A Performance-spec G70 for the Genesis Brand?

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
a performance spec g70 for the genesis brand

As bargain luxury brands go, Genesis Motors is aiming high — seemingly fixated on taking down its German competitors at a fraction of the price. However, while Genesis is capable of rumbling with its rivals’ base models with total confidence, it doesn’t have the hardware necessary to bash in the heads of most models wearing AMG or M badges.

That could soon change.

In a recent interview with Road & Track, Hyundai product planner Mike O’Brien hinted a hotter Genesis G70 may be in the works. “A big effort with the G70 was thermal management, to make sure that this car will hold up,” O’Brien said at this week’s Detroit Auto Show. “We’re building for the future. I’ll just say that.”

Proper thermal management is essential for all vehicles, but you don’t really hear automakers discussing it beyond the confines of performance applications with any genuine excitement. As a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Group, the luxury arm is also under the supervision of the company’s recently promoted head of R&D, Albert Biermann — whose credentials include BMW’s M division and, more recently, Hyundai’s derivatively named N division.

From Road & Track:

That note about extra cooling capacity in the G70 seems to indicate that Genesis wants to offer something sportier than the standard car, perhaps with racetrack performance in mind. An M3-fighter? That seems ambitious, but then again, so was targeting the 3-Series in the first place. And given how sweetly the current G70 drives, maybe Genesis could just pull it off.

Would such a model be badged as a G70 N? O’Brien told me it’s too early to say. Genesis is still figuring out how it wants to brand any eventual performance cars.

Hyundai is placing increasing importance on getting into racing in North America, as evidenced by the new Veloster N TCR race car. It’ll make its competition debut later this month at Daytona in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge series. O’Brien says Hyundai is looking at more motorsports opportunities in the US, and he personally wants to see Genesis involved in racing.

“We’re looking at different things, as you can imagine. Whether it’s GT3 or GT4 or prototypes, we’re looking at all those things,” he explained. “It’s way too early to speculate on where we’re going to go, and of course, we have to think about where we want Genesis to go, where we want Hyundai to go. No decisions have been made at this point, but certainly, we need to think about it. We have two separate brands we need to build awareness and excitement around.”

The possibility of Genesis bringing out hotter trims over the next few years seems like a reasonably safe bet. As sedans lose market share to crossovers, many automakers have tried to appeal to enthusiasts and elevate profit margins by introducing performance-inspired appearance packages and even meaningful upgrades to their passenger cars. That, in addition to Hyundai hitting a homerun with its first batch of N cars, makes a pretty good case for Genesis to try something similar.

[Image: Genesis Motors]

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2 of 34 comments
  • Sportyaccordy Sportyaccordy on Jan 17, 2019

    Not going to make sense without good, track ready gearboxes

  • Jatz Jatz on Jan 17, 2019

    Just imagine what these concentric, convoluted snouts on modern cars would weigh if they weren't plastic!

  • Dukeisduke This would be a nice car. I've long been a fan of the W123 series cars - and one of my favorite colors for these. This would be the injected (D-Jetronic?) 2.8l inline six.Was the cloth always purple like this, or is it age that turns it purple?
  • NotMyCircusNotMyMonkeys nobodys mentioned free HD radio?
  • ChristianWimmer I am a huge W123 fan but I never liked the square headlights on the 280/280E/280C/280CE models and later on the post-1983 entry-level models. The W123s always looked right with the circular headlights.This is a great car, though. But 230C/CE & 280C/CE are so common here - I want a US-spec 300CD Diesel or 300CD Turbodiesel because that would be an exotic here in Germany.
  • NotMyCircusNotMyMonkeys not a single word on whether this grey market would even pass smog or be driveable in the state.
  • MaintenanceCosts Gorgeous, even if the W124 coupe is even better. Too bad about that paint color, though.