I went into the launch of the new 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70 ready to be mildly disappointed. I thought it’d be something of an afterthought, just the normally gas-powered GV70 crossover with batteries. And we know that in 2023, EVs designed to be EVs from the ground up tend to perform better than cars adapted for electric power after the fact.
I also didn’t understand why Hyundai’s luxury division would do this since it already has an outstanding electric compact crossover in the Genesis GV60. I figured the Electrified GV70, which is built in Alabama, was a fast-tracked battery-swap job just to take advantage of the new tax credits, which require EVs to be assembled in North America. The Korean-built GV60 doesn’t qualify.
Folks, when I’m wrong, I’m wrong. The Electrified GV70 is a stellar addition to the brand’s growing portfolio of EVs, and there are even some ways that it outclasses the GV60 – not to mention a lot of other competitors in this space. Plus, like the Electrified G80, it rides on a platform that was always designed to go electric, but with even fewer hits to room and cargo space than that sedan.
It’s still down on range compared to some rivals and comes with a few nitpicks, but this crossover can be counted as another win for a brand that’s truly firing on all, well, battery cells lately.
|Quick Stats||2023 Genesis Electrified GV70|
|Motors:||Dual Permanent-Magnet Synchronous|
|Output:||429 Horsepower / 516 Pound-Feet|
|0-60 MPH:||4.5 Seconds (est)|
|EV Range:||235 Miles|
|Trim Base Price:||$66,975|
Gallery: 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70: First Drive
Same, But Different
The GV70 crossover was launched last year to generally stellar reviews. It debuted with two turbocharged engines, a four-cylinder and a V6, and it squares off against the BMW X3, Audi Q5, Acura RDX, and other tough competitors.
But you could now argue the Genesis’ edge over those cars is its fully electric version. It is technically considered a standalone model under the name Electrified GV70 but is effectively the range-topping GV70 in terms of price and performance. In that way, the price increase over the gas version makes more sense.
But as a result, it is not built on the same Hyundai Motor Group Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) as the Hyundai Ioniq 5, Kia EV6, and GV60, though it borrows a considerable amount of hardware from those cars.
The GV70 also has a different personality and intended audience than the GV60, what with the latter’s swoopy European hot-hatch looks, adventurous color schemes, and captivating Crystal Sphere gear selector. Genesis’ people told me the GV60 is aimed at the “EV purist,” someone who’s more of a high-tech early adopter and loves the offbeat quirks that come with many electric cars; they didn’t say it, but think about a Tesla buyer.
The Electrified GV70, on the other hand, is for someone who wants a car that feels less like a spaceship and more like a conventional luxury crossover. It’s the difference between an electric vehicle and a vehicle that happens to be electric, I’m told.
Fast Car, Fast Charging
The two cars share some similarities, namely the 77.4-kilowatt-hour battery and a dual-motor, all-wheel drive setup. Spec-wise, the Electrified GV70 has a lot of parity with the more powerful GV60 Performance. Both cars offer 429 horsepower, but the Electrified GV70 has an additional 70 pound-feet of torque for a total of 516 lb-ft. Both are also EPA-rated at 236 miles of electric range and can charge from 10 to 80 percent in just 18 minutes if you use a 350-kilowatt public fast charger. Functionally, both come in around 200 miles of actual range at a 100% charge.
Genesis also says the Electrified GV70 can add 60 miles of range on that charging speed in just five minutes. That’s pretty impressive, and it’s part of why reps say it’s aimed at families on the go who have a lot of weekend activities and no time to sit around waiting forever to add electrons. Moreover, Genesis is throwing in three years of complimentary 30-minute fast-charging sessions at Electrify America stations, in the hopes of reducing range anxiety.
It’s fast in other ways, too. The Electrified GV70 does zero to 60 miles per hour in just 4.2 seconds if you use the Boost Mode function — another donation from the GV60 — making it by far the quickest car in the GV70 range.
In the end, how many buyers really know (or care) if their EV was built on a dedicated platform or not? I’d wager not many, especially in the mainstream audience Genesis is aiming the Electrified GV70 at. They want a car that’s stylish, comfortable, fast, and hopefully without too many charging headaches. On those fronts, this crossover delivers.
Whatever doubts I had about the Electrified GV70 being a battery-swapped compliance vehicle were quickly put to rest behind the wheel. This EV does nearly every type of driving exceptionally well, from around-town errands and highway cruising to offering a surprising degree of speed and athleticism when the kids are at daycare and you crave the kind of fun that could land you in traffic court.
On The Road
You get three drive modes: Comfort, the normal, balanced setting; Eco, which significantly cuts into power but preserves range and is great for city and traffic driving; and Sport, which tightens up the steering and sacrifices a few miles for a much more aggressive character.
Genesis modified the GV70’s suspension and added more aluminum and lightweight materials to the body to offset the battery weight. The end product is more nimble than its 4,982-pound curb weight would suggest.
The default setting lives up to its name by erring on the side of plushness and smoothness to match its supple seats. (I’ll admit I had the massaging function on most of the time.) Even there, it has abundant acceleration to make highway passing a breeze; performance feels far above similar gasoline crossovers in this price range.
The fun really starts in Sport. That’s where the Electrified GV70 may shock you. It’s a tighter, better, more agile handler than the GV60, probably one of the better cars in this class; the words “budget Macan Turbo” escaped the lips of my co-driver, an experienced reviewer and noted Porschephile. Neither of us expected that going in.
One nice touch that carries over from other Hyundai EVs is the “i-Pedal” adjustable regenerative braking, which uses steering wheel paddles to step anywhere between one-pedal driving and full coasting. I also appreciate using it to modulate your speed going into a corner or down a hill; it’s a nice, extra level of car control with the benefit of putting miles back into your battery.
I have to talk about Boost Mode, which here is a button at the bottom of the steering wheel (and one I almost hit a few times by accident.) Activate that, and the Electrified GV70 sort of shimmies a bit, gives a brief moment of four-wheel torque steer and then teleports down the road. Boost Mode gives you a power bump to 483 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque for a ferocious, “Should you really be selling this to normies, Genesis?” 10-second blast of speed. This obviously slices hard into your EV range, so use it selectively – and probably when there aren’t any other cars in front of you. Or cops waiting down the street.
When you’ve had your fill of backroad fun, you can turn Sport Mode off, pick up the kids, put their stuff in the trunk and drive home in respectable comfort with, hopefully, plenty of range to spare. The Electrified GV70 really is a “do it all” electric crossover that skirts the line between luxury and performance car. SUVs have been doing this for years, but they’re about to be on another level in the EV era.
Pricing, Design, and Tech
Perhaps best of all for buyers, the US-built Electrified GV70 does qualify for up to $7,500 in tax credits, while the Korean-built GV60 does not. (In case you hadn’t heard, the revised tax credits have been a bit of a mess for Hyundai, but the company’s starting to work around it with options like this.) It comes in two flavors: the $65,850 Advanced and the $72,650 Prestige, which adds Nappa leather, an impressive 12.3-inch 3D digital gauge cluster, heated seats for the second row, a microfiber suede headliner, Lexicon premium audio, a heated steering wheel, and a few other options.
Visually, this EV is essentially the same as the handsome (and vaguely Porsche 928-esque, in profile) GV70. The biggest change on the Electrified model is the solid silver shield grille, which hides a charging port (unlike the rear- and side-mounted ports on some other Hyundai Motor Group EVs.)
The room sacrifice is minimal here too. Despite the EV batteries, space isn’t impacted much. The Electrified GV70 offers 102.8 cubic feet of passenger volume to the GV70’s 103.6 cubic feet; 56.5 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded to the gas car’s 56.9; and 36.6 inches of rear legroom to its counterpart’s 37.2. I’m not sure you’d notice much of a difference.
The biggest design disappointment – and one of my major marks against the car – is the fact that the Electrified GV70 will only come in four colors at launch, all of them shades of gray or black. That’s a shame because the gasoline GV70 has some lovely color options including green, matte burgundy, and red.
This was done because Genesis actually uses a different, higher quality paint than the Hyundai-branded cars, and that paint shop is still getting set up in Alabama. (Maybe Genesis did fast-track this thing after all.) More shades should be added over time, but for now, if you desire an electric GV70 you can have it in any color you want as long as it’s grayscale.
The story is thankfully better inside. The GV70’s plush interior also carries over into a cabin with supple leather, high-grade materials and actual, physical button controls. The Electrified version also offers a unique Glacier White color and more interior bits made from recycled plastic bottles, a nice touch for a “green” car. Overall, it feels vastly nicer than its $40,000-car roots would imply – a testament to how good even “cheap” GV70s are.
The Electrified GV70 also gets the same infotainment system seen on the gas car and various EVs. It works well here on the 14.5-inch widescreen display, which has quick and responsive touch controls and a number of physical buttons and switches. Those are extremely useful, but I do wish this screen was a bit closer to the driver’s hands, as it is on the GV60.
I didn’t love the GV70’s touch panel for climate and heated seat controls. It’s hard to tell if it’s actually responding to your commands, which is especially frustrating when you’re actually driving and don’t want to take your eyes off the road for long. Also: no Crystal Sphere here. Sorry. But the rotary gear selector knob looks fine enough on its own and works just as well.
Is 236 miles of rated range enough? As ever, that depends on your driving habits, local charging network, weather, and personal needs. We put a lot of miles on the Electrified GV70 in and around Atlanta and its range estimates proved remarkably reliable. Personally, I wish there was an option to sacrifice some performance for the 300-plus-mile ranges on certain other Hyundai EVs, as that’d be a better fit for the families Genesis is trying to reach here. But the fast-charging and Electrify America deal help to sweeten the offer.
There’s also the challenge of availability. Genesis EVs are only sold in 15 states as of this writing, but that number is rapidly growing. It’s easy to expect the Electrified GV70 to become a volume-seller in the coming years, but for now, it could be scarce to find.
Get past all that – and the lack of color options at launch – and the Electrified GV70 is an extremely promising and compelling offering in the EV crossover market. As much as I love the GV60, I’ll admit this one’s a stronger fit for many people, and in some ways I actually liked it better. The performance of this crossover alone should put it on your shopping list, provided you can find one right now.
And if nothing else, the Electrified GV70 proves the era of doubting Genesis is over. If Mercedes and Lexus aren’t worried, they aren’t paying attention.
2023 Genesis Electrified GV70
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