Whether you have a big family or a lot of cargo to carry around Danvers, MA, a 3-row SUV has your back. So, you'll want to be sure to consider models like the 2021 Subaru Ascent or the 2021 Kia Telluride for your drives in and around Wakefield and Reading.

With an ample towing capacity, powerful handling capabilities, and efficient powertrains, both these active SUVs are a great choice. However, you'll want to pick the one that's the better fit for you.

To help you decide, the team at Ira Subaru compared the Ascent vs. Telluride. You can find out what we learned by reading our comparison.

Subaru Ascent vs Kia Telluride Quick Facts


2021 Subaru Ascent

2021 Kia Telluride

Max. Seating Capacity



All-Wheel Drive (AWD)



Max. Towing Capacity

5,000 pounds

5,000 pounds

EPA-estimated MPG (with AWD)

21 city/27 highway MPG

19 city/24 highway MPG

Performance and Handling: 2021 Subaru Ascent vs Kia Telluride

We know you have places to go and people to see, so you'll need an SUV that's ready to hit the road, whatever the weather. With an All-Wheel Drive (AWD) system, both the Subaru Ascent and the Kia Telluride help you take on difficult terrain with ease, whether you're driving through snow, gravel, and dirt, or cruising along a dry highway.


2021 Subaru Ascent

2021 Kia Telluride

All-Wheel Drive



Max Towing Capacity

5,000 pounds

5,000 pounds


277 lb-ft

262 lb-ft

 As you can see above, the Subaru Ascent comes standard with Symmetrical AWD, while the Kia Telluride requires an upgrade before AWD capabilities are available.

Still, we like that both SUVs deliver plenty of torque to help you tow up to 5,000 pounds when properly equipped, ideal when taking a boat to the ocean or traveling out to the trail with an ATV or two in tow.

However, with 15 lb-ft more torque output, the Ascent may be able to get moving with more ease than the Telluride, especially with a trailer in tow or when traversing muddy or snowy terrain.

Ascent vs Telluride MPG

Now, when it comes to fill-ups, the Subaru will probably take you farther between pit stops on your next road thrip than the Kia, as you can see in the table below:

EPA-estimated Fuel Economy

2021 Subaru Ascent

2021 Kia Telluride

City MPG

21 MPG

19 MPG

Highway MPG

27 MPG

24 MPG

When equipped with AWD, EPA estimates put the Subaru Ascent at 21 city and 27 highway MPG. Compare this to an EPA-estimated 19 city and 24 highway MPG for the Kia Telluride when equipped with AWD.

The difference may be in the transmission. Both SUVs have an automatic transmission that provides smooth, automatic shifts while you focus on driving. They also both include a standard manual shift mode that lets you optimize your performance even more when you're travelling through especially tricky conditions.

The Ascent, however, has a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) that has a history of improving efficiency. It does away with the set gears of a traditional automatic transmission, instead allowing for nearly infinite, optimized shifts between the upper and lower limits.

So, with its traditional 8-speed automatic transmission, the Kia may have you exiting the highway more often to fill up.

Will You Drive the Subaru Ascent or the Kia Telluride?

Now that you know how the 2021 Subaru Ascent and the Kia Telluride compare, which one will you drive around Wakefield, Reading, and Danvers, MA? If you like what the Subaru offers, contact the team at Ira Subaru and we'll put you behind the wheel.

Contact us to test drive the Ascent today!

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Ira Subaru

97A Andover Street
Directions Danvers, MA 01923

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