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The all-new compact crossover combines looks, advanced technologies, power and handling.

COURTESY PHOTO: GENESIS - The 2023 Genesis combines futuristic looks with dazzling performance, luxury and advanced technologies in an all-eelctric compact crossover.Hyundai and its corporate sibling Kia have already conquered the affordable compact EV market with their mechanically-related Ioniq 5 and EV6. Now Hyundai's luxury brand Genesis has set its sights on the premium compact EV market with its surprisingly original GV60 crossover. The new model should have other luxury manufacturers worried.

The Ioniq 5 and EV6 are big hits because of their bold styling, upscale interiors, impressive performance, reassuring electric range and — above all — reasonable prices. Both are futuristic but start at around $40,000 before incentives.

The 2023 GV60 is based on the same dedicated Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) but looks wilder and offers even more advance features, like facial and fingerprint recognition. Although Genesis is still a relatively new brand, the GV60 genuinely competes against compact EVs from such established luxury manufacturers as the Audi Q4 e-tron and the Volvo XC40 Recharge.

COURTRESY PHOTO: GENESIS - The 2023 Genesis GV60 attracts attention coming and going with wild styling.

Additional versions of the GV60 will eventually be offered, but for now, buyers can choose between two AWD versions, the 314-horsepower Advanced or 429-horsepower Performance.

Estimated driving range varies from 235- to 248-miles per full charge. Connected to a DC fast charging station, Genesis says the GV60's battery can be recharged from 10- to 80-percent capacity in just 18 minutes.

As befits a luxury model, the GV60 costs substantially more than the Ioniq 5 and EV6, starting at around $58,000. That's a challenge for Genesis because the Hyundai and Kia versions are so good. The GV60 overcompensates on every level, however.

COURTESY PHOTO: GENESIS - The interior of the 2023 Gensis GV60 is simple yet refined and dominated by huge display screens.

For starters, the styling is completely different. They are boxy and angular, while the GV60 is rounded, similar to a Porsche Cayenne or Macan. Like other Genesis models, the headlights and taillights are flush with the body, giving it a unique look.

The basic design of the interior is the same, with a minimalist dash dominated by a huge combination gauge and infotainment screen. But the GV60 offers its own touches, including the Crystal Sphere — a large rotary transmission shifter built into a globe that rotates open when started and closes when turned off. It is a serious attention-getter, especially for first-time passengers. Interior materials are also higher quality, with more and higher quality leather.

More advanced technologies are also available, including two that allow owners to drive the GV60 even if they have forgotten their fobs. Once set up, the driver's door can be opened with a facial recognition system, while it can be started inside with a registered fingerprint. I advise drivers to always know where their fobs are, but there might be some situations where those are necessary.

COURTESY PHOTO: GENESIS - High-tech touches in the 2023 Genesis GV60 includes the Crystal Sphere which swivels when it is turned on to reveal a rotary transmission shifter.

But the biggest differences are the performance. The aptly named top-of-the-line Performance model has much more power — up to 429 compared to a maximum 320 for the other two. And the Performance version offers 483 horsepower in a short-duration burst through a boost button mounted on the steering wheel. Plan ahead before you use it — the additional power is instantaneous and head-snapping serious.

The ride is also sportier. While the Ioniq 5 and EV6 ride well, the GV60 is closer to a sports car. It is firm without being harsh, however, which makes it a good daily driver, even on bad streets.

The GV60 also come with a Vehicle-to-Load (or V2L) adapter that plugs into the charging port and allows electricity to drawn out. It can charge anything from power tools at construction sites to refrigerators during power outages to other EVs. It might not power an entire home like the optional generator of Ford F-150 pickups, but it could save your day.

COURTESY PHOTO: GENESIS - Cargo space in the 2023 Genesis GV60 is reasonable for a compact crossover.

In a week of test driving the 2023 GV60 was always exciting to see, fun to drive and attracted a lot of attention. Many pedestrians and even other driver twisted their heads to stare when I drove by. Other Genesis models I've tested have also attracted attention, but nothing like the GV60. It is perhaps the best example of why EVs are generating so much excitement these days.

2023 Genesis GV60 Performance AWD

Base price: $59,985 Advanced (before incentives)

Price as tested: $69,560 Performance (before incentives)

Type: Compact crossover

Drivetrain: Dual electric motors, (314 Advanced/429-483 hp Performance - as tested)

Transmission: Direct drive

EPA estimated range: 235 to 248 miles

EPA MPGe: 90 MPGe (as tested)

Drive modes: Eco, Normal, Sport

Overall length: 177.8 inches

Curb weight: 4,862 (as tested)

Final assembly: Ulsan, Korea


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