- Fastback sedan design
- Gorgeous interior
- Twin-turbo V-6
- Loaded standard features
- Headlight and taillight designs might be trying too hard
- Limited dealer network
features & specs
The 2021 Genesis G80 promises to be a value-driven luxury sedan in crossover-crazy times.
When it goes on sale late this year, the 2021 Genesis G80 mid-size luxury sedan will share much with the recently introduced 2021 Genesis GV80 crossover SUV, including a gorgeous interior loaded with all the latest technology. The striking fastback design is all its own—and it’s gorgeous.
The low-slung sedan wears the brand’s broad crest-shaped grille that first graced the G90 four-door. The lower half of the honeycomb grille stretches from end to end over the splitter. This face that could be a twin of the GV80 is bookended by distinctive LED headlights bisected by twin horizontal lines that flow over the front wheel down the body line to the rear taillights. The profile is where the G80 really distinguishes itself from its crossover brother. A short front overhang and a long wheelbase dramatize the coupe-like curve of the roof into the trunk. With available 20-inch wheels, it looks like a cross between an Audi A7 and Porsche Panamera, which are hatchbacks. The 2021 G80 comes with a trunk.
Like the GV80, the redesigned G80 sits on a revised rear-drive platform that rides lower than its predecessor. The use of more aluminum in the body shaves off 243 pounds from last year’s model. In the U.S. the G80 is powered by either a 300-horsepower 2.5-liter turbo-4 making 311 pound-feet of torque or a 375-hp 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 that makes 391 lb-ft. The V-6 is more potent than the outgoing model by 10 hp and 15 lb-ft. We expect it to beat the outgoing model to 60 mph, as well, and come in under 5 seconds.
Both come with an 8-speed automatic transmission in rear-wheel drive, though all-wheel drive is an option. The turbodiesel engine offered in other markets isn’t planned for the U.S., though a plug-in hybrid could be coming later. The 5.0-liter V-8 is no longer offered.
Genesis is pursuing what it calls athletic elegance in the G80, and the elegant part dazzles in the cabin. A lower dash along with thinner roof pillars and a slimmer rearview mirror should make for better sight lines and broader outward visibility. Buttons and controls are relegated to the steering wheel and band of climate controls, opening up the clean design of the dash bisected by a thin line of vents and textured open-pore wood trim.
The wood trim carries over to the console, which features twin dials: the protruding one shifts gears and modes, while the other one is a recessed circular dial with a touchpad to control the 14.5-inch touchscreen mounted in the center of the dash. Most of the necessary info can be accessed through redundant steering wheel controls for the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster.
Other standard equipment includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, ambient lighting, a head-up display, heated and cooled front and rear seats, which can be controlled by the driver, and a driver’s seat with a stretching mode that we’re eager to test. Drivers can even control the level of the enhanced engine sound through the Lexicon sound system.
G80 owners with an aversion to parking can get help remotely via the fob or while in the car. Other safety and convenience tech features include automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, active lane control that automatically changes lanes if you use the indicator, blind-spot monitors, adaptive cruise control with machine learning that Genesis says will independently learn the driving characteristics of the driver so as to help him. The marriage of man and machine matures. Awww.
Fuel economy, pricing, and trim levels will be announced when the 2021 Genesis G80 goes on sale in the U.S. in the second half of the year.