Until Genesis makes a three-row SUV, the G90 is the Korean brand's flagship model. An executive sedan competing with the likes of the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class, the G90 aims to provide uncompromising luxury at a lower price than the Germans. For the most part, it delivers on the promise, although it lacks the grandeur of more established models. The G90 is unchanged for the 2022 model year.
There's one very good reason to buy a Genesis G90 over a Mercedes-Benz S-Class: With the money you save buying the G90, you could add a G70 or a CLA-Class to fill out the garage.
Genesis has established itself by offering luxurious alternatives to the pricier badges. The G90 fulfills that mission with admirable grace. A 2020 refresh brought a much-needed exterior refresh, giving the G90 on-road presence it lacked. Count us fans of the gloriously retro dish-and-spoke wheels.
In most ways that matter, the G90 keeps up with its rivals. Acceleration is effortless, and the cabin is quiet and draped in leather. The G90 doesn't feel like a bargain-bin imitation—it's a luxury cruiser.
In this price range, however, value can only carry you so far. The G90's interior is comfortable, but the design is bland compared to the tech-laden opulence of an S-Class or A8. The rear-seat entertainment system is only available with the V-8 powertrain, which asks more money for little gain over the V-6.
For many buyers, the (considerable) savings will outweigh these niggles. For everyone else, the S-Class is waiting.
The G90 offers two engines. The modern choice is a 3.3-liter twin-turbo V-6 making 365 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque. For old-school grunt, a 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V-8 with 420 hp and 383 lb-ft is available for an extra $3,750. Both use an eight-speed automatic transmission to send power to the rear wheels. All-wheel drive is a $2,500 upgrade.
If you think those torque figures look suspiciously close, you're not wrong. When we tested a G90 3.3T last year, it ran the 0-60 sprint only a tenth of a second slower than the G90 5.0. The V-6 is also more efficient, although combined city/highway mpg still barely clears the teens. In use, the two powertrains feel almost identical, which raises the question: Why would anyone pay extra for the V-8?
Executive sedans have become test beds for the latest and greatest in automotive technology. Perhaps the G90's best innovation is in its seating. The driver can enter in their height, weight, and inseam, and the 22-way driver's seat will adjust itself to create the best driving posture.
Last year's Genesis G90 earned a nearly perfect report card from the IIHS, including top crash test scores and a Top Safety Pick+ award. With no significant changes to the 2022 model, we expect a repeat performance.
Tech is a must-have in an executive sedan, and the G90 delivers with a full suite of active safety features. Automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitors, and lane keeping assist are all standard.
The G90 is down on rear legroom compared to most executive sedans, but we think it feels spacious in practice. Cargo capacity is reasonably good for the class.
Legroom (first/second rows):
An infotainment system with navigation, smartphone compatibility, and a 12.3-inch touchscreen comes with every G90. The system could use an update—Mercedes-Benz and BMW both offer smoother interfaces, and even the G80 gets a larger screen. Wireless charging, a head-up display, a 360-degree camera system, and a premium 17-speaker sound system are also included. V-8 models come with 10.3-inch rear entertainment screens.
The G90 is all about standard equipment, so the trim range doesn't leave much room for customization. V-8 models have nicer rear seats, but the differences are minimal otherwise. We'd rather have the V-6 anyway—unless you need a heated and ventilated second row, the base trim is the one to get.
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