Genesis dropped its first tranche of info and photos of the GV70, and while the latter depict an SUV with all the now expected touches that define the bold styling language on the rest of the Genesis lineup—two-bar headlights and taillights, huge pentagonal grille, elegant body lines—that familiarity in no way makes it less exciting. First off, the GV70 is Genesis’s opening shot at one of the car market’s hottest segments, where it will compete head-on with the BMW X3, Audi Q5, Acura RDX, Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class, and other compact luxury SUVs. It’s an even bolder salvo than the G70 sport sedan, which was released for 2017 into the competitive waters where the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class swim, if only because of its expected greater sales volume.
A Floral-Print Suit: Styling and Trims
It isn’t often we have the chance to judge an all-new model wearing a fresh design language—meaning there’s no precedent to go by—so allow us to slowly drink in the newest Genesis. The 2022 GV70 threads a delicate path between being overstyled and eye-catching, and we think it does so well. It certainly looks nothing like anything else in the segment, even if from certain angles there are some familiar lines and themes. Up front, the GV70’s big five-sided grille looks better integrated than on, say, the larger G90 sedan, where it resembles a tacked-on shield made of chainmail. Here, it has some subtle three-dimensionality, and fits into a structured face that largely relies on clever surface manipulation, not brightwork or trim, for its definition.
The rear is smooth, highlighted by gentle curves and spare detailing. The floating triangular rear quarter windows are unique and cool, and among the few GV70-specific cues you won’t find on another Genesis. As on its siblings, the GV70 gets a pair of sweeping character lines on its flanks, the lower one arcing up toward the rear wheel and the upper, more defined line gently tapering down to meet the taillights.
Genesis is planning two trim treatments for the GV70, at least for global markets, and it displayed Luxury and Sport models in its initial photos. (The red-painted GV70 pictured here is the Sport, the lavender and silver examples in the gallery are Luxury models.) When it comes to the U.S. market, the Sport will be segmented by way of a package (as in, a Sport package), and it isn’t clear yet what the non-Sport GV70 will be referred to as. Our guess is that it’ll simply be called “the GV70. ” But, we’ll see.
The baseline GV70 setup includes smaller front bumper intakes and rear exhaust outlets, toned-down wheel designs, and a shiny or chrome finish for what limited trim exists on the GV70’s body. Sport models replace that flash with the visual suggestion of more dash, with mostly blacked-out trim, larger front intakes, and cannon-like exhaust outlets. The GV70 Sport package’s wheels also wear a highly technical dimpled finish, almost like a golf ball.
The GV70’s Interior Is Stunning
But wait, there’s more! The Genesis SUV’s interior is even bolder than the exterior. As with other Genesis products, the GV70’s cabin is divided into upper and lower visual sections, with the upper wearing a dark material and the lower seemingly available in a variety of colorways. A simple two-spoke steering wheel is fitted to Luxury models (Sports get the three-spoke unit seen above), while a new wide-format display is placed atop both trims’ dashboards like a billboard.
What primarily sets the GV70 apart from the others, however, is a pleasing oval theme. (Hold your late-’90s Ford Taurus jokes, please. Associating the Genesis’s interior with that of the odious oval Taurus would be an insult.) The GV70 shows Genesis stepping up its interior design game beyond even what it pulled off with the larger GV80 SUV and G80 sedan.
As in those models, a full-width recess separates the upper and lower colorways on the dash itself and hides the air vents, the seats feature intricate stitching, and bold colors appear to be on the menu. The photos, for example, show purple and chili-pepper red interior themes. We like the climate controls’ location in the primary oval in the center of the dash, and the knobs and buttons that control the main infotainment display are situated on the center tunnel nice and close to the steering wheel. We also note what look like speaker grilles adorning the entirety of the sides of each front-door armrest, along with ambient lighting throughout. It’s a fashionable, original aesthetic, just like the exterior’s. We’re here for it.
Two New Engines, Too
Under the GV70’s hood will sit one of two fresh-for-Genesis engines: A turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder, which recently debuted on the larger GV80 SUV, and a twin-turbo 3.5-liter V-6. (The six also hails from the GV80.) Genesis isn’t yet sharing how much power either engine will make in the GV70, but in the GV80, the 2.5-liter four makes 300 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque, while the twin-turbo V-6 puts out 375 hp and 383 lb-ft. In the smaller, lighter GV70 SUV, those engines—should their outputs stay the same as in the GV80—promise to deliver notably spicier performance. As is expected, the GV70 will offer driver-selectable drive modes, including Eco, Sport, and Custom settings; opt for the Sport package, and you’ll also get a Sport Plus option.
So far, that’s all we know about the new luxury crossover. Expect all-wheel drive to be optional and rear-wheel drive standard. Pricing and more U.S.-spec details should drop soon, for those who remain interested. As with other Genesis models of late, we’re assuming that will be the case, and given Genesis promises the GV70 will go on sale here sometime in 2021, look for full details soon.