Remember when Hyundai's luxury marque Genesis teased their first-ever SUV a few weeks ago? Well, after showing its shadowy silhouette and shape, the Korean-based luxury brand has officially unveiled the GV80 in Seoul.
Joining the G70, G80, and G90 models, the GV80 paves the way for Genesis' entry into the luxury SUV market. Featuring the brand's 'Athletic Elegance' design language, the brand's first-ever SUV remains faithful to the original concept revealed in 2017 and comes with a plethora of high-tech features.
Starting with its exterior, the GV80 is easily recognizable with its huge 'Crest Grill' at the front, and the signature Quad Lamp headlights. The distinct 'Parabolic Line' on the side gives the GV80 a muscular look, which is then complemented by splashes of chrome and huge 19-inch alloy wheels. Finally, the rear of the SUV features wraparound LED taillights, and a tailgate-mounted spoiler for better aerodynamics. As for the body itself, Genesis made use of hot-stamped, high-strength steel, while lightweight aluminum was applied on the doors, hood, and tailgate for a rigid and lightweight structure.
“We enjoyed the challenge to apply ‘Athletic Elegance’ design language to SUV architecture. The precise proportions and attention to every detail denote that GV80 is authentic to Genesis design principles,” said Luc Donckerwolke, executive vice president, chief design officer of Hyundai Motor Group.
Over to its cabin, Genesis emphasized on delivering 'luxury in space' while also maintaining a simple and clutter-free design. Immediately noticeable inside the cabin is a huge 14.5-inch free-standing infotainment display that supports wireless connectivity features like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Meanwhile, the center console is dominated by an intricate wood panel with minimal buttons for the climate control and drivetrain systems.
Soft-touch materials, including the quilted knee-pads on the lower side of the center console give the GV80 its opulent look and feel. Instead of a traditional gear selector, Genesis opted for a shift-by-wire system via a dial-based selector. In terms of amenities, the GV80 comes with quilted leather seats, heated and ventilated seats for the front and rear passengers, an air purification system, and active noise control which reduces road noise from intruding into the cabin.
Under the hood, the GV80 will initially be powered by a 3.0-liter turbo-diesel inline-six. It cranks out 278 PS along with a whopping 588 Nm of torque. Power can then be shifted to all four wheels via an optional all-wheel drive system with multi-terrain control. With it, Genesis claims the GV80 can take on sand, mud, and even snow. However, the GV80 is also available as a standard rear-wheel drive SUV. In the future, two turbocharged gasoline engines will be available for the GV80.
Besides having a meaty engine and drivetrain, the GV80 also benefits from an electronically-controlled suspension. The unique thing about the suspension is that it can optimize ride comfort by recognizing road information in advance via front cameras and navigational data.
Advanced safety features and driver aids are also present in Genesis' first-ever luxury SUV. Like the G70, G80, and G90, the GV80 can come with the following driver assist systems like smart cruise control which can learn a user's driving style, forward collision-avoidance assist, blind spot collision-avoidance assist, rear-cross traffic alert-avoidance assist, driver attention alert warning, and a total of 10 airbags.
The GV80 is now available in Korea, with other markets soon to follow. Hopefully Hyundai Asia Resources Inc. (HARI), the official distributor of Hyundai in the Philippines, will be able to bring their luxury SUV to the country soon. Should it be available, it will go up against the likes of the Lexus RX, and Mercedes-Benz GLC just to name a few.