The market share of sedans has been shrinking for decades, SUVs/CUVs outnumber sedans, especially in North America. The market share of full-size luxury executive sedans is even smaller, but that doesn’t mean some manufacturers are giving up on this once-thriving segment of the automotive world.
Genesis, Hyundai’s luxury marque, introduced the second generation of their flagship luxury sedan, the G90 in late 2021, with sales commencing in Korea and other markets in 2022. We finally got our hands on the 2023 Genesis G90 last week after much anticipation.
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A Brief Overview of the G90
The first-generation Genesis G90 was a reworked Hyundai Equus, it was a luxurious car but not fully developed by Genesis. This was the same story with the first-generation Genesis G80, which was based on the Hyundai Genesis before Genesis was a standalone luxury brand.
The second-generation Genesis G90 (RS4) is designed and developed by Genesis from the ground up. It shares many styling elements with the rest of the Genesis family of vehicles, which include the G70, G80, GV60, GV70, and GV80.
2023 Genesis G90 Canadian Prices
In Canada, the G90 comes in one trim only, the G90 Prestige, with a price tag of $115,000. The only options are exterior paints and interior leather colors. There are a total of 8 colors offered, with two matte paint options, which cost an additional $1,700. And that’s all there is to the pricing of the G90 in Canada, there is no need for additional packages and standalone options.
You can add accessories and extended warranties for an additional cost.
2023 Genesis G90 Engine/Driving
Unlike the previous generation G90, the 2nd generation G90 is not offered with a V8. The only engine choice is a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 with a 48-volt e-supercharger. However, the lack of 2 cylinders doesn’t hinder the power output much, the V6 produces 409 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 405 pound-feet of torque between 1,300 – 4,500 rpm, using premium fuel. Power is sent to all-four wheels via an 8-speed automatic transmission.
The Genesis G90 drives as you’d expect it, it’s a big luxury cruiser that will get you from point A to B in the most comfortable way possible. The 409 HP is more than enough to motivate this big luxury sedan. The G90 comes with 3+1, the modes include Eco, Comfort, and Sport. The +1 is the Chauffer mode, which is selected by holding down the mode selection button. This mode makes the rear suspension softer and the application of brakes smoother, perfect for the businessman that prefers to be driven.
The twin-turbo V6 sends power smoothly to the front and rear wheels, the gear shifts are so smooth most people won’t even notice them. The G90 drives almost like an electric vehicle, thanks to the smoothness of the engine and transmission. I’m looking forward to the fully electric version of the Genesis G90.
Everything about the driving dynamics of the G90 emphasizes smoothness and luxury. The ride quality is excellent thanks to the air suspension and “Bump Control”. Bump Control is a system used on higher-end Genesis vehicles, the system scans the road ahead and adjusts the vehicle height and damping force when it detects bumps in the road, making for a buttery smooth ride.
The driving dynamics of the G90 remind me more of the Lincoln Continental than the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. I found the S-Class to be a bit sportier while the G90 is more about comfort.
The G90 is equipped with Rear Wheel Steering (RWS); the rear wheels turn in the opposite direction of the front wheels at low speeds and in the same direction at high speeds. This makes maneuvering the G90 much easier in parking lots and a bit sportier on twisty roads.
Genesis G90 Styling
A flagship sedan should be elegant looking, it should be understated yet still demand attention. The G90 is and isn’t understated, it’s understated in the overall design, but the front grill is large and in your face. However, it works beautifully with the rest of the G90 design, in my humble opinion. I know this is subjective, but I personally loved the way the G90 looks. Normally, I’m not a big fan of large grills (looking at you Lexus), but it works so well with the G90, especially if there is no front license plate.
Genesis uses the diamond-shaped pentagonal grills on all of their latest sedans and SUVs, I like all of them, but I think the G90’s grill looks the best. The G90 also uses the same twin headlight design found on other Genesis vehicles, with twin side marketers that are aligned perfectly with the headlights and taillights. The G90 features flush door handles, which pop in and out, by touching the small indentation on the handles. Thankfully this lock/unlock feature is available on all four doors, I have complained about the lack of door locking/unlocking mechanism on the rear doors of other Genesis vehicles like the G70, G80, and GV80.
Our car came with massive 21” wheels, which suit the car perfectly. The wheel design is quite intricate, reminding me of a snowflake. These wheels would be a bit of a pain to clean but the chauffeur should be able to take care of them.
I did notice the design to be more rounded and softer from the B-pillar forward and edgier with straight lines from the B-pillar backward. It almost feels like two different design teams worked on the car. But, overall, I still think the Genesis G90 is a stunning car; it was a head-turner everywhere I went.
Genesis G90 Interior & Features
The interior of the G90 is a feast for the senses. The G90 competes with the likes of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, BMW 7-Series, Audi A8, and the Lexus LS; however, I think the interior beats all of those cars and is leaning more towards a Bentley Continental. The interior is absolutely amazing, in my opinion. You will not will not find any plastics here, everything is covered with soft materials and miles of Nappa leather.
The interior layout is elegant and minimalist, with a large touchscreen at the center of the dashboard and a digital gauge cluster behind the steering wheel. The touchscreen is extremely responsive, features crisp graphics, and houses many of the controls to the tech and convenience features. The digital gauge cluster isn’t very customizable, it does change colors depending on the driving mode, but I would’ve liked a bit more customization, like what Mercedes-Benz offers on their cars.
The functions that are used the most have their own special sections or physical buttons, making life much easier than having to scroll through multiple screens for the most basic functions. There’s a separate section for climate control, which features a screen that looks like it uses e-ink (kind of like Amazon’s Kindle e-book reader). This screen is easy to understand and use, with the ability to control the front or rear climate settings. Within this section, there are shortcut keys to the navigation, radio, media, and track-seek features.
The center console houses the rotary knobs for the gear selector and a knob for moving the “mouse cursor” on the infotainment system, if you chose not to touch the infotainment screen. This section also houses the buttons for the heated/cooled front seats, the camera, and the drive mode selector. Below these buttons are two buttons for closing the two front doors… that’s right, you don’t have to strain your muscles by pulling a door to close it, just press the button and the door will automatically and softly close. Closing your own doors is so 2022.
The driver’s door comes with buttons for three seat memory settings, with a button to control the passenger seat, and a button for the massage seats. I like the placement of the massage seat button here because I don’t have to go through multiple menus to start the massage. However, this button only starts and stops the massage seats, to customize your preferred massage, you’ll need to go into the menu on the infotainment system and pick between a variety of massage options and different intensities.
A lot of luxury cars would stop here with all the fancy stuff for the front two occupants, but the G90 is no ordinary luxury sedan, it’s a limousine. The back seats are just as luxurious, if not more, as the front seats. The rear seats come with heating and cooling, recline feature, and the rear passengers can move the right front seat forward to provide even more leg room for the right rear occupant. The right rear seat also has a built-in ottoman for maximum relaxation for the passenger. If you are an executive that prefers to be driven around, this is the seat to be in. Like the front occupants, the rear occupants also have the option to close the doors with a push of a button. The rear fold-down console also comes with a touchscreen and the rear passengers can control multiple functions via those controls, things like radio/media, volume, climate control, lighting, sunshades, and heated/cooled seats. The rear passengers also get a wireless charging pad and there’s a storage compartment that comes with a UV light cleaning feature. These are some impressive features; however, I was expecting massaging seats in the back but couldn’t find the option. It would make a lot of sense to have massaging seats in the rear as well. I do see the rear massage feature on US-spec G90, so I’m not sure why the Canadian-market G90 doesn’t come with this feature.
With all these luxury features, the interior is like a living room in a luxury home. Thanks to the double-laminated glass and active road noise control, the interior is extremely quiet. As I said above, the G90 would be a perfect candidate for electrification. The seats the super comfortable and can be adjusted to fit just about any height drivers and passengers. There is more than enough leg room in the back seats, but if you are looking for even more leg room, there is a G90 long wheelbase version, that’s 7” longer. I don’t see it available on the Canadian website, but I’m sure Genesis can special order if for you. It’s available in other markets around the world.
The second generation 2023 Genesis G90 is an amazing luxury car with loads of tech, safety, and convenience features. It has an eye-catching design and is a head-turner where ever you go. It’s the perfect full-size luxury sedan for the financially responsible executive that wants to save a bit of money without sacrificing luxury and style.
For more information on the Genesis G90, check out their official Canadian website.