The luxury brand’s answer to the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class

The Genesis brand was introduced in 2015 as Hyundai’s premium division. The name was derived from the Hyundai Genesis, the company’s full-size sedan, which became the Genesis G80 after the rebranding. Before the G80 debuted, the newly-founded brand introduced the G90, a redesigned, more luxurious version of Hyundai’s range-topping sedan, the Equus. Come 2017 and Genesis introduced its third sedan. Called the G70, it is aimed at the premium compact market, which is currently populated by offerings like the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and Cadillac ATS.

Part of the company’s plan to roll out several new models by 2020, the G70 is Genesis’ last effort in the car market for the time being, as the Korean brand wants to focus on launching a full SUV lineup too. The G70 is slated to go on sale in the U.S. later in 2017 with at least two engines, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder in the base model, and a 3.3-liter V-6 in the Sport versions. A diesel is also available in Korea, but we might not see it cross the pond to North America anytime soon. Much like the larger G80 and G90, the G70 comes with a solid package of standard features and promises to deliver best-in-class safety, but more on that in the review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Genesis G70.

Teaser video

Exterior

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731672
Although more compact, it borrows the athletic, yet graceful design of the bigger G80 and G90

The smallest sedan in the Genesis lineup boasts a familiar appearance. Although more compact, it borrows the athletic, yet graceful design of the bigger G80 and G90. At the same time, it feels a bit more dynamic due to its slightly more angular design cues.

Up front, we can spot many of the familiar Genesis features, starting with the crest-shaped grille. It’s basically a shrunken version of the G80 and G90 and it has the same chrome frame, but while the non Sport versions of the bigger sedans have horizontal bars, the G70 sports a honeycomb-like pattern.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731678
Unlike the G80, which has larger, more elegant headlamps, the G70 has a more angrier look

The headlamps are based on the G90’s, with angular edges and a slimmer shape toward the grille. Unlike the G80, which has larger, more elegant units, the G70 has a more angrier look. Down below, the G70 differs quite significantly from other Genesis sedan, mostly due to the vertically oriented side vents being placed higher in the bumper. The slim center intake is also different, with two angled winglets adding further sportiness to the design.

The profile of the G70 is a little more athletic than its bigger siblings, but not overly sporty. While the beltline is noticeable, it doesn’t stand out too much, allowing the sedan to exude an elegant feel. However, the hockey stick-shaped trim on the front fenders, the sculpted side sills and lower door areas, and the slightly more muscular rear haunches give the G70 the athletic look a compact sedan needs to compete against the likes of the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. The side view is rounded off by a set of multi-spoke alloy wheels.

2018 Genesis G70
- image 734359
Around back, the G70 has a nicely sculpted trunk lid area, flanked by LED taillights inspired by those seen on G80

Around back, the G70 has a nicely sculpted trunk lid area, flanked by LED taillights inspired by those seen on G80. The sporty bumper includes a sporty, diffuser-like element on the range-topping model, while two oval exhaust pipes are integrated into the apron on each side.

Ten exterior colors are available for the G70, most in the usual and very popular shades of white, gray, and black. The palette includes Platinum Silver, Carbon Metal, Marble White, Titanium Black, Racing Gray, Graceful Gray, Lapis Blue, Royal Blue, Blazing Red, and Umber Brown.

Interior

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Interior
- image 731673
Unlike the exterior, the interior of the G70 isn't based on existing Genesis models

Unlike the exterior, the interior of the G70 isn’t based on existing Genesis models. Sure, they do share a somewhat similar design language, but several important features are positioned elsewhere on the G70, giving the compact sedan a unique look. The dashboard design is clean and simple and the unit is rather slim. This not only provides better visibility up front, but also gives the driver and passenger the feeling you usually get in sports cars.

The horizontal layout, a common recipe in modern premium cars, is further enhanced by the wide and tall center console, as well as the driver-oriented center stack. The latter is also pretty clean to look at, with only a handful of buttons placed under the A/C vents. The infotainment display at the top of the dash looks neat too and doesn’t ruin the overall design, as it happens in a bunch of vehicles.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Interior
- image 731670
2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Interior
- image 731671
The materials used inside the G70 are of the premium variety, starting with the aluminum door handles and the quilted leather door panel inserts

The materials used inside the G70 are of the premium variety, starting with the aluminum door handles and the quilted leather door panel inserts. The seats are wrapped in Nappa leather as standard, while almost everything else is covered in soft-touch materials. Upholstery color options include Obsidian Black, Sandstorm Gray, Velvet Burgundy, Tobacco Brown and Vanilla Beige, with Sports Gray and Sports Red available for the G70 Sport model.

The seat positions have been adjusted to lower the center of gravity of the car to maximize performance and they also feature the company’s smart posture control system. Initially introduced in the G90, this system automatically adjusts the seat, steering wheel, outside mirror, and heads-up display to the optimal position based on the driver’s body information.

As in most premium cars, noise, vibration and harshness have been minimized too through use of sound absorption and isolation, suspension and body frame connection, the design of the door sealing systems, and the exhaust system.

As far as convenience goes, the eight-inch display comes with MirrorLink, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto, as well as server-based voice recognition technology via artificial intelligence platform Kakao I. A 15-speaker Lexicon surround-sound system is available.

Drivetrain

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731669
The range-topping G70 Sport draws its juice from the familiar 3.3-liter Lambda V-6 powerplant

The G70 will be offered with a drivetrain range consisting of three engines. First up is the familiar 2.0-liter GDI. The turbocharged four-cylinder is rated at 252 PS and 353 Nm of torque (249 horsepower and 260 pound-feet). Opting for the Sports package increases output slightly to 255 PS (252 horsepower). A diesel version is also available, powered by a 2.2-liter four-pot rated at 202 PS and 441 Nm of twist (199 horsepower and 325 pound-feet). Performance ratings and other data aren’t yet available.

Finally, the range-topping G70 Sport draws its juice from the familiar 3.3-liter Lambda V-6 powerplant. This engine delivers a solid 370 PS and 510 Nm (365 horsepower and 376 pound-feet) of torque and enables the sedan to hit 62 mph from a standing start in 4.7 seconds. That’s two tenths quicker than the range-topping, non-M 3 Series, the 340i with RWD and as quick as the same model equipped with AWD. Not bad! Top speed is rated at 168 mph, significantly higher from the 155-mph ratings that come with most compact BMW and Mercedes-Benz sedans.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731674
The G70 Sport might just be more capable than all BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class models, except the M3 and AMG C63

On top of the more powerful engine and increased performance, the G70 Sport also features variable-ratio steering and electronically controlled suspension as standard. The sedan is also equipped with Launch Control and rack-mounted, motor-driven power steering and multi-link rear suspension, both of which provide precise handling and comfortable ride. The dynamic torque vectoring system improves vehicle cornering control, while the mechanical limited slip differential allows safe driving capabilities in low friction road conditions such as rain, snow and ice.

It might be too early to draw conclusions, but the G70 Sport might just be more capable than all BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class models, except the M3 and AMG C63. And it should give the latter two a good run for their money, despite not being as quick in a straight line.

Safety

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731675

Genesis promises to offer best-in-class safety with the G70, which incorporates numerous advanced driver assist systems and no fewer than nine standard airbags. Hot stamping methods and extended use of structural adhesives have also used to enhance torsional rigidity and improve overall body stiffness. The G70 has also been designed to help protect pedestrians. when impact with a pedestrian is detected, the active hood function operates by lifting the hood to absorb shock and minimize the risk of injury. This feature has been introduced by Volvo a few years ago, but it’s not yet a standard (or even optional) feature on many production models.

The list of advanced driver assist system is quite long and includes Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), Highway Driving Assist (HDA), Blind spot Collision Warning (BCW), and Driver Awareness Warning (DAW). Safety ratings aren’t yet available, but Genesis says it aims to receive the highest ratings from both international and domestic organizations including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Prices

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731676

Pricing for the G70 is still a mystery as of this writing, but if Genesis wants to make an impact on this crowded market, the sedan shouldn’t cost more than $35,000 in base trim. For reference, the current BMW 3 Series retails from $34,900. Likewise, the G70 Sport shouldn’t cost a lot more than the BMW 340i, priced from $48,950 as of September 2017. For reference, the other major competitor to the G70, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan, retails from $40,250.

The G70 went on sale in South Korea in September 2017. Details about its rollout in other markets will be announced at a later date.

Competition

BMW 3 Series

2016 BMW 3 Series High Resolution Exterior
- image 629379
2016 BMW 3 Series High Resolution Exterior
- image 629378

The benchmark for the compact premium class for decades, the 3 Series continues to be a popular choice and its one of the primary vehicles the G70 will have to confront on its way to glory. The German sedan is available with a choice of gasoline and diesel engines in the U.S. There’s the 320i with 184 horsepower, the 330i with 248 horses, and the range-topping 340i with 326 horsepower. On the diesel front, the 328d cranks out 181 horses and 280 pound-feet of torque. A 330e iPerformance hybrid with 252 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of twist is also available. U.S. pricing for the 3 Series range begins from $34,900.

Read our full review of the BMW 3 Series.

Mercedes-Benz C-Class

2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class High Resolution Exterior
- image 536067
2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class High Resolution Exterior
- image 536069

Widely regarded as the sexiest sedan in its class, the current C-Class arrived in 2014 with styling cues inspired from the larger S-Class. Sporty and elegant at the same time, it features a gorgeous interior with the company’s latest technology and a wide range of gasoline and diesel engines. In the U.S., two versions are available below the beefed-up AMG C63. There’s the base C300 with a 2.0-liter turbo-four rated at 241 horsepower and the C450 AMG with a larger, 3.0-liter V-6 that cranks out 362 horses. Pricing starts from $40,250, making it the most expensive premium compact in North America, but Mercedes’ base model is not only more powerful, but it also comes with more standard features compared to its rivals.

Read our full review of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

Cadillac ATS

2015 Cadillac ATS Sedan High Resolution Exterior
- image 559212
2015 Cadillac ATS Sedan High Resolution Exterior
- image 559211

The company’s smallest vehicle yet, the ATS was introduced in 2012 to rival the 3 Series and C-Class. Inspired by the larger CTS design-wise and loaded with luxury features inside the cabin, the ATS has already received a facelift and some engine upgrades for the 2016 model year. The base model uses a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 202 horsepower and 190 pound-feet, while the turbo options brings a 2.0-liter unit with 272 horses and 295 pound-feet under the hood. A larger 3.6-liter V-6 cranks out 335 horses and 285 pound-feet in the range-topping version, while the performance-oriented ATS-V model comes with a twin-turbo 3.6-liter V-6 with 464 horsepower and 445 pound-feet on tap. Pricing for the ATS starts from $34,595.

Read our full review of the Cadillac ATS.

Conclusion

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731668

Given that both the G80 and G90 were introduced for the 2017 model year, it’s definitely too early to say how the Genesis brand will do on the market. As a result, it’s impossible to predict what impact will the G70 have on the premium compact segment. The niche is already very crowded with BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, and Cadillac battling for supremacy, and the G70 will have a hard time making a name for itself. While the Hyundai name is still being disregarded for its past, the Genesis badge will need some time to establish itself as a trustworthy brand. Should Hyundai manage to do it in a couple of years, the G70 could give its German and American competitors a run for their money. On paper, the Genesis provides a better bang for the buck given its standard equipment list, but this needs to be paired with a good sticker and a solid marketing strategy. By design alone, I think that the G70 is at least on par with the competition both inside and out. And its drivetrain lineup and performance figures aren’t bad either.

  • Leave it
    • * Genesis is a new brand
    • * The luxury company may suffer from Hyundai’s past reputation
    • * Tough competition from Germany and the U.S.

References

Genesis G80

2017 Genesis G80 High Resolution Exterior
- image 683384

Read our full review on the Genesis G80.

Press release

A new era dawned today as Genesis officially presented the highly anticipated G70 luxury performance sedan at the Hyundai·Genesis Design Center in Namyang.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731677

Dr. Woong-Chul Yang, Vice Chairman of the Hyundai Motor Group’s R&D Division, key Genesis brand officials, and approximately 300 international automotive journalists participated in the activities. The G70 goes on sale in Korea on September 20th, with timing for its rollout in other markets to be announced soon.

“The Genesis G70 is the latest demonstration of our dedication to delivering innovative, customer-oriented vehicles,” said Vice Chairman Yang. “We will continue to focus our R&D efforts on the development and expansion of the Genesis brand. It is a great point of pride to have Genesis showcase what a true luxury brand of Korean origin can present to our discerning customers.”

The Genesis G70 is an athletic sedan characterized by its graceful and dynamic exterior styling; elegant and intuitively designed interior; choice of three different powertrains. Customers will be able to select between a turbocharged 3.3-liter gasoline V6, a 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline I4, and a 2.2-liter I4 diesel models.

The G70 also incorporates numerous advanced driver assist systems such as Highway Driving Assist (HDA), best-in-class safety with nine standard airbags and active hood function, and a high level of connectivity with server-based voice recognition technology, using Kakao Corp’s artificial intelligence platform.

Hot stamping methods and extended use of structural adhesives have been employed to enhance torsional rigidity and improve overall body stiffness.

“G70 Seoul 2017”

To commemorate this important moment, 15,000 people will celebrate the official unveiling of the G70 at “G70·Seoul 2017,” a global launch festival held on September 15th in Seoul’s Olympic Park.

“The launch of the Genesis G70 is an important milestone for our brand,” said Manfred Fitzgerald, Head of Genesis Division. “We deliberately chose Seoul, as this is our place of origin. This is where we are coming together with our customers and friends in the music industry to celebrate as a people’s festival.”

“G70 Seoul 2017” is a brand celebration of Genesis and the new G70, featuring global music superstars Gwen Stefani, Andra Day and CL. While attendance is capped at 15,000, more than 80,000 people expressed interest in being part of the festivities.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731678

Completing the Genesis sedan lineup

The G70 completes the Genesis brand’s sedan lineup, along with the G90 flagship and mid-luxury G80. The arrival of G70 further strengthens the Genesis brand’s presence in the global luxury market.

In November 2015, Genesis launched and set out to compete with the world’s top luxury automakers as a Korean brand. To differentiate itself in the luxury segment, Genesis strives to make a positive impact in the lifestyles of its discerning customers through a progressive and innovative approach to performance and design excellence.

Genesis launched the flagship G90 sedan in December 2015, followed by the G80 sedan in July 2016 in Korea. Since the brand’s inception, Genesis has sold more than 150,000 units, with strong performances in both Korea and the U.S.

Genesis has also received many accolades, most recently, ranking highest among premium automakers in the J.D. Power 2017 U.S. Initial Quality Study (IQS), topping all 13 brands in the premium segment.

The G70 marks the completion of Genesis sedan line-up and the brand will now start strengthening its lineup with SUVs and alternative powertrains. Genesis plans to roll out new products to expand its presence and coverage across the global market and six models are expected in its product portfolio by 2021.

An Exterior with Genesis’ Unique Design Identity

The all-new G70 showcases the future direction of the Genesis brand’s design identity.

Athletic elegance is represented in the exterior styling, as the car captures both beauty and tension, like an athlete poised to perform.

Luc Donckerwolke, Head of Genesis Design, said, “At Genesis, we shape fascination and desire with the passion, dedication and talent from our designers. We modulated all parameters from the Genesis DNA to tailor a sports sedan. This challenge required the highest skills and know-how. The G70 is designed to captivate all senses with its sensuous and tensioned muscular volumes.”

The long hood and short front overhang, elegant roofline and assertive multi-spoke alloy wheels combine to form a sleek, dynamic profile, subtly highlighted by dark chrome aero trim.

The hockey stick daylight opening and parabolic sidelines further express the unique design signatures of Genesis, displaying fast and dramatic energy with voluptuous forms and smooth surfaces.

From the front and side, the G70’s prominent crest-type grille, character lines extending from the hood emblem, and pronounced air intakes communicate the muscular performance that the car is capable of.

Two distinctive linear LED DRLs on each side of the large crest grille foreshadow the future Genesis signature quad lamps.

In the rear, the LED rear combination lamps continue the quad lamp theme, while the raised trunk lid and compact bumper designs give the G70 a poised character. The rear lamps, evolved from the G80, have been stretched to the end of the rear to convey a wide and dynamic stance.

A Sophisticated, Driver-Focused Interior

2018 Porsche 911 GT3 with Touring Package High Resolution AutoShow Exterior
- image 731679

G70’s interior is configured to prioritize an excellent user experience, with superb fit and finish throughout. The interior packaging reflects the thoughtfulness that drives the Genesis brand, with a priority on simplicity and an emphasis on genuine functionality instead of gimmickry.

A horizontal layout brings a sense of stability and the driver-focused packaging provides a comfortable driving environment, with intuitively laid out switchgear and a comfortable, assertive sport steering wheel.

Genesis designers employed premium materials throughout, including aluminum door handles, quilted leather door panels, metal speaker grills and high-quality soft touch surfaces. Nappa leather seats further add to the dynamic yet elegant interior.

The G70 offers a wide range of unique and sophisticated color options that properly reflect global trends to meet client demand.

Ten exterior colors are available: Platinum Silver, Carbon Metal, Marble White, Titanium Black, Racing Gray, Graceful Gray, Lapis Blue, Royal Blue, Blazing Red and Umber Brown.

A new paint-finishing method separates small, evenly distributed aluminum particles and high luminosity colors, maximizing the brilliance of the exterior colors.

The passenger cabin is available in five different colors: Obsidian Black, Sandstorm Gray, Velvet Burgundy, Tobacco Brown and Vanilla Beige. Two additional interior colors, which are Sports Gray and Sports Red will be dedicated to the G70 Sport and the high-end trim level for the 2.0T.

Driving Character — Agile Yet Safe, Dynamic Yet Quiet

The G70 offers three powertrains – a 3.3-liter V6 gasoline turbo, 2.0-liter I4 gasoline turbo and a 2.2-liter I4 diesel. The 3.3-liter V6 turbo is the backbone of the enthusiast-focused “G70 Sport.”

The G70 Sport is equipped with the Lambda II 3.3-liter V6 turbo GDI engine, with 370 PS and maximum torque of 52.0kgf·m.

G70 Sport is a dynamic and powerful performer with 0 to 100 kph (62.5 mph) acceleration in 4.7 seconds and a top speed of 270 kph (167/168 mph). Variable-ratio steering and electronically controlled suspension are standard to provide agile steering response and an optimal ride-and-handling experience.

The G70 2.0 turbo gasoline model is equipped with the Theta-II 2.0-liter turbo GDI engine, with 252 PS and maximum torque of 36.0kgf·m. (Sports package: 255 PS)

The G70 2.2 diesel model is equipped with the R 2.2 VGT engine with 202 PS horsepower and maximum torque of 45.0kgf·m.

Dynamic performance features include:
1. Launch Control - Maximizes power control in acceleration mode
2. Rack-mounted, motor-driven power steering (R-MDPS) and multi-link rear suspension - Provides precise handling and comfortable ride
3. Dynamic torque vectoring system - Improves vehicle cornering control
4. Mechanical limited slip differential (M-LSD) - Allows safe driving capabilities in low friction road conditions such as rain, snow and ice

The seat positions have been adjusted to lower the center of gravity of the car to maximize performance. To augment the driving experience, the Active Sound Design (ASD) system creates an aural character that reflects the engine load and driving mode settings.

Noise, vibration and harshness have been minimized in the G70 through enhancements in multiple areas including vehicle body structure; exhaust system; sound absorption and isolation; suspension and body frame connection; and the design of the side mirrors and door sealing systems.

The performance-focused sedan has been tested under the most challenging environments and surfaces in the world, including Death Valley (U.S.), northern Sweden, the Nürburgring (Germany) and the Alps (Austria) for driving stability, handling, durability and power delivery.

■ Best-in-Class Safety

Following the trend of the G90 and G80, the G70 offers the most comprehensive levels of safety in its class. Overall body stiffness and rigidity have been dramatically strengthened.

The G70 has also been designed to help protect pedestrians – when imminent impact with a pedestrian is detected, its active hood function operates by lifting the hood to absorb shock and minimize the risk of injury.

An unparalleled suite of advanced driver assist systems such as Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), Highway Driving Assist (HDA), Blind spot Collision Warning (BCW) and Driver Awareness Warning (DAW) have been added as part of the ‘Genesis Active Safety Control’ to offer the highest level of safety and convenience in its class.

The FCA system provides added safety with newly developed technology designed not only to protect vehicles and pedestrians, but also cyclists on the road. It automatically activates emergency braking through integrated radar-camera sensors when detecting bicycles.

‘Genesis Active Safety Control’ is the brand’s newly labeled advanced driver assist system package previously known as ‘Genesis Smart Sense.’

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731676

Genesis aims to receive the highest ratings from both international and domestic organizations including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and Korea New Car Assessment Program (KNCAP).

Exceptional Comfort and Convenience

The G70 incorporates a diverse range of advanced technologies that deliver ultimate convenience and connectivity.

An example includes the smart posture control system, initially introduced in the G90. When the driver’s body information is input, the system automatically adjusts the seat, steering wheel, outside mirror and heads-up display to the optimal position, ensuring minimal stress even on long journeys.

The G70 provides a diverse range of advanced convenience and connectivity, including an 8-inch touch screen display supporting MirrorLink, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The G70 will also be the first vehicle in Korea to feature server-based voice recognition technology, using Kakao’s artificial intelligence platform ‘Kakao I.’

For the best audio performance, a 15-speaker Lexicon surround-sound system is available to provide an audiophile-level acoustic experience.

Overseas product specifications in markets including North America, Russia and the Middle East are planned to be announced in early 2018.

View the full press release Hide press release
Press release
What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: