June 30, 2022

Botu Linum

The Car & Automotive Devotees

2022 Kia Telluride vs. 2022 Ford Explorer Comparison

5 min read

The 2022 Kia Telluride brings amazing value and ability to the family-friendly SUV space, while the 2022 Ford Explorer offers a choice between sportier gasoline-powered variants or more fuel-efficient hybrid options. Both offer 3-row seating and year-round practicality, but read on to find out which is best for you.

2022 Kia Telluride

2022 Kia Telluride Starting Price: $33,390 | Price yours or View listings near you

Above Average: Plenty of room; well-equipped; loads of standard safety features; excellent warranty.

Below Average: No Wi-Fi hotspot; small glovebox.

Consensus: Spacious, affordable, well-equipped, and well-mannered, the 2022 Kia Telluride has plenty to offer.

2022 Ford Explorer

2021 Ford Explorer

2022 Ford Explorer Starting Price: $33,745 | Price yours or View listings near you

Above Average: Sporty, off-road, and hybrid variants; three rows of seats; standard rear-wheel drive (RWD); optional all-wheel drive (AWD).

Below Average: The third row’s a bit tight; expensive for top trims; plain looks.

Consensus: A 3-row midsize SUV, the 2022 Ford Explorer offers lots of options, from a powerful engine to the luxurious Platinum trim and even a more aggressive off-road version. The third row’s best for smaller passengers, however, and its looks are a bit plain.

Telluride vs. Explorer: Everyone Wins

Kia Telluride

With room for up to eight passengers (and seven in higher trims), the 2022 Kia Telluride has plenty of passenger and cargo space. It offers a wide range of trims, from classy mainstream to value-packed near-luxury. The Telluride has been so good that it’s won both our 2022 Best Buy and Best 3-Row Midsize SUV awards over the past year. For 2022 it gets a larger standard infotainment screen at 10.25 inches and standard navigation. As before, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard fare.

The ride quality is comfortable and agile for the large SUV, and the standard-issue adaptive cruise control with Highway Driving Assist makes long drives easy to manage. The system reads road signs and adjusts the speed as necessary. If you need to do a little off-roading, the Telluride can handle it thanks to its 8 inches of ground clearance and the available AWD system.

Inside is ample space for adults (even in the third row). Seats are easy to access whether you have the captain’s chairs layout or the standard bench seat in the second row, and the seats are stacked stadium style so that everyone in the back can see the road ahead. This year, Driver Talk comes standard, which means you don’t have to scream to be heard in the back rows. A Quiet Mode also turns off the rear speakers when kids are sleeping.

Additionally, the Telluride boasts an impressive suite of standard safety systems. These include forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control with stop and go. Blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, driver-attention warning, rear-occupant alert, and safe exit assist are also included.

Ford Explorer

If there’s one thing the 2022 Ford Explorer offers, it’s variety. Three powertrain choices include a capable turbocharged 4-cylinder, a 400-hp twin-turbo V6, and a hybrid V6. Trim choices are equally comprehensive, with options for captain’s chairs in the second row (reducing seating capacity to six), an off-road-ready Timberline version, and the luxurious and expensive Platinum trim.

Whereas the Telluride can seat up to eight passengers, the Explorer has max seating for seven. As is common with midsize SUVs, the third row is best for smaller children due to its relatively tight legroom. The cabin is comfortable and quiet, although neither the exterior nor the interior design is terribly exciting. Upper trims add such details as red stitching, simulated suede, and, of course, full leather in the top King Ranch and Platinum trims.

Even the base turbocharged 4-cylinder is good with its 300 horsepower offering plenty to keep the Explorer moving, but the twin-turbo V6 in the ST is the one people will be talking about. It’s quick and powerful, with a sport-tuned suspension, optional 21-inch alloys, and stronger brakes. A Timberline version boasts all-terrain tires, standard AWD, limited-slip rear differential, raised suspension, and skid plates.

Standard features include keyless ignition, tri-zone climate control, and an 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, as well as the Co-Pilot360 suite of driver assistance features. Infotainment is via an 8-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto integration, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB ports, satellite radio, and a 6-speaker audio system. Higher trims add more luxury touches, but prices can climb to nearly $60,000.


Optional AWD; standard driver’s assistance features; family-friendly features.

2022 Kia Telluride Benefits

Longer warranty; ample interior space; well-priced even at the top trim; seating for up to 8; standard adaptive cruise control.

2022 Ford Explorer Benefits

More powerful base engine; more engine options; slightly better base fuel economy; available hybrid.

Which One is Right for Me?

The 2022 Kia Telluride fits the bill if you’re in the market for a comfortable, affordable, well-equipped, and somewhat off-road-capable SUV that can carry up to eight passengers and their gear.

The 2022 Ford Explorer’s three rows of seating offer good space for families as long as they don’t need to seat more than seven. With many variants, including a hybrid, there’s something to please nearly everyone.

Ready to buy a Kia Telluride or Ford Explorer? Shop for one on sale now near you

2022 Kia Telluride 2022 Ford Explorer
Popular Powertrains
Engine 3.8-liter V6 2.3-liter turbo I4
Horsepower 291 hp @ 6,000 rpm 300 hp @ 5,500 rpm
Torque 262 lb-ft @ 5,200 rpm 310 lb-ft @ 3,500 rpm
Transmission 8-spd automatic 10-spd automatic
Fuel Economy 23 mpg (20 city/26 hwy) 24 mpg (21 city/28 hwy)
Also Available AWD 3.0-liter turbo V6; 3.3-liter V6 hybrid; AWD
Warranty 5 years/60,000 miles 3 years/36,000 miles
Powertrain warranty 10 years/100,000 miles 5 years/60,000 miles
NHTSA Overall Safety 5 stars n/a
Max Seating Capacity 8 7
Wheelbase 114.2 inches 119.1 inches
Overall Length 196.9 inches 198.8 inches
Width 78.3 inches 78.9 inches
Height 68.9 inches 69.9 inches
Turning Diameter 38.8 feet 39.2 feet
Headroom, Front 40.9 inches 40.7 inches
Headroom, 2nd row 40.2 inches 40.5 inches
Headroom, 3rd row 38.1 inches 38.9 inches
Legroom, Front 41.4 inches 43.0 inches
Legroom, 2nd row 42.4 inches 39.0 inches
Legroom, 3rd row 31.4 inches 32.2 inches
Shoulder Room, Front 61.6 inches 61.8 inches
Shoulder Room, 2nd row 61.2 inches 61.9 inches
Shoulder Room, 3rd Row 55.3 inches 54.6 inches
EPA Passenger Volume 157.1 cubic feet 152.7 cubic feet
EPA Cargo Volume 21.0/46.0/87.0 cubic feet 18.2/47.9/87.8 cubic feet