Six years isn’t a very long time for a wannabe luxury brand to get its act together. Yet Genesis is quickly confronting more established high-line marques. And one place it’s clearly making that known is in the emerging EV market.
The automaker’s initial GV70 and Electrified G80 models offer two different approaches to going full battery power. And both succeed in their own ways. Now comes the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70.
Here, the Korean carmaker has done over its mid-range gas-powered crossover. The electric drivetrain is quiet, quick and confident. The traditional luxury features are matched by plenty of new and useful technology.
To get a sense of what it was like to drive the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 I started out from Atlanta’s exclusive Buckhead community. I started out by diving into the deep end of Atlanta’s notorious urban traffic, eventually making it far enough out to explore the scenic Georgia countryside. Here’s my first take.
Genesis has taken two different approaches to its growing line-up of EVs. The electric-only GV60 uses a version of the E-GMP platform shared with EVs from sibling brands Hyundai and Kia. The Electrified G80 adopts the same platform used by the gas-powered sedan, however. And that’s the same approach used for the Koreans’ latest entry, the Electrified GV70.
As I noted in a review of the original, gas-powered GV70, Genesis took pains to make sure the GV70 doesn’t get lost in a sea of compact luxury SUVs. “Audacious” is the word that Genesis chief designer SangYup Lee used to describe the new GV70 when it made its virtual debut. And that’s more than just hype, as you’ll quickly realize checking out the distinctive quad head and taillights.
As with the original model, the Electrified GV70, offers impressive driving dynamics that emphasize the “sport” in sport-utility vehicle. Credit the fact that the GV70 shares the same basic underpinnings as the G70 sedan. But it also shares many of the same high-line features as the bigger, more expensive Genesis GV80.
Despite using a more conventional platform, Genesis engineers squeezed in the Electrified GV70’s motors, battery pack and control electronics without intruding on the SUV’s cargo and passenger space – though they did sacrifice a frunk, or “front trunk.”
There are only a handful of design tweaks that will distinguish the Electrified model from the original GV70. Outside, there are no special badges. The clearest signals a casual observer might spot are the lack of any exhaust pipes and the “reverse” version of the brand’s signature G-Matrix grille. It’s really just ornamentation, as there’s no need to flow air to an engine under the hood. There are lower intakes on the front fascia to cool the batteries and motors.
As with the rest of the Genesis line-up, quad “parabolic” headlights and matching taillights are the most distinguishing feature for all GV70 models. Twin creases, including what Genesis dubs a “Parabolic Line” counter the coupe-like roofline.
While the Electrified GV70 may not get the frunk found on some competing EVs, there’s still plenty of space for cargo. And by mounting most of the electric drivetrain, starting with the battery pack, below the load floor, there no intrusion into the interior. The cabin remains roomy and well-appointed. Again, there are only a handful of changes that even the driver might notice, including a few key controls.
The paddle shifters that would adjust gear selection on the gas model have been repurposed. They now serve to adjust the degree of brake regen, or regeneration. That impacts the amount of energy recaptured during braking and coasting, but also changes driving behavior, as I’ll explain shortly.
The overall design clearly displays a “Korean influence” Genesis designers suggest. That may escape the eye of many potential buyers. But it translates into a handsome and finely detailed cabin, the instrument panel divided up into two separate zones — emphasized by a two-tone color scheme. It’s often said that it’s all about details, and Genesis gets that, delivering elegant touches like the knurled control knob operating infotainment functions.
Both versions of the Electrified SUV feature a 14.5-inch reprogrammable gauge cluster, along with a 12.3-inch display that can present a variety of apps simultaneously, such as a navi map and audio information.
Slim air vents and elliptical accents are meant to look like a wing’s cross-section. Seats are attractive and, more importantly, comfortably supportive. Ambient lighting adds another upscale touch.
All-wheel-drive is standard with the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70.
As with the brand’s two other battery-electric vehicles, the layout here uses twin motors, one on each axle, to create what is known as a “through-the-road all-wheel-drive system.” There’s no connection between the front axles, but using sensors and computer software, power is varied to the motors to compensate for different road and weather conditions, as well as driver input.
The drivetrain delivers a combined 429 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque, but the driver can tap the “Boost” button on the steering wheel to up the pony count to 483 for 15 seconds at a time.
The 77.4 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack delivers an EPA-rated 236 miles per charge – though that will vary according to weather and the weight of your right foot. That’s low to mid-pack for the segment. The EPA also gives the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 a rating of 98 MPGe in the City, 83 on the Highway, and 91 combined.
The 800-volt electric architecture used by the Electrified GV70 helps speed up charging times, meanwhile, the crossover capable of going from a 10 to 80% state-of-charge in as little as 18 minutes when plugged into a 350 kW DC public quick charger. Using a conventional Level 2 public or home charger would take about 7 hours to hit 100%.
Safety and Technology
Like the brand’s bigger SUV the 2022 Genesis GV70 is loaded with useful technologies – starting with that fingerprint recognition system that allows you to start and operate the vehicle without bothering to bring along your keyfob. Alternatively, you can use the Genesis app to open or lock, as well as run the SUV – though the process is easier with an Android phone than one running on Apple’s iOS operating system.
Both trim levels of the Electrified GV70 are outfitted with that 14.5-inch touchscreen infotainment display. Like so many manufacturers, Genesis has switched to a fully 3D digital gauge cluster which uses cameras to monitor the position of your eyes, projecting images that give the cluster a realistic sense of depth. It is a truly impressive system that is rivaled only by the 3D system offered on the new Mercedes S-Class.
Add to this, a 12-inch Head-up-Display that projects arrows onto the road to help you pick the right place to make a turn, something that proved especially useful trying to navigate my way along the crowded and complicated streets of Brooklyn.
The infotainment system can store a number of different profiles, should you have more than one regular driver. That means you’ll have unique display and climate control settings, among other things. There is, of course, the now requisite Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and wireless smartphone charging, as well as a wireless hot spot.
The system provides 2-way communications that allows for “dynamic voice recognition,” a fancy way of saying it understands plain English commands — though it’s not an Alexa-level voice assistant. It does keep the navigation system updated, not only for changing traffic conditions but also for detours and new construction. And it permits Genesis to revise the onboard infotainment system — but not other vehicle systems — using over-the-air updates.
The list of smart safety technology is particularly impressive, starting with essentials like forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and lane keeping assist. Options add evasive steering assist, and a semi-autonomous highway driving assistant to help keep you centered in your lane and keeping a safe distance from traffic. The GV70 also adds an airbag between front-row occupants to reduce the risk of head and torso injuries in a side impact.
For those who haven’t yet driven an EV, or who’re familiar with early models, such as the original Nissan Leaf, getting behind the wheel of today’s all-electric vehicles likely will deliver a pleasant surprise. And the twin-motor system powering the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 is a case in point.
Starting out from my Buckhead hotel, I squeezed the throttle and the drivetrain smoothly set me in motion. As I finally found a break in Atlanta’s notorious traffic, I slapped the throttle and found myself sinking deep into the SUV’s plush driver’s seat, all that torque coming on instantaneously. It proved especially useful navigating stop-and-go traffic. The big plus was the GV70’s 1-Pedal drive mode, activated by the paddle shifters.
In 1-Pedal, you simply modulate the throttle to both accelerate and slow, much like when running a gas engine downshifted several gears. It’s not only great in traffic but when navigating twisty back roads where you seldom have to go back-and-forth from accelerator to throttle.
The all-electric drivetrain does add hundreds of pounds to the SUV’s mass but, with the battery pack under the load floor, it actually has a lower center of gravity than a GV70 with an internal combustion engine. And the modifications to the overall body and platform make the Electrified model 24% stiffer, Genesis claims.
That played out well when I got out to the Georgia countryside, the all-electric ute pleasingly confident as I carved my way around corners and then accelerated quickly on the straights.
Another plus: the electronically controlled suspension system uses the safety system’s camera to scan the road ahead of the vehicle. It automatically adjusts shock damping before you hit a bump or pothole.
With even more sound insulation than the gas models, the new Genesis proved almost eerily quiet while cruising, though a driver can activate an artificial sound generator that subliminally adds an emotional element while accelerating.
2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 Specifications
|Dimension||L: 185.6 inches/W: 75.2 inches/H: 63.5 inches/Wheelbase: 113.2 inches|
|Powertrain||dual synchronous motors, 1-speed automatic transmission, AWD|
|Fuel Economy||98 MPGe city/83 MPGe highway/91 MPGe combined|
|Performance Specs||429 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque|
|Price||Base price: $66,975; As tested: $72,650 plus $1,125 delivery fees|
|On-Sale Date||Available now|
As with most EVs, You will pay a premium to go all-electric. The Advanced trim starts at $66,975, including $1,125 in delivery fees. But you get plenty for the money, on the whole. I spent my day in the more lavish Prestige model, starting at $72,650. For the extra money you get plenty of desirable features, including leather seats, a heated steering wheel and additional technology.
The standard, gas-powered 2023 GV70 starts as low as $45,400, with delivery fees, though that gets you the base engine and you won’t find nearly the level of features. On a more applies-to-apples basis, the gap is a lot narrower than it first might seem.
Helping offset that, the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 features three years of free charging – for up to 30 minutes at a time – using the growing Electrify America network. If you do that regularly it can add up. And, as with all EVs, you will have far less maintenance to deal with – no tune-ups or oil changes, among other things.
And, unlike a number of other foreign-branded EVs, the Genesis EV still qualifies for up to $7,500 in federal tax credits since it’s assembled in Alabama. That could change, however, as the federal government has not yet locked down rules covering battery sourcing under the Inflation Reduction Act.
Genesis delivered some real surprises right out of the box and, in the six years since its launch has continued to impress, especially with the 2023 Electrified GV70. While it’s not a ground-up EV design, as with the smaller GV60, it all comes together. There’s no sense of compromise to the package. And it should be on the shopping list for anyone looking for a high-line battery-electric SUV.
2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 — Frequently Asked Questions
Is the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 worth the money?
At a base price of $66,975 – including $1,125 in destination fees – for the Advanced trim, the Genesis Electrified GV70 clearly pushes into the midsize luxury segment where, on the whole, buyers will pay a premium over gas-powered models. But the Genesis EV offers a lot for the money, especially if you upgrade to the Prestige model for a total $72,650. It gets a number of desirable features, including leather seats, a heated steering wheel and a number of high-tech systems.
Does it qualify for federal EV tax credits?
At the moment, the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 does qualify for up to $7,500 in credits since the all-electric model is being built at the Hyundai Motor Group plant in Alabama. There is the possibility the credits will be withdrawn, however, as the new Inflation Reduction Act requires that batteries and their raw material also come from U.S. or other, select partners. A final decision on that has been delayed by Washington.
What is the range of the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70?
The all-electric version of the Genesis GV70 crossover yields an estimated 236 miles per charge, according to the EPA.