Update: The livestream is over, and the GV80 is now official. Read about it in our debut post below.
April 12, 2017 – it’s when Genesis introduced the GV80 concept at the New York Auto Show. Debuting not a moment too soon, the production version has been a long time coming and about ready to do battle with the Mercedes GLE and BMW X5.
With good reason, some would say Hyundai’s luxury brand should’ve prioritized the development of the GV80 given the SUV-hungry market, but it was quicker to update the Equus and sell it as the G90 and do the same thing for the Hyundai-Genesis-turned-G80 sedan. As for the G70, its close connection to the Kia Stinger can explain why the BMW 3 Series rival was launched before an Audi Q7 competitor.
Fast forward to January 14, 2020, we are about the witness the world unveiling of Genesis’ first SUV live from South Korea where the brand is organizing a dedicated event for its high-riding vehicle. It’s been obsessively spied and teased in the last couple of years, so the cat is pretty much out of the bag when it comes to the GV80’s design. The aforementioned concept actually looked quite close to what you’d expect from a road-going vehicle, so the production version will remain pretty much faithful to the showcar from nearly three years ago.
Genesis has also released some preliminary details in regards to the oily bits of the KDM-spec GV80, which will be offered with a turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine with a 2.5-liter displacement and a solid output of 304 hp and 422 Nm (311 lb-ft). It will be enough muscle to enable a 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) run in 6.9 seconds.
Step up to the six-cylinder 3.5-liter unit feeding on gasoline as well and Genesis will reward you with 380 hp and a meaty 530 Nm (391 lb-ft). Going for the larger engine will reduce the sprint time to 5.7 seconds. The Korean version will also be offered with a six-cylinder 3.0-liter turbodiesel producing 278 hp and a healthy 588 Nm (434 lb-ft) for a sprint in 6.8 seconds.
The GV80 will initially go on sale at home in South Korea later this month, but a global launch is scheduled to take place later in 2020. It will be available with five and seven seats, with the former featuring two rows of electric seats. The diesel will be the first to launch in the SUV’s domestic market, with the gasoline versions to follow. The base models will stick to the rear-wheel-drive layout, but more expensive ones will have AWD with an electronic limited-slip differential.
Gallery: Genesis GV80 Plug-in Fuel Cell Concept
Wheels as large as 22 inches will be available, as will be a total of 12 exterior paints with three of them having a matte finish. Inside, Genesis will offer several ways to customize the fancy cabin, which will be a technological tour de force with a 14.5-inch central screen, augmented reality support for the navigation system, head-up display, and a digital instrument cluster.
We’ll have all the details shortly as the livestream is programmed to start today at 8:30 PM Eastern / January 15 at 1:30 AM GMT.