The Kia Telluride has been named one of three finalists for the 2020 North American Utility Vehicle of the Year.
Assembled in West Point, Georgia, the Telluride was one of 12 semi-finalists in the utility category. The NACTOY jurors spend months driving the new vehicles throughout the year. To be eligible, vehicles must be all-new or substantially new and must be available at dealerships within a reasonable time frame from the announcement of the awards, which will take place on January 13.
“The Telluride is the first Kia vehicle designed specifically for the U.S. market and the impact it has made while reintroducing the Kia brand to Americans is nothing short of incredible,” said Michael Cole, president of Kia Motors America. “Demand for Telluride continues to outpace supply 10 months after our flagship SUV first arrived in showrooms, and we are honored that Kia has been named a finalist for the prestigious North American Utility Vehicle of the Year award.”
The Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia plant produces 340,000 vehicles a year. In addition to the Telluride, the plant also produces the Sorento CUV and the Optima sedan. Since going on sale earlier this year, nearly 50,000 Tellurides have been sold and it is the first Kia vehicle to be exported from the United States. Its markets outside the U.S. include Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean and Pacific nations.
In mid-November 2019, Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia celebrated its 10th anniversary of vehicle production. KMMG is the Korean company’s third manufacturing plant overseas. The plant’s current annual production target for the Telluride is 60,000 units but with the vehicle’s popularity, that target number is expected to increase to 80,000 units.