2021 Genesis G80 Review

The 2021 Genesis G80 is an all-new midsize luxury sedan with sleek styling and advanced technology.

3 months ago
Warren Clarke
  • Value compared to key German competitors
  • Great powertrain warranty
  • Contemporary styling
  • New luxury brand may not yet have the cachu00e9 for some
  • Leans more toward smooth than sporty handling

The 2021 Genesis G80 is a midsize luxury sedan that seats five passengers. Owned by Hyundai, Genesis is one of the newer luxury brands on the market; the G80 is one of just a handful of vehicles offered by this automaker, and it made its debut with the 2017 model. The G80 has been completely redesigned for the 2021 model year and begins its second generation. The 2021 G80 offers refined handling and lots of luxury amenities, at a price that undercuts key German rivals. Starting price for the 2021 Genesis G80 is $47,500.

G80 Exterior

It’s important for a luxury car to look the part. The previous-generation G80 did okay in this area, with an exterior design that was both elegant and understated. The 2021 model steps things up, with styling that looks significantly more expensive than that of its predecessor. 

A large, shield-like grille with a diamond pattern graces the front fascia, and it looks imposing and deluxe. The slatted quad headlamps are stylish and unique, and they help give the car a distinctive face. In profile, the G80’s sloping, coupe-like roofline adds modern, sporty appeal. There’s also sleek character line that starts at the headlight and ends just above the rear door; this design element seems to take its inspiration from classic cars of days gone by. Overall, the G80’s sheet metal reflects a blend of opulence and athleticism that should speak to this segment’s most style-conscious buyers. 

The 2021 Genesis G80 comes standard with 18-inch aluminum wheels, and 19- and 20-inch rims are available. Automatic LED headlights brighten the path ahead. The list of standard exterior features also includes heated power-folding side mirrors and rain-sensing windshield wipers. A panoramic sunroof is offered as an upgrade. 

G80 Interior

Just as with its exterior, a luxury car’s cabin design plays a key role in helping the vehicle establish itself as a credible contender. The G80’s interior is more than capable of meeting this challenge. The cabin’s styling isn’t as fussy and formal as that of some rivals; instead, the G80 takes things in a cleaner direction, one that’s minimalist and modern. The sculpted dash with its handsome metallic accents reflects the chiseled look of the car’s exterior. And an oversized 14.5-inch touchscreen is standard, serving as an easily accessible interface between driver and machine. 

Those seated within will find the G80’s cabin comfortable and pleasantly spacious. The front seats provide agreeable support, and the rear seats deliver a generous 38.7 inches of legroom for those perched in the second row. 

When it comes to cargo space, the G80 provides 13.1 cubic feet of room for your belongings. That’s on par with the cargo capacity offered by rivals such as the Audi A6 and Mercedes-Benz E-Class, but it’s less room than you’ll get with the Lexus ES. 

2021 Genesis G80

G80 Powertrain

The 2021 G80 gives buyers a choice of two engines. Base models are equipped with a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine good for 300 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque. There’s also an optional turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 on offer, and it generates 375 hp and 391 lb-ft of torque. Both engines are governed by an 8-speed automatic transmission, and both rear-wheel drive (RWD) and all-wheel drive (AWD) are available. 

Genesis recommends premium gas for the G80. According to EPA estimates, this sedan achieves mileage of up to 26 mpg combined with the base engine. With the V6, fuel economy tops out at 22 mpg combined. Those numbers make the G80 less fuel-efficient than rivals such as the BMW 5 Series. 

2021 Genesis G80

G80 Driving Experience

Buyers who choose luxury sedans expect a surplus of power underfoot, and the G80 doesn’t disappoint in this respect. This sedan is hefty, tipping the scales at between 3,957 and 4,497 pounds depending on the trim level; still, both available engines are brawny enough to easily hustle the G80 down back streets and freeways. 

With some models in this segment, handling leans toward sporty athleticism. That isn’t the case with the G80, a sedan that instead sets its sights on delivering maximum comfort. If you value a smooth ride quality (and we’re guessing the vast majority of shoppers in this segment do), you’ll love the way the G80’s suspension prevents road ruts and roughness from reaching the cabin. 

The standard suspension is impressive, but there’s an optional Electronically Controlled Suspension with Road Preview on hand to heighten the experience. This system employs the car’s front camera to track the road surface ahead. Using this data, it tweaks the vehicle’s suspension settings to minimize any upcoming road harshness. 

Generally, this is a sedan with handling characteristics that are built to help make your daily travels more soothing and agreeable. 

2021 Genesis G80

2021 Genesis G80 Trim Levels and Pricing

Pricing for the 2021 G80 starts at roughly $47,500. That gives it a lower base price than that of rivals such as the Audi A6 and BMW 5 Series. Two trims are offered, and both are available with either RWD or AWD: 

  • 2.5T (starts at about $47,500) – This is the base model. It comes with features such as 18-inch wheels, LED headlights and taillights, leatherette upholstery, a 12-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front seats and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone integration. 
  • 3.5T (starts at around $59,000) – This trim comes with a more powerful engine than the base model, and it adds features such as a panoramic sunroof, a wireless charging pad, ventilated front seats, leather upholstery and real wood interior trim. 

If you are looking for a more accurate idea of pricing, you can build and price a G80 on the Genesis official web site.

2021 Genesis G80 Review

G80 Best Features

The G80’s chic exterior styling helps give it a distinctive identity in the luxury-car class. This Genesis sedan looks thoroughly modern, yet there are cues that reference vintage cars of the past.  

Also, we think buyers will be impressed with the car’s smooth handling, which is at its best with the optional Electronically Controlled Suspension with Road Preview that we mentioned earlier. 

Last but not least, there’s the matter of the G80’s warranty. This sedan’s powertrain warranty coverage is among the best in the luxury-car segment: 10 years/100,000-miles.

2021 Genesis G80

What Is Our Favorite Version of the G80?

We think the base 2.5T trim offers the best value. Though it has less power under the hood than the 3.5T, there’s more than enough muscle available to get things off to a quick start. The 2.5T comes with the features shoppers in this segment expect, such as keyless entry and ignition, adaptive cruise control and a hands-free smart liftgate. 

2021 Genesis G80

G80 Notable Safety Features

All G80 sedans come with a reassuring selection of advanced safety features. All models are equipped with safe exit assist, a feature that alerts rear-seat passengers if they’re about to exit into oncoming traffic. Blind-spot warning is standard, and this technology can help you make safer lane changes. Every G80 comes with a driver attention warning system that issues an alert if its sensors detect that you’re driving while drowsy or distracted. The list of standard features also includes forward collision mitigation, lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist. 

A surround-view camera is available to help give you the lay of the land when you’re entering or exiting tight spaces. This feature is optional on both trims. 

The redesigned 2021 G80 hasn’t yet been crash-tested by the IIHS and NHTSA. 

2021 Genesis G80

Who Should Buy a 2021 Genesis G80?

The 2021 G80 is a compelling pick if you’re a luxury-car shopper with an eye for value. It has a lower base price than rival German models, and it comes with a generous selection of standard features. The G80 is also a solid bet of you’re in the market for a luxury car with stylish, one-of-a-kind exterior design; its sheet metal has a bold elegance that’s sure to turn heads in a crowd. Finally, this midsize sedan’s roomy cabin makes it a suitably spacious choice for families with children. 

2021 Genesis G80

CarExpert’s Take on the 2021 Genesis G80 

Part of a small Genesis lineup that’s rounded out by the G70, G90 and GV80, the G80 presents a modern and refreshing take on automotive luxury. It provides the flawlessly smooth handling shoppers in this segment love, and it comes with the upmarket design cues that help set luxury cars apart from their more plebeian counterparts. Its cabin is spacious, comfortable and a treat for the eyes. Best of all, the G80 has lots of standard features and a lower base price than some rivals, so it offers good value. Overall, this Genesis sedan is easily one of the most compelling picks in its class.  

2021 Genesis G80

G80 Competitors to Consider

  • Audi A6
  • BMW 5 Series
  • Lexus ES
  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class
  • Volvo S90


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Show Breakdown
Cost of Ownership 8.4
Ride Comfort 8.1
Safety 7.8
Fit for Purpose 8.5
Handling Dynamics 7.8
Interior Practicality and Space 8.3
Fuel Efficiency 7.9
Value for Money 8.6
Performance 7.7
Technology Infotainment 8.7