2019 Genesis G70 Sport 3.3T AWD

 

Another genesis for the Genesis brand

Words by: Adam Allen

 

Another genesis for Genesis? Huh?

Perhaps we should offer some clarification. Since the brand’s inception with the G90 back in December of 2015, Genesis has been strategically building better cars with each passing model year. Often the succeeding car is much better than its predecessor, and so it feels like a new beginning- a genesis, if you will. In this case, the handsomely striking G70 you see here is brand new, a true Genesis offering from the designers’ pen on a restaurant napkin to the tightening of the last bolt. Although it doesn’t have a predecessor to provide a frame of reference, trust us when we say that the G70 Sport is good. Very good.

OK, I’ll bite. What makes it good?

Poor Genesis. Until they get some years under their belt, they face a hardscrabble battle of justifying their goodness compared to the old stalwarts it must compete with. As good as the BMW 3 series, Audi A4 and Mercedes Benz C-Class are, the G70 is, in many ways, better. We’re not going to beat around the bush here, and we are just as taken aback by that statement as you are. The stars are aligning in South Korea, and the usual suspects of the segment had better be worried. And get this: despite the G70 being at the bottom rung of the Genesis ladder, it might be the most solid and cohesively excellent offering from the brand. It has the value thing going for it- our fully loaded tester undercut its competitors by a healthy margin in price- but now it has the dynamic chops to meet them head on or even exceed them. All this is wrapped up in exterior styling that is effortlessly handsome, especially when viewed from the rear complete with proportionally perfect swollen hips.

Let’s hear more about the G70’s dynamic delights.

A rigorously engineered car doesn’t need to be flogged for countless kilometers before it reveals its brilliance to the driver. The simple act of maneuvering the G70 out of the parking lot where we picked it up confirmed that we were in for a treat. The steering is fantastic, and while like most modern setups it could use more feedback, its precision is laudable and the effort is spot on. The steering wheel itself is a joy, itself being the perfect diameter with the styling to match (we especially liked the textured metal scroll wheels on either side.) Actually, all the controls have a well weighted and quality feel to them. The aluminum trimmed pedals offer great feel, and the floor hinged accelerator moves with a discreet slickness. All these delights were savoured before we even got it on the open road, but once there we marvelled at the dividends chassis chief Albert Biermann’s sweat equity have paid. The ride is not punishing but is decidedly firm yet strikes that balance of comfort and exactitude that eludes so many luxury sport sedans. It will follow your intended line obediently just as easily as it will bare its teeth and hang onto a series of corners when the moment arrives. The brakes- oversized Brembo’s at all four corners- allow you to summon the exact amount of deceleration warranted by what’s unfolding in front of your headlights and they do have their work cut out for them thanks to the speed the twice turbocharged V6 can muster. We have become familiar with this mill most recently in the Kia Stinger and Genesis’ own G80 Sport, but it’s really arrived in the lighter-than-the-other-two G70. From idle to redline it’s a real sweetheart- smooth and sophisticated. But dial up the aggression and the V6 responds in kind, hurling the G70 towards the bumper of the car in front of you. We know that Genesis is quoting the 0-100km/h sprint in the high 4-second range, but the G70 feels much faster than that. You can shift through the eight gears using the paddles- they respond quickly to your commands- but the transmission’s calibration is so well sorted that simply leaving it in Drive does not diminish the fun factor whatsoever. If you haven’t figured it out yet, we will spell it out for you- the G70 is fantastic to drive, and it likely unseats its competitors at the stuff they claim to have written the book on. As they become softer and more isolated, the G70 feels connected and alive.

Genesis is crafting interiors to compete with the best…how does the G70 fare?

Quite well, actually. The seats, which are of the sporty persuasion feel a little firm at first until you realize that they do a great job of holding you in place while remaining mega mile comfortable. The also feature a wonderfully executed quilted diamond motif that looks fabulous. Up front, they are heated and cooled while the rears offer heat only. We must tip our hats to the cooling feature on them- they are hands down the best we have ever experienced and are revelatory in scorching temperatures. All the touch points and materials are up to Genesis standards which is to say they’re all excellent and assembled with care. The infotainment system is the same unit as the one we lauded in the G80 Sport complete with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and the Lexicon sound system sounds similarly powerful and clear. You also get a full compliment of the latest driver assists which includes a colour head-up display. All this was standard kit on our loaded G70 Sport- the other guys charge a whole lot extra for the same stuff.

What might go wrong?

As the saying goes, when you have a hammer everything begins to look like a nail. That’s how we felt when we were looking for things to complain about where the G70 Sport is concerned- it really is that good. Is that a dashboard stitch out of place here? Could that touchpoint be covered in softer plastics? You get the idea. Ultimately, we found the backseat a trifle tight and we’d long for more legroom were we relegated there on a long trip. The only other gripes can’t be directed at our tester itself but instead to those decision makers at Genesis Motors Canada. Please guys; you can get a manual gearbox with the smaller engine- this sublime V6 twin turbo is begging for one. While you’re at it, could you make rear-wheel a drive an option like it is for our American counterparts? That’s it, really.

Should I buy a Genesis G70 Sport?

After spending a week unearthing the G70’s pleasures, we would answer that with an emphatic yes. When the established players in the segment start to offer watered down sports sedans of the 100-proof stuff we’re used to expect but keep charging what they do for the privilege, perhaps it’s time to set some new standards. In that context the G70 Sports seems poised to be a game changer. It offers supremely competent driving dynamics, quality interiors, handsome styling and a ton of standard kit at a price that undercuts its rivals by several thousand dollars- brand snobbery or not, it’s time to take notice. You could buy the G70 Sport because it’s a compelling value, but likely you’ll buy it because it is just plain good. Then there’s the ownership experience- you needn’t ever set foot in a dealership or service centre, ever. Genesis will come to your home or office and deliver your car to you personally, and when it comes time for oil changes and that sort of thing they show up to retrieve your car and leave you with a courtesy car while they do their thing. You won’t find that anywhere else in the industry, folks. This is a company that is serious about getting your business, and if they keep building cars as cohesively awesome as the G70 Sport, it becomes starkly obvious that the Genesis brand is destined for greatness. Kind of reminds us of a little of 1989 when an upstart brand called Lexus hit the streets. At first no one took them seriously, even snickering that Toyota could never build a luxury car to rival Europe’s best. Of course, we all know how that turned out.

2019 Genesis G70 Sport 3.3T AWD– Specifications

  • Price as tested: $57,500
  • Body Type: 4-door, 5 passenger Sports Sedan
  • Powertrain Layout: Front engine/all-wheel drive
  • Transmission: 8-speed automatic
  • Engine:  3.3 litre twin-turbo V6, DOHC, 24 valves
  • Horsepower:  365 @ 6,000 rpm
  • Torque (lbs-ft.): 376 @ 1,300 rpm
  • Curb weight: 1,816 kg (4,004 lbs)
  • Observed Fuel Consumption: 12.1L/100km (19 mpg)