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A Premium Small SUV with Handling Like a Sports Wagon
The all-new 2022 Genesis GV70 slots in just below the larger GV80 SUV, both of which will be joined soon by the all-electric GV60. Clean Fleet Report would not be surprised if Genesis has even more SUVs on the drawing board, with most of them being hybrids, plug-in hybrids or EVs.
The 2022 Genesis GV70 has two engine options with all-wheel drive (AWD) standard. Clean Fleet Report drove the GV70 with the twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 that pumped-out 375 horsepower (hp) and 391 pound-feet (lb.-ft.) of torque. Mated to an 8-speed automatic that has a manual shift mode, paddle shifters and driver-selectable drive modes.
Running on unleaded premium, the EPA has rated the fuel economy at 19 mpg city/25 highway/21 combined. In 386 miles driving through Southern California, aided by the start/stop (where the engine shuts off when not needed), we averaged 23.7 mpg. Where we did much better was on a 102-mile freeway run in either Eco or Smart mode and with the adaptive cruise control set at 65 mph, we achieved 27.5 mpg. It may be too much to ask a powerful V6 to get 30 miles per gallon, but our result showed the GV70 can be an efficient 4,256-pound, five-passenger SUV. Fuel economy numbers reported by Clean Fleet Report are non-scientific and represent the reviewer’s driving experience using the dash gauge computer. Your numbers may differ.
The base engine on the GV70 is a turbocharged 2.5L producing 300 hp and 311 lb.-ft. of torque. Using the same 8-speed automatic, the fuel economy is 22 city/28 highway/24 combined. We are familiar with this engine as it was in the 2021 Genesis GV80 we reviewed earlier.
Excellent Road Manners
The smooth and quiet twin-turbo 3.5L really gets up and goes. With torque spooling up at a low 1,300 rpm and pulling strong through 4,500 rpm, we easily negotiated highway onramps and passing big rigs. For the best performance, the driver can select from five drive modes of Eco, Comfort, Sport, Sport+ and Snow. Eco is best used on long stretches of flat or gently sloping roads to squeeze-out every last drop of fuel where there won’t be much performance demand on the engine. The Comfort drive mode offers nearly the same efficiency as Eco, but with better acceleration at all times. The best performance comes in Sport and Sport+, where it holds the transmission in each rev band a bit longer, sending more available torque to all four wheels. Using Sport or Sport+ mode delivered respectable 0-60 times of 5.1 seconds.
Equipped with two turbos and the automatic start/stop feature, the GV70 3.5 hesitates ever-so-slightly upon launching from a stop. The combination of these two is probably what is causing this very minor, but noticeable, hiccup that completely goes away after the initial launch.
The 2+ ton weight never felt bulky, and had a very good driving feel as the electric power steering was not programmed to take away road feedback. The camera-based adaptive suspension reads the road ahead to imperceptibly adjust the ride and handling. The result, even when encountering bumps and other road imperfections, is a controlled and comfortable ride.
It quickly became apparent the GV70 was easy-to-drive, offering no resistance for anything asked of it. It was also sportier than anticipated, which should not have come as a surprise as it is built on the same platform as the rear-wheel drive G70 sedan. The Sport and Sport+ drive modes increase the heaviness of the steering, making turn-ins more direct and reliable, which makes it possible with the AWD to attack corners aggressively. It was fun tossing the GV70 around on country lanes and mountain twisties, as the handling precision provided a big level of confidence.
The relaxed feel in-town and at highway speeds began with the Michelin Primacy Tour 255/40 all-season tires, mounted on 21-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, which were part of the Sport Prestige package, which also included an electronic limited slip differential. The responsive steering delivered taught handing with little body roll when pushed on corners, and was easy to maneuver in parking lots. In general, the GV70 is a comfortable riding and handling premium SUV.
Stops were solid with a good brake pedal feel that required no modulation. The power-assisted system consists of vented front and rear discs, and four-wheel anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution. The GV70 is rated to tow 3,500 pounds and comes with towing pre-wiring.
Appealing Exterior Design
Turning heads and meeting new people comes along with driving the GV70 Sport Prestige. The Genesis wing emblem boldly sits proudly above the Crest grille that is bordered with a tasteful chrome strip. The two-line horizontal LED head and daytime running lights wrap onto the fenders, sit above functioning corner vents, which along with the narrow black grille in the lower fascia, continue the cross-hatch design of the upper grille.
The sides are smooth but for two distinctive lines that run the length of the doors. The look is classy without any chrome, save for the five spoke wheels that drew curious comments on their dimpled design. The lightly raked roof has a power panoramic sunroof, rack rails, and a body-color shark fin antenna. The dual level, horizontal LED tail lights wrap from the fender to the hands-free power lift gate, and sit above the lower fascia that features dual round exhaust ports and a continuation of the cross-hatch design. Clean Fleet Report’s GV70 was painted in an elegant Saville Silver.
The GV70 Prestige interior is a wonderful place to spend time. The black-with-red top stitching front seats were heated and ventilated, with the driver getting 4-way power lumbar and 16-way power adjustments that included side bolsters and a cushion extender. The driver gets an Ergo Motion seat, which has seven power adjustable air cells to help reduce fatigue. Massage is also available. The front passenger gets 12-way power adjustments including lumbar, but not the other adjustments as on the driver seat. Also make sure to notice the attractive ellipse theme repeated throughout the interior.
The front seats, covered in Nappa leather with suede inserts, were soft and supple to the touch, plus being comfortable and supportive. The multiple power adjustments and the power tilt and telescoping steering column made finding a comfortable driving position easy. The door pockets can hold up-to medium size bottles, while the large, deep, padded center console has cup holders. The adjustable multi-color ambient LED lighting was soothing. Two nice features that should be on all cars are the front sun visors that extend, and the seatbelts that are height adjustable.
Rear leg, head and shoulder room was generous, even for six-footers. Classy up-market touches for the back seat passengers include heated reclining seats, side window shades, second row HVAC vents, USB ports and a 110V AC outlet. Storage space behind the rear seat, which can be released by levers in the rear cargo area, was very good at 28.9 cubic feet, but improves significantly to 59.6 cubic feet when the 60/40 split-folding seat was in the full down position. There is an underside storage tray, side storage pockets and a temporary spare tire.
Sliding behind the wheel reveals a 14.5-inch split-screen high-definition LCD multi-information display, sitting above a sleek dash that has accents of carbon fiber, leatherette and a layered backlit trim. The clean GV70 Prestige cabin design has a rotary dial gear selector for the shift-by-wire transmission, top stitching on the soft and hard touch surfaces, and aluminum and gloss black surfaces.
The deep-set analog tachometer and speedometer gauges are easy to read with white lettering on a black background. The heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel has audio and telephone controls, with the paddle shifters peeking out from behind. When reaching for the gear selector wheel on the center console, you may instead grab the infotainment screen multi-media control wheel. I did it several times and appreciate how it may be confusing for others.
Operating the sound system was easy and met Clean Fleet Report’s minimum requirement for being driver-friendly as it had channel and volume wheels that were located on the center console. Our GV70 Sport Prestige came with the Lexicon by Harmon surround sound audio system with woofers, tweeters and mid-range speakers all part of the great-sounding 16-speaker system. SiriusXM satellite radio is included (three-month trial subscription) as is the AM/FM/MP3 HD radio, USB ports with wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Aux-in jacks and Bluetooth streaming audio with voice recognition completed the system. Connecting to the voice recognition is as simple as pressing the button on the left side of the steering wheel and entering a command. The Genesis Connected Services and Digital Key offer multiple conveniences including being able to start and park the GV70 remotely.
The head-up display offered driver-selectable content that was configurable through the display screen. Clean Fleet Report feels a head-up display should be standard on all cars and all trim levels as it is an important safety factor for the driver helping to keep their eyes on the road. Fingerprint Recognition enables the GV70 to be started without a key.
Make sure to check out the Sounds of Nature, where you can listen to calming and soothing sounds of Snowy Village, Lively Forest, Calm Sea Waves, Rainy Day, Open Air Café, and Warm Fireplace. Ahhhh.
Adding to the interior comfort and convenience was a surround-view monitor, rain-sensing wipers, wireless phone charging, push button start, power windows with one-touch up/down, power door locks, power heated and folding outside mirrors, carpeted floor mats, an auto dimming rearview mirror with Homelink, multiple beverage holders and an automatic three-zone climate system.
To learn more about the technology in the GV70, you can go here.
The 2022 GV70 comes with a long list of safety features including eight air bags, and advanced driver assist systems (ADAS), including forward collision avoidance with evasive steering assist, pedestrian and cyclist avoidance assist, lane keeping and lane following assist, blind spot collision avoidance assist, back-up warning with rear cross traffic warning, electronic parking brake, hill start assist, surround view monitor, tire pressure monitoring system and electronic stability control.
One very cool feature is the Blind Spot View Monitor. When using the right or left turn signal, a camera comes on automatically, showing the side of the GV70 and any close traffic or other objects, depending on which direction is being turned.
The GV70 has a semi-autonomous driving system, which works impressively well. Checkout the Genesis Highway Driving Assist here.
The 2022 GV70 has not been rated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), but the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) awarded it their Top Safety Pick.
Pricing and Warranties
There are seven 2022 GV70 models to choose from, ranging in base price from $42,045 to $62,500. These prices, before any optional items, depend on the engine (2.5T versus 3.5T) and trim level. Clean Fleet Report’s 2022 Genesis GV70 AWD 3.5T Sport Prestige, with $10,400 in options, had a MSRP of $64,045. All prices include the mandatory $1,045 freight and handling fee.
The 2022 GV70 comes with these warranties:
- Powertrain – 10 years/100,000 miles
- New Vehicle – Five years/60,000 miles
- Maintenance Three years/36,000 miles
- Roadside Assistance – Five years/Unlimited miles
- Anti-perforation Seven years/Unlimited miles
Observations: 2022 Genesis GV70 AWD 3.5T Sport Prestige
The 2022 Genesis GV70, in any of its seven different trims, has clean, contemporary styling, an impressive interior offering a comfortable ride experience and ample cargo space. With a features list that is long and deep, including a full safety suite, the GV70 is a true value proposition in the premium small SUV class. Having choices of two stout engines with standard all-wheel drive, plus the best warranty in the class, makes the GV70 a top choice.
The GV70 competes against premium small SUVs including the Acura RDX, Audi Q3, BMW X3, Buick Envision, Lexus NX, Lincoln Corsair, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Tesla Model Y and the Volvo XC60. How does it compare? It isn’t the least expensive of them all, but arguably is the best value of them all. The GV70 sets itself apart from the competition beginning with the appealing design, excellent road manners, ride comfort and, of course, that outstanding warranty.
Genesis is a new car company, launching its first stand-alone model in 2017. Building out a dealer network may be in the future, so they currently share showroom space with their sibling brand Hyundai. To take care of its owners and give them the pampered treatment they deserve, dealers will pick up and deliver a customer car through the Genesis Cares concierge program. This is a convenient and classy method of treating their customers as something special. Your dealer sales associate will explain how this program works.
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Story and photos by John Faulkner.
Other Premium Small SUVs News & Driving Impressions:
Road Test: 2022 Acura RDX
Flash Drive: 2022 Lexus NX Hybrid
Road Test: 2018 Volvo XC60 T8 PHEV
News: Tesla Model Y
Road Test: 2021 Buick Envision Avenir
Flash Drive: 2019 Infiniti QX50
Flash Drive: 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio
Clean Fleet Report is loaned free test vehicles from automakers to evaluate, typically for a week at a time. Our road tests are based on this one-week drive of a new vehicle. Because of this we don’t address issues such as long-term reliability or total cost of ownership. In addition, we are often invited to manufacturer events highlighting new vehicles or technology. As part of these events we may be offered free transportation, lodging or meals. We do our best to present our unvarnished evaluations of vehicles and news irrespective of these inducements.
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