About two and a half years after the concept’s debut in Detroit, the (mostly) production 2020 Kia Telluride has been revealed in New York for Fashion Week. The odd location for the reveal has to do with a partnership with fashion designer Brandon Maxwell who got Kia to donate to his childhood school district in Marfa, Texas, as part of the deal to display the SUV at the show. It has also been customized to fit Maxwell’s Texas-themed line of fashion for spring and summer of 2019.
Although the production SUV is partly obscured by custom features such as the off-road bumpers, skid plates, auxiliary lights, ladder and spare tire, this is still our best look yet at the SUV. There’s clearly a lot of influence from the old concept, but there’s also been quite a bit of compromise for production. It’s a clean design that’s still pretty squared off. The headlight and grille design borrow heavily from the concept, and the taillights are pulled right from it. It’s much taller now and more rounded. The rear hatch isn’t upright and vertical anymore, the front fascia has been given an arc that softens it, and the proportions between the headlights and grille seem like they may still be in flux.
Kia is still keeping many of the technical details under wraps. The company says that the Telluride will have seating for up to 8 passengers, and that it’s a few inches longer and wider than the current largest crossover in its line, the 7-passenger Sorento. It will also have a V6 under the hood. Availability and pricing still have yet to be announced, but we expect it to go on sale early next year. The crossover will be assembled at Kia’s factory in Georgia.