If you’re contemplating your first electric car, I wouldn’t blame you if you’re scared off by the recent flood of vehicle introductions, many from companies you’ve never heard of and lots of them with stratospheric price tags. Well, this car kind of fits the bill. It’s the Genesis Electrified G80.

Genesis G80 Electrified

8.50 / 10
Key Features
  • Vehicle-To-Load Charging
  • Lexicon Premium Audio
  • Power Door Closure / Power Tail-Gate
  • Nappa Leather Seats, Matte Wood Trim, Microfiber Headliner
  • Premium Navigation With 14.5" HD Screen
  • Active Noise Control
  • Model: 2023 Genesis Electrified G80
  • Engine:: Dual-Electric Motor
  • Power Output: 365 HP
  • Torque: 516 LB-FT
  • Range: 282 Miles (EPA Estimated)
  • Transmission: Direct-Drive
  • Driveline: All-Wheel Drive
  • MSRP: $79,825
  • Sensuous Design
  • Hyper-Fast Charging,
  • Priced Well Below EQS
  • Shrunken Trunk
  • Less Passenger Volume
  • Uncomfortable Seating Position

A Bargain-Priced EQS?

The Genesis Electrified G80 starts at $81,000, its availability is extremely limited, and it’s sold by a brand that’s largely flying under shoppers’ radars partly because of a sparse dealer network. Oh, and it’s a car, not an SUV, so it’s fighting an uphill battle there, as well. It’s unlikely you’ll encounter many of these, but that doesn’t mean Genesis’ first electric sedan isn’t worth a look. With 282 miles of driving range in temperate conditions, 365 horsepower, on-demand all-wheel drive, and sensuous design, its resume is alluring; a bargain play in the luxury EV segment. It can’t quite match the stat sheet of the Mercedes EQS but the Electrified G80 is priced at $20,000 less – minimum.

RELATED: 2022 Mercedes EQS 580 4MATIC Review: Tech Laden and Eager to Please

Impressive Drive

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 interior driving shot
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Steve Hammes driving the 2023 Genesis Electrified G80 on a windy road in the rain.  

Let's talk performance. The drive is marked by EV quietness, immediate, gutsy acceleration, refined manners, and powerful regenerative braking that can be tailored to the driver’s liking; it can essentially decelerate to a stop simply by lifting off the accelerator. The ride is undoubtedly smooth but not quite to the expected luxury level considering the camera-aided, adaptive suspension.

Having a leg up on road imperfections by ingesting data processed by the forward-facing camera, the G80 preemptively adjusts to what it sees. And it’s a sanctuary inside. The Active Noise Control-Road feature plays counteracting frequencies through the speakers to offset outside din complimenting the EV-compatible quiet tread design of the staggered width Michelin all-seasons.

Eco, Comfort, Sport, and Snow driving modes are easily ordered to taste, controlling steering feel, motor response, all-wheel drive torque split, and suspension firmness. They even integrate the driver’s seat settings to match the mood. Overall, it’s a highly energetic but relaxed luxury sedan drive that simultaneously promotes confidence and calmness.

Electrically speaking, the G80 is fitted with front and rear motors of equal power generating a combined 516 pound-feet of torque, fed by an 87-kWh battery system. That lithium-ion polymer pack contributes 1,200 pounds to the G80’s substantial 5,000-pound curb weight. But EVs are born quick and this one is no exception, easily overcoming its heft to hit 60 MPH in under 5.0-seconds. No manufactured sounds accompany the powerful yet serene acceleration experience.

The Skinny On Charging

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 Capri Blue charge port
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Close up of the grille and charge port door of a 2023 Genesis Electrified G80 in Capri Blue.  

It took me a while to find it’s so cleverly integrated charge port in the grille but locating it makes life a lot easier when it comes time to plug in – no having to back into parking spots. Like Hyundai / KIA’s newest EVs the G80’s motors and inverter can boost the voltage level to 800 volts resulting in significantly reduced charging times. When pulling into the Electrify America charging station look for the plugs labeled Hyper-Fast or stickered with 350-kW. If operating at full strength, the G80’s battery can be rapid charged from 10-80 percent in only 22 minutes - a huge advantage over EVs limited by a 150-kW charge rate.

Slower level II chargers require seven-and-a-half hours but can prudently take capacity all the way to 100%. A standard household outlet takes 80 hours. And, just as I’ve experimented with some other Hyundai KIA EVs of late, this one comes with an adapter that allows the G80 to power other things, such as small appliances and even another electric car! Three years of fast charging sessions are included with the purchase.

RELATED: 2022 Genesis G80 Review: The Korean Luxury Sedan For The Family

Less Headroom, Not Enough Cushioning

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 front interior shot Parchment
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The front cabin of the 2023 Genesis Electrified G80.  

Stepping inside, my main issue lies upfront; this car also affords less headroom. At just over 6.0 feet tall I’m certainly no giant, but I’m struggling to find a comfortable seating position behind the wheel. Even with the seat at its lowest placement, my head is closing in on the roofline and the windshield is rather narrow. The seat itself also lacks the plush cushioning a car of this ilk should possess.

That’s me though – seating position is highly subjective – so you may have greater success in finding the sweet spot. To assist with that, there is a posture analyzer but even those results haven’t been to my liking. There is also extendable thigh support, power side bolsters and, on the driver’s side, a motion function similar to a massage program.

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 rear seats in parchment
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The parchment rear seats of the 2023 Genesis Electrified G80.  

The rear seats aren’t as spacious as the car’s long body suggests, again losing some legroom during the EV conversion but even more so foot room. Seating three across is an uncomfortable proposition for the middle passenger.

Shrunken To A Midsize

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 trunk shot
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The trunk of the 2023 Genesis Electrified G80.

The Electrified G80’s built upon a rear-wheel drive, large car architecture but not a dedicated EV platform and that’s where some warts are revealed. Both passenger and luggage volume take a hit, knocking its classification down to midsize proportions. Channel your inner Chris Farley and sing it with me: big car with a little trunk. The big bump behind the rear seats disguising the electric conversion is limiting. With just under 11.0 cubic feet of non-expandable space, a MINI Cooper 4 Door offers more carrying capacity than this.

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Still No Wireless Phone Projection

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 tight shot of center console
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The center console of the 2023 Genesis Electrified G80.  

EV-specific electronics are quite similar to those found in other Hyundai Kia products with range guidance tools, plug finders, and charge management software. But it’s a shame that even now, for 2023, the company’s top-tier infotainment system still doesn’t support wireless phone projection – pretty lame seeing a USB cable cluttering this regal landscape. And, Genesis' Digital Key still doesn’t work with Apple devices – just Android. I also wish the rotary controller wasn’t so close in size and proximity to the similarly styled gear shift; I’ve made that mistake more than once.

Though it’s a touchscreen, it’s a bit of a reach from the driver’s seat so using the big dial to navigate the 14.5-inch landscape is often a better option. Voice commands work too. The screen is also very wide, so it’s inherently less intuitive to quickly locate settings when compared with the company’s more traditional setups. It does pack an immersive 21-speaker Lexicon audio system from Harman, that employs the audio giant’s impressive Clari-Fi digital music restoration software.

Because the Electrified G80 comes as a mono-spec model, all features are standard – no choices other than paint and cabin colors. Speaking of which, the EV playbook typically calls for environmentally friendly materials and the G80 dabbles in that with recycled wood and Polyester fabrics though it’s still using real Nappa leather, just with natural dyes.

Give The Driver A Hand

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 HD screen
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The 14.5" HD screen of the Electrified G80.

Genesis doesn’t do hands-free driving such as Cadillac, but its Highway Driving Assist is the next best thing to alleviating some monotony by aiding in steering and braking, in addition to maintaining a set speed and distance from the vehicle ahead. The Blind-Spot View Monitor conveniently shows in the instrument cluster when signaling a turn or lane change, there’s a 360-degree camera and a comprehensive head-up display. Remote Smart Parking Assist is also a handy tool for guiding the G80 into and out of tight spots right from the key fob while outside the vehicle.

RELATED: 2023 Hyundai Kona Electric Review: The Perfect First EV

An Auspicious Beginning

2023 Genesis Electrified G80 Capri Blue driving away from camera
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A 2023 Genesis Electrified G80 in Capri Blue driving away from camera.  

So to summarize, through design, Genesis has resuscitated the golden age of automotive elegance; the G80 is a beautiful car no matter where the eye wanders. Though the electrification process demands some sacrifice, the Electrified G80 portends a glorious path for Genesis’ EV journey.