Eight Is *More* Than Enough for Genesis, Apparently
We’re talking cylinders here, not model count. Genesis could certainly make use of more than three models — the fledgling brand’s two planned crossovers can’t come soon enough.
But back to engines. Currently, the Genesis lineup offers a 5.0-liter V8 option in both the G80 midsize and G90 full-size sedans, with a twin-turbo 3.3-liter serving as the models’ entry-level mill. However, Genesis now claims the Tau V8’s days are numbered.
Making 420 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque, the Tau V8’s pulling power comes close to that of the 3.3L — the two differ by only 7 lb-ft, with the advantage going to the larger engine. However, displacement comes at a cost, and not just in terms of pricing. Fuel economy suffers with the V8, and its lifespan apparently now has an end date.
Speaking to Car and Driver, Genesis CEO Manfred Fitzgerald said the next-generation G80 appearing later this year won’t offer a V8 option.
“The G80 range will be topped off by the V6,” he said, adding, “We will have a brand-new G80 coming out this September in Korea and subsequently on global markets. With that car, you will see the next evolution of our design language.”
The G90 sedan received a refresh for 2019, and a full redesign of the model (assuming the slow-selling yet extremely competent sedan has a future at all) won’t occur anytime soon. Expect the G90 to continue onwards with an optional V8 for the remainder of this generation, but not beyond. No upgrades are planned for the Tau mill.
“We really have to pay close attention to markets and legislation and hedge our bets,” Fitzgerald said. “Don’t expect another evolution of the V8.”
This means Genesis’ upcoming GV80 crossover, which borrows its architecture from the G80 sedan, will probably eschew V8 propulsion right from the outset. The GV80 is expected to appear late this year or early next.
Engines aren’t the brand’s biggest concern right now — dealers are. After the brand switched to a carefully selected, standalone dealer presence in the United States, sales suffered. This stemmed from Genesis’ decision to sell down existing 2018 models last year in order to launch new dealers with only 2019 inventory in stock.
April’s U.S. sales tally of 1,605 vehicles was the brand’s best showing since January of 2018. Of that volume, 844 units were the new-for-2019 G70 compact sedan.
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