Notice….we didn’t say Hyundai Genesis….just Genesis. That’s how it is now.
While Genesis may consider its’ prime competitors to be Mercedes’ E Class or BMW’s 5-Series, let’s use Lexus as an example for the moment.
Toyota launched its’ first Lexus almost 30 years ago. Today Lexus rivals any vehicle in terms of luxury and reliability….and they’re gaining in the performance department these days, too.
It’s taken parent company Hyundai less than 10 years to put their premium division, Genesis, in the same ring with the big boys…..and that’s the last time we’ll use the word “Hyundai” here other than to remind you that Hyundai, and sister brand KIA, now fight for top spots in the J. D. Power reliability surveys.
They’ve done so well, in fact, that the parent company recently decided that Genesis deserved to be a completely separate brand….with their own identity and soon to be sold in separate buildings.
Their flagship is the G90…a large 4-door powered by either a twin-turbo V-6 or a 5.0 liter V-8 and priced from just under 70K up into the high 70’s or perhaps low $80’s. Its’ most obvious competitor? Mercedes’ S Class.
We tested the somewhat smaller G 80….still a large, luxurious and roomy vehicle. ( Those of you who may remember the Genesis 2-door coupe….forget it. While a coupe may someday return, the old 2-door was in no way reflective of what Genesis has become today. )
So….what do we have here with the new Genesis G80?
Pretty much following their parent company’s example, a vehicle that stands up to the competition…..for perhaps 5 to 10 thousand less.
And with the Genesis G80, the competition is 4-door luxury / performance sedans. Vehicles, again, including Mercedes E-Class, BMW’s 5, Lexus’ ES, and nameplates like Volvo, Cadillac, Acura, Infiniti ,and….welcome back….Lincoln.
Genesis’ G 80 comes in two versions….let’s call ‘em ”regular” and “Sport”….and your choice of rear-wheel or all-wheel drive.
While most of Genesis’ competition has gone to 2.0 liter turbos for their base powerplants, Genesis has stuck with a traditional six….the standard G80 coming with a 311 HP 3.8 liter engine or an optional 5.0 liter, 420 HP V-8. All come with 8-speed automatics. Window stickers start in the low 40’s for this version.
We got to test their All Wheel Drive “Sport” version…swapping the 3.8 six for a 3.3 liter, 365 HP twin-turbo that also included upgrades in the suspension and brake department….along with an upgraded interior.
And as you’d imagine…or expect…there was little if anything missing.
The G80’s Sport package includes “19 alloys, heated and ventilated leather with very subtle contrasting color, a panoramic sunroof, pretty much every lane-departure / auto-braking / parking alert available these days. Mileage is rated at 17 city and 24 Hwy MPGs….figures that we were able to match or beat with some rare speed-limit driving on a crowded freeway.
On the road, the Sport version doesn’t disappoint. You can accelerate your way past 99 percent of the rest of the folks out there, bring it back down with complete confidence in your brakes, and corner without drama.
While Genesis comes with a 10-year / 100,000 mile powertrain warranty, leasing may prove to be an interesting option, as the Genesis G80 comes with what they call “Service Valet” for three years of 36,000 miles.
It’s a complimentary service that includes the ability for your dealership to remotely monitor any maintenance issues and, if needed, come to you to pick up your vehicle….drop off a loaner…and return your vehicle when ready.
Roadside assistance is covered, along with map updates, three years of no-charge traffic updates…..even overnight accommodations, when necessary.
All this, for a window sticker of under 59 thousand.
Don’t bet against Genesis….or its’ parent company.