Hyundai’s new luxury brand Genesis will soon launch its second model – the 2017 Genesis G80.
The G80 used to be the plain Genesis sedan under the Hyundai nameplate. But now that Hyundai’s spun it off into its own premium brand, it’s getting a new identity. Sort of.
You won’t find any dramatic changes. But it’s a step up in the luxury department. Hyundai wants it to compete with the Audi A6, BMW 5-Series, Cadillac CTS, Jaguar XF and Mercedes-Benz E-Class.
Here are the top five biggest things to know about the G80 in its new form.
1. Think classy, not trendy.
The G80 is built on an ultra-rigid platform made of more than 50 percent high strength steel.
There aren’t any dramatic style changes from its former life as a Hyundai. Designers went for luxury, not aggressive or trendy. It is, after all, Hyundai’s attempt to break into the premium space. They wanted it to be sleek, modern and yet classic at the same time.
The G80 features a hexagonal front grille as a key geometric element. Designers used “voluminous” body sections rather than surface details to create a bit of drama. The rear features full-LED wrap-around taillights.
2. It carries over the Hyundai-era Powertrains.
The G80 offers two engines, both carryovers from its days as a Hyundai model.
The 5.0-liter V8 engine offers 420 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 383 pound-feet of torque at 5,000 rpm. (By the way, the engine made the Ward’s Ten Best Engines list three times.) The 3.8-liter V6 uses direct-injection and a three-stage variable intake system. It packs 311 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 293 lb-ft of torque at 5,000 rpm.
Both engines use Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing and are paired to eight-speed automatic transmission. Both can also run on regular fuel with only a small power reduction and no negative driving effects.
3. It is packed with safety technology, including CO2 detection.
The Genesis gains a longer list of safety features over its Hyundai form.
A full suite of safety features includes Automatic Emergency Braking, Smart Cruise Control with Start/Stop, Blind Spot Detection, Lane Keep Assist, High Beam Assist, and Rearview Camera. A rearview camera is standard as well, with a head-up display optional. A CO2 interior sensing system also comes standard.
Optional safety features include parking assistance that uses eight ultrasonic sensors on the bumpers.
4. It offers both rear-wheel and all-wheel drive.
Rear-wheel drive comes standard and all-wheel drive is optional. The system uses multi-modes with electronic, variable-torque-split clutch, with active torque control. Both configurations come with Intelligent Drive Mode. It allows drivers to choose between four drive settings to best adapt to their needs and road conditions. The modes are Eco, Normal, Sport, and Snow. Snow adjusts the model for low-traction conditions.
5. It’s full of fancy tech toys.
The G80 is no slouch when it comes to tech toys, especially when it comes to sound. An available Lexicon Discrete Logic 7 Surround audio system comes with 17 speakers and a 12-channel digital amplifier with 900- watts of equivalent output.
The G80 also features an 8-inch touchscreen display, along with integrated Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Other tech features include Remote Start, Car Finder, Destination Search by Google, and Roadside Assistance. Genesis also brags about its fancy Valet Service choice which allows drivers to schedule valets via the Genesis mobile app.
The 2017 Genesis G80 will go on sale later this summer. Pricing info will be available then.