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Genesis G80 — an EV for the Cars & Coffee Crowd

Popping the hood on most EVs can be a bit of a disappointment to old-school car guys … but if a frunk doesn’t do it for you, the Genesis G80 will!

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It’s been several weeks since I first took delivery of my Genesis Electrified G80 luxury sedan. And, while I liked the car even before the moment I slid behind the supple leather wheel, I couldn’t quite get a handle on who this EV might be for. But now? Now I get it. This Genesis is the EV that’s gonna wow them at Cars & Coffee.

If you’ve never been to a Cars & Coffee style gathering, it goes a little like this: a bunch of guys pull up to a local coffee shop on an early weekend morning in their fancy cars, they pop the hoods of their Cobras or Corvettes or Mercedes-AMGs to show off the goods, then proceed to walk around each others’ cars looking admiringly down into engine bays with oohs and ahs that signify a genuine appreciation for (if not an understanding of) the high-horsepower engineering therein.

By now, I’ve already lost at least a few of y’all out there in CleanTechnica Readerland — and I get it. This kind of car guy act isn’t for everyone. That said, it is definitely for a lot of people, and these are people who have a staggering amount of influence over what brands, if not models, that the people in their social circles actually buy. They’re important to any dissemination of automotive ideology, in other words, and most of these people want to look under the hood and see— well, something.

And a frunk, dear reader, is not “something.”

No matter how much you like your frunk or how many tiny/highly respected journalists you can stuff into yours, a frunk is a novelty act. It’s only really cool in an act of defiance against what most people think “should” be there. It’s not a something added, it’s a clever use of space that would, otherwise, be a whole lot of nothing. When you pop the hood of the Genesis Electrified G80, though, one thing you won’t see is nothing.

Under the Hood of the Electric Genesis G80

Hyundai Genesis Electrified G80 EV engine electric motor

Photo by the author.

I know, I know — that’s not what it looks like and it’s really just a bunch of controllers and cooling and blah blah … but, crucially, it looks awesome, and I would be extremely interested in taking the G80 to a Cars & Coffee, leaving the hood up, and people-watching the reactions of the car guys walking past to see what they were.

I can tell you one thing: however they react, it will be to something, rather than nothing.

The Car, As a Car

Genesis G80 electric car

Photo by the author.

The G80 is one of the more conventionally styled EVs on the market. The large grille, long hood, and short deck styling cues shout “big engine” about as loudly as any phony exhaust sound could, and the Genesis backs that up with the kind of instant torque performance you’ve come to expect from an EV. That said, it goes about the task of getting you and yours from point A to point B very differently than most modern EVs.

For starters, look at the roof. It may not seem like a huge deal, but just about every other car I’ve driven in recent years — and certainly every “high end” one — has come to me with a full-length sunroof. From the Tesla Model 3 we rented in Austin to the Mustang Mach-E I drove last winter to the Hyundai IONIQ 5 in my driveway right now, they all have glass roofs. The G80, meanwhile?

That roof is all steel, and the sense of separation and serenity and quiet that that detail imparts on the people inside the car can’t be discounted.

“Is this a limo?” asked my daughter, getting into the back of the car for the first time.

“No,” I said. “Why would you think it’s a limo?”

“It’s nice,” she responded. “No one can see me back here.”

In an era when almost everything we do and say feels like it’s public, that little bit of privacy and isolation might go a long, long way. In fact, even in the face of the Genesis G80’s excellent interior appointments, sumptuous comfort, excellent sound system, willing chassis, totally believable 282 mile range, and totally underrated 365 HP … it was that sense of feeling cocooned into the car by the steel roof that made it feel the most different from the Volvos, Hyundais, and Teslas I’d been spending the most time in.

Not just different, though. Special.

Frankly, for the car’s $79,825 starting price (less additional options, accessories, destination costs, taxes, tags, and fees), it should feel special. The fact that it does just means that Genesis did the thing — but that’s just my take. If you’ve had the chance to sample the Genesis Electrified G80 for yourself, let us know what you thought about it in the comments section at the bottom of the page.


Original content from CleanTechnica.

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I've been involved in motorsports and tuning since 1997, and have been a part of the Important Media Network since 2008. You can find me here, working on my Volvo fansite, riding a motorcycle around Chicago, or chasing my kids around Oak Park.


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