The 2022 Genesis G80 aims high but falls short of excellence. Sitting in the middle of the brand's sedan lineup, the G80 delivers luxury, tech, and value aplenty. It's let down by driving dynamics, which are spoiled by unrefined engines and a rough suspension. It doesn't help that competition in this segment is fierce—the G80 is up against the BMW 5 Series and our 2021 Car of the Year, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class.
We know Genesis has what it takes to build a winning sedan. The G70 was our 2019 Car of the Year, and the G90 beat out three other luxury sedans in an executive-class showdown. The 2022 G80 is easy to like, but it hasn't yet perfected the winning formula.
The best part of the 2022 G80 is its cabin. Seats are supportive, wood trim is generously applied, and material quality is excellent. The rear seat is among the most spacious and comfortable you'll find in the class. It's a luxury experience that matches cars costing many thousands more.
The good news continues with the features list. The 14.5-inch infotainment screen is sharp and responsive, and heated seats come standard. Advanced safety features such as adaptive cruise control and automatic high beams are also included, something the G80's German rivals can't claim.
When the key turns—or rather, the start button is pushed—is when those rivals start to pull ahead. The G80 has plenty of power, but its engines have none of the cabin's sophistication. The suspension somehow manages to be both less comfortable and less agile than a 5 Series or E-Class. The drive detracts from the G80's character, which is otherwise premium and polished.
If you can look past its dynamic flaws, the G80 offers solid feature-per-dollar value among luxury midsize sedans. It starts under $50,000, while the A6, 5 Series, and E-Class all ask more than $55,000. This year's new Sport trim with retuned suspension may improve driving dynamics. If Genesis can fix the suspension, it will have a real winner on its hands.
The 2022 Genesis G80 is unchanged under the hood. The base engine is a 2.5-liter turbo-four making 300 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. Rear-wheel drive is the default, but all-wheel drive is available for $3,150. In our testing, an AWD G80 2.5T reached 60 mph in 5.9 seconds. Fuel economy is a respectable 23/32 mpg city/highway, or 22/30 with AWD.
The upgrade pick is a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6 that cranks out 375 hp and 390 lb-ft. It pairs with AWD. We measured the 0-60 sprint at 5.2 seconds in an AWD V-6-powered G80. Fuel economy for the G80 AWD 3.5-liter V-6 is 17/26 mpg. The V-6 uses the same eight-speed automatic transmission as the base engine.
By the numbers, both powertrains compare favorably to counterparts in the BMW 530i and 540i. There's more to a drive than numbers, however, and we found the G80's engines rough and unrefined.
It's easy to compare the G80 to its trio of Teutonic targets, which come with a higher asking price. But the G80 is also up against other budget-luxe sedans, including the Lexus ES and Acura TLX. The TLX is the cheapest of the three, and it has nearly as much standard safety tech as the G80. The Lexus ES is one of few midsize sedans that has more legroom and cargo capacity than the Genesis, and it's available as a hybrid.
Like the G80, the TLX and ES come with compromises. Both sit on front-wheel-drive platforms, and neither is as powerful as the G80. None of the three can match the athleticism of the German establishment. If value is the main priority, however, Acura and Lexus may offer even more bang for the buck than Genesis.
The IIHS declared last year's model a Top Safety Pick+. Standard safety tech is comprehensive: automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitors, lane keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control are all included. A 360-degree camera system is available as an option, as is a remote parking assistant.
The Genesis G80 makes the most of its size. Cargo capacity is average for the class, but passenger space is excellent compared to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class sedan.
Headroom (first/second rows):
Legroom (first/second rows):
Every G80 comes with a generous 14.5-inch infotainment display. The system can be controlled by touch or rotary dial and is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a head-up display are available, although you'll need to upgrade to the V-6 to get them.
For the best value, it's hard to beat the base trim. It includes most of the features we look for in a luxury sedan, and the deal is sweetened by a stellar warranty and copious safety tech. The base engine is substantially more efficient than the V-6, and it's quick enough for all but the most enthusiastic drivers.
We're intrigued by the new Sport trim. With the optional Prestige package, the G80 Sport gets rear-wheel steering and a retuned suspension. Our biggest complaints about the G80—its lack of athleticism and refinement—may be addressed with these updates. That said, a 2022 G80 Sport Prestige costs around $70,000, so the juice may not be worth the squeeze.
|$400||Genesis announces a College Graduate Offer that is good towards a lease or purchase when financed through Genesis Motor Finance.||01-03-2022|
|$0||1.9% Financing available for varying term lengths : 24, 36, 48, 60 Months - Genesis announces APR rates on select models.||01-03-2022|
|$0||2.5% Financing for a maximum term of 72 Months - Genesis announces APR rates on select models.||01-03-2022|
|$500||Genesis announces a Bonus Cash on select models for eligible competitive customers.||01-03-2022|
|$500||Genesis announces a cash certificate coupon on select models for eligible current customers.||01-03-2022|