The luxury SUV market gained a major rival with the launch of the Genesis GV80. It’s an affordable model with a design often compared to Bentley’s products. But how does the GV80 actually stack up to Bentley’s SUV, the Bentayga? Specifically, a used one that’s gone through some democratizing depreciation? That’s what YouTube team Throttle House wanted to find out.
The 2021 Genesis GV80 has half of a 2017 Bentley Bentayga’s cylinders…
Like many used luxury SUVs, a used Bentley Bentayga is noticeably more affordable than a new one. A 2021 Bentayga starts at just under $180k, Automobile reports. But even a 2017 model like the one Throttle House drove isn’t exactly cheap; similar-condition examples start at roughly $129,000.
In contrast, the 2021 Genesis GV80 starts at $48,900. And even a fully-loaded example tops out in the low $70k range. So, what do you get when you spend roughly half the price of a used Bentley Bentayga on a new GV80?
To start, the 2017 Bentley Bentayga has a larger engine. Under the hood is a 6.0-liter twin-turbocharged W12 engine rated at 600 hp and 664 lb-ft, Car and Driver reports. It’s connected to an 8-speed automatic and standard all-wheel drive. As a result, although the Bentayga weighs 5781 pounds, it goes 0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds, Car and Driver reports.
The 2021 Genesis GV80 can’t match that level of power. In range-topping form, it has a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 rated at 375 hp and 391 lb-ft. As a result, despite AWD, an 8-speed automatic, and a 772-lb curb weight advantage, it’s not as fast. In Car and Driver’s hands, the GV80 went 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds.
…but not half the features
However, when it comes to luxury SUVs speed is secondary to features. And the Genesis GV80 doesn’t lack for those. In 3.5T trim, it has adjustable ambient lighting, wireless charging, heated and ventilated front seats, real-wood trim, and a 14.5” center touchscreen. And the Prestige Package adds Nappa leather upholstery, a larger 12.3” digital driver’s cluster, heated and ventilated power-operated 2nd-row seats, a heads-up display, and active road noise cancellation.
Plus, while ‘lesser’ Genesis GV80 3.5T’s have manual rear window shades, with the Prestige Package they’re power-operated. And every GV80 comes standard with a full ADAS suite, including adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, and automatic emergency braking, Car and Driver reports.
Still, given its original MSRP, the 2017 Bentley Bentayga is far from barren inside. It was the first SUV to offer active 48-volt anti-roll bars, Motor1 reports, which are paired with air suspension. And, naturally, there’s plenty of leather, wood, and real metal in its interior, MotorTrend reports. Plus, a heads-up display, a Naim audio system, and infrared night-vision cameras.
But the Bentley Bentayga has a bit more to offer, especially when it comes to options. The 2nd-row passengers have individual tablets, as well as heated, cooled, and massaging seats, Roadshow reports. The GV80 doesn’t offer the tablets or massaging functions, nor the $17,000 Breitling clock. And while both SUVs have Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, the Bentayga one-ups the Korean SUV with on-board WiFi, Roadshow reports. Interestingly, though, the GV80 has a larger touchscreen than the Bentayga.
Does the Genesis GV80 deliver a luxury driving experience similar to a used Bentley Bentayga?
There is some substance behind the Bentley Bentayga’s and Genesis GV80’s similar looks. As Throttle House points out, they were penned by the same designer. But besides the superficial details, what are these two luxury SUVs like to drive?
Although the GV80 is Genesis’s first SUV, the brand did its homework, MT reports. Every interior detail feels carefully considered and both looks and feels premium. Car and Driver named it a 10Best-winner because “[i]ts design and refinement allow it to sing many of the same notes as vehicles twice its price.”
The seats are comfortable, the infotainment controls are “satisfying to use,” Motor1 reports, and the interior has Bentley-like levels of quiet, Car and Driver reports. Plus, with the 3.5T’s adaptive dampers, the GV80 rides and handles well, Autoblog reports.
However, Throttle House notes the Bentley Bentayga’s interior is worthy of its near-$200k original price tag. There’s less plastic, especially on the steering wheel, and a greater sense of solidity. And its digital gauge cluster is better-executed than the GV80’s ‘3D’ one. Plus, unlike the Genesis, the Bentayga has dedicated off-road driving modes, Autoweek reports.
The Bentley Bentayga also edges out the Genesis GV80 when it comes to on-road refinement. That’s not to say the GV80 rides poorly—it doesn’t. And it genuinely handles well. But its powertrain is coarser than the one in the Bentayga. Plus, while the GV80 has good ride quality, the Bentley’s ride is even better. Though, according to Throttle House, by less than you might think.
Which one should you buy?
Admittedly, the average Genesis GV80 buyer likely won’t be cross-shopping a used Bentley Bentayga, and vice versa. As such, the two luxury SUVs compete in different segments.
However, there’s another way to look at this. True, Throttle House reports that a used Bentayga is “without question, worth the money.” But the fact that the GV80 is being seriously considered as a rival is impressive in and of itself. And unlike a used Bentley, the Genesis comes with a factory warranty.
So, is the Bentley Bentayga a more luxurious experience? Yes. But does that mean the Genesis GV80 is half the luxury SUV the Bentley is? Not necessarily.
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