This month another luxury midsize SUV has burst onto the scene: the Genesis GV80. Up until now, Hyundai’s luxury brand has offered only sedans. It’s Genesis‘ first SUV and it has created quite a stir among critics and car buyers.
Because the GV80 is so new, the automaker has been careful to release only limited information about it. But we’ve been able to fill in a few of the gaps thanks to Tony Quiroga at Car and Driver. And the one thing we’re wondering about is just how expensive this upscale SUV really is, compared to competitors such as the BMW X5, the Mercedes-Benz GLE, and the Audi Q7.
What the GV80 offers for the money
According to Car and Driver, the Genesis GV80 will start at around $50,000. A fully loaded model will cost buyers just over $60,000. But with the GV80 their money will be well-spent, regardless of the options they choose.
The base model’s engine is a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 290 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. An option is the twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 but Genesis has not released the stats for this upgrade yet. Both engines will be paired with an eight-speed automatic.
Quiroga believes that most of the GV80s that come to the U.S. will have all-wheel drive, although Genesis might make a rear-wheel-drive version available as well. The AWD models have a multi-terrain control function that allows drivers to select traction for sand, mud, or snow.
The GV80’s interior will equal those of its rivals, with a spacious cabin, wood trim, and quilted leather upholstery. Its front seats have air bladders that support its occupants on long rides. A road noise cancellation system plus an active suspension system that uses forward-facing cameras to preview the road makes the SUV’s ride quiet and smooth. A three-row version of the GV80 will be available, too.
Genesis had ensured that the GV80 has the right amount of infotainment and safety tech to keep up with its competition. Drivers will appreciate the large 14.5-inch touchscreen, similar to those in German luxury vehicles.
The GV80 also has an impressive array of active safety features including radar cruise control, forward-collision braking and warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic assistance, and drowsy driver detection. It also has 10 airbags.
The SUV’s distinctive styling sets it apart. Quiroga likens it to a Bentley Bentaga, but even better. Its massive mesh grille, innovative quad headlights, and upright stance signal luxury. Twenty-two-inch wheels are an option that enhances the GV80’s elegant yet sporty appearance.
Another appealing feature is the GV80’s warranty, which is the same as Hyundai’s: five years or 60,000 miles, bumper-to-bumper.
How does the competition match up?
The BMW X5 is one of the rivals that the GV80 has been compared to in the luxury SUV segment. It has powerful engine options that range from the base 335-hp 3.0-liter V6 to a 600-hp 4.4-liter V8. All-wheel drive comes standard on the X5.
Like the GV80, the X5 has a roomy interior with comfortable seats. It also offers generous cargo space. A three-row version is available.
The tech on the X5 is also comparable, with a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen. It shares many active safety features with the Genesis SUV but also has night vision, which detects pedestrians and cyclists beyond headlight range.
It has a starting price of $58,900 for the base model sDrive40i and $114,100 for the top-of-the-line M Competition variant.
Another contender in the luxury SUV market is the Mercedes-Benz GLE, with three engine choices that range from the 255-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine to a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine that makes 483 hp. Rear-wheel drive is standard on the GLE with all-wheel drive as an option.
Inside, the Mercedes SUV is comfortably and opulently equipped for five occupants, with an optional third-row variant. Its tech includes a 12.3-inch touchscreen and advanced safety features that are comparable to the GV80 and the X5.
Starting prices for the GLE are $53,700 for the base model and $76,800 for the top trim level.
The Audi Q7 is yet another German luxury SUV that has many of the same amenities and technology provided by the Mercedes GLE and the X5. Engine options are the 335-hp turbocharged V6 and a less powerful inline four-cylinder that delivers about 250 hp. The Q7 starts at $61,975 for its base model and $72,195 for its top trim level.
The final verdict
At $50,000, the Genesis GV80 should be priced competitively for a luxury midsize SUV. Compared to the BMW X5, the Mercedes GLE, and Audi Q7, this newcomer offers the same comfort, luxury, and power as these contenders plus novel styling. Yet it costs thousands of dollars less. So, yes, the GV80 is just not that expensive when we consider everything it brings to the table.