The Genesis Electrified GV70 Stays Calm and Collected

You’ve got to hand it to Genesis: a modest eight years since it splintered off from parent company Hyundai, the Korean marque has carved out a fine niche in what otherwise remains a distinctly German — and very competitive — field. While not as taut or performance-driven as the Bavarian BMW nor as high fashion as the status symbols of Mercedes-Benz, Genesis has authentically embraced its Korean roots across all aspects of its operation, from support and customer care to design. And although it takes a fair bit to pull German luxury car loyalists across to a new brand, Genesis seems to be putting down fairly firm roots in Canada. Only five Genesis showrooms existed in the country last year; by the end of 2024, that number will grow to 30.

Genesis Electrified GV70 interior

But let’s put the brand’s business plans aside for a moment. The crucial question is, can the Genesis Electrified GV70 can keep luxury SUV buyers satisfied? The nomenclature alone alludes to a smart lesson that the brand learned early on — that while the market is hungry for EVs, not everyone is quite so open-armed about the outlandish, even obtuse design choices that often accompany them. EV customers seem to land in two separate camps: those who want a vehicle that screams “look at me, I care about the environment” and those who simply want a normal, familiar, well-appointed car that just so happens to consume electrons instead of fossil fuels. This model was made for the latter.

As such, on paper (and for the most part even in person) the Electrified GV70 differs little from its gas-powered peers. At most, you’ll notice a different texture to its front grille and slightly altered aero pathways in the lower bumper. There’s also an inevitable increase in mass — thus far, automotive engineers haven’t been able to square the weight of electric motors and batteries off with their internal combustion counterparts, but this difference is only noticeable if you drive both versions back-to-back and at a fairly aggressive pace because there’s not much in it. Compare the weight of the EV variant with that of its 3.5-litre V6 sibling and there’s only a very modest increase of 225 kilos.

Where the difference can be felt, however, is inside the cabin. Luxury carmakers have always taken pride in the silence and smoothness of their rides. But in luxury EVs such as the Electrified GV70, this tranquility takes a real leap forward. Without the drone of a diesel-or-petrol-powered engine to do battle with, drivers are treated to a new level of peace and comfort as they cruise from one destination to the next.

But guaranteeing this soothing atmosphere takes a fair bit of work, not least because traditional ways of deadening sound require packing more heavy materials into the car. With this is mind, Genesis’s engineers — in close collaboration with audio partners Bang & Olufsen — have cooked up a solution that’s far from your typical sound-suppressing fare. Taking the same technology we usually see in headphones, Genesis has applied active noise cancellation to the whole passenger cabin. By dialing in on the specific sounds generated by the road and the car’s tires, an optional audio set-up created by the Danish electronics brand can counteract these frequencies on the fly and neutralize the noise in real time.

Genesis perked in driveway

Alongside these acoustic modifications, Genesis has also ensured that its new EV won’t leave drivers waiting when recharging on the move. The car has an expected 383 kilometres of range, meaning most “regular” driving habits will be well-covered. However, thanks to rapid-charge capabilities, the GV70 is capable of juicing up from 10 per cent to 80 per cent in just 18 minutes. And once you’re back on the road, the new model will easily chew through the miles thanks to its ample reserves of power. Using a pair of motors — one per axle — the Electrified GV70 delivers 429 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque to keep things moving.

There’s even one final trick up Genesis’ sleeve. Not unlike the old school dragster method of flipping a switch to hit the nitrous bottle, the Korean carmaker has installed a boost button on the Electrified GV70’s steering wheel. Push it and the power output jumps to 483 horsepower for a brief — but effective — 10 seconds. It feels a little unnerving at first, but it’s a great tool for completing passing manoeuvres or to up the enjoyment of your favourite driving roads.

Genesis Electrified GV70 rear view as it drives up cobblestone street

Overall, while it isn’t easy to bridge the gap between combustion and electrification, Genesis has given it a fine go with the new Electrified GV70. Whether we like it or not, the era of electrification is well on its way — so be thankful that cars such as these are making the transition that much smoother.

Learn more about Genesis Electrified GV70.