Genesis (and Hyundai-Kia generally) are absolutely killing it lately, I drove the G70, G80, and G90 over the past year. And, oddly enough I just realized I did those reviews in numerical order, but that’s not the point. They were all fantastic sedans with a great mix of sport and luxury. It’s clear that Genesis is not only emulating the European brands, but in some cases, beating them handily. And at a lower price point generally. They sent me something a little different this time, an all-electric 2023 Genesis GV60 Performance. Let’s see what’s what with this compact luxury EV.
2023 Genesis GV60 Overview
Hyundai is in the process of “electrifying all the things” across their three brand lineups, and this battery electric GV60 is just one example at Genesis. Their GV70 comes in gas and EV, as does the G80 sedan (which I am driving as I type this, well not literally as I type this, that wouldn’t be safe). This GV60 is actually electric-only and was built on the new Hyundai Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) which is shared with the current Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Ioniq 6, plus the Kia EV6. It will also underpin the new Kia EV4, EV9, Hyundai Ioniq 7, and Genesis GV90 over the next couple of model years. Whew, that’s a lot of motors and batteries inbound.
Building your new GV60 is relatively simple, you can choose from Advanced or Performance, both come spec’d with AWD. The biggest difference is the powertrain, and as you can see below it’s a pretty drastic difference. The “base” Advanced gets 314 electric horses, while the Performance tester ups things by a non-so-insignificant 115 horsepower. Bear in mind, the compact GV60 Performance weighs in at 4,872 pounds. More on the performance in a bit.
Pricing starts at close to $60,000 for the Advanced and tacks on another $9,000 for the Performance. The good thing about Genesis (depending on your point of view) is that the top trim gives you, well, everything. Almost no top spec Genesis I’ve tested had a single option added, because it already had them all. Our tester only had the Uyuni White paint added ($575 bucks) for an out-the-door price of $69,570.
See, $69,560, I wasn’t lying. Let’s dig deeper to find out if $70,000 for a compact EV makes any sense at all.
2023 Genesis GV60 Performance Inside & Out
Let’s start on the outside, the GV60 looks…a little like a jelly bean if I’m honest. I know the split headlight and taillight design is a theme across off all of their designs, but it works a bit better on the larger models. The front features a fake grille across the bottom, clearly the designers couldn’t quite commit to the grille-less look and that’s OK. Still, it’s got some good angles and interesting details. The side profile and rear are both strong visually, the ducktail-style spoiler across the back gives it a legit hot-hatch look. The wheels are a little busy, with dozens of intersecting lines, but I like seeing a unique design and the overall look is solid.
On the inside, the GV60 is pure Genesis, with tons of interesting details and quality materials throughout. You get a 12.3-inch touchscreen mounted next to a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster so there is no shortage of screenage. There is even a standard Bang & Olufsen stereo system. The ergonomics are very well thought out, with all of the HVAC and other hard button controls organized into a centrally located panel within easy reach. The seats are great, nicely adjustable and comfortable, and I even dig the yellow stitching. It does have a massage feature, but it is way more limited compared to some of the other Genesis models I’ve been in recently.
Still, it’s crammed full of tech. There is even a facial recognition camera mounted in the door that unlocks the car when you walk up and a fingerprint ID that allows you to start the vehicle and then loads your driver profile. Combined, these technically negate the need to actually have the physical key with you. Weird wild stuff for sure, but I would keep the key with you, just in case. I got stranded in New Jersey when the latest keyless start feature failed on my (then new) 2007 G35 so I’m hesitant to jump all-in on new tech sometimes. Naturally the GV60 will do over-the-air updates and there’s an app to help you control things remotely.
The party piece is the rotating “Crystal Sphere” shift dial that rotates into position when you start the vehicle. I don’t mind a little theater and it made me smile on numerous occasions. Just look at it go!
Overall the interior is quite good, and criticisms were minor. I made a note in my test drive log that there were a lot of different interfaces across the GV60’s interior. Whether it is an actual physical button that you click up or down (or push in), a rotating dial, or some sort of touch sensitive non-button button, there’s a lot going on. On more than one occasion I reached down and grabbed the wrong metallic dial.
There is a lot of metal, and that means things are going to get either warm or cold, depending on the exterior temperature. It was very cold during my time in the GV60, and the contrast of cold metal next on an otherwise heated steering wheel made for some strange sensations. Your hand literally goes from “ahh warm” to “oh damn that’s cold” as you drive the GV60 in the winter.
Interior space is good for a compact SUV, with 24 cubic feet of space behind the back seats and 54.7 cubes with the seats folded. The GV60 successfully tackled ice hockey practice, which is always the biggest cargo test I throw at a vehicle. The frunk is a little bit of a let down, it’s really just a small compartment with a plastic lid. Still, at least it has one, some other EVs (cough *Bz4X* cough) don’t even have one.
2023 Genesis GV60 Performance On The Road
Ah, EV life. I recently sold my Mach-E after a year of ownership mostly because of the challenges of charging in my new living situation (apartment garage with no plugs) and that made my week with the GV60 a little bit of a challenge. Genesis does help calm your range anxiety with it’s easy to use driving modes. For example at one point in Eco mode it had 211 miles remaining, whereas comfort was estimated at 205, and sport was 198. Once the 235 miles of range was exhausted, I stopped by the local Safeway grocery store to use their EVgo charging station. The charger in the middle wouldn’t process my payment, while the one just to the left of it went through with no problem. I know, at some point we’ll get there infrastructure-wise, but we’re not there yet.
However, the GV60 Performance has got a damn BOOST button!!!!
Seriously, look at it! It delivers 483 horsepower for short bursts to help with a faster launch off the line or to facilitate overtaking maneuvers. You depress the button and the dash will start a countdown to show how much longer you get to use the boost. If you are stationary, the countdown starts when you hit the accelerator, if you are already on the move it kicks off immediately. And it’s freaking quick, sixty miles per hour comes in just 3.7 seconds. That’s only a couple ticks slower than a Mach-E GT and it’s a lot of fun. Genesis even touts a “Drift Mode” where the GV60 goes primarily RWD for sideways antics. Sadly, I did not test that bit.
The GV60 is easy to drive and incredibly comfortable out on the road. It rides with almost complete silence and absorbs bumps, while somehow handling like a sporty hatchback. All that technology makes for an easy-to-use experience. The panoramic rearview camera, for example, is super high res and made for easy parking and reversing, even at night when it was raining.
The GV60 Performance is an impressive machine, and like all of the other Genesis vehicles I’ve driven, you get your money’s worth and then some. However, I regularly landed on the question, is a $70,000 compact luxury EV a reasonable proposition? You can get more interior space and equal (or more) performance with other options on the market right now. Still, there are buyers who prefer a smaller vehicle, and the GV60 was easy to park on the street, so perhaps it’s not a bad proposition depending on your situation. Those interested in the GV60 should take a look at the Advanced trim. Even though I haven’t driven it, I imagine that it’s still reasonably quick, has a longer range, and will save you $9,000.
Although it doesn’t have a Boost button.