Model tested: 2020 Genesis G80 AWD 3.3T Sport
Engine: 3.3-liter twin turbo V6
Transmission: 8-speed Shiftronic automatic w/paddle shifters
Torque: 376 lb.-ft.
EPA ratings: 17/city, 24/highway, 20/combined
Base price: $57,750
As tested: $58,745
Overview: Genesis — Hyundai’s luxury brand — debuted for the 2017 model year in two rear-wheel drive configurations: the midsize G80 and the full-size G90. It has since added the smaller G70 sport sedan. However, the G80 nails that sweet spot in size, having the BMW 5 Series, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Audi A6 and Lexus GS directly in its crosshairs. Refined and sophisticated, it boasts a choice of strong powerplants and outstanding safety technology. It has three trim levels — base, Sport and Ultimate, each with a different powertrain. Our test driver was the all-wheel drive 3.3T Sport, which this review focuses on.
Walkaround: The G80 showcases clean and smooth lines, attention to detail and subtle styling. Its large, shield-like grille gives it a strong, dignified presence, complemented by a strong shoulder line. The Sport package features different bumpers and copper design elements. While its classic proportions aren’t overly attention-getting, it’s a handsome car overall.
Interior: The G80 exterior may be subtle, but its spacious cabin is unequivocally plush — with a high-quality interior highlighted by standard leather upholstery and available wood trim. While Genesis doesn’t offer the wide-ranging color palette of some rivals, featuring only tan, black or gray, it defines simplicity without being spartan, and still bathes passengers in comfort. The available 16-way adjustable front seats are exceptionally comfortable, and there’s 35 inches of legroom for rear passengers. Instrumentation and controls are situated on a well-organized dashboard, grouped around a 9.2-inch touchscreen display, which includes navigation and an excellent infotainment system. Trunk volume is 15 cubic feet, with a wide and relatively low opening.
Behind the Wheel: The 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 puts 365 ponies to the pavement. It’s married to a slick-shifting 8-speed automatic with paddle shifters. The well-mannered G80 coddles passengers without the punishing sport sedan ride — even on rough pavement. The supple suspension overpowers bumps and potholes, with surface imperfections taken in stride. Considerable sound deadening helps isolate passengers from the road as well. The G80 functions best as an open-road highway cruiser, although the V6 seemingly feels stronger in everyday driving than on the freeway.
Bottom Line: The Genesis G80 delivers a commendable balance between luxury, performance and value, topped by an impressively comfortable ride — in addition to stellar safety technology earning it top crash-test ratings.