By: Malcolm Hogan
There’s a delicate balancing act taking place among luxury automakers in creating electric vehicles (EVs) throughout various segments. When it comes to electrifying a current crossover platform, Genesis seems to have got many things right with their new Electrified GV70 compact crossover.
Without much of a difference in the look between the current Genesis GV70 powered by one of two gasoline engines, and the new Electrified GV70, the brand plays and bets on the success of such an excellent crossover, which is a good thing. Also, keeping things rather simple with the Electrified GV70 having a single trim level adds to the forward-thinking efforts to roll out a commendable EV crossover that fits well to appease a wide range of potential buyers.
Performance and Driving Character
Having an electric powertrain, the Genesis Electrified GV70 has a ‘shocking’ edge that is even more powerful than its highest-level trimmed gas-powered GV70 sibling. That edge is to the tune of 429 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque. However, the Electrified GV70 has a neat party trick, the ability to produce as much as 483 horsepower in 10-second spurts utilizing a Boost button at the bottom of the steering wheel. Surprisingly, the boost feature can be used as many times as you want, provided you have enough charge in the 77.4-kWh battery pack. That power, if used in a tamed manner, should yield a range of about 236 miles.
The ample power from the Genesis Electrified GV70 is somewhat tamed through the drive modes where the default Normal drive mode doesn’t offer up the full beans, and the Eco mode further reduces power to conserve energy and extend range. In the Sport drive mode, the full capability of the two-motor AWD setup is offered up, where the Electrified GV70 can hit 60 mph in about 4.2 seconds while using the Boost mode from a stop gets you up to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds.
There is an obvious performance theme about the way the Electrified GV70 drives, but in the Normal and Eco drive modes the throttle seems to come on in a soft way versus when you use the Sport mode. Just like the Genesis GV60 EV and Hyundai and Kia EVs, the regen mapping can be modulated through several levels using steering wheel paddles, in addition to switching to a one-pedal drive mode.
While the drivetrain is ultra-smooth and virtually silent, there are some artificial sounds to select from within the Genesis GV70’s settings, adding a soundtrack that hums or somewhat shrieks along with the speed and throttle application. Much of the way the Electrified GV70 drives is on par with the GV60 Performance AWD that I experienced last year.
The extra weight of the Electrified GV70, about 477 pounds over the gas GV70, can be felt somewhat, and the suspension seems to have completely different tuning where it adapts to contend with that heft. Handling seems compliant in Electric GV70, where you won’t miss much compared to the gas version. Overall, the suspension is compliant and smooth even with the beefy Michelin Primacy Tour A/S all-season 265-width 20-inch tires.
Electric Consumption and Efficiency
Just like its other Genesis, Hyundai, and Kia brethren, the Electrified GV70 packs in an 800-volt architecture, allowing it to get a remarkable charge time. The Genesis Electrified GV70 prides itself on being charged in just 18 minutes from 10% to 80% state of charge using a 350kW DC fast charger. Using a home Level 2 charger, you’ll expect to add just over 20 miles per hour with a 40 amp setup.
Driving on the highway you’ll easily match the EPA estimate of 83 MPGe, or in town get the 98 MPGe figure, which is nearly 2.7 miles per kWh. When it comes to the range of 236 miles, reaching such seems spot on for driving civil in our hot 92-degree Florida weather. That range could theoretically be extended slightly if you don’t use the air conditioner as much, which the range estimate will display in the EV menu.
One thing I am baffled by is the cheap-feeling front charge port door cleverly hidden in the front grille, which must be manually opened and feels like it may not last the life of the vehicle.
Interior and Technology
The cabin of the Genesis Electrified GV70 is nearly identical to what you find in the top trim GV70 AWD 3.5T Sport Prestige, having a supple space with several soft-touch surfaces and an overall luxurious theme. The Electrified GV70 gets the same wide 14.5-inch touchscreen that’s a far reach but includes a redundant central control knob with a trackpad. The system is mostly user-friendly, as I have said before, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto that’s only integrated via USB connection even though there’s a wireless charging pad that conveniently stores your phone out of the way.
The seating areas have good space for a crossover that’s classified as compact with just enough space in the back for people that are just over 6 feet tall like myself. The seats up front are comfy as well, featuring heating, ventilation, and massage functions for the back and bottom. The 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster has a neat 3D effect through tracking of the driver’s eyes and a color head-up display. The automatic climate controls have their own haptic touchscreen panel that proves to be easy to use after a few minutes of becoming acclimated to how it functions, along with the shallow rotary knobs for adjusting the temperature.
Genesis bundles up all the typical, expected active safety features and includes their latest Highway Driving Assist II system to maintain its lane at a set speed but doesn’t allow true hands-off capability. The 360-degree camera system combines a neat birds-eye view from multiple angles that can be dragged and viewed on the wide infotainment touchscreen.
The Genesis Electrified GV70, having one trim level, doesn’t vary in price much from its base $65,850 level other than adding on the optional Prestige package found on my test vehicle, raising the price to $74,350, which includes an inland freight and handling fee of $1,125. Such a price is competitive but not spectacular, even though you get a lot bundled in properly fitting luxury expectations. I just wish the range was a lot longer, and then you would have an impressive all-around contender in its segment.