To some observers it’s a Bentley, to others an Aston Martin, and some will simply ask what is it as they have never seen a Genesis on the road.
Those questions are testament to the design and rarity of the Genesis GV60 pure battery SUV and they are all good points about this premium sector model from the Hyundai Motor Group.
Not only does it look very up market, exclusive and sophisticated, but it is. Genesis has also launched in the UK with an unrivalled customer care and service package including replacement courtesy car when service is required along with a collection and delivery service to minimise inconvenience to users.
There are three versions of the GV60; the 168kW RWD Premium, 234kW Sport AWD and the model we evaluated, the 360kW Sport Plus dual motor AWD. All exclusively use battery power, they are not hybrids with a petrol engine thrown in for good measure and practicality.
The top of range model we tested packs a combined hefty punch of about 490ps giving it sports car like acceleration from rest and a very high maximum speed.
This is despite it weighing in at over two tonnes, due to the big battery, twin motors driving four wheels and a big roomy body.
The weight took the edge off its handling but its roadholding was very good, it slowed quickly and the steering was a bit vague but nicely weighted although I would have preferred a more compact turning circle in streets.
Secondary controls on the steering wheel and column covered the most frequently used features and they were silent and swift operating as well as convenient. The push button ignition on the fascia was partly hidden from view but there was no mistaking the revolving jewel that was the transmission selector on the central console.
The controls for the infotainment system were split between the console and a big touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard, and they were not particularly quick operating or at times as clear as they could have been when a lot was being shown infront of you. The driver’s screen was large and very clear by comparison, and its displays changed with the selection of eco, normal or sport settings on the mode button and accompanying boost button giving ten seconds of kidney-kicking acceleration.
Generally, all the power was delivered very smoothly and quietly, and while the deeply padded seats with their optional leather covers had a lot of electric adjustment inc. a massage function for the driver, heating and cooling there was no getting away from a sometimes bumpy ride at low speed as he big wheels and tyres coped with poorer surfaces.
Main roads were not an issue, secondary and side roads a different experience.
The road rumbles and suspension bump-thump probably intruded more noticeably because of the lack of powertrain noise, near absence of wind ruffling and any other mechanical noises.
Visibility was generally very good with low waistline and big windows, particularly infront, bright long range headlights with auto dip and extremely good front wipers but nothing on the back window which seemed odd. Our test car was fitted with additional rear view cameras in the door mirrors and sensing system and had a massive sunroof which gave a very open-air feeling to the interior.
Access to the cabin was easy with wide opening doors and a high lifting powered fifth door to the luggage area, which was wide and deep over the compartment for the power-charging and breakdown kits.
We charged the GV60 numerous times and if you find a 150kW charger or higher those are the best, even if they are not cheap. A rare 350kW point will boost the battery to 80% in under 20 mins., a 50kW box takes over an hour while a normal AC wallbox is over 7 hours and a familiar domestic point would tie up the car for 34 hrs. Yes, a day and a half.
In today’s world, the Genesis GV60 SUV is extremely eye-catching, highly sophisticated and comfortable with a useful range between reboosts. It’s not cheap but its very good.
For: Sophisticated, comfortable, very roomy and extremely smooth powertrain with good steering, brakes and roadholding
Against: Surprising amount of road noise, big turning circle, fiddly infotainment system, didn’t feel agile due to weight.