2021 Genesis GV80 revealed in its final form

Genesis' first SUV will finally go on sale later this year.

Steven Ewing Former managing editor
Steven Ewing spent his childhood reading car magazines, making his career as an automotive journalist an absolute dream job. After getting his foot in the door at Automobile while he was still a teenager, Ewing found homes on the mastheads at Winding Road magazine, Autoblog and Motor1.com before joining the CNET team in 2018. He has also served on the World Car Awards jury. Ewing grew up ingrained in the car culture of Detroit -- the Motor City -- before eventually moving to Los Angeles. In his free time, Ewing loves to cook, binge trash TV and play the drums.
Steven Ewing
3 min read
2020 Genesis GV80
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2020 Genesis GV80

The production GV80 looks a lot like the original concept from 2017.


pulled a fast one on us, sending out the first photos of its long-awaited SUV, the GV80, a few hours before midnight on Dec. 31. Now, we're finally able to see the brand's first utility vehicle in its final, production form, thanks to a handful of photos that Genesis released Tuesday.

The design is hardly a surprise. The initial teaser images didn't exactly leave much to the imagination, so the GV80's overall shape and lighting elements look exactly as we expected. What's more, the production model stays incredibly true to the original GV80 SUV concept, which first premiered at the New York Auto Show in 2017. The SUV has a strong resemblance to the redesigned G90 sedan, too.

Inside, Genesis says the GV80 "focuses on the beauty of white space," according to a statement. And indeed, the best thing about the cabin is the obvious lack of buttons and clutter. The long, horizontal dash cuts a clean line across the front, with a large, 14.5-inch infotainment screen nestled away from passengers.

The tech found within that 14.5-inch display sounds impressive, too, with Genesis adding augmented reality overlays to its navigation system, to help drivers better understand a route. ( offers a similar version of this tech in its new MBUX interface.) A controller on the center console lets occupants work through the infotainment functions, and includes handwriting recognition tech.

As you can see, the curved center stack also houses a screen for the climate controls, with two dials on either side for temperature adjustment -- kind of like what you'll find in a new Land Rover . Oh, and before we go any further, take a look at the absolutely awesome brown-and-green motif seen here, complete with quilted stitching. We absolutely hope this interior scheme is available in the US.

2020 Genesis GV80
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2020 Genesis GV80

We're big fans of this interior design (and color scheme).


The GV80 will be offered in five- and seven-seat configurations, and Genesis says the SUV will have noise-canceling tech to make the cabin as quiet as possible while driving. The driver's seat also has what Genesis calls an "active motion" function with seven different air cells, which we assume works like other automakers' massage programs, to reduce fatigue while driving.

When it goes on sale in the US, the GV80 will be offered with two engines: a 2.5-liter, turbocharged I4, and a 3.5-liter, twin-turbo V6. The I4 engine is likely the same 2.5T found in the new Sonata N-Line -- Hyundai is Genesis' parent company, after all -- which makes 290 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque in that application. As for the larger, twin-turbo V6, we don't have any official power numbers, but a Genesis spokesperson told us this will be a brand-new engine unique to the luxury brand. Both engines will be mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.

When it goes on sale in South Korea, the GV80 will initially be offered with a 3.0-liter, six-cylinder diesel engine, making 274 horsepower. Don't expect this one to make its way to the US.

The GV80 rides on a new, rear-wheel-drive platform that'll soon underpin other Genesis products, namely, the next-generation sedan. The company says all-wheel-drive models will have a Multi-Terrain Control system, with sand, mud and snow modes. An electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential will help modulate the engine's power.

A number of driver-assistance technologies will be available, as well, including rear-cross traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, forward-collision warning and a driver attention monitor. A new, novel feature is something Genesis calls Smart Cruise Control with Machine Learning (SCC-ML), which learns the driver's habits and applies them to the driver-assistance tech. This works alongside the Highway Driving Assistant suite that bundles adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping and lane-change assist, like what  offers on the SUV. (Note: It's unclear if the SCC-ML tech will be available on US-spec cars.)

The 2020 GV80 goes on sale in Genesis' home country, South Korea, later this month, and will soon be offered globally. We hope to have more details about the US-spec version in the not-too-distant future.

2020 Genesis GV80 is a stylish, tech-rich SUV

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