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    1. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 11:10 AM #1
      https://www.motortrend.com/news/3-ro...mparison-test/

      3-Row Midsize SUV Comparison Test: Kia Telluride vs. Toyota Highlander vs. Ford Explorer vs. Honda Pilot and Five Other SUVs
      The 3-row midsize SUV takes its place as the modern-era family-hauler.
      Miguel Cortina
      Mar 23, 2020

      The 21st Century has seen Americans ditching minivans for midsized three-row SUVs. In the last decade and a half, about a dozen minivans have been discontinued as the family-hauler of choice. And in the past three years, new names like Atlas, Ascent, Telluride, and Palisade have joined the hyper-competitive three-row SUV segment.

      I grew up surrounded by minivans because our family of six required a family hauler that was spacious and comfortable. And we made good use of them. A big family like ours needed a vehicle with plenty of space for six and their gear; a minivan was the only option. Space, safety, and reliability were at the top of my parents' list of must-have transportation features. SUVs were for off-roading, not the road trip or morning school run.

      But now, SUVs have evolved and taken over the carpooling and road-trip game. And there are so many to SUVs choose from. So MotorTrend will answer for you: Who makes the best midsize three-row SUV for a big family?


      It's worth a full read, but I'll spoil the results for the non-clickers...

      3-Row SUVs: Best and Worst

      9th Place Volkswagen Atlas
      It's plenty spacious but has a ride that will make kids carsick. VW needs to improve its family SUV's suspension.

      8th Place Ford Explorer
      It's new to market, but the Ford seems like it was built ages ago. Its price ladder doesn't speak well to value.

      7th Place Mazda CX-9
      Great power, ride, and handling, but that's not why folks buy people haulers. It's short of the traits that make a true family vehicle.

      6th Place Chevrolet Traverse
      A strong SUV just three years ago, the Traverse has suffered at the hands of the newer players in the segment. A rental car feel at a high price.

      5th Place Toyota Highlander
      The segment sales leader arrived with a cool new design, but a cramped third row and a thrashy powertrain hurt.

      4th Place Hyundai Palisade
      A smart value, the Palisade raises eyebrows at school plays and soccer practice. Ride is stiff for kids, though.

      3rd Place Honda Pilot
      The smartly packaged Pilot scores highly with its responsive suspension and direct steering feel.

      2nd Place Subaru Ascent
      It's oddly styled, but once you see how spacious and capable it is, the Ascent checks many boxes. Plus: value.

      1st Place Kia Telluride
      Eye-catching design, an elegant interior, and excellent value. The Telluride doesn't disappoint. A class above.


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    3. Member
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      03-23-2020 11:54 AM #2
      I can think of a few posters who REALLY aren't going to like this, and I CAN'T WAIT for them to chime in with the spin

    4. Member
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      03-23-2020 12:11 PM #3
      I work with the Koreans and have nothing but disdain for the management of their auto brands, but I must say the Telluride is fantastic.
      Current: 2015 Chevy SS 6MT
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    5. Member vwpiloto's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 12:13 PM #4
      Ford needs to fix the Explorer asap. It's too critical of a vehicle to be getting hammered so badly by virtually every article and video made about it.

    6. Member The_Real_Stack's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 12:19 PM #5
      Shocked the Pilot scored that high, it is oooold.

      My choice would be the Highlander, I don’t think there is anything wrong with it’s 3.5L and I don’t care about 3rd row comfort for kids on short hauls. Give me (my wife) the Platinum version and I think we’d be good.
      Quote Originally Posted by Volkl View Post
      My wife wanted a SUV with a manual transmission. I suggested a Wrangler, she said no way, too masculine

    7. 03-23-2020 12:27 PM #6
      Lol, the Mazda hs great power, ride and handling, but that's not why people by haulers... Then the Honda gets 3rd with essentially the same praise.

    8. Member CostcoPizza's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 12:29 PM #7
      I've never been in the CX-9 -- is it as compromised as they say?

      Quote Originally Posted by iheartphaetons View Post
      I work with the Koreans and have nothing but disdain for the management of their auto brands, but I must say the Telluride is fantastic.
      Can you elaborate?

    9. Member TangoRed's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 12:35 PM #8
      Quote Originally Posted by shimps1 View Post
      Lol, the Mazda hs great power, ride and handling, but that's not why people by haulers... Then the Honda gets 3rd with essentially the same praise.
      I'm sure if you read the review you'll get some context behind those judgments. They're essentially saying that's all the Mazda has going for it while the Pilot has all the critical family friendly specs (i.e. large 3rd row) plus it's good to drive.

      I typically dislike MT reviews but this comparo looks about right.
      Quote Originally Posted by Doug Butabi View Post
      And on the tenth day of the two thousand fifteenth year, TCL finds out about rich people.

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      03-23-2020 12:45 PM #9
      If the Korean twins could get their drivetrain updated, they'd have a real winner on their hands. Hilarious that the Atlas didn't even hit 100 mph in the testing.
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      03-23-2020 01:01 PM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by TangoRed View Post
      I'm sure if you read the review you'll get some context behind those judgments. They're essentially saying that's all the Mazda has going for it while the Pilot has all the critical family friendly specs (i.e. large 3rd row) plus it's good to drive.

      I typically dislike MT reviews but this comparo looks about right.
      Yeah, honda has always been great with packaging and that's still paying dividends it looks like. I'm still surprised it did as well given the newer competition though. Also surprised the Toyota isn't more competitive. Korean twins are still the belles of the ball which shouldn't surprise anyone, good for them though.

    12. Member
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      03-23-2020 01:02 PM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by iheartphaetons View Post
      I work with the Koreans and have nothing but disdain for the management of their auto brands, but I must say the Telluride is fantastic.
      I echo this statement completely. After working closely with their auto industry, I will not buy a Korean-branded automobile, regardless of how great the Telluride may be.
      Quote Originally Posted by Triumph View Post
      That's like a child saying, "I'm going to swing my fists and walk towards you, and if you get hit, it's your fault!"

    13. Senior Member
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      03-23-2020 01:13 PM #12
      Only surprise is the Atlas placing dead last, even behind the (not competitive) new Explorer and Traverse (!!).

    14. Member
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      03-23-2020 01:38 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by kaz02a4 View Post
      I echo this statement completely. After working closely with their auto industry, I will not buy a Korean-branded automobile, regardless of how great the Telluride may be.
      I'm intrigued. Can you elaborate?

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      03-23-2020 01:43 PM #14
      I really need an Ascent.

    16. Member TangoRed's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 01:48 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by Charlie84 View Post
      I'm intrigued. Can you elaborate?
      The Korean management style is not for the faint of heart, and that extends outside the auto industry. Very "do what the boss says, sacrifice everything to hit these goals" in my limited experience.
      Quote Originally Posted by Doug Butabi View Post
      And on the tenth day of the two thousand fifteenth year, TCL finds out about rich people.

    17. Member
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      03-23-2020 01:49 PM #16
      Quote Originally Posted by kaz02a4 View Post
      I echo this statement completely. After working closely with their auto industry, I will not buy a Korean-branded automobile, regardless of how great the Telluride may be.
      Quote Originally Posted by iheartphaetons View Post
      I work with the Koreans and have nothing but disdain for the management of their auto brands, but I must say the Telluride is fantastic.
      It seems that the Koreans would put their US CEO on blasts so that seat had been a hot for some time (Hyundai losing John Krafcik now at Google/Waymo was not great IMO). It seems to have been more stabilized nowadays. I'm looking at Hyundai's current structure, and it seems that a lot of Toyota alum are in high positions there (Mark Del Rosso formerly Audi & Toyota and Brian Smith nee Lexus/Toyota).

      OTOH, the Pilot finished pretty high. I think the HL and Palisade would finish better. Honda SUVs lately have been kinda meh.
      Last edited by got-rice; 03-23-2020 at 01:53 PM.

    18. Senior Member
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      03-23-2020 01:58 PM #17
      It's a shame that the seemingly promising new platform Ford developed for the Explorer/Aviator is such a letdown in Explorer form (and not just due to the atrocious build/QC issues of the early production cars). And pricey, to boot.

      Surprised that, with Ford's dramatic shift away from passenger car production, they couldn't engineer in more quality to the Explorer.

    19. Senior Member 2.0T_Convert's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 02:03 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by TangoRed View Post
      The Korean management style is not for the faint of heart, and that extends outside the auto industry. Very "do what the boss says, sacrifice everything to hit these goals" in my limited experience.
      Wait are we talking about Amazon or Hyundai?

    20. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 02:13 PM #19
      Quote Originally Posted by Numbersix View Post
      It's a shame that the seemingly promising new platform Ford developed for the Explorer/Aviator is such a letdown in Explorer form (and not just due to the atrocious build/QC issues of the early production cars). And pricey, to boot.
      TCL was all aflutter over the RWD-based SUV platform but it landed with a dull thud.

    21. Member adrew's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 02:19 PM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by Sporin View Post
      TCL was all aflutter over the RWD-based SUV platform but it landed with a dull thud.
      They need to make one with a FX4 off-road package, knobby tires and a low-range transfer case. They should capitalize on the longitudinal powertrain a little!!
      Improving the signal-to-noise ratio

    22. 03-23-2020 02:29 PM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by Numbersix View Post
      Only surprise is the Atlas placing dead last, even behind the (not competitive) new Explorer and Traverse (!!).
      It some other recent review with all the same cars the Atlas placed third. People who buy cars based on comparison reviews are true sheep.

    23. Member
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      03-23-2020 02:43 PM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by Charlie84 View Post
      I'm intrigued. Can you elaborate?
      Quote Originally Posted by TangoRed View Post
      The Korean management style is not for the faint of heart, and that extends outside the auto industry. Very "do what the boss says, sacrifice everything to hit these goals" in my limited experience.
      I work for a tier 1 supplying the Korean automakers. It's based on the culture: proud individuals who rely heavily on experience, age, and wisdom. Many times we run into an emotional blockade that flies in the face of anything rooted in logic. Additionally, the automakers are used to bleeding their own local Korean suppliers for cost, lead time, etc. When they work with an international company (like mine) they are appalled by our cost and lead time for certain things.

      Oh, and they aren't afraid to escalate things to top management quicker than you can say "there's no way they will escalate that".
      Quote Originally Posted by Triumph View Post
      That's like a child saying, "I'm going to swing my fists and walk towards you, and if you get hit, it's your fault!"

    24. Member The_Real_Stack's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 02:51 PM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by kaz02a4 View Post
      I work for a tier 1 supplying the Korean automakers. It's based on the culture: proud individuals who rely heavily on experience, age, and wisdom. Many times we run into an emotional blockade that flies in the face of anything rooted in logic.
      Bro. I'm no fan of the Koreans or their brand, but....have you ever worked with...Germans?


      Source: spent 26 months doing this at Siemens.
      Quote Originally Posted by Volkl View Post
      My wife wanted a SUV with a manual transmission. I suggested a Wrangler, she said no way, too masculine

    25. Member
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      03-23-2020 02:57 PM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by The_Real_Stack View Post
      Bro. I'm no fan of the Koreans or their brand, but....have you ever worked with...Germans?


      Source: spent 26 months doing this at Siemens.
      Yup, in the weeds right now with a couple big German OEMs. They are incredibly demanding, but compared to our Korean friends, the Germans are the saner of the two.
      Quote Originally Posted by Triumph View Post
      That's like a child saying, "I'm going to swing my fists and walk towards you, and if you get hit, it's your fault!"

    26. Senior Member chucchinchilla's Avatar
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      03-23-2020 03:08 PM #25
      Pretty sure every company has it's flaws in culture, ethics, etc. according to it's employees.
      Quote Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
      This forum is more and more of an embarrassment every day...

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