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Kia Telluride could get off-road-focused trim

by Ronan Glon

Kia wants to make the Telluride rugged.

The 2020 Kia Telluride introduced at the 2019 Detroit auto show is a family-oriented, three-row SUV. You're more likely to see one in the Target parking lot than on a trail in Moab, Utah. Kia wants to bring out the Telluride's rugged side, however.

"We're definitely interested in something along those lines, either for a trim level or accessories in the future," replied Tom Kearns, the Telluride's designer, when asked by Motor Trend about the possibility of releasing an off-road-friendly model.

Kia showed what a more rugged-looking Telluride could look like with four concept cars unveiled at the SEMA show. Kearns stopped short of revealing whether the off-road-friendly model would borrow styling cues from them, or if it would go in a less aggressive direction. He also didn't specify when the variant will appear.

At launch, the Telluride will boast a 3.8-liter V6 engine. Other engine options -- including the 3.3-liter V6 from the Stinger -- will not be offered, according to Kearns.

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