Breaking New Ground

Through its purity of design execution, the Genesis GV70 is a stunner inside and out.
Aug 9, 2022
Barry Spyker

It’s called a luxury crossover but it has a sporting attitude, too, with a striking, raked-back profile and dazzling two-tiered LED lights. Its stance is daring, lower and wider than the rest of its class.

A twin-turbo punch launches it into a league with sporty entries from Mercedes, Audi and BMW, with a torque-vectoring limited slip differential that makes magic in grip and agility.

And then there’s “wow” technology like a fingerprint identifier to start the engine, and a posture control which adjusts seats automatically to your personal dimensions – if you’re willing to plug in a few body measurements. Relax, it doesn’t get too personal.

These are some of the reasons that Genesis, the luxury-brand spinoff from Hyundai, is making another big splash in the marketplace with its all-new GV70. The compact-luxury SUV is raking in awards wherever it goes: Motor Trend magazine’s 2022 SUV of the Year, AutoTrader’s Best Overall SUV for 2022, and ForbesWheels’ Crossover of the Year, to name a few. 

The GV70 is built on the same platform as Genny’s G70 sedan. It’s also the little sibling to the midsize GV80 but they each have their own style. Below the big grille are functional vents at each corner. Stacked rear-light clusters wrap into the lift gate, above a pair of large dual exhaust tips. Optional five-spoke 21-inch wheels have a strange waffled look that, well, not everyone will like.

Power in the Sport Prestige trim comes from a twin-turbo 3.5-liter V-6 that makes 375 horsepower and 391 pound-feet of torque. Another trim level, the 2.5T, gets a 4-cylinder turbocharged engine that’s still good for a respectable 300 hp. In both, the power is channeled to all four wheels though it can be sent exclusively to the rear wheels, too.

The 3.5T runs to 60 mph in around 5.5 seconds, which sits 6 or 7 tenths behind the competition, according to Motor Trend figures. But those foes include sport models like the Audi SQ5, BMW X3 and Mercedes GLC43. The GV70, however, does offer launch control as standard.

The GV is prepared for all conditions with drive modes that include Sport and Sport-Plus, Comfort, Eco and Custom for tailoring the drive to your style.

Comfort is enhanced with an adaptive suspension system that peers ahead and adjusts for dips and bumps. If there is any harshness, blame the big 21-inch wheels. Steering response is swift, and it sweeps through curves with minimal body roll. 

The smooth-shifting 8-speed automatic transmission holds gears longer in Sport, and times them just right to launch the GV out of corners. Paddle shifters provide more control.

Better spend some time in Eco mode for any chance of meeting the EPA’s estimated fuel economy estimates of 19 mpg city, 25 highway, for a combined 21.

GV70’s gorgeous interior is dressed in quilted, ventilated Nappa leather with suede inserts. Virtually all materials are top quality, like carbon fiber trim on the doors and console, and everything fits just right. Overhead are suede-like headliners and a panoramic sunroof.

Wide ovals, cleverly worked into the dash and door panels, were inspired by the aerodynamic shape of aircraft wings, say engineers.

Head and leg room is more than ample up front and seats have cushion extensions, 16-way power for the driver, 12-way for the passenger. Both offer 4-way power lumbar adjustments.

An exceptional massage feature, dubbed Ergo Motion, allows adjustments for length of time and intensity. The five-seat GV70 has adequate headroom for back-seaters even with the raked roof, but leg and foot room are tight for six-footers.

There is no shortage of high tech – futuristic? – features. For the driver, a fingerprint reader not only starts the engine but can remember the seat position, climate and audio preferences. 

Behind the wheel is a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster which has 3D virtual gauges plus an infrared camera that monitors eye movement for safety. A head-up display offers key data at a glance.

Atop the dash is a 14.5-inch LCD touchscreen. It has crisp graphics and is easy enough to navigate, but it’s a reach for the driver. Now get this: The screen can also be controlled by a rotary dial on the center console, but the gear selector also is a rotary dial and right next to the multimedia dial. Oops. Could be a frustrating before your coffee.

A 16-speaker Lexicon audio system is available as part of a $5,000 package of premium and safety features, including park assist and reverse automatic emergency braking.

Cargo space is better than most compact-luxuries with 28.9 cubic feet behind the second row. It expands to 56.9 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down. 

Many advanced safety features are standard, including adaptive cruise control, automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection. A self-driving system combines adaptive cruise and lane centering and can also change lanes on its own with turn signals. Also included is intersection turn assist.

No surprise that the GV70 is raking in awards with its looks, quality interior and impressive performance. It’s a well-rounded package for thousands less than most foes. 

Barry Spyker was the automotive editor and columnist for the Miami Herald.

Genesis GV70 3.5T Sport Prestige

Base Price: $52,600

As Tested: $64,045 (Includes Sport Advance Package with Nappa leather, suede headliner, several parking assists, 16-speaker premium audio - $5,000; Sport Prestige package with 21-inch wheels, electronic limited slip differential, suede seat inserts, carbon fiber trim, 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and head-up display - $4,900)

What’s all the excitement about? A new compact-luxury SUV from Genesis is garnering attention and accolades with its style, quality and performance

Powertrain: Twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V-6 engine, good for 375 hp, mated to 8-speed automatic

How’s the performance? With help from Sport Plus mode, it gets to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds, only a half-second behind the German sporty models. Good balance of performance
and comfort

Fuel economy: 19 mpg city, 25 highway, 21 combined

IMG Insurance Management Group

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