An Impressive Dual Launch

FACT spent five days in the captivating Korean city of Seoul to witness the unveiling of two exceptional Genesis luxury SUVs.

In recent years, we have been keeping a close eye on the rise of the highly impressive Genesis brand, a car manufacturer seeming to improve with every new offering produced.

As the luxury vehicle brand of the Hyundai Motor Company, they have firmly established themselves as global contenders in the upmarket segment, having produced some of the finest high-end saloons, coupes, convertibles and SUVs on the roads today.

FACT recently travelled as guests to the home of Genesis in Seoul, South Korea, to attend the global launch of the GV80 Coupe and the unveiling of the new redesigned GV80, We want to take this opportunity to give a big thank you to Genesis Bahrain for making this first-class adventure a reality.

Seoul, South Korea

From the moment we touched down, we found South Korea to be a beautiful and efficient country filled with friendly and respectful people, including our gracious hosts at Genesis, who ensured we felt welcome and comfortable throughout our stay.

Immediately apparent was the huge number of Genesis vehicles driving on the city streets. There is no doubt that locals and visitors alike have warmly embraced this homegrown brand.

Launch Night

After a quick unpack at the magnificent Grand Walkerhill Hotel, Seoul, we were chauffeured around the city, enjoying activities such as the fascinating Genesis Experience Centre Suji Tour.

On our first evening in South Korea, we attended the highly anticipated launch of the GV80 Coupe and the reveal of the new redesigned GV80, held at the prestigious Seoul Wave Art Centre in the city’s famed Hangang Park.

Redesigned GV80

As fans of the original GV80, we were intrigued to discover what the manufacturers had accomplished with the redesign.

Updated Exterior Design

The improved GV80 features numerous exterior upgrades, including a freshly designed Two-Line Crest Grille complemented by the signature Two-Line headlamps. We appreciated how the master crafters at Genesis have refined the overall elegance of this luxury SUV through the now smoother corner lines of the Crest Grille, along with the sleek look of the headlamps – made possible with MLA (Micro Lens Array) technology.

Striking design elements, like the larger air intakes and a wide skid plate on the front bumper, enhance the refined and robust persona of the updated GV80. One of our favourite external features has to be the guilloché-patterned emblem that adds a graceful finishing touch to an already alluring SUV.

We took in the new chrome trim that extends seamlessly through the sides, helping the car exude a powerful presence from bumper to bumper. Noise-absorbing 22-inch, multi-spoke dark grey matte wheels contribute to the SUV’s solid stance and ensure best-in-class ride tranquillity.

The impressive nature of the vehicle continues at the back end, where muffler tips integrated into the bumper further elevate the car’s sophisticated design. A distinctive V-shaped chrome trim adds to the futuristic look of the model, while the lower part of the bumper makes a statement with its bold body-coloured line.

Enhanced Interior Design

The beauty of the GV80’s exterior flows effortlessly into the firstclass cabin, where we were welcomed by comfortable seating, an impressive array of modern features, quality materials and various design enhancements. It became obvious the GV80 has been designed to elevate the daily lives of owners through an all-encompassing, in-car luxury experience.

The two-tone-coloured steering wheel has been immaculately designed and feels faultless in hand. We also admired the new elevated pedal design, the improved crash pads and the well-crafted centre console featuring Nappa leather and genuine wood. Standing out amongst the extensive list of advanced tech features are the 14.6-inch rear seat smart entertainment system, the Bang & Olufsen sound system and the impressive 27-inchwide OLED display that smoothly integrates the cluster and the Audio, Video, Navigation (AVN) screen.

Other must-mention internal features include the seamless design of the centre facia, the wide-angle digital centre mirror, the redesigned crystal-like Shift By Wire (SBW), the improved wireless smartphone charging tray and the touch-based Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system that gifts the driver with extreme ease of control.

Improved Performance

On our second day in South Korea, we took the upgraded GV80 out for a spin.

Our model was equipped with the potent 3.5-litre turbo engine, complemented by near-perfect suspension, handling and braking capabilities. This enables the new GV80 to deliver 380hp and 54.0kgf·m of torque.

To us, however, the most impressive performance upgrade was the overall smoothness of the ride, made possible by the Preview Electronic Control Suspension System (Preview ECS), which optimises control of the suspension by anticipating road conditions, and the Engine Mounting Control Unit (EMCU), which detects road surfaces to reduce driving vibrations.

In our opinion, these inclusions, complemented by the vehicle’s numerous advanced safety and assistance features, ensure the GV80 is now in contention for the best mid-sized luxury SUV in the market today.

“It became obvious the GV80 has been designed to elevate the daily lives of owners through an all-encompassing, in-car luxury experience.”

GV80 Coupe Launch

For this special launch, one luxury SUV reveal was not enough. We also had the absolute pleasure of witnessing the unveiling of the ultra-stylish, new GV80 Coupe.

Eye-Catching Exterior

We have to say that Genesis have outdone themselves with these two new editions – the coupe adding a new facet to the Genesis brand.

As with the GV80, we became absorbed by the double-layered G-Matrix Grille and MLA-powered LED headlamps that announced the arrival of this coupe in style.

At the front end, we also admired the expanded air intake, Active Air Flap and four air vents that improve engine cooling while contributing to the vehicle’s bold demeanour.

Shifting to the flanks, we found the arch-shaped parabolic line spanning the body and the low, sloping roofline to achieve a perfect balance, providing an excellent finish to the dynamic and powerful look of the exterior. Further enhancing this bold presence are the coupe-exclusive 22-inch dark grey matte wheels with distinctive spokes.

We also recognised the unique design of the back end, complete with LED surface-emitting rear combination lamps, along with a wide integrated auxiliary brake light on the tailgate. A centrally descending rear spoiler adds a sporty touch, finishing the exterior design with a flourish.

Sporty Interior

Our first impression of the roomy GV80 Coupe’s interior was that it exudes a sporty sensibility.

The two-tone D-cut steering wheel reinforces this feeling while maintaining an essence of elegance. We loved the unique carbon garnish patterns and seats with the coupe-exclusive patterns and stitching, accentuating the refined nature of the design.

We noted the practical metal accents on the brake and accelerator pedals, included to minimise the risk of foot slippage during operation. Furthermore, thanks to the optimisation of the engine room layout and chassis, along with the incorporation of rear seat reclining functionality, the interior of the GV80 Coupe proved to be very spacious. An optimised trunk package and a foldable luggage shelf ensure plenty of storage room.

As in the GV80, the coupe model houses an array of advanced technical features, including the 27-inch-wide OLED display, the 14.6-inch rear seat smart entertainment system, the wide-angle digital centre mirror and the before mentioned Bang & Olufsen sound system. These and numerous other convenient features ensure an efficient and leisurely driving experience.

Exhilarating Performance

During the second day of our stay in Seoul, we were also privileged to get behind the wheel of the GV80 Coupe. Powered by a 3.5-litre turbo 48V electric supercharger (e-S/C) that delivers 415hp and 56.0kgf·m of torque, we soon realised the coupe model is as impressive on the tarmac as the GV80.

This model’s potent and innovative engine compresses air twice to maximise torque and improve acceleration, ensuring a performance that had us smiling from ear to ear throughout. As with the GV80, Genesis have ensured the smoothest of rides by including Preview ECS and EMCU.

The coupe is also jam-packed with the latest advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and safety features, including 10 airbags and powerful mono-block brake calipers, to ensure the well-being of all occupants.

Our Generous Hosts

Not content with spoiling us for two days, our gracious hosts from Genesis ensured we enjoyed many other fascinating experiences over the following days. Our highlights included a tour of the Hyundai Motor Studio, the breathtaking Seoul Sky Tour and scrumptious meals at several high-end restaurants.

Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

All too soon, we were packing up with heavy hearts before being driven to Seoul Incheon International Airport. Despite our sadness at departing from this delightful city, we left feeling grateful for having such a magnificent experience.

We want to thank Genesis and the city of Seoul for making us feel so welcome and for sharing the launch of two exceptional vehicles. We know they will prove hugely successful in the mid-sized luxury SUV segment. ✤