2021 Genesis GV80 3.5T Prestige

Overview

2021 Genesis GV80 3.5T

The 2021 Genesis GV80 is the first SUV the Korean luxury brand launched late last year. It is vitally important for the long-term success of Hyundai Group’s upward move into the luxury segment. Genesis offers two turbo-engines with four and six cylinders which are a wise-choice.

We drove the range-topping GV80 3.5T Prestige.

Based on the market acceptance and our earlier driving impressions with the G90 and G70 sedans, there is a reason for optimism. Hyundai is a passionate and fast-learning company and we can expect Genesis to become an equal player in the luxury segment. At least gradually.

Engine and Powertrain

The 2021 Genesis GV80 comes with two engine choices: Two turbocharged The 3.5L, V6, turbo-charged engine with smooth and torque moves the car “like a freight train”, as my colleague Dan defines it. But of course, it can’t beat physics – it is a heavy vehicle.  The 8-speed transmission is very good and is a proven platform used in other Hyundai/Kia models in the past. Upshifts/downshifts are fast enough for an SUV, but comfort is the absolute priority.

 

The smooth and powerful 3.5L, V6 engine with turbocharging delivers 375 horsepower and 391 lb-ft of torque

The 265/40R22 tires with aluminum wheels are standard in the range-topping Prestige model

Interior

Genesis offers a high-quality, impressive interior that meets expectations in the luxury class

The 2021 Genesis GV80 impresses instantly with high-quality materials and attention to detail. The look and layout are impressive. The padded centre console provides a soft landing space for the driver’s right knee. We loved the big, 12.3″ infotainment screen in particular. The high-resolution screen is impressive with a well-defined easy to look menu. However, the rotary bezel with a concave touchpad in the centre looks impressive yet less practical and somewhat distracting. There is no input lag. The digital instrument cluster works well without any palpable input lag.

 

The digital instrument cluster is easy to read and uncomplicated

The infotainment screen is easy to read and has a high resolution. Controls could be better

The video feed in the instrument cluster is activated with the turn signal

The video feed in the left or right side of the instrument cluster (depending on the turning direction), which pops up when the turn signal is activated, is a nice and convenient feature.

The press buttons have a good haptic feeling. However, familiarity with other Hyundai models can be felt. This is a slight minus for Genesis in developing its own identity as a luxury brand.

 

The 12.3″ digital instrument cluster is one of the most advanced you can get.
Wide and comfortable front seats meet expectations

 

Despite its larger appearance, the GV80 is primarily a two-row SUV. The third row is optional and standard with our range-topping tester. The front seats are wide and very comfortable. It is easy to find the perfect seating position and visibility. So are the second-row seats. The rear doors are wide and open with a wide-angle enabling easy access. But, the third row is tight and best for children when it comes to long drives.

The manually adjustable second-row seats are very comfortable and easily accessible due to wide doors.

The third row is best for children when it comes to long drives

Cargo capacity is increased from 328L to 991L when the third row is not used.

When the third row is not used, you have ample luggage room. Otherwise, the cargo space is reduced significantly. Access to the third row is a bit cramped and best suited for kids.

It surprised us, that Genesis does not offer power-adjustable head restraints, especially when you have massage function for the seats.

The second-row seats are manually adjustable. While the third row is power-adjustable, it is interesting.

Driving Impressions

Comfort – this is where it gets tricky. Of course, the suspension is tuned really well, it absorbs the bumps smoothly, it definitely feels like a big luxury SUV, but still not on par with high-end German competition especially on road imperfections, but it is very close.

Where it falls behind compared to German luxury SUV’s is the tire/road noise. Granted, it was running on winter tires, but still, this is an area where they can improve.

With the 22″ wheels absorbing the road imperfections on cratered Toronto streets occasionally turned to a less-than-perfect experience. On the highway, though the comfortable drive was near perfect. We also loved the adaptive cruise control which enables a semi-autonomous driving experience. Subjectively speaking, The Hyundai Group already gained some significant experience for tomorrow’s autonomous driving. The tire and road noise is still not up to the standards of German competitors. We are confident that Genesis will improve in the next generation if not at the first midcycle refresh.

Fuel Consumption

Fuel consumption is 14.5L which is not too bad considering its size and weight. Fuel consumption got better over the years, I remember having the same fuel consumption with Kia Stinger, which was a much lighter and smaller vehicle compared to this

Pricing and Specifications

The 2021 Genesis GV80 is competitively priced. “if they are looking for the ultimate luxury and best in class regardless of the price tag, this may not be the best option”

The Genesis pricing policy is quite straightforward. Even the basic model is very well equipped with all important safety and luxury features.

For the G V80, Genesis offers two, turbocharged, gasoline engines, with 2.5L and 3.5L engines. The smaller engine comes in two versions; Select (MSRP 64,500) and Advanced (MSRP 70,000). The bigger, 3.5L engine is sold as Advanced (MSRP 80,000) and Prestige. The top-of-the-line Prestige trim which we tested has an MSRP of 85,000. For this price, you get everything technically available in today’s luxury market.

For further details, please visit: http://www.genesis.ca

Conclusion

With the new 2021 GV80 Genesis is on the right track to carve out a market share in the very competitive and German-dominated luxury class. Despite the significant price advantage over Mercedes, BMW, Audi and Lexus, it will take some time the attain the same level of recognition. In the meantime, it is important how today’s brand new vehicles age lets’s say over the next five to seven years. Genesis does not have to wait long to attract price-sensitive luxury buyers.

For our review about the flagship G90 sedan: https://www.autoandroad.com/2018/09/genesis-g90-v8-5-0/

For our review about the flagship G90 sedan:

https://www.autoandroad.com/2020/11/perfect-day-with-the-2021-genesis-g70/

Article By Varol McKars

Photo Credits: Varol McKars, Burak McKars, Dan Gunay & Serdar Guvenal