Test Drive: The Future of the SUV

test drive

Buying an electric vehicle may strike you as years away. The truth is there are some appealing EV models out there right now – like the Hyundai Kona Electric.

The battery-powered version of this subcompact crossover SUV offers lively acceleration with 201 horsepower on tap, a lot for a vehicle this size.

More importantly, the EPA estimates the range at 258 miles on a full charge. While the gas-powered model may take you a little further on a fill-up, our experience showed this electric powertrain should get you through a couple of days before topping it off with electrons.

On the road, a low center of gravity and well-tuned suspension make the Kona Electric enjoyable to drive even on a curvy stretch of asphalt. Adjustable
regenerative braking helps recharge the battery pack while driving and brings the vehicle to a stop simply by lifting your foot off the accelerator.

With all those details, the Hyundai Kona Electric could easily introduce EVs to a wider audience today.

Starting Price: $33,550

MPGe (city/highway): 134 city / 106 highway

Safety: N/A

2023 telluride

If the term SUV conjures images of rugged, four-wheel-drive models on backcountry trails, the restyled Kia Telluride will surprise you.

The mechanical bits of this sophisticated midsize crossover include a 291-horsepower, 3.8-liter V-6 that delivers strong acceleration. Front-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive is available as an option.

Towing capacity of 5,500 pounds and a nicely tuned suspension make for an excellent road-trip companion.

Inside, the spacious eight-passenger cabin is done up in high-quality materials. Top trim levels, like the SX model we drove, could hold their own against luxury crossovers costing thousands more.

Seats offer adult-size comfort, even in the third row. Folding those rear seats down gets you a healthy 87 cubic feet of cargo room.

Add an impressive list of high-tech features and options and the Kia Telluride will change your mind about what an SUV can be.

Starting Price: $35,690

MPG (AWD): 18 city / 24 highway

Safety: N/A

Looking for a new ride? Check out more car reviews at AAA.com/TestDrive.

Visit AAA’s Electric Vehicle platform for more information on these cars of the future.

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