Hyundai’s story is a real-life example of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale “The Ugly Duckling.” In the 1980s, the South Korean automaker’s first effort in America was the Excel, a car that became the butt of jokes for its unreliability and shoddy quality.
Today, that homely Hyundai has evolved into a beautiful swan, the Genesis G90 full-size sedan, a car that challenges such German luminaries as the BMW 7-Series and Mercedes S-Class.
Genesis was launched as Hyundai’s luxury brand for model year 2017, and the G90 was introduced as the company’s flagship large sedan that same year.
For 2020, the G90 received new styling plus a passel of tech features, from navigation that’s updated over the air to a rear cross-traffic sensing system that automatically applies the brakes to prevent a collision.
Even the V6 base model is loaded with luxury features—and the V8 model more so. Serene and comfy on the road, the G90 doesn’t match the taut, precise handling of its German competitors. But it bests them in terms of price—by tens of thousands of dollars.
Vehicle layout: 3.3-liter V6 (365 hp), 8-speed automatic, RWD
MSRP, base model/as tested: $73,975; (as tested: $76,475)
MPG, city/highway/combined: 17/24/19
Crash-test ratings: NHTSA: not yet rated; IIHS: Good (all ratings), Top Safety Pick+
Spare tire: Compact spare
Final assembly: Ulsan, South Korea
Basic warranty: 5 years/60,000 miles