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  • 2017 Genesis G90 3.3T Premium Sedan

    Posted on May 17th, 2017 ninarussin

    High-luxury affordably priced

    By Nina Russin

    Genesis G90

    Genesis G90

    These days, it’s hard to find a high-luxury sedan priced below six figures. The notable exception is the Genesis G90 priced from $68,100 for the rear-wheel drive version equipped with a 3.3-liter turbocharged engine. If sub-70K doesn’t sound like a bargain, consider the competition. The Audi A8 starts at $82,500, BMW 7-Series at $81,500 and Mercedes-Benz S550 at $96,600.

    The 3.3-liter V-6 engine is a fine piece of work, developing 365 peak horsepower and 376 pound-feet of peak torque as low as 1300 rpm. It’s a rocket off the line and easily wins the race to the front of the highway entrance ramp. An eight-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode enables drivers to downshift hard for more aggressive performance.

    Buyers will appreciate a haggle-free dealership experience since the sedan comes fully loaded with safety and convenience features, including keyless entry and start, 19-inch alloy wheels, 22-way power driver’s seat, 16-way power front passenger seat, heated front and rear leather seats, navigation, wireless Qi charging, power sunroof, satellite radio, Bluetooth interface, power trunk, three-zone automatic climate control and more. The price out the door is base MSRP plus a $950 destination charge.

    Test drive in Southern Arizona

    Genesis G90

    Genesis G90

    This week I put the G90 through its paces on highways and surface streets through Phoenix, Scottsdale, Chandler and Tempe, Arizona as well as some rural roads in the Gila River Indian Community south of town. From Peter Schreyer’s striking exterior design to the sedan’s powerful engine and smooth-shifting transmission, the G90 delivers the goods. The engine is every bit as good as the car’s more expensive German competitors. The transmission is well matched, progressing through the gears with no obvious shift shock under normal driving conditions.

    Upon hard acceleration, the exhaust system emits a satisfying belch out of its two rear pipes.

    A four-wheel independent suspension consisting of a five-link setup front and rear with stabilizer bars on both axles soaks up bumps in the road while keeping the chassis flat in the corners. The large alloy rims with low-profile R-rated tires give the G90 a fat footprint for enhanced high-speed performance.

    Genesis G90

    Genesis G90

    An electric power steering system offers plenty of assist on the low end, but on-center response is softer than competitive products. This may or may not be a problem, depending on whether the buyer prefers very sharp response at high speed or a more neutral feel that requires less interaction with the wheel.

    The G90 is a heavy car and feels it: curb weight is 4,360-pounds for the rear-wheel drive variant with the smaller engine. The acoustic insulating glass, large rims, heavy seats and a lot of wiring for infotainment features make a car bulky. Competitors are no different.

    Engineers managed to pare the sedan’s coefficient of drag down to a respectable 0.27. As-a-result, fuel economy is pretty-good for a car of this size, averaging 20 miles-per-gallon on the highway according-to the EPA.

    Genesis G90

    Genesis G90

    Visibility around the car is good. The overhead camera is extremely useful navigating through crowded parking lots, since it enables the driver to scan the vehicle’s entire perimeter. Blind spot monitoring illuminates LED signals in the side mirrors when vehicles in adjacent lanes pass through the driver’s blind spots. The system is on the sensitive side, with margins that are too large for typical urban driving scenarios. The system is also prone to false positives when drivers in adjacent lanes are cornering at the same time.

    The lane-keeping assist system is one of the best this writer has experienced, gently guiding the car back towards center without annoying or scaring the driver.

    Engineers did an excellent job minimizing noise intrusion to the interior, enabling occupants in both rows to converse on the highway or enjoy the audio system.

    Upscale interior

    Genesis G90 Interior

    Genesis G90 Interior

    Inside, the G90 is loaded with comfort and infotainment features as well as a long roster of active safety technology, including overhead and rearview cameras, blind spot monitoring, lane-keeping assist, autonomous braking, whiplash-resistant front seats, daytime running lamps, adaptive cruise control and more. There is also a drowsy driver alert: an important addition for commuters who come home tired after long days at the office.

    I found the power driver’s seat easy to adjust for a clear forward view with ample lower lumbar support. Memory settings make it easier for multiple family members to share the car.

    The heads-up display is rather difficult to read with polarized lenses on. White numerals might have been a better choice than amber.

    Individual tire pressure indicators display pressures in the digital information center in the gauge cluster, taking the mystery out of which tire triggered the low-pressure warning lamp.

    Both climate and infotainment controls are easy to reach from either front seating position and intuitive to operate. Redundant steering wheel controls minimize driver distraction.

    Standard safety

    The G90 comes with nine airbags, antilock brakes, traction control, stability control, daytime running lamps, rearview and overhead camera, blind spot monitoring, lane-keeping assist, whiplash resistant front seats, autonomous braking with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control and tire pressure monitoring.

    Genesis builds the G90 at its Ulsan, Korea assembly plant.

    Like: A full-size high-luxury sedan priced well below its competitors with a strong engine, high level of standard comfort, convenience and active safety features.

    Dislike: Soft on-center steering response, overly sensitive blind spot monitoring system.

    Quick facts:

    Make: Genesis
    Model: G90 3.3T Premium
    Year: 2017
    Base price: $68,100
    As tested: $69,050
    Horsepower: 365 HP @ 6000 rpm
    Torque: 376 lbs.-ft. @ 1300 rpm
    Zero-to-sixty: N/A
    Antilock brakes: Standard
    Side curtain airbags: Standard
    First aid kit: N/A
    Bicycle friendly: No
    Off-road: No
    Towing: No
    Fuel economy: 17/24 mpg city/highway

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