Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 17 February 2020

Genesis G80 stands up and gives rivals the eye

The mid-size offering from Hyundai's offshoot luxury brand is making its presence felt against tough competition

As any wannabe social media influencer struggling to get their fanbase past single figures will tell you, standing out from the crowd is not always easy. Car manufacturers would no doubts nod their collective heads in sombre agreement at this assertion.

At a time when vehicles in distinct automotive sectors are becoming increasingly homogenised (jargon alert: they’re all starting to look the same), being distinctive is a tough ask.

The Genesis G80, however, does manage to make its presence felt, despite being surrounded by a seemingly endless range of mid-size, luxury cars of a similar hue. And it does so without a series of questionable videos on YouTube that others have had to resort to.

It certainly looks as good as any in its class. The Genesis back-room crew have done their best to smooth down the body, giving it the feel of a four-door sports affair. Nudge the stylings and change the badge and you could easily be looking at any one of a number of cars far higher up the food chain in terms of cost.

If you check out the specs, the G80 is a premier performer. It’ll do 0-100 kilometres per hour in 5.2 seconds and can reach 240kph flat-out (if the luxury model is a little rich for your blood, though, you can also get a more modest V6 3.8-litre version, which looks to be what the company will be offering as standard in the near future). Even with all this power, the ride is smooth.

The cabin is decked out in leather, wood and aluminium, with some tidy suede and carbon-fibre touches, and it’s all very high-end. Standard kit in the G80 includes power-adjusted seats, which are heated and ventilated, a neat head-up display and an infotainment system that is rather less complicated than many of its rivals (yes, we’re looking at you, Mercedes).

The G80's dashboard is simpler than many of its rivals.
The Genesis G80's dashboard is simpler than many of its rivals.

It could be dangerous to your social life, all this gear, as you might not want to actually get out of the car when you arrive at the golf club or marina for whatever suitably posh engagement is next in your diary.

Genesis started out as a range in Hyundai’s line-up, but the company took the decision to send it out on its own, creating a new, upscale brand in the process. Much like many of its forebears who have used extreme value as a way to engender interest, Genesis is a manufacturer whose products may well go up in price in the coming years as the brand gains more kudos. This being the case, if you want one, you might save yourself some cash by investing sooner rather than later. The G80 is cheap compared to its rivals, but it might not always be.

Updated: January 4, 2020 02:01 PM

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