Genesis has been setting the Internet alight with a trio of gorgeous all-electric concept cars, the last of which is this lovely X Convertible.
The concept debuted this week ahead of the Los Angeles auto show, and it has us daydreaming of taking this grand four-seater for a quick blast along the Pacific Coast highway. And, even if it rains, we could still enjoy the view since the car’s folding hard-top incorporates dual moon roofs – a first, as far as we can tell.
The palatial convertible, which looks ready to rival anything from Bentley or Rolls, shares its architecture and electric powertrain with the 2021 X Concept and 2022 X Speedium Coupe concept. In other words, this is pure fantasy, at least for now.
The company’s Chief Creative Officer, Luc Donckerwolke, is refreshingly honest about the idea behind these concepts.
“Genesis started life by producing sedans mainly targeting business users,” Donckerwolke said in a statement. “Now, electric powertrains have given us the perfect scenario in which to enjoy nature, and propelled the brand to create vehicles with even greater emotional resonance,” he added. In other words, it’s not enough to be a competitive luxury brand anymore; Genesis is aiming to spark desire too. The company explains this trio of concepts function as “a beacon” for the brand.
The X Convertible concept isn’t just beautiful, it’s original too. The “parabolic lines” flowing over the hood and down the car’s sides eschew the traditional nose-down wedge-shaped stance in favour of a look that’s altogether more regal. Seen from the side, its silhouette is pinched in the middle for a kind of Coke-bottle shape. The long hood, rearward cabin and generous deck lid give the car immense presence. “Athletic Elegance” is what Genesis calls it.
The cabin is just as lovely, with a driver focused cockpit that signals this is no luxury barge. Genesis clearly intends to (continue) making performance-oriented machines even as the brand moves into new segments.
Perhaps you noticed the textured woven pad that wraps around the cabin? It’s made from recycled wool fabric and inspired by “Giwa,” the roof tiles on Korean houses. Dancheong Orange – “named after the traditional decorative colorings on traditional Korean wooden buildings,” explains Genesis – serves as an accent colour for stitching that encircles the cabin.
We’re not alone in thinking Genesis’ design department has been smashing it out of the park lately. The 2021 X Concept earned a prestigious ‘Best of the Best’ award in the Design Concept category at last year’s Red Dot Design Awards.
“We are in the process of transitioning Genesis into a company that will deliver products for customers to enjoy,” Donckerwolke said.
Indeed, the brand has been gradually ratcheting up the raw appeal of its automobiles in recent years. The fastback GV70 SUVs and the radical all-electric GV60 are both highly original designs in a crowded market where we thought we’d seen it all. The brand’s lovely “two-line lamp” design that wraps around the side of the cars – seen prominently on the new full-size G90 sedan, for example – has given Genesis its own unique and instantly-recognizable visual signature.
Even before the trio of X concepts, Genesis gave the world the stunning Essentia sports car concept. The low, lithe coupe stole the New York auto show back in 2018. Everyone loved it and rumours swirled it could preview a future production car. Unfortunately, however, those rumours have yet to come true.
Although it’s still a relatively new brand, only seven years old, its ambition seems to know no bounds. With the X concepts, Genesis is taking aim at the upper echelons of the luxury car market and showing it could compete, if it wanted to. The only question is will it?
So far there is no firm indication that any of the X concepts will go into production. Genesis has proved it can make excellent, sporty luxury cars with the G70 sedan and the GV70 SUV, both of which earned rave reviews. However, for Genesis to really tug on the heart-strings of luxury buyers, it could certainly use a halo product, something surprising, something that makes a statement and grabs the attention of people who wouldn’t otherwise pay attention.
In other words, the brand would be well served by putting one of these X concepts into production. The only question then is which one: The X Convertible, last year’s X Concept or the 2022 X Speedium Coupe? The latter might be our favourite – it’s the most unusual, not fitting easily into any current genre – but we’d be quite happy to park any of them here at the Sharp garage.
Sadly, the X Convertibles concludes this trilogy of concept cars from Genesis, but we can’t wait to see what Donckerwolke and the brand do next.