The first Genesis model with a dedicated all-electric platform is the GV60, a high-end compact crossover.
Genesis is the luxury brand for Hyundai. While the GV60 shares some underpinnings with the related Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the Kia EV6, it has plenty of unique features that put it well above its Hyundai and Kia relatives.
Outside, the styling looks luxurious, with touches that mimic the larger Genesis crossovers and sedans, including two-level narrow headlights and taillights.
Similar to the Ioniq 5 and EV6, there are two large display screens on the dashboard. The one in front of the driver conveys information such as speed and how much power is being consumed. The centre screen provides, among other things, the map or the radio.
Below that are the vents for heating and air conditioning, and below that is another panel with a graphic of the climate controls. This means, unlike some vehicles, you can adjust your climate settings without having to close out your map or sound system settings.
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Controls are very intuitive and logical. The GV60 does an excellent job of having knobs and buttons of different sizes for different functions, such as power windows and remote control mirrors. It makes it easier than having to pause and study the icons on identically-shaped buttons. The most noticeable knob is a large one right in the centre of the console, which appears to be a huge crystal knob. It rotates to reveal the gear selector.If you like to frequently change radio stations when travelling as I do, the GV 60 has thumbwheel knobs on the console to select stations. This means I didn’t have to stretch out my right arm to the middle of the dash to change stations; the thumbwheel is right where my fingers rest when my right arm is on the armrest.
The GV60 has soft-touch leather trim on the doors. Fit and finish are spectacular. The Bang & Olufsen stereo is outstanding, and the seats are extremely comfortable.
GV60s in Canada are all-wheel drive. Two power levels are available.
The standard trim level, called Advanced, starts at $71,500 and has a 74 kWh front motor battery and a 160 kw rear motor. These combine to provide 314 horsepower and the range is 399 kilometres.
The top trim level, called Performance, has a price of $79,000 and has 160-kw motors in the front and rear for a combined 429 horsepower, although the range drops to 378 kilometres.
Recharging can take from 18 minutes on an ultra-fast charger to about seven hours on a standard 240V charger at home.
The Performance model was the one I had for the test drive.
The GV60 is quiet and fast. Early on my test drive I noticed a button on the steering wheel marked “boost.” When I pushed it, it was as if I had stepped on the accelerator. This boost button has the battery supply more power to the electric motors for a 10-second spurt. Genesis says, “Boost Mode immediately increases the vehicle’s maximum output for 10 seconds to achieve peak performance.”
Late in my drive, I hit that boost button again – but, this time, nothing happened, except for a message that appeared on the dash that said, “boost unavailable due to low battery.” I checked, and I had just 24 per cent of juice left in the battery, and the next charging station was 80 kilometres away.
The styling, innovations, quick performance, and luxury touches will appeal to many people shopping for a compact crossover. And with the all-electric drivetrain, there’s no need to be concerned about the price of gas.
Dale Johnson is an award-winning author, broadcaster and journalist who has worked in TV, radio, print and online. Dale loves to restore classic cars. Dale was provided with a vehicle to test drive by the manufacturer. The content of this review was not reviewed or accepted by the manufacturer.
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