Genesis GV70 review
The Genesis GV70 is a well equipped, refined and luxurious family SUV that’s good enough to rival German models
The Genesis GV70 is a highly appealing family SUV that adds something different to a congested market. Quality is not only a match for its established German competitors, but good enough to rival a Lexus. It also looks refreshingly different, has a spacious interior and comes with more kit as standard than you’d expect for a premium SUV of this price.
Sales will be hampered by the absence of any hybrid options, although the Electrified GV70 is a welcome addition to the range, even if it’s at the pricier end of the market. Throw into the mix the GV70’s likely strong reliability and excellent five-year warranty package, and you’ve got the makings of a car that should be on your family SUV shortlist.
Our choice: Genesis Electrified GV70
About the Genesis GV70
Hyundai builds some impressive cars, but it was never going to break into a premium SUV market dominated by Audi, BMW and Mercedes. And so it launched Genesis as an upmarket sub-brand, which is to Hyundai what Lexus is to Toyota.
The GV70 sits between the GV60 and GV80 as Genesis’ rival to SUVs like the Audi Q5, BMW X3, Mercedes GLC, Volvo XC60, Alfa Romeo Stelvio and Jaguar F-Pace. It’s a tough market to break into, so it’s impressive that the GV70 manages to hold its own, and in some areas beat its key rivals.
With prices starting from around £42,000, the GV70 undercuts those rivals while offering even more kit as standard. Even the high-spec Luxury model costs around £46,500, which is exceptional value for money given the specification and the brand’s Five-Year Care Plan, which includes a warranty, scheduled servicing, roadside assistance, a courtesy car and over-the-air software updates, all free for five years.
There’s a choice of two engines – a 2.0-litre diesel and 2.5-litre petrol – along with an Electrified GV70 which offers a range of up to 283 miles. At £65,000, it sounds expensive, but it comes with a large 77.4kWh battery, a pair of electric motors and a long list of standard equipment.
For the petrol and diesel versions, you get a choice of three trim levels: Premium, Luxury and Sport. Even the Premium model comes with more kit as standard than you’ll find in any of its German rivals, so you might not need to upgrade to one of the more expensive trim levels.
Engines, performance & drive
The GV70 weighs more than two tonnes, and this is something you can feel when you’re behind the wheel. There’s an appreciable amount of body roll and the steering is heavier than in other Genesis models to give an impression of sportiness, but it only adds to an overall sense of lethargy.
Ignore the sporty pretensions, and the GV70 feels perfectly pleasant to drive. Ride comfort is reasonable overall, although it suffers slightly if you opt for the 21-inch alloy wheels. It’s wider than some of its rivals, which is something to be mindful of in the city and when parking, but it’s not a problem on the open road. Once there, leave the GV70 in Comfort mode for the best balance of ride and handling.
The 2.5-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol develops 300bhp and 422Nm of torque, so performance is more than adequate. This performance is best deployed at low to mid revs, because it starts to get noisy when you reach the top of the rev range. With 199bhp, the 2.2-litre four-cylinder diesel isn’t as powerful as the petrol, but with the torque available at lower revs, it’s better for overtaking. Both versions come with a smooth-shifting eight-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel drive as standard.
At 2,310kg, the Electrified GV70 is even heavier than the standard models, but this is true of many electric SUVs. There’s only one version, which comes with a 77.4kWh battery and a pair of electric motors delivering up to 483bhp in Boost mode, plus a maximum of 700Nm of torque.
The performance is impressive, especially with Boost mode activated, but the Electrified GV70 never feels anything other than smooth and refined. Thanks to an almost complete absence of motor whine, the Genesis is eerily quiet when cruising, and ride quality is good, even on our test car’s optional 20-inch alloy wheels. In fact, we’d say it’s the best-riding Genesis we’ve tested.
0-62mph acceleration and top speed
If you’re after the quickest GV70, the 483bhp Electrified version is the one to choose. It’ll sprint to 62mph in just 4.2 seconds with the Boost mode activated or 4.8 seconds in standard mode. Boost mode delivers a 10-second burst of maximum performance and is activated via a button on the steering wheel.
The petrol and diesel versions can’t match these acceleration figures, but at 149mph, the top speed of the 2.5 petrol is 3mph higher than the GV70 Electrified. The 2.0 diesel maxes out at 133mph. It’s also the slowest to 62mph, completing the sprint in 7.9 seconds, leaving it 1.8 seconds behind the 2.5 petrol.
MPG, CO2 & running costs
Predictably, the diesel is the most economical GV70, although figures of 37mpg to 39mpg on the WLTP combined cycle are a little disappointing in an era of hybrids and efficient small turbocharged petrol engines. Still, it’s significantly better than the petrol version, which offers just 27.9mpg to 29.7mpg. We struggled to top 30mpg, even on a motorway run, so the 2.2 diesel would be our choice.
All GV70 models cost more than £40,000, which means you’ll spend an extra £390 a year for VED (road tax) for five years from the second time the car is taxed. You can avoid this by buying the Electrified GV70, although you’ll pay an extra £20,000 on the car to make a £1,950 saving.
Electric range, battery life and charge time
A range of 283 miles is competitive, and our test drive put us within 10 per cent of the car’s official figure, which bodes well for daily use. Spend most of your time in the city and you could achieve as much as 367 miles, according to official tests.
The Electrified GV70 can accept charging speeds of up to 240kW, with a 10-80 per cent top-up taking 18 minutes – it’ll sustain its peak charging rate from 15-55 per cent, too.
Genesis has partnered with Shell Recharge to give access to all of its charging points, along with five years’ free access to the Ionity network at a discounted rate of 24p per kWh, rather than the standard 69p per kWh.
Thanks to insurance groups ranging from 40 to 44, the petrol and diesel versions of the GV70 will cost more to insure than the G70 saloon and Shooting Brake. Premiums for the Electrified GV70 will be even higher, thanks to a group rating of 50.
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On average, the GV70 should hold onto around 52 per cent of its original list price after a typical three-year/36,000-mile ownership period. The Electrified GV70 is expected to perform the best, retaining around 55-56 per cent.
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Interior, design & technology
The GV70 looks impressive and manages to stand out, even in the crowded family SUV market. At the front, the split headlights and imposing shield grille give the GV70 an imposing look, while the split tail-lights and curvaceous shape of the rear end put us in mind of the Porsche Macan.
Sport trim adds a chrome coating for the grille, 19-inch alloy wheels and a black finish for the bumper mouldings, roof bars, beltline moulding and skid plate. 19-inch wheels are also standard on the Premium model, and they fill the arches well enough to make you think twice about ordering a Luxury model for its 21-inch alloys.
If the exterior styling is impressive, things get even better inside. Quality is excellent – easily on a par with the likes of Audi and Lexus – and it’s obvious that Genesis has ensured that all of the bits you touch are finished to a high standard. The knurled effect of the column stalks is a great touch, as is the glass-topped rotary gear selector. Most of the trim is soft and squidgy, while the door handles feel solid and metallic.
The level of standard specification is high, even on the entry-level Premium trim. Highlights include LED headlights, a 14.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system, electric seat adjustment for the driver and front passenger seat, an electric tailgate, dual-zone climate control, rear parking sensors and rear-view camera. As the names suggest, the Luxury trim adds some luxurious upgrades, while the Sport is largely a cosmetic upgrade, although both models have a heated steering wheel, plus heated seats and climate control in the back.
Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment
The infotainment tech is displayed on a huge 14.5-inch touchscreen that boasts Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity, plus connected services. It looks impressive, dominating the top of the dashboard, but it can’t quite match the pin-sharp graphics of Jaguar’s Pivi Pro setup, while BMW’s iDrive system is easier to use.
All versions come with an 8.1-inch digital instrument cluster, although an impressive 12.3-inch 3D display is available as an option. It comes as part of a £4,200 Innovation Pack, which also adds a head-up display and an array of driver assistance systems. There are four USB ports as standard – two in the front and two in the back.
Practicality, comfort & boot space
You’d expect a family SUV of this size to be practical, and for the most part, the Genesis GV70 doesn’t disappoint. In the front, it feels more luxurious than its German rivals, although you’ll need to upgrade to the Luxury or Sport model for heated seats and a heated steering wheel. Electrically adjustable front seats are standard across the range, so finding a good driving position won’t be a problem.
Look out for the Comfort Seat Pack. At £1,700, it’s not cheap, but the massage function, electric side bolster, electric cushion extension and ventilation for both front seats, plus the electric lumbar support for the passenger, are welcome on a long trip. Heated rear seats are also available as an option.
The GV70 measures 4,715mm long, 1,910mm wide and 1,630mm tall, which is about par for the course in the premium SUV segment. For comparison, the Audi Q5 is slightly longer but a tad narrower, but within a few millimetres of the BMW X3 and Mercedes GLC.
Leg room, head room & passenger space
Anyone travelling in the front will enjoy the amount of leg room and head room that’s on offer, with both the driver and front-seat passenger getting electric adjustment for height, lumbar and cushion tilt-up. The driver seat also has a memory function.
It’s less spacious in the back, with some rivals offering more leg room and shoulder room, while the transmission tunnel eats into the space available for anyone sitting in the middle. On the plus side, there’s plenty of head room, even for tall passengers, while the backrests recline for added comfort.
The GV70’s boot compares well with many of its rivals, offering 542 litres with the rear seats up, increasing to 1,610 litres with the seats folded down. It’s worth noting that, while some family SUVs have a handy 40/20/40-split arrangement, the GV70’s back seats split 60/40. All versions get an electric tailgate.
The capacity drops to 503 litres in the Electrified GV70, although thanks to having no engine, you do get an extra 20 litres in the front. At 1,678 litres, it’s also marginally larger with the rear seats folded down.
The GV70 can pull 2,500kg braked (or 750kg), dropping to 1,800kg braked for the Electrified GV70. All versions get pre-wiring for towing a trailer.
Reliability & safety
Neither the GV70 nor Genesis as a brand appeared in our most recent best cars to own or best car manufacturer rankings, which are both based on the results of our latest Driver Power owner satisfaction survey. However Hyundai finished a respectable 17th out of 32 manufacturers. Given the excellent aftercare package and the lengths Genesis is going to to create a strong brand, we expect reliability to be a strong point.
The GV70 was awarded a maximum five-star safety rating when it was tested by Euro NCAP in 2021, scoring 89 per cent for adult occupant safety, 87 per cent for child occupant safety, and 87 per cent for safety assist technologies. The 64 per cent score for pedestrian safety was a little disappointing.
Standard safety kit includes multiple airbags, blind-spot collision avoidance, lane-keeping assist, forward collision avoidance, rain-sensing wipers and rear parking sensors. The optional Innovation Pack costs £4,200 and includes parking collision avoidance assist, a head-up display, dual front LED headlights, front parking sensors, blind-spot view monitor, surround view monitor and seat occupant detection with radar sensor.
The Genesis G70 comes with a five-year unlimited mileage warranty, which is better than the typical three-year/60,000-mile warranty offered by rival manufacturers. It’s also transferable to the next owner.
Like all Genesis models, the GV70 comes with a five-year care plan, which includes the warranty, scheduled servicing, European roadside assistance, courtesy cars and over-the-air software updates.
For an alternative review of the Genesis GV70, visit our sister site carbuyer.co.uk...