Eight years ago, Hyundai made a serious upmarket push with the debut of the Genesis sedan. The company had established itself as a maker of value-packed, well-made vehicles and felt the time was right to dip its tires into the luxury-sedan pool. It was an effort to raise its game and its image with the American consumer.
The spacious Genesis, which was more than a step up from the company's respected but mainstream Sonata sedan, could be had with V6 or even V8 power and boasted a well-trimmed cabin. The Genesis earned praise for its refined performance, comfortable and quiet ride, and generous standard features list. Crazy as it sounded then, Hyundai was offering a viable alternative to much pricier American, Asian and German luxury sedans. Indeed, the success of the Genesis gave Hyundai the confidence to launch its even larger and more luxurious Equus sedan a few years afterward.
This year, Hyundai is taking a page from the Toyota/Lexus and Nissan/Infiniti playbooks by spinning off the Genesis as its own luxury brand. The G80 is the model formerly known as the Genesis sedan. The flagship Equus becomes the G90.
The 2017 Genesis G80 has some changes to go along with its new name. Some formerly optional equipment, such as a power-adjustable steering wheel, lane-departure warning and blind-spot monitoring, are now standard. New this year and also standard are Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which allow users to operate certain smartphone functions, such as navigation and audio, via the car's touchscreen. Oddly, this feature is deleted if you opt for the G80's posh Ultimate package. The larger touchscreen is not compatible with the smartphone-linking technology.
As before, the value proposition is strong. The 2017 Genesis G80 is essentially without peer at its price point. Even the base version provides perks that, in addition to the those already mentioned, include xenon headlights, a navigation system and adaptive cruise control. Trim levels again correspond to whether the G80 is powered by a 3.8-liter V6 (G80 3.8) or 5.0-liter V8 (G80 5.0). All-wheel drive is optional for the V6. The EPA fuel mileage estimates range from 18 mpg combined 15 city/23 highway) for the V8 to 22 mpg in combined driving (18 city/28 highway) for the V6.
It's true that the 2017 Genesis G80 doesn't have the long-standing status of pricier rivals, but it also doesn't require you to tap into your home's equity to acquire a genuinely fine luxury sedan. If you share that sentiment, Edmunds can help you find the ideal 2017 Genesis G80.
Edmunds attended a manufacturer-sponsored event, to which selected members of the press were invited, to facilitate this report.