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Road Test: Genesis Electrified GV70

By
Michael Bettencourt
and
6
min
Oct 2023
Genesis, Hyundai's luxury brand, has added the choice of an electric drivetrain to its popular GV70 midsize SUV. It's fast, luxurious, and has impressive charging specs - but how does it compare against the Tesla Model Y?
Genesis E-GV70 exterior view
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The 2024 Genesis GV70: New and Electric-Improved

Talk about the ultimate stealth model. The 2024 Genesis Electrified GV70 parked in front of me looks almost identical to its sharp-looking gas-powered counterpart, yet this EV version is quicker, quieter and perhaps surprisingly not much pricier than the top V6 turbocharged version of this compact luxury SUV – especially when you option them out to similar niceties inside.

Not so long ago, creating a stealth model involved plunking down a physically larger, performance-enhanced drivetrain into a smaller or lighter model. Genesis has instead ditched the larger and heavier internal combustion engines and multi-speed transmissions from the GV70, and replaced it with the impressive all-electric drivetrain from the Korean luxury brand’s slightly smaller GV60 Performance SUV, a dedicated EV that offers roughly the same amount of interior space as the E-GV70, but a more unique jellybean-shaped body that caters more to a futuristic aero-over-everything EV esthetic.

The result is essentially a unique Genesis offering that the company expects to one day become the best-selling vehicle in the lineup. When exactly that happens will lie somewhere between when parent company Hyundai can ramp up the E-GV70 side of production at its new Montgomery, Alabama plant that opened earlier this year, and the brand’s announced vow to become an all-electric vehicle brand by 2030.

Genesis E-GV70 interior

Quality Touches and Room Aplenty Inside

There are ways to visually distinguish an E-GV70 from its gas-only counterpart, but it’s not easy. The EV has a unique grille with a fairly stylized ‘G’ to help mark the push-and-extend powered charge port door located in its nose. The EV comes standard with 20-inch low-profile yet comfort-oriented Michelin Primacy tires, which are not quite as large as the 21s available on the gas Sport model. The rims are similar style but darker, with white calipers the giveaway from the side, whereas from the rear it’s the lack of exhaust tips and the plastic panels that wrapped around them.

Genesis has also largely kept everything inside the same, with traditional yet luxurious materials compared to the more starkly space-age GV60. For example, it’s missing the GV60’s signature rotating crystal shifter party trick, though its circular shifter knob is not quite old-school. But there’s modern gee-whiz features such as 3D gauges, a fingerprint reader to start the car if you don’t have the key, or the ability to use your phone as the key instead – the former a nice back-up to the latter, in case your phone runs out of juice.

Aluminum trim and available double-stitched Nappa leather inside complement easy-to-use climate controls and infotainment buttons, clearly prioritizing ease of use over the my-screen-is-bigger-than-yours design ethos so prevalent amongst EVs now.

From a roominess standpoint, the all-electric GV70 offers only one less cubic foot of interior space than its gas twin with 28.7 cu-ft of cargo room with the seats up, and 56.5 cu-ft with them down. No third-row option though, like its Tesla Model Y nemesis, by far the best-selling vehicle in this class.

Genesis E-GV70 in a charging station

Charging Capability : 236-mile Range

Speaking of the Model Y, this E-GV70 charges just about as quick, with a peak DC charge rate of 240 kilowatts on its advanced 800-volt system. This allows for a 10-80 percent charge in only 18 minutes, which I actually saw in person when I went from an eight percent charge to 75% in 16 minutes and 47 seconds, hitting a max charge rate of 234 kW.

Genesis, like Hyundai, will sometimes confusingly say that this 18 minute figure is achievable at DC quick charge stations capable of 350 kW, leading many to report that this and their E-GMP EVs (Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6) can charge at 350 kW – which is untrue. This particular machine was a 350 kW unit, which are still fairly rare, but if you dig into their material, the company does admit its peak charge rate and times are possible on a 250 kW or higher DC (for Direct Current) charger.

This is industry-leading quick-charging speed. And in this case, it was helped along by the E-GV70’s ability to manually pre-condition the battery. Late summer and near-ideal temperatures also helped, but I’d wager the roughly 30 minutes of pre-conditioning while highway driving to the charger was the most significant factor.

On road trips, getting in while it’s at a low charge and out at one of these chargers can provide 60 miles of range in an ICE-like five minutes. And Genesis in the U.S. offers three years of free 30-minute charge sessions with Electrify America. The more usual Level 2 charging from a similar 10 percent state takes roughly seven hours to fill the 77.4 kWh lithium-ion battery.

Not quite so impressive is the E-GV70’s official range of 236 miles, which is quite a bit below the stated 330 miles of the Model Y Long Range in similar dual-motor, all-wheel drive form. It’s still one official more mile of range than the 235 miles promised by its GV60 all-electric sibling, surprisingly, but also behind EVs like the Cadillac Lyriq as well. All mileage is EPA Estimated.

Power and Safety Features

Power is plentiful in the E-GV70, with satisfying responsiveness at any road speed, courtesy of an omnipresent 429 hp by the matching front and rear 160 kW motors, while paddle shifters control brake regeneration instead of shifting duties for a welcome addition of driving involvement when the mood strikes. But the real “oh-my-word!” moments come when you hit the Boost button in the steering wheel, where every boot-full of acceleration unleashes 483 hp and an immediate 516 lb-ft of torque.

You can goose this Boost button as many times as you’d like when it’s over 30 percent charged, and the fun lasts up to 10 seconds, with a little countdown in the dash and visible in the HUD.

Genesis Europe folks estimate a 0-60 mph time of 4.2 seconds in this mode, though some outlets have gotten that down a further few tenths. This is scorching performance for any vehicle, but especially a luxurious and comfortable family SUV.

Speaking of families, there’s a long list of active and passive safety systems in the GV70, starting from the 360-degree overhead camera views to help you safely navigate through tight parking lots, to auto-lane changes above 37 mph, to the blind spot monitor that lights up a view of the side of your car in the dash when you use those turn signals for more than lane changes.

For when a crash can’t be avoided, there’s a driver’s knee airbag to go along with a center side bag, as well as the usual side and curtain bags.

Genesis E-GV70 charging

Genesis E-GV70: Value

The 2023 model I test drove had a starting MSRP of $65,850, which has increased for the identical ’24 model to just over $66,000, with this top-line Prestige model coming in at a starting MSRP of $72,650, which includes heated second row seats, manual rear sunshades and Nappa leather. That’s roughly $20,000 more than a base four-cylinder GV70, which sounds like a deal-breaker right away for vehicles that look so similar.

From a value perspective, once similarly equipped with the top Prestige packages on both, there’s roughly a $10,000 upgrade premium to go electric. If you’d like to take advantage of the $7,500 federal EV rebate, current foreign content rules necessitate you lease it, which many in this segment do regardless, which brings the monthly price down to within roughly a few thousand dollars for the quicker and quieter drivetrain, and much lower fueling costs. (The shift of production to Alabama will make it eligible for the incentive if you purchase.)

Keep in mind, however, that the E-GV70 is not available in all states yet, with the latest information from Genesis suggesting it’s currently available in: AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, IL, IN, LA, MA, MD, MN, NC, NJ, NV, NY, PA, SC, TX, UT, VA, WA, and WI.

When it comes to value in the EV world, however, it’s almost impossible not to discuss Tesla, especially in North America, where it slashed Model Y prices (with a $50,490 starting MSRP price for the LR AWD), and extensive Supercharger network is also surely worthy of consideration, even with a decidedly less luxurious interior and ride. For those happy to blend in with a handsomely subtle luxury SUV with a gas twin, the Genesis Electrified GV70 provides stealthy speed along with your massaging seats.