The Telluride, Kia’s newest and largest SUV, has just been launched and is officially on sale now in the UAE for a starting price of Dh119,000.

Designed at Kia’s studio in the US and named after a ski-centric town in Colorado, the Telluride will battle against some pretty established competitors such as the Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot, Volkswagen Teramont and Ford Explorer but having seen the handsome Kia up close during the launch event at the Oberoi Hotel in Dubai it sure looks prepared to take them all on.

Promising bags of comfort and power not to mention a plethora of safety tech, there is a lot going for the newbie – not least its bold aesthetics. Thankfully, Kia hasn’t gone down the tired, swoopy route and instead has blessed the Telluride with a bold and boxy design which gives the model a distinct identity and which will, no doubt, allow it to stand out in the busy segment. Even the base LX model rides on 20in wheels, packs LED daytime running lights and gets lots of chrome trim all over the muscular body while the top spec SX – which is available for Dh170,000 - adds goodies such as dual sunroof and self-leveling rear suspension.

Inside, the top spec three-row Telluride - available with captain chairs that recline and boast heating and ventilation functions (it can be had with either seven or eight seats) looks decidedly premium what with all materials used not only very stylish but of a high quality too. The seats are wrapped in supple Nappa leather (available in several colours) while the dash gets very realistic faux wood trim and plenty of chrome detailing giving it a luxurious but not pretentious appearance. It is packed with tech and kit too; some of the highlights include a huge 10.25in infotainment system, 7.0in LCD display in the instrument cluster, wireless charger, 10-way power driver’s seat, an auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink, a 10-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, power tailgate and mood lighting with 64 colours. It’s loaded with safety systems and includes lane keeping assist, forward collision-avoidance assist, a blind-spot view monitor, forward park distance warning, driver attention warning and a surround view monitor.

Power comes from a 3.8-litre V6 making 291 horses and 355Nm of torque and is mated to an eight-speed automatic that can be had with an optional all-wheel drive system (it has several drive modes including Eco, Comfort, Sport, Smart, Mud and Sand).

With consumers continuing to move to large family haulers and carmakers responding in kind with new models, Kia’s latest looks like it ticks all of the boxes and has been competitively priced to make an impact in the segment. We’ll be driving the Telluride in the coming weeks so look out for our full review soon!