The first test drive of the New Year, why did it leave me feeling a bit weary of the new forces in the automotive industry?

Author: Monkey Strolling

At around 7 o’clock in the morning, I drove more than 90 kilometers and crossed the Juyong Pass to participate in the first test drive event of 2023. The reason why I am so enthusiastic must be because of my curiosity about new things. I am both unfamiliar and familiar with the brand that I will test drive. It is unfamiliar because it officially entered the Chinese market in 2021, and I have never driven any of its models before this test drive event; it is familiar because it has a relationship with Hyundai which can be seen everywhere in Beijing, and it used to be called Genesis.

Of course, today we are not here to give you a history lesson, let’s get in the car directly. This test drive can be said to be very fulfilling. We can test drive two cars a day. One is the Genesis GV70, and the other is the G80.

The Versatile GV70

In the morning, we first test drove the mid-size luxury electric SUV, the GV70. When a model dares to add the words “luxury” in its prefix, we must take a good look at it.

At first sight of the GV70, I felt that it did not look like a product from an Asian car brand, whether it is in appearance or interior design. In terms of appearance, GV70 is not the kind of electric car model that can be identified at a glance. Compared with the radical exterior designs of most electric car models, GV70 has some shadows of classical European car models, and the use of lines is also relatively rich, but fortunately these lines do not dominate, nor do they make the styling look cumbersome, instead they give a sense of elegance.

The “grille” on the front face, known as the “emblem of the brave”, is of course made into a closed type, and the charging port is hidden in it. If it weren’t for the “G” logo on it, it would be difficult to see with the naked eye. This approach also reduces the visible gaps on the body; while the treatment of the C-pillar has a taste of paying tribute to traditional SUVs, and the front and rear signature dual-line lights are also one of the most recognizable elements of the Genesis models.

As I got into the car, the overall color scheme was the white interior that I personally favor. The clever design of this interior is that it integrates what seems like numerous function keys into one area which looks like a “flying vehicle”. The use of this elliptical flying vehicle design blends well with other parts in the car, such as the speakers and armrests, creating a harmonious atmosphere that does not feel haphazard.

Of course, whenever I see more physical buttons, I always praise it as it is my usual viewpoint that a large screen does not equate to intelligence, technology, or ease of use.

Having said all that, let’s get the car moving quickly. Actually, ever since the class introducing the model before the test drive, I have been wondering what the orientation of this purely electric SUV’s character would be and what kind of person would drive it. After all, beneath the relatively classical and elegant appearance and interior, Genesis has endowed it with sporty attributes, and on the day of our test drive, we spent more time driving the GV70 on mountain roads.

Of course, before discussing this car’s sporty orientation, let’s talk about the comfort of the ride first. The seat comfort and the support, softness, and cushion length of the front and rear rows all met my expectations for a mid-size luxury SUV. However, due to the pure electric platform, the longitudinal space was still affected to some extent. Compared with the G80 we test drove in the afternoon, the headroom in the rear was only slightly higher. Fortunately, the backrest of the rear seats can be adjusted at multiple angles. If you feel cramped due to your height, adjusting the backrest can still provide a comfortable space and more comfortable sitting posture.

As for a luxury car, comfort also includes quietness. The NVH plays an important role in creating a sense of luxury for a car. The GV70 is equipped with an active road noise control system, which can be understood as the active noise reduction principle of noise-cancelling headphones. From actual experience, the control of road noise, tire noise, and wind noise is not bad overall, but the experience in the front row is better. Perhaps because of the noise suppression of the SUV’s tail and trunk, the noise in the rear row is more obvious, but there is not much to criticize for an SUV.

As for the character of this car, I feel it is somewhat variable after experiencing it. It is trying to find a balance between sportiness and comfort. In comfort mode, it is obvious that when passing bumpy roads and speed bumps, the dynamic of the whole car is clean and without excessive vibrations, but it will feel that the suspension is somewhat hard, while in mountain roads, it will feel somewhat soft on bends. However, when I turned on the sport mode, this balance point seemed to be clearer. The dynamic of the car on bends became better, and the lateral support was more confident. Of course, if you have a higher demand for power, you can try turning on the boost mode. Although you can’t feel the acceleration of 4.4 seconds per 100 kilometers by driving straight on, it’s not difficult to try to shake off the fleet by a little bit. After all, even the coach almost couldn’t catch up on the way back.

It should be noted that if there is no continuous acceleration action after turning on the boost mode, it will automatically exit the mode after a period of time. After all, the acceleration ability of 4.4 seconds per 100 kilometers is not really used in daily life, especially when there are other passengers in the car. This mode is more like a configuration that allows the driver to have a little excitement in a good road condition and without affecting the driving of other vehicles.## G80 made me change my mind

To be honest, GV70 was what interested me the most before this test drive. However, after driving G80, I feel this car may be more to my taste, especially in terms of driving performance.

If you only look at the appearance, it’s really hard to associate this pure electric sedan with a 3-meter-plus wheelbase, 5-meter-plus car length, stable and gentle appearance with anything sporty. Compared to GV70, it also lacks a boost mode. In addition, the brown warm-toned interior and the dual screens for rear passengers, as well as the central armrest with various controls, give it an executive business style, making me want to sit in the back seat.

But after driving it, I feel that as the front driver, I might enjoy this car more. Because of the lower car body center of gravity, whether it’s cornering, rapid acceleration, rapid deceleration, or braking, the overall posture of the car is better than that of GV70, of course, I know that this may not be comparable, but today we can only use these two cars for reference.

The handling in comfort mode has been well tuned, with a compact chassis and no loose steering. I tried to corner at nearly 60 km/h and there was no obvious understeer, thanks to the dual-motor all-wheel drive system. Although its 0-100 km/h acceleration of 4.9 seconds is not as fast as the 4.4 seconds of GV70’s boost mode, it is still enough to experience some speed and passion on a car that should be relatively gentle.

But the driving seat ERGO MOTION on GV70 wasn’t experienced on G80. Through the built-in seven airbags in the seat, this system can automatically adjust the support force for the driver according to the driving mode or speed change, and of course, the air cushions can also be adjusted independently. In actual experience, whether the sports mode is turned on or not, when the speed reaches over 100 kilometers, the support on both sides of the seat will tighten, the airbags in the cushion will shrink, and the whole person feels tight and enters the combat state directly. This change in seat wrapping will make the entire driving experience more complete. When the speed drops back to a relaxed driving state, the seat also returns to the state that you have adjusted before, and the adjustment speed is quite suitable for your driving mode.

In addition to unexpected athleticism, the comfort of the entire car is also good. The seat cushion is thick and long enough, just like the GV70. But the backrest angle of the rear seat in the G80 is a bit straight and cannot be adjusted. Although the leg support is not a big problem, the comfort of the back is slightly insufficient. However, the silence of the rear seat is in line with its identity, and it filters out road noise and tire noise better. The rear windshield is also equipped with an electric sunshade, and these small details can also help enhance the sense of luxury.

As for the assistance driving, both cars support Highway Driving Assistance II. Besides the basic distance and lane keeping, they also support automatic lane changing with the turn signal on. In our actual driving experience, this assistance driving system belongs to the more decisive type when changing lanes with the turn signal. Of course, due to the good high-speed road conditions that day, it didn’t encounter too many complex scenarios, so the test for it can only be left to more detailed testing later.

By the way, when I got off the car at the starting point and prepared to take some photos, I found that the G80 I test drove also had a solar roof, which was an optional configuration. The electric energy converted by the solar energy can provide the vehicle with a driving range of about 1000 km in a year. However, when viewed from a daily perspective, it can only be regarded as an insignificant addition. In addition, if you choose the solar roof option, you have to give up the sunroof.

On the way back after the test drive, I had a strange feeling. After driving so many electric cars, when I drove the Genesis G80, which left some traditional industrial atmosphere of the automotive industry in this era of electric vehicles, I felt tired of the radical new forces all over the streets. Maybe the electric car market still needs some players with different characteristics. -END-

This article is a translation by ChatGPT of a Chinese report from 42HOW. If you have any questions about it, please email