2023 Genesis GV60 Performance review (video)

Brett Davis

First thing’s first, it’s an odd-looking one isn’t it? This is the Genesis GV60, otherwise known as the company’s first dedicated fully electric vehicle, based on Hyundai Motor Group’s E-GMP architecture like the Hyundai IONIQ 5 and 6, and Kia EV6.

We think it does look better in person compared with on paper or on the screen. It’s not as big as it might seem, and it presents the sporty proportions of a performance SUV with a wide rear end and ready-to-pounce stance.

Just two variants are on sale in Australia, including a standard all-wheel drive, and this, the all-wheel drive Performance. Both versions come with a 77.4kWh battery pack that feeds a pair of electric motors. The standard model develops 234kW, while this performance spec boasts an impressive 320kW, or up to 360kW with the Boost mode activated.

Prices kick off from $103,700 for the base AWD and from $110,700 for the AWD Performance (excluding on-road costs). Like most EVs on the market at the moment, the price is high when compared with an equivalent petrol/diesel-powered model.

It’s also worth noting the top Kia EV6 GT is priced around $10k south of this performance version despite offering even more power and better acceleration. Genesis does put together a splendid interior package though, with higher quality materials, and the after-sales care is on another level.

2023 Genesis GV60 Performance – THE SPECS

[column width=”47%” padding=”6%”]Battery: 77.4kWh lithium-ion, 400V/800V
Output: 320kW / 605Nm (360kW/700Nm in Boost mode)
 1-speed auto
Drive type: All-wheel drive
Wheels: F & R: 21×8.5, 255/40
ANCAP: Five stars
Keight: 2210kg
Power-to-weight: 6.14:1 (kg:kW)
Official range: 466km
Max charging capacity: 11kW AC, 350kW DC[/column] [column width=”47%” padding=”0″]0-60km/h: 2.15 seconds*
0-100km/h: 3.99 seconds*
60-110km/h: 2.46 seconds*
1/4 mile: 12.25 seconds at 183.8km/h*
Max acceleration: 0.944g*
100-0km/h braking: 3.02 seconds at 37.15 metres*
Max deceleration: -1.145g*
Decibel at idle: 22*
Peak decibel at 60-100km/h: 63/73*
Priced from: $110,700[/column][end_columns]

* Figures as tested by PerformanceDrive on the day. Factory claims may be different

2023 Genesis GV60 Performance – THE PACKAGE

The main visual difference for the Performance model is a set of unique 21-inch alloy wheels – compared with the standard 20s. These are wrapped in fat 255/40 Michelin Pilot Sport EV tyres. Despite offering excellent lateral grip, it can scramble for traction off the mark when provoked. That’s mainly due to the instant availability of 700Nm of torque when the Boost button is pressed.

The interior is one of our favourites. We love that it offers heaps of space but it’s also really well made and blends in some quality design themes. Most materials are premium in look or feel, and this example features the optional digital side monitors with cameras replacing conventional mirrors. Although they provide great wow factory, the problem with these is you can’t lean forward to widen your view, like you can with mirrors.

Down on the console is a magical spinning gear selector ball that definitely leaves new passengers gasping in amazement, and you have an array of convenient controls and physical buttons. Up on the dash is a huge multimedia display which is presented on one seamless panel with a separate digital gauge cluster (both 12.3in). We love the graphics and animations offered on the main screen, with seemingly endless menu options and functionality to play around with, including a deep-dive into the energy consumption stats.

There are more than enough pockets and storage holes to place your things, along with a variety of charging ports everywhere you look. The driving position is also good, blending the sporty feel of a hatchback with a slightly high ride for better visibility. If we were to be really critical, we’d say the seating position is perched higher than we would ideally prefer. But it is comfortable and provides good forward visibility.

The door trims are very elegant and made with interesting elements of design. On the front doors, for example, you have a vertical grab handle complete with a four-axis thumb-control pad for the side mirrors/cameras. Across the middle of the door trim is a soft Alcantara-style wave of material to provide a level of exotica.

You won’t be wanting for more rear seat legroom. Even in the middle. The floor is completely flat thanks to the clean packaging of the E-GMP architecture, and ceiling clearance is respectable for its size. There’s also climate vents in the B-pillar, access to more storage via the centre console, and USB-C charging ports. We also love the cup holders neatly integrated into the door cards, with matching suede trim as in the front.

Boot space doesn’t stack up that well against leading mid-size SUVs. This is rated at 432L or up to 1460L with the rear seats folded. But since this, technically, competes against the likes of the Audi Q3 and Volvo XC40, according to VFACTS, the volume is about average for this segment. You have some extra storage under the floor, and like the cabin, the boot area is very open and airy.

Being an electric vehicle there is no engine under the bonnet. Instead, you’ll find some hardware as well as an additional storage case which is perfect for taking care of the charging cable when not in use.

2023 Genesis GV60 Performance – THE DRIVE

If you love the idea of causing your passenger to head-butt the seat headrest, then you’ll adore this machine. The performance from the twin 180kW motors is nothing short of breathtaking. It really is. Under full power you feel this immense surge that suddenly pushes you back hard into your seat the second you push the throttle. It’ll even spin the wheels if you’re not careful.

Across the usual sprints on a private road we clocked a best 0-100km/h time of 3.99 seconds, matching Genesis’s claim of 4.0 seconds, with 0-200km/h coming up in 15.50 seconds. These are seriously quick times that would put a proper supercar to shame not that long ago. Even the quarter mile time of 12.25 seconds is astonishing for something with a decent boot and the comfort of a luxury car.

The fact that it crossed the line at 183km/h proves it does offer top-end grunt as well – a common deficit in electric vehicles. For reference, we’ve clocked a Bentley Bentayga V8 in 12.22 seconds at 185km/h, according to our performance data table. It also did the 0-100km/h run in a similar 3.95 seconds. As you can see, performance is not only in the name, it is in its DNA. This is a genuine performance vehicle.

Genesis is a bit ambitious to offer a ‘Drift mode’ with the GV60. We think this is very much a gimmick rather than a useful function. We tried it out on some quiet corners and although it did try to push the vehicle into a drift, it wasn’t as nice to control as a conventional rear-wheel drive vehicle.

We noticed that in Drift mode the on-board power distribution graph revealed the mode does not simply convert the powertrain to rear-wheel drive, as you might expect. Instead, it uses things like left-to-right power distribution to cause traction loss. During our acceleration runs we also observed smoking front tyres while in Drift mode (as shown in my dodgy Instagram video below). It’s a fun gimmick to have if you have a lot of free space on a property or a large empty shed.


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A post shared by Brett Davis (@brettdaviscars)

Out on some spirited roads the GV60 does feel heavy and less planted than some petrol-powered rivals. The front end tips in with decent confidence but from there the power-down stability and engagement starts to fall behind. This is only noticed when pushing quite hard in the bends. There seems to be some torque-steer-like sensation too, which is fine, but it is not supported by a natural steering feel. It can be off-putting. The AWD Performance model does include an electronic limited-slip differential (E-LSD) for added precision.

Ride comfort is good most of the time. Some larger bumps and rugged bits of bitumen can shake the vehicle around a bit, but overall comfort is great for a performance SUV. We suspect the big 21-inch wheels play a negative role here (pardon the pun). During day-to-day driving the ride is settled and solid, especially on the highway. It always feels secure and safe.

Hyundai’s battery technology and electrical systems are some of the best in the business in our experience. The on-board range calculator always seems to be an accurate representation of real-world possibilities, and the brake regeneration can really help optimise your range.

We achieved an easy 370km of driving during our test and we didn’t let the battery go all the way down. Charging is possible at ‘speeds’ up to 350kW using a rapid charger, which takes around 18 minutes to go from 10-80 per cent. The GV60 also offers vehicle-to-load (V2L) capability so you can power external appliances. However, doing so will deplete the battery and reduce your range.

2023 Genesis GV60 Performance – THE VIDEO

2023 Genesis GV60 Performance – THE VERDICT

We think this is a good option for those looking for something a little bit different. But unlike some products that are ‘different’ this one comes with the backing and expertise of an automotive giant; Hyundai. So it should hold together extremely well after years of use.

Genesis also offers one of the best ongoing care packages available, with perks such as concierge services, loan vehicles, and the choice of a 5-year Chargefox subscription or an AC charger and install at home. Genesis vehicles are also covered by a five-year, unlimited kilometre warranty package with five years free servicing.

Areas that we think could be improved include the near-the-limit handling prowess, the steering feel and handling engagement, and perhaps the exterior design. Obviously the latter is all down to opinion, but we know Genesis/Hyundai could do better in the former areas. The price, like all EVs, needs to be reduced before it can be truly appealing over an existing combustion model as well.

[column width=”47%” padding=”6%”]PROS:
– Great interior design with quality materials and well-made feel
– Outstanding after-sales care
– Free 5-year Chargefox subscription or AC home charger
– Blistering straight-line performance
[/column] [column width=”47%” padding=”0″]CONS:
– Lacks handling skill, especially for such a quick vehicle
– A lot more expensive than equivalent petrol models
– 466km range pales against current benchmarks[/column][end_columns]

As always, if you’re thinking about buying a new car don’t forget to click here to speak with our car buying specialists.

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