Luxury car manufacturers have figured out the secret recipe to bigger sales volume. Make a SUV, and if one is not enough, make two. Other automakers have reaped the success of their SUVs for well over a decade and now Genesis Motors, the not-so-new-kid-on-the-block from South Korea, are joining in with the all-new GV70 compact crossover to go along with the GV80 luxury mid-size SUV introduced last year. We quickly snatched what is expected to be a volume seller – this is the 2022 Genesis GV70 2.5T Advanced Plus.
The design team at Genesis Motors wanted to make a statement with the GV70 and came up with a striking crossover that looks drastically different than others on the road today. The company’s signature Crest grille and quad lamp design are displayed proudly up front, followed by a sloping roofline that gives the GV70 a fastback coupe silhouette. The rear three-quarter design and the quad taillights are a bit controversial, however we applaud the effort by designers to break the mold and created a compact luxury crossover that looks trendy and refreshing.
Our tester is powered by the 2.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 300 horsepower at 5,800 RPM and 311 lb-ft. of torque from 1,300 to 4,500 RPM. Despite being a base engine, there is plenty of get-up-and-go power for the GV70 2.5T that did not leave us longing for more off the line. Stay on the throttle a bit longer though, and its inadequacy shows as the powerplant runs out of breath once past mid-range. Those looking for performance should give the GV70 3.5T a long hard look – that six-cylinder turbo is excellent and gives the top German crossovers a serious run for their money.
Power is routed to all four-wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission, and the GV70’s all-wheel drive system offers swift assistance when traction is needed. The system’s eagerness can be a bit intrusive for advanced drivers looking to have more fun but it is perfectly apt for our unpredictable climate. When roads are clear, the GV70’s joyful steering and well-balanced chassis make it one of the most fun-to-drive crossovers today.
There is good communication from its electric steering rack, and drivers can finetune the dynamics through five distinct drive modes. Moreover, there are three terrain modes – snow, sand, and mud – that adjust the powertrain, power, and brakes to assist with control based on the situation at hand.
Fuel economy of the 2022 Genesis GV70 2.5T is rated at 10.4L/100km in the city and 8.4L/100km on the highway for a combined figure of 9.7L/100km. Our observed fuel efficiency rating came in at a higher than rated 11.0L/100km, but it is worth noting our test drive was over a snow-filled week in frigid temperature which would always negatively impact fuel consumption. Premium grade gasoline is recommended for the GV70 2.5T.
Stepping inside and users are greeted to an upscale cabin that draws inspiration from Korean architecture as well as the aerodynamics of aircraft wings. It is a fluid and elegant design throughout and the materials and craftsmanship are top notch. We love the unique Ocean Wave with Pine Grove (Read: green and bronze) leather; it is a fresh take on the usual colour combos in luxury cars and we love it.
The interior layout is quite user-friendly too, with the touchscreen in close proximity to the driving position, and a rotary command knob on the centre console for quick navigation. One minor complaint is the two rotary dials – one for infotainment commands and one for gear shifts – along with the volume dial, are too close together, leading to a bit of confusion. The infotainment system is a joy to use; the screen is vivid in resolution, system navigation is intuitive, and offers support with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The upgraded 18-speaker Lexicon premium audio system that comes standard on the Advanced Plus trim is excellent as well.
Interior space is acceptable at the front with good support from the seats. Rear passenger space, to no one’s surprise, falls a bit shy due to its unique design, but thankfully our Advanced Plus AWD trim comes with an oversized panoramic sunroof that keeps it from feeling too confined. Despite firm suspension, the GV70 is far from harsh and the quiet ride helps add to above average comfort. Cargo volume is measured at a generous 818 litres.
The Genesis GV70 2.5T Advanced Plus comes with a loaded drivers assistance package including Smart Cruise Control with Stop-and-go, Rear Parking Distance Warning, Blind Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist and Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Following Assist, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Surround View and Blind-Spot View Monitor, and Driver Attention Warning systems. We particularly enjoyed the Lane Following Assist function as it accurately keeps the GV70 centered between the lines – a great assistance feature for road trips.
The 2022 Genesis GV70 starts at an attractive $49,500 for the Select AWD model, and moves up rather quickly to our as-tested $59,500 sticker for the Advanced Plus AWD. Notable additions over the base unit include a heads-up display, rear side sunshades, ventilated front and heated rear seats, and 19-inch wheels. It is in a heated race against the BMW X3 to be the best driving compact luxury crossover in the market. The X3 offers a slightly sportier package while the GV70 balances its engaging dynamics with a luxurious cabin.
With the 2022 Genesis GV70 2.5T Advanced Plus, the brand has added one more winning card to their already excellent deck and extended its appeal to cover a wide array of luxury car shoppers. Knowing it is the key ingredient to success, Genesis design team took their time in designing the well-rounded GV70 and GV80, and we expect them to push the young luxury brand to a new level of prominence on the big automotive stage.