The game-changing Kia Telluride is set to be awarded North American Utility Vehicle of the Year at the upcoming 2020 North American Car of the Year Awards in Detroit, beating tough competitors in the saturated SUV segment.
This marks the first time that a Kia model has won an ‘of the year” recognition from the North American Car of the Year (NACTOY) jury. It also caps several awards for the three-row SUV from major consumer and enthusiast publications since the Telluride arrived at dealerships in early 2019.
“We are immensely proud of Telluride capturing North American Utility of the Year,” Kia Motors North America CEO Sean Yoon said. “It solidifies years of effort on behalf of every Kia employee to build vehicles consumers desire and industry experts value. Winning the North American Utility Vehicle of the Year is an honor that marks Kia’s arrival in the top tier of the world’s automotive manufacturers.”
Members of the judging panel picked the Telluride as number one following months of deliberation, which includes test drives, comparisons, and other evaluations. Only all-new or substantially new vehicles that are available at dealerships prior to the announcement of the awards were eligible.
The Kia Telluride prevailed over 12 semi-finalists and three finalists in the utility category. Two of the finalists were the Hyundai Palisade and Lincoln Aviator.
“The Kia Telluride makes owning an SUV look cool while offering the smooth ride and rich interior of a luxury vehicle without the luxury price,” NACTOY Secretary-Treasurer Kirk Bell said.
The Telluride is one of Kia Motors America’s best-selling vehicles, with nearly 60,000 units being sold to customers since the model went on sale. The midsize SUV was specifically conceived, designed, and assembled in the United States and for the American market. It is also the first Kia vehicle to be exported from the U.S.