words & photos by Ricardo
The automotive world is changing in a way we have not been able to predict just ten years ago. New brands have emerged, some old ones disappeared, and just a handful are transitioning into complete mobility solutions. From Korea, the Hyundai Motors Group has become a global enterprise with the aim to provide such future solutions. In the USA, it has committed to over 10 billion dollars for the development of the key industries that will move goods and people from A to B. The plans include robotics, air mobility (helicopter-type vehicles), artificial intelligence, and autonomous machines in both personal and commercial transportation segments. A new EV and battery manufacturing plant is included as well.
The company leader in the Americas is Jose Munoz. A Spaniard whom I have interviewed and can testify as one of the most intelligent, foot on the ground, and humble executives in the industry. The "group" offers three brands that are well defined and appeal to different tastes. Along the lines of Toyota-Lexus, the Genesis brand is a luxury offering from Korea that, although it is a newcomer it, has already beaten most of the established and traditional high-end makers.
The four-door sedan G70 model has won several awards, and their SUVs, the GV70 and GV80, have been voted best in their segment by the automotive journalist. Beyond the cars themselves, the Genesis dealers are also something different. I had the opportunity to visit the first agency in America, and once inside, I realized that the company's approach is quite different. For me, it was like a combination of the 1930s Auburn dealer. The luxury carmaker at that time sold you a chassis with an engine, and you tailored the interior and exterior colors, finishes, and textures you liked. And at the same time, like being in a Taschen Bookstore where you could think and browse surrounded by beautiful architecture and objet d'art.
Since the future is electric, Genesis now offers the GV60. A great-looking medium-sized SUV type four-door vehicle. And it comes with its own crystal ball. I mean that literally as when I had the chance to get into it, I found this translucent ball in the middle of the center console and just feeling the smoothness changed my attitude toward what this vehicle was capable of. Suddenly there was an emotional effect. The sphere changes colors working as the vehicle's mood lights. Not only that, it also has Face Connect, which allows you to interface with the car in a new way. Only your face recognition by the system will let the car unlock its doors. This Genesis is one of the most sophisticated cars in the world today.
The GV60 is built on the dedicated EV Electric-Global Modular Platform. This allows to have several options in power and drive types. Leaving the tech aside, you need to know that you can go over 250 miles on a single charge on the basic model and over 300 miles on the more powerful versions. Goodbye range anxiety. Additionally, the charging system can handle 350kW ultra-speed charging stations that could get you 50 % charge in 15 minutes.
The interior is what I like the best. The exterior looks good too, but since I drive from the inside, the materials and textures that create a particular environment are most important to me. And this car has style and a high detailed finish like the best of the best.
The first GV60 was just delivered in California, and by the company history, I know they are in no rush to become mass-market. Good things take time and lots of attention to detail. Like the rest of the model lineup, the GV60 is about your experience while commuting. My opinion is that they will continue pushing the technology envelope while making it subconscious to you.
Genesis is becoming a carmaker of the future. Maybe the first one in a decade or two to fly you to your destination all by itself. But for now, find a Genesis dealer and check the crystal ball for yourself.