Genesis GV70 Electrified review: Taking electric EVs up a size - MrLiambi's blog


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Tuesday, 4 October 2022

Genesis GV70 Electrified review: Taking electric EVs up a size

Genesis is a relative newcomer to the UK and Europe, the luxury arm of to very familiar brands - Hyundai and Kia. Genesis' position aims to offer an alternative to some of those premium brands that are so dominant in Europe.

The GV70 Electrified sees Genesis offer a fully-electric SUV in a larger size than the excellent Genesis GV60 - and one that wants to be compared to the likes of the Mercedes EQC or Audi e-tron.

But offering quality interiors, options for a whole want of technology on top of a great EV system, Genesis lands cheaper than those rivals, while wanting to offer The Genesis Difference, with close attention to customer service.

Design and build

The Genesis GV70 already exists in combustion form, having previously seen a full release before moving to offer the fully electric version. The design of these is mostly similar, the Electrified version getting a few exclusive tweaks, including EV-specific wheels, front bumper and rear end. 

Of course, with no tailpipes, the rear of the car is tidied up a bit, a little more seamless and doing away with some of the plastic inserts found on the combustion version. 

Around the front, of course, the huge signature grille is adapted, here a solid panel carrying the same design as other Genesis models, but without the need for airflow into the engine bay, it's now cleverly used to integrate and hide the charging port cover.

That also means there's no need to accommodate a charging port elsewhere on the car for cleaner overall lines.

And there are some great clean lines on this car, a curving waist line meeting a muscular haunch at the rear.

The roofline drops a little towards the rear end, with all lines drawing your eyes to a point on the tailgate, giving the illusion of motion. It's a sophisticated design, although does see the rear windows getting slightly smaller, which seems all the range on big cars these days.

We also love the matte grey finish on this model, a £1,130 option, but it does give it some distinction among a sea of glossy factory painted cars.

An interior uplift

With the Genesis GV60 - its smaller SUV - it was easy to see the relation to the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the Kia EV6, but with the GV70 it sits on a different platform and it's more difficult to relate to sister models across the group.

Certainly, there's no EV from Kia or Hyundai that currently offers the size that the Genesis GV80 Electrified will give you.

collection: interior

The interior is distinct, but perhaps not as showy and as the GV60 - there are no electric mirrors, for example, no Crystal Sphere, instead it feels as though the GV70 Electrified is resorting to traditional quality touches, like lots of leather.

That's what you get, with just about every surface covered, with neat visible stitching, while maintaining surprisingly clean lines across the dash. Other areas use wool to again give a high quality finish.

There's a top-mounted 14.5-inch display, while the climate controls have their own panel, easy to access - and with a huge range of options and functions. Thankfully, it's centered around a couple of dials, so you can easily rotate to adjust the temperature.

If you have a model with ventilated seats (offering both heating and cooling) you have those controls too. Again, ventilated seats is a premium feature adding to the comfort options that Genesis is offering. The rear seats also offer heating, but ventilation is reserved for the front.

There's no flat floor in this model, no move to give you space between the front footwells like you'll find in some electric cars recently, but you do have a decent central armrest covering a storage compartment, a pair of cup holders and a dedicated area for your phone, which can be shut away.

This offers both a Qi wireless charging pad and USB connections for cable charging or for connection to the car's own systems - but more on that later.

The remaining space gives you access to the important drive controller, a clickwheel for the main display and drive mode, and other UI navigation buttons.

The steering wheel is a little busy as it adopts controls so the driver can do most things without taking a hand off the wheel, while the cruise control and driver assistance functions all seem to have a button too.

But overall there's a fairly clean feeling to things, it's certainly spacious and we found the seats to be nicely comfortable both front and back. The front seats offer plenty of adjustability in all sorts of directions with memory functions, and can also be linked to a biometric fingerprint scanner, meaning you can just touch this to return the car to your profile and preferred settings.

There's also a treat for those accessing the Sport mode as, if you have the Comfort Seat Pack, the seats will pump up the side bolster to reduce your roll as you go through faster corners. The GV60 also offered this, and it's a nice touch.

The rear bench gives ample head, knee and shoulder space, while the boot/trunk offers 503 litres of space - paired with an additional 25 litres in the frunk.

There's also a great tranquillity to the interior, thanks to the active noise cancellation system that it offers with the Lexicon audio pack. Like your high-end headphones, the Genesis GV70 will detect sound coming into the cabin and produce opposing sound waves to cancel it out.

Plenty of technology

We've already mentioned that some of the tech that awaits you, with that 14.5-inch display dominating proceedings. It's an ultra widescreen sort of effect, but it's been cleverly done, so if you're using Android Auto from your phone (for example) you get useful information panels flanking this view, rather than just having wasted space.

collection: display

That 14.5-inch display is paired with the 12.3-inch digital driver display. This has a great holographic effect, giving a sense of layering to the information it displays, which carries with it a degree of sophistication. Importantly, it's easy to see the information that matters, while also adapting with the selected driving mode.

There's also the option for a heads-up display that comes with the Innovation Pack, putting more information straight into your eye line.

Returning to that central display and Genesis is offering touch and rotatory controls, so you can click through things. There are also buttons - map, nav, radio, media - sitting below the aircon display, so there are lots of ways to access the most important areas.

collection: screen

There are perhaps too many tiles within the users interface itself and if you're swiping through the pages with a finger, there seems to be more here than you might immediately want access to, but thankfully the buttons resolve that, so you can get to the functions you'll need for driving.

Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are supported, but we've found Genesis' system to be pretty good when it comes to navigation and mapping, Of course, the advantage of using a system like Google Maps is that you're more likely to be able to instantly access the most up-to-date information, but we were pleased to find that EV charging locations were easy to locate in the POI system.

There's also a comprehensive system of driving assistance, much of which you can forget about - although we found that, as is often the case, the lane keep assistant was all too keen to panic when passing parked vehicles on narrow UK roads, requiring a crossing of the centre line.

Of course there's also steering assistance once you're in the adaptive cruise control, at which point the car will essentially be able to drive itself, which is great for motorway driving.

On the road

There's a feeling of majesty and serenity once you're on the move, benefiting from the premium position of the GV70 Electrified. As with all electric cars, you can roll along pretty much in silence, benefitting from that ANC system once you're up to speed.

The Geneis GV70 Electrified has an all-wheel drive system, with a dual motor setup offering 360kW - 490PS. That sees 180kW on the front and rear axles. However, in normal driving, this is limited to 160kW - with access to the additional power reserved for the Boost button.  

Hitting this steering-wheel mounted button gives access to that additional power for 10 seconds, which is fun to test, recreating those 80s Knightrider fantasies, but we struggle to see the practical applications for such a feature.

Not that you really need it, because the performance of the GV70 Electrified is satisfying, offering a 0-62mph time of 4.8 seconds. Yes, that Boost button will see that drop to 4.2 seconds - so it's good for bragging rights at least.

There's no single motor option - often used to provide a more affordable entry point - so you have no option but to take the dual motor option, and accept the price.

The Genesis GV70 Electrified offers a 77.4kWh battery which is pretty big, but you'll notice that this is the same capacity as the smaller Genesis GV60 and that has an impact on the range.

The cited range from Genesis is 283 miles. In our testing, we averaged around 3.3 miles per kWh, which would be about 255 miles. Of course, the actual range you'll get from the car - and the average ranges you'll achieve - will be dictated by a wide range of factors.

Driving style will have a big impact, with the opportunities for regeneration playing a big part. Stop-start driving in urban environments will see your averages higher than prolonged motorway driving at speed. But the temperature will also impact on the range.

This is where the premium positioning of this car is worth pulling into focus. With a starting price of around £65k, it's still healthily cheaper than the Mercedes EQC (which claims 255 miles of range), and around the same price as the BMW iX3, which doesn't feel as modern, although Genesis doesn't carry the same sort of brand sway, yet.

For many people wanting the convenience of an SUV for transporting the family around a busy life, the range won't be a problem, however, with the added advantage that Genesis supports rapid charging too. Hook up to a 350kW charger and you'll get from 10-80 per cent in 18 minutes, with support for 240kW peak charging.

We also really like the setup with the regen paddles. This will allow you to vary the level of regeneration that the GV70 Electrified will offer you, from nothing through to i-Pedal, which will basically allow you to drive without using the brakes.

While some cars don't give you these options (linking it to driving mode or just managing it automatically), once you're familiar with the ins and outs of regen on EVs, being able to adjust it with your fingertips to the conditions is really useful.

The Genesis GV70 Electrified is a big SUV and it drives like one, soaking up bumps in the road but giving a refined and comfortable ride as it does so. It perhaps doesn't feel as dynamic as some of the German rivals, but we can't fault it for the serenity that it offers.

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