2022 Genesis G70: Value-packed sport sedan
Hyundai is taking the automotive world by storm with the impressive and value-packed vehicles produced by its upscale Genesis brand. All of its cars and SUVs are very competitive against the traditional American and European marques but cost thousands less.
Now, with the 2022 G70, Genesis is beginning to compete against itself. The compact sport sedan has been redesigned to more closely resemble the midsize G80. It now features the same flush head and tail lights, oversized shield-shaped mesh grill, and refined interior found in the larger car.
The result is so successful it is hard to even tell the two cars apart if they aren't side by side. And the G70 feels as luxurious and drives as well as the G80. But the G70 costs thousands less than the G80. Although it is smaller, the G70 still offers a lot of front seat room. About the only tradeoff is the rear seat, which is tighter and best suited for children. So if you don't need to haul more than one other adult around very often, it's hard to justify paying more for the larger Genesis, just like its hard to justify paying more for equivalent European vehicles.
Yes, the G80 offers a more powerful optional engine, a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6. But the optional twin-turbocharged 3.3-liter V6 in the G70 produces up to 368 horsepower and 376 foot-pounds of torque which provides impressive acceleration, especially in the Sport and Sport+ modes, which increase throttle response. Both come standard with rear-wheel-drive but can be ordered with all-wheel-drive, eliminating another potentially important difference between them.
Although my 2022 Genesis G70 3.3 Sport Prestige tester lacked AWD, I can't think of anything more it need to qualify as a genuine luxury sport sedan. The profile was long, low and wide, the interior was lined with high quality leather and chrome trim, and the display mounted high on the dash was easy to see and read. Safety features were comprehensive and effective. Dialing into the Sport and Sport+ modes not only increased performance but stiffened the side bolsters in the sport bucket seat for better cornering.
On the road, the suspension was refreshingly supple instead of harsh, which too many manufacturers apparently think define sport sedans. Acceleration was impressive in the default mode and world-class in both the Sport and Sport+ modes, thanks in part to the very responsive eight-speed automatic transmission. Although I recommend all-wheel-drive for anyone in wet climates like the Pacific Northwest, I don't think the additional weight and differential would slow it down much.
If anything, the entire Genesis line can called brash. They are all well-engineered but also styled to attract attention. My tester was deep grey with black alloy wheels and features an interior with tufted red and black leather, faux carbon fiber trim, and chrome speaker covers and trim lines. It was just a step short of Las Vegas, especially compared to the restrained European competitors, but generated a lot of compliments.
The 2022 Genesis G70 should appeal to anyone looking for a genuine luxury sport sedan who wants real performance and all the bells and whistles without paying too much, which should be all of them.
2022 Genesis G70
Base price: $37,525 (2.0 RWD)
Price as tested: $51,945
Type: Compact luxury sport sedan RWD/AWD
Engines: Twin- turbocharged 2.0-liter four (252 hp, 260 lbs-ft); twin-turbocharged 3.3-liter V6 (365/368 hp, 376 lbs-ft - as tested)
Transmission: 8-speed automatic
EPA estimated mileage: 21/25; 20/24 - as tested
Overall length: 184.4 inches.
Curb weight: 3700-4000 pounds.
Final assembly: Ulsan, South Korea
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