Distinctive design of its own. With so many crossovers SUVs on the market, they all sort of blend together. That’s not the case with the all-new 2021 Genesis GV80, which takes its own path with a bold design.
The massive crest-shaped grille and quad LED headlights create an unmistakable front end. The split design of the taillights, raked rear windshield, and large dual exhaust outlets are standout elements at the back. But it’s not just the front and rear ends that are stylish – it’s also about the little things. The body line that connects the headlights to the taillights, the short overhangs, and the smart placement of chrome on specific parts of the body help the GV80 look more upscale than its rivals.
While the GV80 is sporty and muscular on the outside, it’s a first-class hotel on the inside. The elongated design of the dashboard, extended center console, and unique steering wheel give it a look that’s unlike anything else. It’s also about the little details on the inside, as the majority of switchgear has a knurled machine finish and the mix of interior color schemes is a high-end touch.
No need for options. Between the GV80’s well-equipped trim levels, you won’t be searching for any optional features. Even the base trim comes better equipped than the majority of rivals in the midsize class, maintaining Genesis’ track record for offering some of the best value options.
The standard GV80 comes with a 14.5-inch touchscreen, a handsfree power tailgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, 19-inch alloy wheels, 12-way power-adjustable front seats, and heated front seats. The trim also comes with an impressive suite of advanced safety features and an unmatched 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty.
While normally not the case for luxury vehicles, the range-topping Prestige trim is the most value-packed option in the GV80 lineup. Nappa leather upholstery, a 21-speaker Lexicon audio system, a 12.3-inch 3D digital instrument cluster, a suede headliner, power-closing doors, and active noise cancellation are all standard. While the trim costs over $70,000, getting a similarly equipped vehicle from a competitor would be even more expensive.
Supremely comfortable and quiet. Unless you’re in the available third row, which is only offered on the GV80 3.5T Advanced Plus trim, chances are that you’re going to be incredibly comfortable. Offering more interior space than the majority of other midsize crossovers, the GV80’s seats urge passengers to stretch out and get comfortable.
In addition to having some of the most comfortable seats in the class, the GV80 has one of the quietest cabins of any SUV on sale. It becomes even quieter with the available Prestige trim, which comes with active noise cancellation. Using its audio system and microphone, the GV80 uses inverted sound waves to cancel out road and wind noise. The result is a hushed cabin.
Satisfying powertrains. Most midsize crossovers and SUVs are available with high-performance V8 engines, but the GV80 lacks a performance variant like its mostly German rivals. Instead, it comes with two turbocharged motors that aren’t exciting, but offer a good amount of power.
The standard turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine produces 300 horsepower. For the most part, the four-cylinder feels powerful enough once moving, but it can struggle to get the hefty GV80 off the line in a hurry. The available twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 engine is a more refined and better choice. It produces a more fitting 375 hp and brings much better performance.
Final Thoughts. The 2021 Genesis GV80 may be the automaker’s first attempt at a crossover, but the vehicle feels like an incredible option from a well-established brand. Not only does it continue to offer everything Genesis is known for – a long warranty, excellent value, and a handsome design – it also brings a supremely opulent and quiet cabin.
We only have minor gripes with the GV80. Its powertrains aren’t as powerful as ones available on German rivals. Additionally, its infotainment screen can be tricky to use, as the touchscreen is hard to reach and the dial sits in a bad spot.
If you’re looking for a sportier and more powerful midsize crossover, the BMW X5 is a better option. It’s available with more powerful engines, is more engaging to drive, and is available in high-performance trims. The X5 also offers similar tech features to the GV80 and is offered with a third row of seats throughout the lineup as an option.
The Volvo XC90 is a comfortable, safety-forward midsize crossover. Just like the GV80, it’s more focused on being a comfortable vehicle instead of offering sporty performance. The XC90 comes with a similar amount of tech features, a similarly spacious interior, but is available with a plug-in hybrid engine.
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