2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 First Drive Review

Power and refinement make this the best version of the GV70.

By Michael Bettencourt Wheels.ca

Mar 21, 2023 7 min. read

Article was updated 2 months ago

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Atlanta, GA – There’s no doubt that the 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 will be a popular EV for the relatively new Korean luxury brand, even though it just unveiled another all-electric compact SUV last year in the GV60. That GV60 is slightly shorter, but basically the same size inside, offers the same power (in its Performance trim) and charging speeds, and doesn’t have a non-electrified twin sitting next to it in the showroom like this E-GV70 does.

But with the striking good looks of the gas GV70, that very similar exterior design could be a plus for this battery-electric version that’s slated to arrive in early spring to Genesis dealers across the country.

The Electrified GV70 is expected to eventually become the brand’s best-selling model, especially as it ramps up its U.S. production in Montgomery, Alabama, although Canadian units will come from South Korea at launch. Genesis and its parent company Hyundai have already proven that consumers are willing to pay a premium for more powerful and much smoother full-electric versions of gas vehicles, in both the luxury and subcompact SUV ends of the market, with the Electrified G80 sedan and Hyundai Kona EV, respectively.

Genesis Electrified GV70

The key question now is whether the Electrified GV70’s lower range and higher price compared to other luxury SUVs like the Cadillac Lyriq, and Tesla Model Y will be offset by its front-of-the-pack DC quick charging, unique technologies, and that come-hither but familiar styling.

It may be helpful here to clarify that GV in Genesis-speak denotes a crossover/SUV model and not an EV. Unlike the hot-selling Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6, the Electrified GV70 doesn’t use the E-GMP architecture, but was designed to accommodate both gas and EV versions early on in GV70 development, and that’s where the “Electrified” nomenclature comes from. By 2030, Genesis says it plans to offer only all-electric models.

Telling the two GV70s apart will be tricky, but not impossible from most angles. The most obvious difference is from the rear, where the lack of tailpipes is a dead giveaway, but there’s also more body colour sheet metal under the bumper, given that the E-GV70 has lost the rear cladding that also wrapped around those prominent twin exhausts. From the side, the body and wheels are largely the same (but darker here), so the tell is the white calipers. Which even on our brand-new testers were already getting dirty by the mid-way point of our sunny day-long drive in and around Atlanta.

Genesis Electrified GV70

Its front end looks like the gas car’s grille but with closed openings. There’s also a very subtle ‘G’ where the charge port opens once you push on it. Aim for the top right corner and you’ll find it. This heated and elegantly hidden charge port location will be helpful to folks that like to nose into their charging spot, either at home or at public chargers.

Inside, while the E-GV70 doesn’t have the crowd-pleasing rotating crystal ball shifter of the GV60, there’s an overall feeling of quality that’s a slight notch above its e-stablemate, and largely identical to the gas GV70. The circular shifter just below the same-size circular controller can sometimes be confused for one another, but the controller and the plethora of actual hard buttons clearly caters to traditional luxury vehicle buyers.

Genesis Electrified GV70

Genesis Electrified GV70

Passenger space is generous in front and in back, and identical with the gas GV70, with plenty of headroom and legroom in either row, even with the standard opening panoramic roof. Perhaps not surprisingly, the E-GV70’s extra length and more traditional shape netted it 813 litres of cargo space, which is a big advantage over the GV60, and only down a couple litres to the gas GV70. And in terms of overall interior room, the E-GV70 is right up there with the top-selling Tesla Model Y (although there’s no third row option), and the larger and much heavier Cadillac Lyriq.

Heavily refined is a good way to describe its overall driving feel, as its 429 hp and 446 lb-ft of torque move it along silently and swiftly at all road speeds – you don’t have to be in its unique Boost mode to throw your head back, but you’ll want to be. That’s because Boost mode, governed by a button at the bottom of the steering wheel, temporarily pumps up the power to 483 hp and a lofty 516 lb-ft of torque, allowing fans of ‘80s car shows like Knight Rider to instantly hit fast forward mode.

Genesis Electrified GV70

A 10-second countdown appears with each button push, and there’s no limit to how many times you can summon Boost mode, until you hit roughly 20-30% of a charge, said Genesis officials. It would be fascinating to actually give this luxury SUV this thermal torture test at a race track.

None of the Genesis folks at the event wanted to discuss acceleration times, although Genesis Europe’s site lists the E-GV70 as providing a 4.2 0-97 km/h time when using Boost mode, its standard all-wheel drive helping it achieve a super quick time for a family hauler. Just not nearly as quick as the 3.7 second 0-100 km/h time of a Tesla Model Y Performance, which after the major price cuts earlier this year, starts at about $78k.

But there are various options that will easily take that price over the Electrified GV70’s all-in $84,000 price – which includes all freight and dealer fees. This is a major advantage of the “agency model” that Genesis uses in Canada, the first brand in North America to do so, which works as a hybrid of the direct-to-consumer sales model employed by Tesla and the traditional dealership model most other automakers use. Genesis owns all the vehicles, and therefore does direct sales to consumers, and it’s why Genesis calls its dealers “distributors”.

“It’s a very transparent approach, so there’s no need for haggling,” said Eric Marshall, the director of Genesis Motors Canada. “Every purchase has to come through our system, and there is no capability to discount or add fees at the distributor (dealer) level.”

Genesis dealer folks are paid a commission per sale Marshall later admitted, but the amount is based on customer satisfaction metrics, not price paid for anything else.

Genesis Electrified GV70

As with any EV, range is one of the main questions. And this is perhaps the biggest drawback to the E-GV70: its 380 km is not the worst in class, but it’s certainly closer to the bottom than the top. On the other hand, it’s one of the quickest to DC fast charge, with the capability to add 100 km of range in five minutes, at a maximum DC charge speed of 240 kW provided you’re hooked up to a 350 kW charger. This is the same as the E-GMP vehicles, and is near the front of the industry.

Speaking of DC quick charging, the E-GV70 has another potential bonus over its GV60 sibling: its front charge port could make like much easier at a Tesla Supercharger equipped with its new MagicDock.

Granted, there still haven’t been any MagicDock-equipped Tesla Superchargers installed in Canada as I write this, but there are some within an hour or two of the Buffalo border, and more all the time.

On the other hand, some buyers may regularly use municipal Level 2 street charging, where the GV60’s right rear taillight charger door may work better than the E-GV70’s front end.

This all may sound trivial to ICE vehicle drivers, but charger door placement can be key. And given the relatively minimal difference between the $84,000 all-in price of the E-GV70, and the $79,000 MSRP of the Genesis GV60 Performance with the exact same powerful drivetrain, the choice between the two may come down to styling, and then a number of personal preferences.

The value equation overall is there for the Electrified GV70 to be a fine choice in this market, based on your own priorities.

2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 Prestige

BODY STYLE: Compact luxury all-electric SUV

DRIVE METHOD/BATTERY: Dual-motor, permanent all-wheel-drive, one-speed automatic; 77.4 kWh

POWERTRAIN: 160 kW motors front and rear (429 hp, 446 lb-ft); in Boost mode: 483 hp, 516 lb-ft (for up to 10 seconds);

FUEL ECONOMY/RANGE: TBD/380 km (236 miles)

CARGO VOLUME: 813 litres (28.7 cu ft); Rear seats down: 1,601 litres (56.5 cu ft)

TOW RATING: 3,500 lb.

PRICE: $84,000 not including taxes

WEBSITE: http://www.genesis.ca/




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