Kia Motors has come a long way since the days when its cars struggled to keep up with rivals in their respective segments. Today, together with its sister brand Hyundai, the Korean carmaker builds some of the best equipped cars in their class, and caters to various segments of the market with its range of models. While it had the saloon, crossover, hatchback and mid-size SUV classes covered, one big hole remained in its product line-up. It was the lack of a large SUV, which proved a disadvantage in markets such as the US and the Middle East. With the recently launched Telluride, Kia has addressed this shortcoming, and the largest model in the automaker’s portfolio is coming to the UAE in a couple of months.

Designed in the brand’s US design centre, the Telluride can seat up to eight occupants, and is powered by a 3.8-litre V6, which mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox, puts out 291 horsepower and 355Nm of torque. Featuring a strong, rigid body structure with a monocoque shell made of 59.4 per cent advanced high-strength steel, and self-leveling rear suspension, the Telluride offers a choice of four drive modes – Smart, Eco, Sport and Comfort.  In addition to these, there are two driver selectable settings, Snow and AWD Lock, for specific driving conditions.

The available active on-demand all-wheel drive system delivers 100 per cent power to the front wheels in “Eco” and “Smart” mode, 80 per cent to the front and 20 to the back in “Comfort” and “Snow” modes and splits the power 65:35 between front and back in Sport mode. Meanwhile, “Lock” mode delivers power evenly to all four wheels.

Being the brand’s flagship, it expectedly is packed with with technology features including Blind Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance Assist, Lane Following Assist, Safe Exit Assist, Highway Driving Assist, Head-Up Display and Rear Occupant Alert among others. It also boasts 7 airbags including dual front advanced air bags, dual front seat-mounted side air bags, side curtain air bags with rollover sensor, driver's side knee air bag).

Assembled at Kia’s manufacturing facility in West Point, Georgia, the Telluride’s pricing will be announced closer to its launch in the region.