Launching a new luxury car brand takes courage, determination and deep pockets. However, Hyundai is certain that over time, its Genesis brand will spread its wings and become a desirable alternative to German luxury companies. Or at least, Lexus, Infiniti and Acura.
To make the launch of Genesis even more difficult, Koreans will not introduce an SUV to their product line until next year. For now, there are three sedans, including the compact G70 , the intermediate G80 and the large G90 .
If the 2018 Genesis G80 seems familiar to us, it’s because Hyundai was selling it as the second generation of the Genesis in 2015 and 2016. For 2018, a new Sport version is added, equipped with the 3.3-liter V6 twin-turbo builder who develops 365 horses and a couple of 376 lb-ft. It comes with an eight-speed automatic transmission and a full-wheel drive. Until now, it’s an interesting product.
It’s probably the best engine available in the 2018 Genesis G80. The 3.8 Luxury and 3.8 Technology liveries get a 311 horsepower V6, while the 5.0 Ultimate is equipped with a 420 horsepower V8. Two good engines, no doubt, but the biturbo gives the car a more dynamic character, with a beautiful sound and a lot of low-end torque.
No, it does not compare to a BMW 5 Series or a Maserati Ghibli , but for someone looking for a mid-size luxury sedan without a decidedly sporty driving dynamics, the 2018 Genesis G80 will do the trick. The Sport version gets a recalibrated suspension and oversized brakes, while its HTRAC all-wheel drive offers a torque distribution further favoring the rear wheels when the Sport mode is activated. Maximum engine torque is between 1,300 and 4,500 rpm, meaning fast take-offs and muscular ups and downs.
We saw an average of 10.7 L / 100 km aboard the G80 Sport, which is not bad at all, even though super gasoline is required. The eight-speed automatic transmission works like a charm, with smooth climbs and – when the Sport mode is engaged – quick demotions.
We love what 2018 Genesis G80 has done with the appearance of the sports car. Dark chrome trims, smoked taillights, four exhaust tips, rear bumper diffuser and 19-inch graphite wheels accentuate the G80’s sleek look .
Like the body, the interior of the sedan is not breathtaking, but is carefully finished well anyway. Our test car was dressed in two-tone, black and gray nappa leather upholstery, with contrasting copper stitching and faux-carbon fiber appliqués on the dashboard and door panels. Silver trim is spread across the cabin, but in general, the design is not over-the-top.
There are a lot of buttons on the console and on the center board, but at least the features of the air conditioning system and the multimedia system menus are easily accessible. The interface includes a 9.2-inch touchscreen with modern graphics, Apple CarPlay integration and Android Auto is standard, and the command dial on the console is not too difficult to use while driving. The 900-watt Lexicon audio system offers beautiful sound with 17 speakers.
The central rear passenger will have to deal with a transmission tunnel between his legs and a firm seat cushion, but otherwise, there is ample space for all other occupants. The driver gets 16 electric adjustments to find the best driving position, while the front passenger gets a 12-way power seat.
There are no Genesis dealers in Canada, which does not rule out the possibility of seeing them soon. On the other hand, the brand tries to do things differently by selling its vehicles on the Internet. Potential customers can book a test drive, and a Genesis representative will make a home visit to help us discover and drive the car we are interested in.
In the case of the 2018 Genesis G80, many body colors are available, and although the Sport version offers only two colors for the passenger compartment, the black and the two-color layout of our car to test, versions 3.8 and 5.0 are available with a choice of five different layouts, including beige, black, brown, gray and ivory. Genesis even told us that online shoppers are more likely to choose more vivid interior colors, while a dealership will only stock cars with more conservative interiors, dressed in black or beige.
The Genesis G80 Sport 2018 is $ 62,000 with a very complete equipment list. This amount includes not only the cost of transportation and preparation, but also the regular maintenance required for five years or 100,000 km (whichever comes first) as well as a concierge service and a courtesy vehicle. The warranty coverage is five years or 100,000 km.
In comparison, a Mercedes-Benz E 400 sedan is available from $ 70k , an Acura RLX costs almost $ 68k while an Infiniti Q70 Sport is close to $ 66k. In return, and although the G80 offers a lot for the price, its resale value is not as high as that of its rivals. A 2015-2016 Hyundai Genesis sedan, which cost between $ 50,000 and $ 62,000 in new condition, can be purchased today between $ 20,000 and $ 30,000, depending on mileage.
Hyundai has improved greatly in reliability and customer satisfaction over the past few years, but the biggest problem with Genesis cars is that many consumers in this price range want a prestige badge for demonstrate their good taste. We do not get that here. Even so, this new luxury brand offers some very interesting products, and if you’re used to changing vehicles every three or four years, renting could be a viable option here.
As for the car itself, the 2018 Genesis G80 Sport is very attractive. She is well assembled, supremely comfortable and very powerful. It can do everything a competitive marque sedan can do, except make the neighbors jealous with the badge of a well-established luxury car brand.