2024 Genesis GV60 Electric Crossover Brings Unexpected Freedoms – Despite Limited Range and Lofty Sticker Price

It seems when we talk about electric vehicles, it’s mostly a conversation about limiting freedoms.  But I don’t see it that way.  EVs can be about enhancing freedom of design, freedom of performance and freedom from fossils.  By completely changing technology, Genesis was able to completely change what we appreciate in compact luxury crossovers.  Unfortunately, freedom from charging stations isn’t unlimited.

Going electric puts batteries beneath the floor, and without an engine to stuff under a hood, designers have more freedom.  There’s a lot of Porsche in the car’s curvy hood, arching roofline, and wrap-around taillamps, but also a lot of Genesis in the twin swaths of LED lights, unnecessary grille, and large winged logos.  I especially like how the lower body appears to fold over the rocker panel and the rear glass tabs around to the sides.  Accentuated fenders cosset 21” wheels.

When the car was delivered, the driver asked if I needed help setting up the facial recognition and fingerprint systems.  I said, “The what?”  Yep, there’s a camera in the door pillar and sensor on the starter that allows owners to enter and start the vehicle without keys.  He should also have mentioned how the car can back into a garage while its owner stands outside with the key fob.  That’s only a first impression.

Designers clearly took the freedom to create a modern clubroom with wide flat floors, high arching ceilings, and carnal luxuries.  Twin 12.3-inch screens for gauges and infotainment get the attention, but look closer to see the high console with rotating orb gear selector, infotainment joywheel, and deep storage.  It feels sumptuous with Nappa leather seats, aluminum trim, and sueded headliner.  Just settle in and drink up the Bang & Olufsen audio system.

Going further, devices are easily connected through Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and wireless console charging while seasons are tamed by heated/ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, and a heated steering wheel.  Luggage is swallowed by a foot-operated power hatch and split-fold rear seats.  And, if safety is a concern, check the head-up display, adaptive cruise, and lane tracing to relive drivers while automatic emergency braking, blind spot avoidance, and lane keep assist amp active safety.  Safe Exit Assist prevents passengers from stepping into traffic.

Beyond a way too brief 235 miles range, the electric powertrain provides lots of freedom for quick acceleration (0-60 mph in 4 seconds), fast charging (10-80% in 18 minutes), and cleat traction (all-wheel-drive).  Fully charge in about 7 hours on 240v home or commercial chargers, but you’ll wait 68 hours using a wall socket.  Buy a charger!

Beyond quick recharge, the GV60 is a delight to drive with 429 horsepower and 516 lb.-ft. of torque underfoot.  Step down for instantaneous response.  You may not need that to get the kids to school, but don’t you want it?  Heavy batteries sit low in the chassis and work with the electronic suspension for both a heavy driving feel on the highway and quick reflexes when requested.  Just don’t expect a super smooth ride.  Click drive modes for Eco, Comfort, and Sport to conserve or consume electrons.

Engineers need to dig deeper to find a bit more driving range, something approaching 300 miles, but the rest of the GV60 mostly exhibits the best of what happens when designers and engineers are set free to reimagine the luxury crossover.  Given all it offers for a base price of $52,000, or $71,320 as-tested, it compares favorably to the Volvo XC40 Recharge, Mercedes-Benz EQB, Lexus RZ450e, and upcoming Cadillac OPTIQ.

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