The brand new 2022 Genesis GV70 is a marvel of a sport-luxury SUV. We just got finished driving it, and it blew our minds how good it is. That's not to say we don't love the other offerings from Genesis. We've driven both the G70 sports sedan and the G90 luxury flagship, and they're excellent. But when we got behind the wheel and experienced this new entrant into the premium SUV segment, we were not prepared to love it as much as we did.
The GV70 is a brand new model for 2022, and it slots in just below the new GV80 SUV. It goes up against heavy hitters like the BMW X3, Porsche Macan, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Acura RDX, and the less popular Volvo XC60. The GV70 doesn't copy any of them, nor does it look derivative in any way. The competition is fierce in this segment, but it looks like the brand did its homework. Let's take a closer look at this new entrant.
Power, Trims, and Pricing
Our test vehicle was the truly premium Genesis GV70 AWD 3.5T Sport Prestige clad in stunning $1,500 Melbourne Gray matte paint. It's the top-level trim package that adds a significant $9,900 to the 3.5T's base price of $52,600. The Sport Prestige trim includes:
- Sport Advanced Package ($5,000): Nappa Leather Seating Surfaces w/ Sport Pattern Quilting, Layered Edge Backlit Trim, Leatherette Upper Instrument & Door Panel, Suede Headliner, Heated Steering Wheel, Genesis Digital Key, Surround View Monitor/Blind Spot View Monitor, Remote Smart Parking Assist, Park Distance Warning (Front), Parking Collision-Avoidance (Rear), Lexicon Premium Audio w/ 16 Speakers
- Sport Prestige Package ($4,900): 21" Sport Alloy Wheels, Electronic Limited Slip Differential, Nappa Leather Seating Surfaces w/ Suede Insert, Carbon Fiber Trim, 3-Zone Climate, Heated 2nd Row Seats, Manual Rear Side Sunshades, 12.3" 3D Digital Cluster, Heads-Up Display
The 3.5T isn't the only choice, and that's good news if you don't want as much power or don't want to spend north of $50,000. While we haven't driven the less powerful engine, we think the $41,000 base MSRP 2.5T GV70 is the one that will sell better between the two vehicles. 300 horses from a turbo four is quite an achievement. GV70 Buyers can choose between two engines, both paired to an 8-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters:
- 2.5T AWD: 2.5-liter four-cylinder turbo with 300 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque.
- 3.5T AWD: 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 with 375 hp and 391 lb-ft of torque
For comparison's sake, the BMW X3 sDrive30i has a turbocharged four-cylinder that churns out far less horsepower, to the tune of 248. What's more, that vehicle trim only comes in rear-wheel drive, while the GV70 2.5T comes with AWD standard. The X3 sDrive30i also costs three thousand dollars more, which is further evidence that Genesis is providing more value for less.
How does the GV70 2.5T stack up against the base Porsche Macan? The turbocharged four-cylinder Macan delivers 261 horsepower, and the price is a whopping $54,900. That's a $13,900 delta. You can even upgrade to the GV70 3.5T ($52,600 base MSRP) and still spend less money than the base Macan. How's that for value?
In terms of power, the 3.5T pulls really hard, and the throttle response is excellent. We didn't notice any lag, and 60 mph comes in a very quick 4.9 seconds. The 8-speed automatic transmission makes quick work of shifting duties, and we didn't notice any unwillingness to downshift when the GV70 is pushed. Sport mode and the paddle shifters make things happen at an even faster rate.
While the twin-turbo V6 Porsche Macan S is quicker (4.3 seconds), its base price is more than our loaded 3.5T ($65,400 for the base price of the Macan S vs. $65,045 for our vehicle, and that includes the $1,045 destination charge. Again, big points for the GV70 when it comes to providing serious bang for your buck. Even the affluent like to save money, right?
In terms of performance, we haven't driven the Macan, but we do know that at this trim level, the GV70 is truly wonderful to drive in everyday conditions. It's rear-wheel drive biased, and it feels fantastic in the corners. The power is intoxicating, but it never feels overdone or overwhelming. This is one of those luxury-sport crossovers that really delivers the goods even when you're just driving to the grocery store. We were surprised how refined, powerful, and composed the GV70 felt under semi-aggressive driving.
The GV70 Styling is Fresh and Fierce
If you take a look at the styling of the GV70, it manages to retain the design language of the rest of the lineup while looking very different from the larger GV80 SUV. At the front end, it does this by way of a more rounded front fascia and a less angular grille. The parallel lighting theme that shows up in both the headlights and the taillights is attractive and very original. The GV70 eschews the lighting detail in the front quarter panel that's present on both the GV80 SUV and the G80 sedan. The GV70 loses nothing in the process because of the styling of the excellent tail section.
We didn't like the look of the GV70's tail section when we saw it in initial photos, but in the flesh, it really is captivating. Genesis did a masterful job of using lines and dramatic rear haunches, as well as a truly unique-looking rear side window, to provide the GV70 with an athletic look that doesn't copy any of the competition, nor does it mimic the GV80. The 21" wheels on the 3.5T Sport Prestige might not be everyone's cup of tea with their waffle-like pattern, but we give kudos to the brand for making the GV80 Concept's wheels to life on the models' smaller, sportier sibling.
The GV70's interior is truly special, and it departs from the more conventional versions found in its stablemates. The ellipsoid theme is really well done here, and we like it a lot more than we thought we would when we saw the photos. The layered dash with linear HVAC vents looks slick, and the large expanse that makes up the climate controls and is one of the GV70's best features. More on that in a little bit.
There's supple Nappa leather, a rich suede headliner, and ample amounts of real carbon fiber everywhere. The metal finishes on the door handles, center console, sport pedals, and the dash trim have excellent quality, and even the leatherette dash is very convincing. We think it's the best interior for the money in this segment. Not only is it well thought out, but the cabin is attractive, original, and remarkably high quality.
There's ample space for tall adults, too. Even though it's based on the G70 sports sedan, which has tight back seat space, the GV70 carves out the front seat backs to make room for knees. Legroom measures in at 37.2 inches, which eclipses the BMW X3's 36.4 inches. Cargo capacity is very good, as well, with 28.92 cubic feet with the seats in place and 56.86 cubes with the seats folded flat. The GV70 has more space than the Volvo XC60 behind row two but falls several cubes short with the seats laid flat.
Let's just say that when it comes to touchscreen controls, especially for something you adjust a lot like the climate controls, we generally hate how they work and look. There are so many manufacturers that get it wrong. The GV70 nails it. Not only does it look fantastic with the control knobs embedded in the ovular screen, but everything is front and center: the vent selection, heated/ventilated seat controls, heated steering wheel, and fan controls. They're all right there and take no time at all to decipher. If everyone did it this well, we could say goodbye to buttons.
The wide infotainment screen is also a visual feast, borrowing from its GV80 sibling. The corresponding control wheel in the center console is just as beautiful to look at as it is to feel. Its actuation could be better, but it's hard to complain when it looks this upscale. The same goes for the knurled gear selector. While it's great that the infotainment control knob and the gear selector are textured differently, they are too close to each other and identically sized, which can make things confusing at first.
All-in-all, the GV70 is a marvel to look at, drive, and sit in. There's very little we would change. It's powerful, excellent to drive at any speed, beautiful to behold, and priced so aggressively, it's hard to imagine buying another sport-luxury crossover. This is the vehicle that stands out the most in the brand's lineup, and we think it will change the brand forever. Shoppers will flock to it because of its value but also for the entire package that brings driving fun, refinement, technology, space, and prestige, as well. Genesis isn't messing around, and you should seriously consider it if you're in the market for a high-performance luxury SUV. It really is that good.