2024 Genesis GV60: Lower-price Standard version added at the right time

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Genesis has introduced a new entry level model for its 2024 GV60 line of all-electric sporty compact crossovers. The rear-wheel-drive Standard version starts at $50,000 on the company’s website, which is $8,550 less than the Advanced AWD and $17,500 less than the Performance AWD,

I don’t normally consider trim changes big news, especially since the Advanced AWD and Performance AWD versions first introduced last year are unchanged. But that’s a big price reduction that should encourage more buyers to enjoy its entertaining luxury SUV.

And whether by chance or foresight, the additional lower-priced model is being introduced just as the government push for EVs is facing growing political pushback, in part because they continue to be more expensive than equivalent gas, hybrid and even plug-in hybrid vehicles.

There are several other reasons why even the New York Times is now questioning government regulations intended to reduce the sale of gas-powered vehicles in favor of EVs. Surveys show that range anxiety — the fear of running out of power during a trip — is widespread and understandable. The public recharging infrastructure is still woefully inadequate. Many people do not have a garage, or even a driveway, where they can conveniently and reliably recharge at home.

But cost is a legitimate challenge, too, especially because the federal government is severely limiting the EVs that qualify for the new $7,500 dealer rebate that takes effect on Jan. 1. Because of cost, buyer income, and battery manufacturing restrictions, only eight EVs qualify in the rules announced in early December — and none produced by the related Korean manufacturers Hyundai, Kia and Genesis. (The State of Oregon allowed its $5,000 maximum rebate program to lapse this year but is expected to renew it for many more EVs next year.)

Manufacturers are doing their part by making more and more EVs that people should want to own, like all versions of 2024 GV60. Although technically a small SUV, compact crossover is better described as an all-electric sports car, with impressive straight-line speed and incredible handling, thanks in large part to the low center of gravity provided by the battery pack mounted under the frame, which makes it great fun to drive. All-wheel-drive is provided in the upper trim levels by dual electric motors mounted front and rear.

Still, even the starting price of the new Standard model is $5,100 more than the least expensive version of the slightly larger gas-powered GV70 SUV, which comes with AWD. Without government incentives to reduce the price of the GV60, that’s a tough sell to anyone not already committed to buying an EV. No wonder thousands of auto dealers recently wrote the Biden Administration to say that EVs are piling up on their lots.

The Advanced AWD starts at $60,550. My top-of-the-line Performance AWD version was priced at $72,245, which is admittedly a lot. But the 2024 GV60 is intended to compete against even more expensive luxury compact crossover SUVs from such legacy manufactures as Audi, BMW and Mercedes. And there it succeeds with a stunning rounded design and impressive power in the upper trim levels. Although the single-motor Standard version only produces 225 horsepower, the Advanced version generates 314 and the Performance is good for up to 429 for a limited period when the Boost button the steering wheel is pressed.

The estimated driving range varies from nearly 300 miles for the Standard to between 235 and 248 on the AWD versions. Connected to a DC fast charging station, Genesis says the GV60’s battery can be recharged from 10- to 80-percent capacity in just 18 minutes, which is getting down to the time it takes to fill as a gas-powered car.

Inside, the GV60 does its best to dazzle its owner and passengers with a huge horizontal display and Crystal Sphere — a large rotary transmission shifter built into a globe that rotates open when started and closes when turned off. The front bucket seats are suitably supportive for a car that corners like a go-kart.

More advanced technologies are also available, including two that allow owners to drive the GV60 even if they have forgotten their fobs. Once set up, the driver’s door can be opened with a facial recognition system, while it can be started inside with a registered fingerprint. I advise drivers to always know where their fobs are, but there might be some situations where those are necessary.

The GV60 also comes with a Vehicle-to-Load (or V2L) adapter that plugs into the charging port and allows electricity to drawn out. It can charge anything from other EVs to power tools at construction sites to refrigerators during power outages. It might not power an entire home like the optional generator of Ford F-150 pickups, but it could save someone’s day.

In a week of test driving the 2024 GV60 was always a delight to see and exciting to drive. It also attracted a lot of puzzled looks, with pedestrians and other drivers obviously trying to figure out what it was. If governments really want to turn them into buyers, however, they need to get a lot more serious about bringing prices down and making recharging much more convenient and reliable. Their policies and programs need to be as futuristic as the 2024 Genesis GV 60 looks and drives.

2024 Genesis GV60

Base price: $52,000 (Standard)

Price as tested: $72,245 (Performance AWD)

Type: Luxury compact crossover SUV

Drivetrains: Single electric motor (225 hp); dual electric motors (314 Advanced/429-483 hp Performance – as tested)

Transmission: Direct drive

EPA estimated range: 294 (RWD), 235 to 248 miles (AWD)

EPA MPGe: 90 MPGe (as tested)

Drive modes: Eco, Normal, Sport

Overall length: 177.8 inches

Curb weight: 4,862 (as tested)

Final assembly: Ulsan, Korea

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