Sedans & Coupes

Where the 2021 Genesis G80 Falls Short Proves It’s Not Ready for Primetime Yet

The 2021 Genesis G80 is definitely a luxurious sedan, but compared to its competitors it may struggle to hold its own. Although the G80 is well-designed and has an appealingly low MSRP of $51,875, MotorTrend reports that this sedan’s shortcomings mean that it lags behind others in its class. Here’s everything you need to know about this luxury vehicle.

What the Genesis G80 gets right

The Genesis G80 is listed as a contender for MotorTrend’s 2021 Car of the Year awards, and while it may struggle in some areas, it is certainly very strong in others. Perhaps its biggest strength is aesthetics: With its sleek exterior and classy, comfortable interior, MotorTrend states “there’s no mistaking the G80 for anything but a luxury car.”

The G80’s cabin is full of attractive wood trim, with incredibly comfortable seating. The design of the rear seat is particularly notable. It is spacious, with individual seat heater controls, a pass-through for longer items, and a padded armrest containing extra storage space.

This luxury sedan also accelerates quickly, getting to 60 mph in just 5.2 seconds with its 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6. Although this speed is admirable, however, it is not class-leading. MotorTrend points out that the Mercedes E-Class and Audi A6 both boast faster acceleration.

Can the G80 compete with top luxury brands?

Although the Genesis G80 was good enough to be a contender for the 2021 Car of the Year, award it didn’t manage to make it to the finals. This is because while the G80 does have plenty of great qualities, reviewers found it seriously lacking in the areas of body control and suspension.

It may have nailed the luxury aesthetics, but in order to be truly competitive the G80 requires a certain level of refinement that it hasn’t quite captured yet. Test drivers found the G80 to feel unsettled and stiff despite its firm suspension. While other sedans in this class typically offer smooth, sophisticated rides, the G80 still lags behind in terms of its performance on the road.

Despite all this, though, the Genesis G80 is still a legitimate alternative to some of the bigger names in the luxury segment. Genesis itself has already been excelling in numerous areas — the G70 was MotorTrend’s 2019 Car of the Year, while the G90 3.3T managed to beat a BMW, Lexus, and Lincoln in MotorTrend’s 2017 luxury sedan comparison.

The G80 is an especially welcome addition to the segment since three luxury sedans — the Lexus GS, Acura RLX, and Lincoln Continental — have all been discontinued. While the G80 may fall short in its performance, it has a lot of potential to take the class by storm in future iterations.

Plenty of room for improvement

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Although the Genesis G80 currently has some shortcomings that may make it a hard sell to more discerning shoppers, it is still a noteworthy luxury sedan. Its relatively low price tag, beautiful interior, and standard 14.5-inch display may make it stand out as an attractive option to some drivers, particularly those who prioritize comfort and aesthetics over ride performance.

Even for people who don’t think the G80 is quite there yet, there’s no denying that it has an abundance of potential. Genesis has proven itself to be a luxury upstart that knows the segment well, and the impressive performance of many of this automaker’s other vehicles indicates that the G80 may improve significantly in future remodels.

Overall, the Genesis G80 holds its own in several key areas. While more established luxury brands may provide a better ride experience, the G80 in its current state could still appeal to certain buyers — and with a few tweaks to its performance, this luxury sedan is likely to become much more competitive in its class.