Is Hyundai’s luxury brand ready to expand?

Launched in 2015, Genesis is the newest luxury brand on the market and the first such company to come from South Korea. Established after Hyundai rolled out increasingly more premium versions of the Genesis and Equus sedans, Genesis has already introduced three products since 2016. It all started with the G90, a redesigned and more luxurious version of the Equus, which was followed by the G80, a better replacement for the Hyundai Genesis. The third sedan, the G70, was introduced in late 2017 as a competitor for the highly popular BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and Audi A4. Having already seen the G70 in all its glory, we began wondering what if Genesis decided to expand the lineup with a wagon?

Called the G70 Sportwagon by X-Tomi Designs, which provided the rendering of what could become Genesis first ever grocery getter, this luxury wagon would compete in a very small niche that no longer benefits from a global presence. While BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi continue to sell station wagon versions of their compact sedans in Europe, the United States only gets the 3 Series Sports Wagon. The G70 Sportwagon not only would add a bit of drama to this market, but it could also come to the U.S. to give BMW a bit of action and maybe even motivate Mercedes-Benz and Audi to bring their own grocery getters over the pond. But, until that happens, let’s have a closer look at what this wagon could bring to the table.

Continue reading to learn more about the Genesis G70 Sportwagon.

Exterior

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
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Note: Genesis G70 sedan pictured here.

Expect it to have the same styling cues as the sedan from the nose to the C-pillars, but a longer roof and a redesigned rear fascia

Much like any station wagon out there, the G70 Sportwagon will be heavily based on the recently unveiled G70 four-door. Specifically, expect it to have the same styling cues from the nose to the C-pillars, but a longer roof and a redesigned rear fascia. And this is great news, as the sedan is quite the looker, even when compared to the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

Up front, the wagon will showcase many of the already familiar Genesis features, starting with the crest-shaped grille with chrome horizontal bars. Should the Sportwagon also get a Sport version like the sedan, expect it to wear a honeycomb-like pattern. The G70’s sleek headlamps with angular edges will give the wagon an aggressive stance, as will the vertically oriented side vents and the complex layout of the center intake, which includes various thin elements that enhance aerodynamics.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731675

Note: Genesis G70 sedan pictured here.

The Sportwagon should retain the sedan's athletic profile, despite the longer roof and the boxier rear end

The Sportwagon should retain the sedan’s athletic profile, despite the longer roof and the boxier rear end. At the same, it should feel elegant as well, mostly due to the subtle beltline and character line just above the side skirts. The profile will change dramatically from the C-pillar to the rear. Not only the muscular rear haunches of the sedan will be gone, but the Sportwagon will get the wagon-specific third window and thick D-pillar. However, the sloping roofline and the angle rear glass will prevent the car from looking like a 1980s Volvo (read "hearse"),

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731668

Note: Genesis G70 sedan pictured here.

The rear end will be almost radically different than the sedan's, so forget about the nicely sculpted trunk lid

The rear end will be almost radically different than the sedan’s, so forget about the nicely sculpted trunk lid, which will make way for a more utilitarian tailgate. It will be interesting to see what Genesis decided to do with the taillights. While the ones seen on the sedan are rather small for a wagon and placed outside the trunk lid, Genesis could opt for longer units that extend into the tailgate. This isn’t necessarily a rule for modern wagons, but it’s a common practice among other brand competing in this niche. I guess that if Genesis chooses to keep the sedans taillights, the Sportwagon will have one more reason to stand out.

The ten exterior colors that are available for the four-door G70 should make it on the wagon too. So expect the palette to include hues like 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 731670

Note: Genesis G70 sedan pictured here.

Look for the same modern design with a clean and simple dashboard

Naturally, the interior of the wagon will also mimic that of the sedan, except for the wagon-style trunk. Look for the same modern design with a clean and simple dashboard that’s slimmer than usual to provide better visibility up front and a sports car-like feeling.

As seen in the sedan, the front section will have a horizontal layout, which is rather common in today’s premium cars, while the wide and tall center console will be topped by a driver-oriented center stack. The latter will include only a handful of buttons placed under the A/C vents for that clean look most premium customers are looking for.

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Interior
- image 731671

Note: Genesis G70 sedan pictured here.

The seats feature the company’s smart posture control system

The seats, which have been positioned so that they lower the center of gravity of the car to maximize performance for the sedan, feature the company’s smart posture control system. Introduced in the range-topping 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 far as materials go, we’ve already seen some premium appointments in the sedan. So the wagon should come with Nappa leather seats, quilted leather door panel inserts, and aluminum door handles and trim. Almost everything else is covered in soft-touch materials, just like in the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Upholstery color options should include Obsidian Black, Sandstorm Gray, Velvet Burgundy, Tobacco Brown and Vanilla Beige.

The Sportwagon will benefit from the larger trunk that all wagons get behind the second-row seat

Passenger comfort will also be enhanced thanks to the lower levels of noise, vibration and harshness achieved through the use of sound absorption and isolation materials, revised suspension and body frame connection, and the design of the door sealing systems. In the convenience department, the eight-inch display will provide access to MirrorLink, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and server-based voice recognition technology via artificial intelligence platform Kakao I. A 15-speaker Lexicon surround-sound system will be available for audiophiles.

Of course, the Sportwagon will benefit from the larger trunk that all wagons get behind the second-row seat. In addition to that, it will also benefit from folding rear seats for that extra space that comes in handy when hauling long objects or when you’re simply moving into a new apartment, and you have a lot of stuff to carry.

But, in order to be competitive, the Sportwagon needs to come as close as possible to the rather high bar set by the competition. For instance, the BMW 3 Series Sports wagon can hold up to 27.6 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 61.5 cubic feet with the seats folded flat. The Mercedes-Benz C-Class Wagon isn’t quite as roomy, but it can still haul a lot of luggage at 17.3 and 53.3 cubic feet, respectively. The new Audi A4 Avant is similar to the Merc with 17.8 and 53.3 cubic feet ratings.

Drivetrain

2018 Genesis G70 High Resolution Exterior
- image 731669

Note: Genesis G70 sedan pictured here.

A diesel version will also be offered, powered by a 2.2-liter four-banger rated at 199 horsepower and 325 pound-feet

Once again, the Sportwagon will mimic the sedan version of the G70 under the hood. The four-door is offered with a drivetrain lineup consisting of three engines, starting with the familiar 2.0-liter GDI available in other Hyundai models. The turbocharged four-cylinder is rated at 252 PS and 353 Nm of torque (249 horsepower and 260 pound-feet), while opting for the Sports package increases the power rating slightly to 255 PS (252 horsepower). A diesel version is also available, powered by a 2.2-liter four-banger rated at 202 PS and 441 Nm of twist (199 horsepower and 325 pound-feet).

Performance ratings for these drivetrains aren’t yet available, but it’s safe to assume that the wagon versions will have slightly slower sprint times. Probably a tenth or two due to the extra weight and the different aerodynamics.

G70 Sport, which will be the range-topping model, will hide a 3.3-liter Lambda V-6 under the hood

Finally, G70 Sport, which is the range-topping model, hides a 3.3-liter Lambda V-6 under the hood. Also available in many Hyundai cars, this powerplant cranks out 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. Interestingly enough, that’s two tenths quicker than the range-topping 3 Series model with RWD and as quick as the same model equipped with AWD. So I guess it’s safe to assume that the G70 Sportwagon will be competitive enough for its German rivals. Top speed is rated at 168 mph for the four-door, significantly higher from the 155-mph ratings that come with most compact BMW and Mercedes-Benz sedans, and this figure should remain unchanged with the wagon.

When equipped with the Sport package, the wagon should also get the variable-ratio steering and electronically controlled suspension offered as standard with the sedan. Another standard feature will be Launch Control and rack-mounted, motor-driven power steering and multi-link rear suspension, both designed to provide more precise handling and comfortable ride. Finally, the dynamic torque vectoring system will improve the wagon’s cornering control, while the mechanical limited slip differential will enhance handling in low friction road conditions such as rain, snow, and ice.

Prices

We still don’t have pricing information for the G70 sedan, which makes it difficult to estimate how much the wagon will cost, but Genesis needs to keep pricing close to the competition. For instance, the BMW 3 Series Sports Wagon starts from $44,450 in the U.S. Of course, pricing will depend on which engines are offered, but being a new brand, Genesis may have to keep the sticker a bit lower in order to score some sales. Somewhere around $40,000 to $42,000 seems like a good guess.

Competition

BMW 3 Series Sports Wagon

2016 BMW 3 Series Sports Wagon High Resolution Exterior
- image 629407

Should it come to the U.S., the Genesis G70 Sportwagon will have just one competitor. But it will have a hard time stealing customers from BMW, as the 3 Series Sports Wagon has been around for quite a while and built itself a solid reputation. Sure, it’s a few years old, and its popularity was enhanced by the fact that there aren’t any other options, but the sporty design, the well-appointed interior, and the powerful engine make it tough to beat.

Speaking of engines, there are two options to choose from. First up, there’s the 330i, which uses a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder rated at 248 horsepower and 258 pound-feet. The second option is the 328d, powered by a 2.0-liter turbodiesel that’s good for 188 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of twist. It’s worth noting that the 3 Series Sports Wagon is the only Bimmer, alongside the X5, to get a diesel powerplant in the U.S. In Europe, the drivetrain lineup is much more diverse. Ranging from the entry-level 318i with 136 horsepower to the 340i M Sport with 326 horses, the 3 Series Touring meets every need performance-wise. On the diesel front, the range begins with the 316d rated at 116 horsepower and goes all the way up to the 335d xDrive M Sport with 313 horses. U.S. pricing starts from $44,450, while German prices start from €34,550.

Read our full review of the 2017 BMW 3 Series Sports Wagon.

Mercedes-Benz C-Class Wagon

2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Wagon High Resolution Exterior
- image 552973

Unveiled in 2014 alongside the then-brand-new C-Class, this grocery getter has been one of the most celebrated compact premium wagons for decades now. And for good reason, as the longer, five-door version of the C-Class is just as classy and luxurious as its four-door sibling. The latest model is particularly appealing, as the C-Class’ design language, which is based on the larger S-Class, is both sporty and elegant. And despite having a wagon rear end instead of the sedan’s sleek, coupe-like roofline, the C-Class Wagon is as sexy as wagons get. Okay, so maybe it’s not as gorgeous as the CLS Shooting Brake, but it’s definitely one of the most beautiful wagons you can buy. The same description can be used for the interior, which blends sportiness and elegance under acres of leather and wood veneer.

The engine lineup isn’t as diverse as the sedan’s, but you get plenty of options ranging from the 154 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of the base C180 to the 362 horses and 384 pound-feet of the C450 AMG. Of course, proper AMG C63 and AMG C63 S variants are also offered. More importantly, Mercedes also launched a plug-in hybrid version, the C350, rated at 275 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of twist. Diesel models range from the C220 BlueTEC with 168 horsepower and 295 pound-feet to the C300 BlueTEC Hybrid with 228 horses and 369 pound-feet. Unfortunately, none of them are available in the United States. German pricing starts from €33,534.

Read our full review of the 2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Wagon.

Audi A4 Avant

2016 - 2018 Audi A4 High Resolution Exterior
- image 635402

Introduced for the 2016 model year, the A4 Avant is the newest offering in this comparison. It’s also one of the most aggressive wagons you can buy thanks to Audi’s recent design language with more angular lines. The interior is also new and quite the significant departure from the previous design. While the outgoing model felt dated, the current-generation A4 has everything it takes to give its competitors a run for its money. And it’s pretty unique too with the classy air-vent strip that stretches across the dashboard. The German wagon is sold with four engines besides the performance-oriented S4 and RS4. The base 1.4-liter unit cranks out 150 horsepower and 184 pound-feet, while the 2.0-liter four-pot is available with either 190 horses and 236 pound-feet or 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet. The range-topping model uses a 3.0-liter V-6 that generates 354 horsepower and 369 pound-feet. The diesel lineup includes various versions of the company’s 2.0-liter and 3.0-liter mills, ranging from the 2.0 TDI with 120 horsepower and 199 pound-feet to the 3.0 TDI V-6 with 272 horses and 443 pound-feet. Like the C-Class Wagon, the A4 Avant isn’t available in the U.S. However, you can buy the A4 Allroad, an Avant with SUV features and higher ground clearance. This model is priced from $44,500. In Germany, the standard A4 Avant retails from €33,700.

Read our full story of the 2017 Audi A4 Avant.

Conclusion

2019 Gensis G70 Sportwagon Computer Renderings and Photoshop Exterior
- image 734727
Gensis G70 Sportwagon

The Genesis G70 Sportwagon is just a rendering as of this writing, and the Korean firm didn’t say whether such a model is under consideration or not. But it’s more than just a cool idea. With the luxury brand having rolled out three sedans so far, and with at least two SUVs underway, a wagon version of the G70 should be included in the company’s future plans. The G70 may be enough to grant the company access to the tough compact market that’s controlled by the 3 Series, C-Class, and A4, but Genesis needs more than just a sedan in order to survive. A coupe and a convertible should also be considered, but a station wagon sounds like a good first step in a niche that doesn’t have too many propositions on offer. And judging by the G70’s looks, lush interior, and solid drivetrain lineup, I think that a station wagon could make a significant impact.

  • Leave it
    • Genesis may never build it
    • Lacks the brand cachet of BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi
    • Is the station wagon segment slowly dying?
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