This feature has been produced in partnership with Genesis.
The Australian automotive landscape is a challenging one for a new car brand. Despite our small population and geographical isolation, we have a uniquely saturated car market. There are over 50 different mainstream brands active in Australia – not to mention the countless tuning houses, bespoke manufacturers and importers that also add to the rich mix of cars on our roads.
On top of that, Australian consumers are savvy, discerning car shoppers: spoiled for choice and quality, we’re tough nuts to crack.
All this makes Genesis’ success in the Land Down Under admirable. Genesis cars are a superb blend of manufacturing excellence and reliability; timeless style penned by the world’s most regarded car designers and informed by a modern, Korean elegance; and sheer, unparalleled opulence.
The new Genesis GV80 is emblematic of how far the brand has come in such a short time: the handsome, prestigious, frankly world-beating luxury SUV is bar none one of the best cars on the market, in any category. Indeed, it’s made Carsales’ Top 10 Cars of 2020 and is a finalist for this year’s Car of the Year.
Firstly, let’s talk tech. Reading the list of features the GV80 has is probably the only negative thing about the car, simply because it’s just so long. It’s got augmented reality view navigation, smart parking assist and a 3D surround view monitor that’s like as if a camera was hovering above the car, making parking a breeze. You can even automatically recline the back seats if someone falls asleep. It’s crazy.
Despite its long list of amenities, the GV80 is surprisingly easy to use. The deliberately uncluttered, intuitive interior doesn’t overwhelm you. You’re not faced with endless buttons or gimmicky bullshit. It just works.
Secondly, it also looks the part. There’s a European prestige influence noticeable in things like the GV80’s quilted leather seats and purposeful stance. Its front end however is a much more modern affair, evocative of a Cadillac Escalade or Mercedes-Maybach GLS.
But to compare the GV80 to other marques is to do it a disservice; it’s an old-fashioned mindset. The GV80 sets its own design precedent. The Genesis winged emblem inspired the shape of the quad headlights and ‘G-Matrix’ grille, and the ‘athletic elegance’ of its flowing lines make it look like nothing else on the road. Our favourite design feature is the two-spoke steering wheel: a delightfully retro touch that looks and feels great.
It’s no slouch when it comes to performance, either. Even the base 2.5L turbocharged inline-four has plenty of grunt, and those looking for a diesel option won’t be disappointed with the torquey 3.0L turbo inline-six. But the 3.5L twin-turbo V6 is so fun that it would be a shame to miss out on it. With a surprisingly linear power band and pep that belies the car’s size, it’s a joy to drive.
We could wax lyrical about this damn car but what you really need to do is go out and test drive one. That’s one area where Genesis are particularly innovative: they’ll bring the car to you, hand you the keys and let you test drive at your pleasure.
It feels almost gauche to mention that the GV80 is also incredible value. But honestly, that’s beside the point. You’ll want a GV80 if you want the best, price be damned. The GV80 ticks all the boxes and then some, and should have the big European luxury brands quaking in their boots.