Genesis is Hyundai’s luxury vehicle brand. Similar to what Lexus is to Toyota, Acura is to Honda, Infinity is to Nissan. You get the point. Genesis brand goes neck and neck with German luxury trio Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi, along with other luxury carmakers like Jaguar and Volvo. Genesis GV80 is the current flagship SUV from the brand until GV90 is launched in 2024. GV90 will come with an electric powertrain shared with upcoming Kia EV9 and Hyundai Ioniq 7.
After the buzz in 2019 regarding Hyundai greenlighting Genesis for India, there were no real developments until last year, when a range of Genesis cars were showcased at a dealer meet. After that, nothing much has happened, until this test mule was spotted in Chennai. Hat tip to automotive enthusiast Barath Kumar for sharing these exclusive spy shots of Hyundai Genesis GV80 SUV.
In terms of dimensions, Hyundai Genesis GV80 is 4945 mm in length, 1975 mm in width, 1715 mm in height and has a 2955 mm wheelbase. This is a 7-seater SUV and its size directly pits it against Mercedes-Benz GLE, Audi Q7, BMW X5 and Volvo XC90. GLE and X5 are not 7-seat SUVs as standard but can be opted for as an optional extra.
If adult occupant comfort and boot space are priorities, the estate-like Audi Q7 is unmatched. With that out of the way, let’s get to the juicy bits. Hyundai has strived very hard to make the GV80 look like a Bentley Bentayga. It is immediately evident with its front grille, winged-logo, headlight positioning, silhouette, 22” alloy wheels, and even with rear design.
That said, in no way has Genesis overdone anything because its design is bang on the money. It looks prominent, appealing, luxurious and has an understated elegance about it. Even on the inside, it screams luxury and is pretty much up there with industry stalwarts too. It gets leatherette upholstery, soft-touch plastics everywhere, Alcantara headliner, faux wood trims, dual-tone soft leather and the likes.
There are experience-enhancing bits like felt-lined storage spaces, cushioned knee pads at central tunnel for driver and front passenger, damped storage lids, knurled effect knobs and dials with glass elements, and a tonne more. Appreciable features continue with electrically operated 2nd and 3rd-row seats, electric tailgate, road scanning forward-facing cameras can adjust the adaptive suspension to offer a pillowy ride, ADAS systems are self-learning and will adapt to driver’s habits and the list just goes on forever.
It is not just sunshine all the way. There are caveats too. There is no sunroof, wireless Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Optional features on the inside include heated and ventilated seats even at the back, electric door blinds, 2nd-row electric recline and more. Safety is pretty much sorted too. If you doubt that, ask Tiger Woods.
Powering this luxury SUV is a 2.5L 4-cylinder turbo petrol with 304 bhp of power and a 3.0L V6 turbo diesel with 278 bhp. The 3.5L twin-turbo V6 with electronic supercharger and 5.0L V8 petrol found on Genesis G90 sedan are given a miss. Hyundai Genesis GV80 offers 5 years warranty, 5 years of free breakdown assistance and 5 years of free servicing too.
Prices of GV80 SUV start from GBP 60,000 (approx Rs. 60.63 lakh) and can go up to GBP 80,000 (approx Rs. 80.85 lakh) in the UK. Even if brought via CKD route instead of CBU or SKD route, Hyundai Genesis GV80 top variant will cost well over Rs 1 crore. There is no official confirmation regarding this from Hyundai. But it is exciting to see more brands looking at India as a viable market.