Crossover & Midsize

The Genesis GV80’s Specs Make It Sound Like an Awesome Luxury SUV

Genesis officially launched its first SUV, the GV80. The new GV80 marks several first for Genesis. Its launch and exhibition took place at the Korea International Exhibition Center (KINTEX) in mid-January. Fans have been anticipating the GV80 since the concept reveal at the New York International Auto Show in 2017. It’s expected to be a competitor for both the Mercedes-Benz GLE-class and the BMW X5.

What do we know about the first luxury SUV in the Genesis lineup?

Performance and Power

The GV80 shares its all-new platform with the forthcoming next-generation G80 sedan. The mid-size luxury will be offered as both rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive. 

While there’s a six-cylinder diesel that’s not offered in the U.S. there will be solid engine choices including a 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder Smartstream engine that’s also used by Hyundai and Kia. It puts out 290 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque. The 3.3-liter turbocharged V6 that’s been in the Genesis lineup looked like it will be replaced by a new 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6. There may even be a hybrid variant offered but we won’t know until closer to the time when it goes on sale.

The GV80 will pair the engines to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The control is an electronic rotary gear selector that’s found in the center console.

There’s also an electronically controlled suspension in the new GV80 that includes an integrated road-preview function. It scans the road ahead for bumps using forward-facing cameras and the latest navigation data. When a flaw or defect is detected, the suspension adjusts in such a way that the occupants of the vehicle are barely aware of the imperfection.

All-wheel-drive models of the GV80 will offer Multi-Terrain Control with mud, sand, and snow modes that utilize the electronic limited-slip differential at the rear axle.

Upscale experience and technology

Designed under the direction of the Hyundai Motor Group, the new GV80 was a collaborative design project between studios in Germany, South Korea, and the U.S.

One thing the new GV80 promises is a luxurious, upscale experience. The base model seats five even though the concept showed a four-seat configuration, and there’s an optional third row. The cabin is a study in sophistication with integrated ambient lighting, buried wood trim, quilted leather, and metal accents. There’s abundant space with a minimalist approach.

The infotainment system offers a slim 14.5-inch split-screen display on top of the wide dash for simplicity. Don’t like to use a touch screen? There’s also a handwriting recognition system you can use via touchpad. Road-noise cancellation technology is introduced.

It’s anticipated that the GV80 will offer all the popular driver-assistance features like adaptive cruise control, automated emergency braking, and pedestrian detection. There will also be Smart Cruise Control with Machine Learning, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Driver Attention Alert Warnings, and more. There may even be a semi-autonomous driving mode included.

There are 10 standard airbags with one center-mounted between the driver and front passenger to help in case of an interior impact.

Exterior and estimated cost

The GV80 is clearly a Genesis in styling with the “G-Matrix” mesh pattern in its Crest Grille. There’s a parabolic character line along the side and quad strips of headlights. Other styling cues can be found including on the optional 22-inch wheels. They used high-strength steel for the structure of the body while aluminum is used for the hood, doors, and tailgate to keep the overall weight down.

Details about the new 2021 Genesis GV80 are limited so prices haven’t been released yet. It goes on sale this month in Korea and will launch in the U.S. in the second half of 2020. Most analysts, including Car and Driver, estimate it will cost around $50,000. MotorTrend estimates the base price will be around $48,000.