2021 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2021 Kia Telluride Comparison in Columbus, OH

Whether you have a lot of cargo to haul or you have a large family, a three-row SUV is the perfect way to get everyone and everything comfortably from point A to point B. The 2021 Volkswagen Atlas is a perfect example: spacious, versatile, and sophisticated with powerful performance and the latest in cutting-edge technology. This is why the 2021 Atlas was named the Family Car of the Year by cars.com for the second year in a row. To show you why we think the 2021 Atlas should be your next family vehicle, we've put together a head-to-head comparison below against one of its rivals, the 2021 Kia Telluride. When you've finished reading, we invite you to come to our showroom at Byers Volkswagen to see the mighty VW Atlas in person.

Volkswagen Atlas wheels

2021 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2021 Kia Telluride Design & Utility

The 2021 Volkswagen Atlas has undergone a refresh for the new model year, including aggressively-styled front and rear bumpers, a bold three-bar grille, and a sporty front fascia. All of these new elements combine to give the largest vehicle in the VW fleet a new level of sophistication that the 2021 Kia Telluride just can't match. While both SUVs offer standard 18" alloy wheels, power-operated, heated side mirrors, and an available panoramic sunroof, that's where the similarities end. Only the 2021 Atlas can boast standard rain-sensing wipers for an automatic clear view of the road and standard roof rails for extra cargo space. If you're looking for roof rails on the 2021 Telluride, you'll have to jump up trim levels and pay more.

Speaking of cargo space, the 2021 Atlas is the clear cut winner. While the Telluride has almost the exact amount of space behind the rear seat, once you fold down rear seats, the Atlas expands to offer more generous cargo areas. Drop the rear seat down for 55.5 cubic feet of space or both rows of seats to open up to a massive 96.8 cubic feet. Folding down both rows of seats in the Telluride will only net you 87 cubic feet of space.

Volkswagen Atlas tailgate

2021 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2021 Kia Telluride Comfort & Convenience

The 2021 Telluride may seat up to 8, one more than the 2021 Atlas, but the Atlas offers more overall headroom and more third row legroom, 33.4 inches compared to the Telluride's 31.4 inches. Both SUVs offer available second row captain's chairs that take the occupancy of each down by one. A dual-zone climate control for all three rows is standard fare on the 2021 Atlas and a tri-zone climate control is available on the higher trim levels. The 2021 Telluride only offers a dual-zone on the higher trim levels. Other features offered by the Atlas that are not available on the 2021 Kia Telluride include keyless entry and rear heated seats.

Staying connected to the outside world is always easy and convenient in the 2021 VW Atlas, thanks to the standard MIB II infotainment system. You have two sizes of touchscreen displays to choose from while the Telluride only offers one but both offer standard Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ capability, Bluetooth® for audio streaming and hands-free calling, and available wireless charging. Only the Atlas, however, will please the audiophile in you by offering the available Fender® premium 12-speaker audio system for an extraordinary musical experience.

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Volkswagen Atlas performance specs

2021 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2021 Kia Telluride Performance

The 2021 Telluride only has one engine across all trim levels and while it may generate more horsepower than the two engines offered by the 2021 Atlas, the Volkswagen SUV still has the advantage. The base engine of the Atlas is compact, which aids in a more rapid warm-up that helps improve efficiency. Plus the Atlas comes standard with 4Motion® all-wheel drive, a feature that's optional on the Telluride for an extra $2,000. Also when equipped with the all-wheel drive system, the 2021 Telluride only manages 19 MPG in the city while the Atlas gets up to 21 city MPG. And the 2021 Atlas comes with Active Control, a feature that lets you select your driving mode based on road conditions, whether it's raining, snowing, or you're taking an off-road adventure.

Volkswagen Atlas safety features

2021 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2021 Kia Telluride Safety

Both the 2021 Atlas and the 2021 Telluride are very similar when it comes to safety features and driver assist technology. They were both awarded a five-star safety crash test rating by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration but only the Atlas offers innovative safety features like the Automatic Post-Crash Braking System. This engages the brakes when the vehicle detects a collision to help reduce the risk of further injury or vehicle damage. The Atlas also offers the standard Intelligent Crash Response System, a feature that, in the event of a collision, shuts off the fuel pump, unlocks the doors, and turns on the hazard lights automatically.


Both the 2021 Atlas and the 2021 Telluride offer a wide array of driver assist technology to make your drive easier and safer. Forward Collision Warning, Automated Emergency Braking, Rear Traffic Alert, and Blind Spot Monitor are standard on both SUVs. Available Traffic Jam Assist and Dynamic Road Sign Display are features you can only find on the 2021 Atlas.

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2021 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2021 Kia Telluride Summary

With less than $600 separating the starting MSRPs of these two three-row SUVs, it comes down to which vehicle best suits the needs of your family. With better fuel efficiency, the latest in technology, and a more modern and spacious cabin, it's obvious that the 2021 Volkswagen Atlas is the better value over the 2021 Kia Telluride. To see this amazing SUV in person, we invite you to stop into our showroom at Byers Volkswagen or contact us to set up a hassle-free test drive. We look forward to getting you behind the wheel of a new 2011 Atlas today.

2021 Volkswagen Atlas2021 Kia Telluride
$32,750Starting MSRP*$32,190
235Standard Horsepower291
258Standard Torque (lb-ft)262
21 MPG City / 24 MPG HighwayFuel Economy20 MPG City / 26 MPG Highway
96.8 Cubic FeetMaximum Cargo Volume87.0 Cubic Feet
5,000 lbsMaximum Towing Capacity5,000 lbs
StandardDual-Zone Automatic Climate ControlAvailable Upgrade
StandardLED HeadlightsAvailable Upgrade
StandardPre-Collision Automatic BrakingStandard
StandardBlind Spot MonitorStandard

*Prices exclude destination, taxes, title, other options, and dealer charges. Dealer sets actual price.