Genesis GV70 Brings Plenty to the Table
The 2022 Genesis GV70 is a brand-new small luxury SUV from Genesis. It was configured from scratch, and it aims to fight in the fiercely competitive segment comprising of the BMW X3, Acura RDX, Lexus NX, Lincoln Nautilus, Audi Q5, Volvo XC60, Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Land Rover Discovery Sport and Mercedes Benz GLC. As we are about to find out, despite its considerably lower MSRP compared to many others in the segment, the 2022 Genesis GV70 brings a lot to the table, making it a compact luxury SUV you dare not ignore.
An exterior of flowing lines
While the GV70 shares some visual cues with its larger, more expensive GV80 sibling, it comes with plenty of its own distinguishing characteristics to set it apart on the street. Looking at the fascia and rear end contours, one could argue that the GV70 is also pulling design cues from the sportier Genesis G70 sedan.
The rear 3rd quarter of the vehicle is where Genesis really defined its more unique design. Instead of the usual flowing line all the way to the back, the GV70 roof line goes above the top of the side windows, then suddenly curves below the back window. This especially visually pops on lighter colors, particularly in white.
With the GV70, Genesis puts a lot of importance on customization, the SUV being available in no less than 13 exterior colors, paired with seven interior options, including nuances such as burgundy and green.
Wheels seem at first to be regular 5-spoke 21-inch models. However, as you get closer, you will be met by a honeycomb-like wrap on 2 thirds of the spokes’ surface. The lower part of the rear seems to have taken a bit of a design hit. While tastes aren’t necessarily debatable, one could agree Genesis could have done a better job replacing the cheap-looking plastic covering the dual exhausts.
The Sport trim gets larger air intakes on the front fascia to compensate for the hungrier 3.5-liter V6 as well as a dark grille. The standard model comes with vertical dual exhausts while the Sport trim goes for circular exhausts flanking a rear diffuser.
To access the cargo area of the GV70, you will need to press the button cleverly blended into the rear wiper assembly. No need to blindly feel above the license plate overhang for the button while carrying groceries, as with some of its competitors.
Speaking of the cargo area, the 2022 Genesis GV70 provides a healthy amount of storage which can be further increased by folding the 60-40 rear seats. A minor gripe is the fact that the rear seats are not power operated. While they will fold on their own when pulling the levers inside the cargo area, they will have to be manually reset upright to accommodate passengers again.
Surprisingly upscale interior
Once you climb into the GV70, the gorgeous interior design catches your eyes and won’t be letting go anytime soon. Admittedly, Genesis has a history of treating its customers with better interiors compared to most of the competition, but even with that considered, the interior design and finishing of the GV70 is simply unbelievable when reflecting on its price point.
Inside the GV70, you won’t find cheap shiny plastic to gather dust, no low-quality cloth on the seats or pretty much any other low-quality eye-hurting materials. Instead, everything is generously covered in soft leather, followed up by aluminum accents and beautifully sculpted carbon fiber trim pieces.
Furthermore, the overall layout of the interior, including the center console, doors and dashboard follow the same design language as the exterior. There are no sharp lines – instead, all the edges are flowing along with the length of the interior pieces, blending with round corners at the end and generally fitting in with the rest of the car.
The aluminum bordered oval-shaped control area goes from the center of the console all the way to the left of the steering wheel. It encapsulates physical buttons and beautifully integrated climate control. Another show of design and integration masterclass is the positioning of the air vents. Unlike many models where they extrude unaesthetically, Genesis seamlessly integrates the air vents along the flowing line of the dashboard in which they become barely noticeable.
Even top luxury vehicles tend to disappoint with low-quality plastics and materials used on often overlooked components such as turn signal, wiper, and window controls. However, the top trim of the 2022 Genesis GV70 impresses with quality aluminum window controls, and caps for the turn signal and wiper controls.
While the full leather, aluminum and carbon fiber trim is available only on the top-end trim, the lower trims still maintain a more than reasonable aspect and finishings. The 2022 Genesis GV70 top trim’s interior is so well put together you don’t want to leave.
Seats are comfortable and offer plenty of support and adjustment. There is adequate leg and headroom for the rear passengers, and enough space to accommodate adults in every seats in relative comfort, or at least as much as you can expect from a compact SUV.
The Ergo-Motion technology found in the driver seat of the Genesis GV70 is a brand-new addition to the segment. Several air cells in the seat activate or deactivate depending on the mode you choose: Pelvic Stretching, Lumbar Stretching or Whole Body Stretching. While it’s not a full 1-hour Thai massage, it does help reduce tension, especially when driving for long distances.
The console-sprouting infotainment display comes with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot as standard. Optionally, audiophiles can upgrade to the premium Lexicon stereo system boasting 16 speakers.
Performance for the road
Unlike other automakers whom try to give hints of off-road capability to their compact-class SUVs and fail miserably, Genesis took the less beaten path. Instead of adding at best ornamental quirks that would hint at off-roading ability, the Genesis GV70 is exclusively marketed as a car for asphalt.
There are two available engine options. The 2.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder is good for 300hp and 311lb-ft of torque, while the more potent twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 boosts output to 375hp and 391 lb-ft. The latter engine however is offered solely with the Sport and Sport Prestige trim. While the GV70 clears borrows some of its design cues from the G70 sedan, it did not also borrow its manual transmission. For the GV70, an 8-speed automatic gearbox and all-wheel drive is the only configuration available.
The 2022 Genesis GV70 shows some respectable levels of athleticism during testing, as the V6 configuration was able to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.9 seconds.
On the road, the 8-speed transmission delivers constant smooth shifting with only a small hint of lag when downshifting. Switching the drive mode to Sport fixes the issue with its performance-oriented transmission mapping. In Comfort Mode, the GV70 elegantly glides through curvy imperfect city streets with a silent and smooth ride.
The 3.5-liter has enough oomph to go against the BMW X3M40i and the Audi SQ5 all while delivering a cushioned ride, mainly thanks to its damper setup. Even in such conditions, the chassis stands out for its minimal body roll, like the G70 sedan.
According to EPA, the most efficient GV70 configuration is the turbocharged 4-cylinder, reaching a 22/28mpg (city/highway). On the other hand, the 3.5-liter is good for 19/25mpg.
A gorgeous compact SUV ready to tackle the market
Apart from some minor design deficiencies in the back and okay EPA mileage, the 2022 Genesis GV70 takes all the right design cues from the G70 sports sedan and mixes them with more space and potent powertrains. The interior of the 2022 GV70 is by far its strongest point, with not an inch of questionable material in the top trims.