When I test drove a number of Genesis ‘luxury’ vehicles late last year and in the spring of 2022, the firm was new to the U.K. and at that stage all their cars were petrol or diesel powered as the Genesis name and brand were introduced to British motorists.
I was very impressed by the way in which all these models drove and performed, the careful attention paid to clever details and the inherent build quality. To read our test drive reports on these vehicles on this website, please enter ‘Genesis’ in the Wheels-Alive search box and select the feature of interest.
Fast forward a year, and Genesis has recently introduced a variety of fresh models, including electric cars new to the U.K. They tell us that from 2025 all their future models will be ‘pure-electric’… Their stated aim is for Genesis to be a ‘zero emission brand’ by 2030, and ‘carbon neutral’ by 2035.
Notably too, in the last 12 months availability of Genesis cars has widened across mainland U.K. (excluding Northern Ireland), whereas originally the vehicles were sold primarily in London and the south east of England.
For those who may be unfamiliar with the Genesis way of doing things, the buying process differs from other manufacturers. Notably a Genesis Personal Assistant liaises with the customer from the start, and throughout the buying/ownership journey. The car is brought to the buyer, also the Genesis 5-Year Care Plan is part of the deal. This includes scheduled servicing for five years/50,000 miles, during which the car is collected from, and delivered back to, the customer’s door when servicing is required . While in operation, the Plan also covers map updates for the navigation system.
The car is covered for complimentary roadside help for five years too.
At a recent press test drive event, on offer to motoring writers to sample were the new pure EV (Electric Vehicle) GV60 SUV, the Electrified GV 70 SUV, the Electrified GV80, and the petrol-powered G80 Sport saloon. In the case of the very recent introduction of the Electrified GV70 and the G80 Sport, this was the first real outing on the Genesis press fleet for these models.
I sampled as many of these variants as possible within the available time… My summaries that follow are necessarily abbreviated (so many cars, so little time…), but in due course we hope to bring you full road tests of a selection of models within the current Genesis line-up.
I should add that for every model in the range, the lists of safety and convenience equipment fitted as standard are long and comprehensive, and I am not going to include all details here (full information is available via the Genesis website) or there would be no room for my impressions of the vehicles. Talking of which… Here we go…
GV60 SUV Premium (rear wheel drive)
First drive of the day for me was in the rear wheel drive ‘Premium’ version of the five door GV60 SUV.
Before looking at the specifics of this model, I should explain that the striking in appearance (notably with its clamshell bonnet design) all-electric GV60 SUV/ ‘crossover’ was introduced to Britain in the summer of 2022. This was the first Genesis model to be built around the Hyundai ‘Electric Global Modular Platform’ (‘E-GMP’). This is also used for the Hyundai Ioniq and Kia’s EV6 electric models, but the GV60 is at the top of this tree in terms of luxury.
GV60 buyers have a choice between a 168 kW rear wheel drive version, costing £47,005 and powered by a single electric motor, or one of two all wheel drive variants with power delivered by twin electric motors. The Sport is a 234 kW machine and is priced at £53,605 whereas the Sport Plus packs a 360 kW punch and costs £65,405. All feature a 77 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, with battery ‘conditioning’ and a heat pump (a waste heat recovery system to improve efficiency) as standard.
For comparison purposes…
The rear drive 168 kW single motor Premium model is said to provide a driving range of 321 miles, a nought to 62 mph acceleration time of 7.8 seconds and has a top speed capability of 115 mph; all respectable enough.
Moving up to the twin motor 234 kW Sport, the driving range is quoted as 292 miles, with 62 mph arriving from rest in just 5.5 seconds, and a maximum speed of 124 mph.
The twin motor 360 kW Sport Plus is said to be able to cover 289 miles on a full charge, reaching 62 mph from standstill in 4.0 seconds, and has a claimed top speed of 146 mph.
I chose first to drive the lowest powered of the bunch (yet still formidable) rear wheel drive model (more later about the twin motor all wheel drive GV60 Sport Plus that I also sampled on the same day).
I liked the fresh-looking ‘light and airy’ interior treatment, including the centre console which appears to ‘float’ within the vehicle. Among many, an innovative design feature from the driver’s perspective is a ‘sphere mode’ controller mounted on this centre console. When the EV power button is operated, the ‘crystal sphere’ rotates from its dormant ‘huge eyeball-like appearance’ to provide the driver with a simple but efficient rotary controller enabling ‘Drive’ or ‘Reverse’ to be selected.
It also incorporates ambient lighting that changes to indicate that the car is ready to be driven.
Clarity was provided too by the instrumentation ahead of the driver, plus the large centrally-located touch screen controlling a variety of functions.
An aspect that I especially liked on this Genesis and other models is the way in which a view rearwards down the side of the vehicle (left or right side, respectively) is projected onto the dashboard when the indicators are activated. A simple but brilliant safety feature I feel, so that the driver can see vehicles, people or animals approaching from behind the car.
I found that driving the GV60 was very easy, and the sophisticated electric motor/drivetrain set-up worked well, and near-silently, with just a hint of electric motor ‘purring’ during rapid acceleration.
In fact, while the car was very quiet in operation overall, what little noise there was came from tyre contact with the road. That’s not a criticism, just an indication of, and underlining, the drivetrain’s near-silence of operation.
From rest speed was gained rapidly (there was torque galore at all speeds) and easy cruising was the order of the day at the U.K.’s legal limit. The car felt solid, secure and stable on all the routes I explored, ranging from main ‘A’ roads to twisting and sometimes bumpy ‘B’ roads and lanes. I thought that the ride quality was ‘firm’ but not uncomfortable, while handling and roadholding on the wet roads prevalent during my test drive were exemplary.
I found that the steering was very positive at all speeds, and braking was reassuring. Slow speed manoeuvres and parking were made easier by the on-board camera system.
The driver’s seat was comfortable for this road tester, and briefly sampling the rear seat revealed good head and leg room for occupants.
The boot (aided in practicality by the rear seat’s divided folding backrest) is large and sensibly-shaped, and with bumper-level loading; all good to see. It’s worth noting that under the bonnet is a useful lidded storage box, built-in.
Importantly, with potential recharging difficulties (currently due to lack of available infrastructure) still an issue for many potential buyers of electric cars, the GV60 is designed to enable easy charging from standard, fast or ultra-fast chargers, and incorporates a battery conditioning system plus a heat pump to aid efficiency. Its quoted maximum driving range of 321 miles (Combined WLTP) is helpful, so that reasonably long journeys can be covered without the need to seek a working recharging point. It’s comforting for would-be buyers to see a long range like this. In fact the ‘WLTP City’ range figure is better still, at 429 miles.
Using a 350kW charger, the battery pack can be recharged from 10% to 80% in just 18 minutes.
A smart regenerative braking system is incorporated within the intelligent ‘i-pedal’ set-up, harnessing kinetic energy produced when braking, and helping to recharge the battery pack.
Up-to-the-minute technology wrapped up in an impressive package providing comfort, good performance and practicality – notably with a commendably long driving range and the availability of rapid battery recharging when required.
Tech. Spec. in Brief:
Single electric motor, rear wheel drive, 168 kW, max. torque 350 Nm (258 lb.ft)
Battery charging: Typically from 18 minutes (fast charger, from 10 per cent to 80 per cent) to 34 hours 20 minutes (domestic charging, from 10 per cent to 100 per cent).
Length: 4,515 mm (14.81 ft)
Width: 1,895 mm (6.22 ft)
Height: 1,580 mm (5.18 ft)
Price: Starting price £47,005. Price as tested: £56,865 including Innovation Pack, Comfort Seat Pack, Outdoor Pack, Bang and Olufsen audio system and other options.
This newcomer was introduced just a few days before this driving event, and I was looking forward to being re-acquainted with the G80 model, having been enormously impressed by this luxury saloon when test-driving it some months ago.
So what’s new with the four door/five seater G80 Sport saloon? Well in truth the changes are mainly cosmetic, with the car’s mechanical specification being the same as for the ‘non-Sport’ versions.
Identifying the Sport are ‘black glossy chrome’ finishes to the front grille, headlamp and window surrounds plus side detailing.
Styling differences continue inside the vehicle too, with a unique steering wheel, pedals finished in metal plus a choice of carbon fibre or metal weave interior surfaces.
Quilted, diamond-stitched leather-trimmed seats also feature, with contrasting piping.
The front seating includes an ‘Ergo-Motion’ function, incorporating seven air cells that vary side support according to speed and driving mode. On long journeys the cells provide a massage function too.
The G80 Sport also features ‘Enhanced Augmented Reality’, with improved directional guidance and with display of a destination image.
Under the bonnet of the test car is a 2.5 litre, 16 valve four cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, mated to an eight speed automatic transmission. Power output is 304 bhp at 5,800 rpm, with maximum torque of 422 Nm (311 lb.ft) available all the way from 1,650 to 4,000 rpm.
Acceleration from rest to 60 mph takes just 6.0 seconds, and the potential top speed is 155 mph.
The WLTP Combined low/high mpg figures are 31.20 and 30.47 mpg respectively.
CO2 emissions figures are between 189 and 195 g/km.
The car rides on multi-link suspension, front and rear, and incorporates electric power steering.
The starting price of the G80 Sport is £49,450, but the test car was equipped with a multitude of options (including the Innovation Pack, Comfort Pack, Executive Pack, Lexicon audio system and Nappa leather-trimmed seats), bringing the total to £61,810.
Behind the wheel
A beautifully finished, finely detailed interior and supportive, very comfortable seats plus generous head and leg room for all occupants are welcoming aspects of the Sport’s interior.
The story gets better still when the vehicle is under way. There’s power and torque available a-plenty from the quiet, smooth-running petrol engine, and the car is soon reaching fast cruising speeds.
The eight speed auto transmission changes ratios (up and down) smoothly, quietly and almost imperceptibly, and with so many gear ratios and so much pulling power, the car always felt eager to perform (from any speed) during my test drive.
I found that the ride quality was firm-ish, and in truth I did feel larger road surface undulations/potholes through the tyres and suspension, but overall I thought that it was a very comfortable car in which to travel – as I did when testing another G80 some months ago.
The Sport is an enjoyable mile-eater on the open road, yet despite being a large car I also found it easy to conduct through narrow village streets, and along twisty country lanes. That said, of course the fact that it is a large vehicle means that you have to seek out suitably accommodating parking spaces. Driving into and out of such spaces is relatively easy, courtesy of the excellent steering (with a reasonable lock) and the reverse camera system.
A smart and sophisticated saloon. Very fast when required, with effortless refined performance, comfortable and reasonably economical, the G80 Sport looks and feels like the premium quality saloon that it is. During my brief test drive the car’s computer was indicating better then 29 miles per gallon (so close to the official WLTP figures), and this would have been better still had I not been trying out the car’s performance potential at times during my drive.
Tech. Spec. in Brief:
G80 Sport saloon
Engine: 16 valve four cylinder turbo petrol; 2,497cc, 304 PS @ 5,800 rpm; 422 Nm (311 lb.ft) torque between 1,650 and 4,000 rpm.
0 – 62 mph: 6.0 seconds
Top speed: 155 mph
Fuel consumption (WLTP Combined): 30.47 to 31.20 mpg
CO2 emissions: 189 to 195 g/km
Length: 4,995 mm (16.39 ft)
Width: 1,925 mm (6.32 ft)
Height: 1,465 mm (4.81 ft)
Price: Starting price £49,450, but the test car was equipped with a multitude of options (including the Innovation Pack, Comfort Pack, Executive Pack, Lexicon audio system and Nappa leather-trimmed seats, bringing the total to £61,810.
Electrified GV70 (twin motor, all wheel drive)
A very recent addition to the Genesis line-up, the stylish ‘Electrified GV70’ is a larger SUV than the GV60, but like its smaller stablemate is a pure EV, in other words propulsion is by electric motor only.
The example I sampled on this test day was a dual electric motor (180 kW or 245 PS plus another 180 kW or 245 PS), all wheel drive machine, with electrical power stored in a 77.4 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. The motors are said to be capable of spinning at up to 19,000 rpm.
Recharging the battery pack from 10 to 80 per cent can take as little as 18 minutes using a 350 kW/800 v fast charger, or more than 34 hours to go from 10 per cent to 100 per cent using a normal domestic power supply (using an 11 kW/16 A wallbox, to move from 10 per cent to 100 per cent takes seven hours 20 minutes).
The total power output is said to be 483 bhp and maximum torque produced is 350 Nm or 258 lb.ft (front motor) plus another 350 Nm or 258 lb.ft (rear motor).
The WLTP protocol driving range is quoted at 283 miles, or 367 miles under the ‘City’ heading.
The vehicle includes a ‘Boost’ mode, activated by a button on the steering wheel, and as its name implies, this produces a short-term (10 seconds) hike in power for maximum acceleration, propelling the car forward with much more urgency even than the prodigious amount it gives you using the accelerator pedal.
To show the difference, acceleration from rest to 62 mph is quoted at 4.8 seconds (itself an impressive figure) when driving normally, by this is reduced to 4.2 seconds by using the Boost facility.
The front suspension is by MacPherson struts, with a multi-link set-up at the rear, and braking is by ventilated discs at both the front and rear. In standard form the car runs on 19 inch wheels and tyres.
The starting price of the test car was £63,600, but with additions including Innovation Pack, Convenience Pack, Comfort Seat Pack, Lexicon audio system, 20 inch wheels and a Vehicle-t-load pack, the total figure rose to £73,220.
On the Road
The interior of the Electrified GV70 features the same style of neat, easy-to-assimilate facia and the welcoming interior provides a similar ambience, as found in the other Genesis models. The overall effect is impressive and once behind the wheel this car does not disappoint.
Even without using the Boost button, performance is lively and the car accelerates rapidly, sweetly and quietly from any speed. It also cruises with near-silence in terms of mechanical sounds, with just a little tyre noise reminding the driver of how quiet the electrical propulsion system is.
A touch on the Boost button propelled the car forwards with an eagerness seldom experienced in anything less than a ‘supercar’ – ideally only to be used when travelling in a straight line, I’d suggest!
I did feel some shocks from major imperfections in the road surface being transmitted into the cabin, but as the test car was running on larger diameter (20 inch instead of the standard 19 inch items), perhaps this is not surprising.
I liked the clear instrumentation and effective large central touch screen, and as with the other Genesis models I drove on the day, I found the rotary drive selector and the electrically operated parking brake much easier to use than on some other contemporary vehicles.
I thought that head and leg room was reasonably good in the rear compartment, better still in the front.
The luggage boot was generous in size too, I felt, and usefully-shaped.
Very fast both from rest and when on the move, especially with the Boost button engaged. I was impressed by the solid feel of the car, both dynamically and in terms of switchgear operation (for example). Again, as with the other Genesis models, in terms of major features and minor but important touches for everyday use the car gives the impression of being thought about very carefully by the designers and engineers.
Tech. Spec. in Brief:
Twin electric motors, all wheel drive, 2 x 180 kW (2 x 245 PS), total bhp 483; max. torque 350 Nm (258 lb.ft) from each motor, front and rear.
Battery charging: Typically from 18 minutes (fast charger, from 10 per cent to 80 per cent) to 34 hours 20 minutes (domestic charging, 10 to 100 per cent).
Length: 4,715 mm (15.47 ft)
Width: 1,995 mm (6.55 ft)
Height: 1,630 mm (5.35 ft)
Price: The starting price of the test car was £63,600, but with additions including Innovation Pack, Convenience Pack, Comfort Seat Pack, Lexicon audio system, 20 inch wheels and a Vehicle-to-load Pack, the total figure was £73,220.
GV60 Sport Plus Dual motor all wheel drive
As the driving day neared its end, my last drive of the day was in the twin electric motor GV60, in ‘Sport Plus’ guise.
By contrast with the single motor, rear wheel drive GV60 which I drove at the start of the day, the Sport Plus features all wheel drive and delivery of power and torque in huge quantities from the twin electric motor set-up.
Each motor serves up power amounting to 245 PS (160 kW) (with a quoted total output of 483 bhp) and together the two units deliver a whopping 700 Nm (516 Nm) of torque.
Acceleration from rest to 62 mph takes just four seconds, and if it were legal in this country the car could be accelerated on the move from 50 to 75 mph in just 2.8 seconds.
There are three switchable driving modes, ‘Eco’, ‘Comfort’ and ‘Sport’, and when ‘Sport’ is selected the instrumentation takes on an appearance geared more towards performance than cruising, let’s say.
In Eco and Comfort modes the car drives normally and is docile in traffic and at low speeds. With ‘Sport’ selected the car ‘tightens up’ and the drive is (of course) far more sporty, although the vehicle still feels entirely happy when driving slowly.
Pressing the steering-wheel mounted ‘Boost’ button when Sport mod is engaged results in up to 10 seconds of amazing acceleration which can almost take the driver’s breath away, it is that powerful. Essentially it delivers an extra 20 kW of thrust, making 360 kW in total, for these few seconds at a time.
Again I would not recommend use of the Boost button except when the car is travelling in a straight line…
For even more excitement, if required, this GV60 incorporates a ‘Drift Mode’ – and no I didn’t try this during my test drive on the roads of rural Gloucestershire.
In other respects the vehicle is generally similar to its less powerful (yet still high performance) rear wheel drive stablemate, including the recharging times required for the 77.4 kW battery pack. The vehicle is equally practical too, in terms of passenger and luggage accommodation.
I thought that the steering and braking performance of the Sport Plus test car was entirely capable of taming the power produced, with reassuring levels of retardation, even from high speeds, and a sure-footed feel, even when driving on bending, rain-soaked roads strewn with slippery autumn leaves.
Luxurious, cleverly designed and built, great fun to drive with wonderful performance and yet versatile in everyday use too, and with a commendably long claimed driving range of up to 289 miles (‘City’, 386 miles).
Tech Spec. in Brief:
GV60 Sport Plus
Twin electric motor, all wheel drive, 245 PS x 2 (total bhp 483) , max. torque 700 Nm (516 lb.ft)
Battery charging: Typically from 18 minutes (fast charger, to 80 per cent) to 34 hours 20 minutes (domestic charging, 10 to 100 per cent).
Length: 4,515 mm (14.81 ft)
Width: 1,895 mm (6.22 ft)
Height: 1,580 mm (5.18 ft)
Price: Starting price £65,405. Price as tested: £71,445 (including Innovation Pack, Comfort Seat Pack, Nappa leather seats, Outdoor Pack, Bang and Olufsen audio system, sun roof, Electrochromatic outside rear view mirror with auto dimming).
Genesis Test Drive Day – Overall Verdict by Kim
A thoroughly useful and enjoyable day, highlighting in particular the advanced (truly, ‘state-of-the-art’) technical specifications of the current line-up of Genesis models, while also showcasing the high standards of engineering, fit and finish evident throughout the cars, as well as the impressive levels of dynamic performance offered. These vehicles are very worthy contenders in a competitive market sector.
© Words & images Kim Henson & Wheels-Alive.co.uk