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Genesis G70 Shooting Brake review

Introduction

If a Mercedes-Benz CLA Shooting Brake and a Bentley Continental GT had a baby, the Genesis G70 Shooting Brake is probably what that infant would grow up to be.

Genesis has been wowing us with its cars for only a year or so in the UK, but it's already proving that it's not about cosmetic surgery. Genesis is the real deal.

Its vehicles demand at least a second glance, and its interiors are utterly sublime. And yet, all the while, Genesis is simply a breakaway brand of Hyundai.

‘They’re chalk and cheese, though?’ you exclaim. And you’d be right in terms of their appeal. But both the chalk and the cheese happen to be made by the same people.

The G70 Shooting Brake has now joined the ranks, sitting alongside the G70 saloon.

Select's rating score* - 3 / 5

At a Glance

Those who are familiar with Genesis will be aware of the Bentley-like looks. The front has a wide and posh grille. However, unlike Bentley, it is more triangular, with a point in the middle at the bottom. It dominates the front end, but there is room for a smaller lower grille, two air intakes and two headlight strips per side.

From the side, the skirt is quite deep, so the car’s sporting credentials are amplified, while there’s a small air vent low down behind the front wheel arch. Creases towards the bottom of the doors and just above the door handles help define the shape. Meanwhile, the rear features a lengthy roof spoiler which sits over the rear windows.


The rear has a more typically Far Eastern look, with the taillights divided into four sections on each side, half of which sit on the boot lid and the other half just outside its lines.

The bottom is shaped to accommodate the number plate with a diffuser effect and two wide, oval exhaust outlets.

Overall, it’s a very striking car which offers something far more showbizzy than your everyday BMW, Audi or Mercedes-Benz. And those are precisely the manufacturers and customers that the G70 Shooting Brake is going for.


Key Features

The G70 Shooting Brake comes in a trio of trims, which Genesis prefers to call 'Lines'.

Entry-level is Premium Line, which has 18-inch alloys, dual front LED headlamps, electric front seats, electric lumbar support and smart cruise control. You also get a 10.25-inch touchscreen with SatNav, a DAB radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and an eight-inch digital dashboard. Rear parking sensors, a rear view camera, and keyless entry and button start are part of the deal, too.

The mid-range Luxury Line adds a heated steering wheel, leather seat cover, heated seats, a premium air filter, electronic control suspension and an electric rear tailgate opening.


The top-of-the-range Sport Line edition has some sports styling to make the car look more athletic, as well as 19-inch alloys, Brembo premium brakes and metal pedals.

Even though the baseline Premium Line gets you a lot of equipment, the bigger brakes and sportier appearance of the range-topping Sport Line might well tempt some to part with more cash, especially as the most powerful engine isn’t available at entry-level.

There are three powertrains to choose from, with the Premium Line getting a choice of a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol producing 197PS or a 2.2-litre four-cylinder diesel generating 200PS.

The Luxury and Sport Lines get the choice of the same diesel, but the petrol (although it has the same specs) is beefed up to 243PS.

All engines come with an eight-speed auto gearbox with rear-wheel drive.


Performance & Drive

We drove the 243PS petrol. We would recommend this one because the diesel isn’t very refined and the alternative petrol – the 197PS engine – is sluggish, taking around 9.3-seconds to get from 0-62mph.

The more powerful petrol in our test car managed to achieve the same in 6.4-seconds. It is impressive from a standing start, boasting plenty of acceleration off the line. However, it does feel like it’s being worked hard to get you up to speed.

It doesn’t sound great, either, with a synthetic engine note pumped through the speakers, which sounds like a car racing game from the mid-1990s. It seems an odd thing to do, given it's not a hybrid or electric car, and you'll want to turn it off, especially at higher revs.


Arguably, the lack of hybridity is the Shooting Brake’s main problem. In this day and age, anything petrol-powered around the 200-250PS mark will have fuel efficiency that's outstripped by hybrids. Given Genesis’ range already boasts a handful of all-electric cars, we’re wondering why some level of hybridity hasn’t made it onto the G70, especially when rivals like BMW and Mercedes-Benz already offer this.

In terms of handling, anyone familiar with the feel of a Hyundai will feel right at home. It doesn’t feel nimble, nor does it feel particularly lethargic in the bends. Instead, like its parent company’s cars, the G70 gives off a middle-of-the-road, all-rounder sort of vibe.

While it’s perfectly okay to drive, nothing about it suggests it has the refinement of its German peers in the handling department.

The ride is reasonable, but there’s a sense that the G70 Shooting Brake doesn’t know what sort of car it wants to be. As a result, it’s a mishmash of a comfortable cruiser and a keen-handling sports car, ticking some of the boxes of each but ultimately satisfying nobody.


There are several driving modes, including Comfort, Sport and Sport+, the latter of which turns off the traction control. This seems like a bad idea in a Shooting Brake that isn't built for sporty handling.

We stuck to Sport and can report that it firms up the suspension somewhat, limiting the body roll around the corners, but we still couldn’t call it fun to drive. Comfort mode leans noticeably more, but, in any event, it can’t compete with the ride quality of the Germans. That is even with the adaptive suspension fitted to the top-of-the-range Sport model, although the suspension system itself is pretty good.

The steering doesn’t provide much feedback, although at least putting it into Sport mode makes it a touch firmer on windy backroads.

Road noise is more noticeable with the bigger wheels, though – they were 19-inches on our test car, while the gearbox changes smoothly and decisively.


Running Costs & Emissions

Our test car's 2.0-litre turbo with 243PS managed 31.6-33.1mpg, producing 193-204g/km of CO2.

Interestingly, Genesis claims these figures are the same on the lower-powered version of the identical engine, which produces 197PS.

The 200PS diesel fares better at 40.7-41.8mpg, with emissions dropping to 175-182g/km of CO2.

It isn’t suitable as a company car, then, as even the more economical diesel falls into the top bracket for Benefit in Kind. Currently, you’d be mad to have anything but a plug-in hybrid or all-electric car if your employer is leasing your wheels.

In terms of reliability, Genesis is a new brand. Still, these cars have so much Hyundai DNA that it's hard to see them not inheriting the reliability of their parent company. And Hyundai is one of the most dependable on the market right now.


Interior & Technology

One of Genesis’ main aims is to wow you with a posh, luxurious interior.

Admittedly, we were a little disappointed, as some of Genesis’ cars have spectacular designs. Yet we found the G70’s to be a little restrained and even dated in comparison with the automaker’s usual posh standards.

The reason is that, although the G70 Shooting Brake is still fairly new to the UK, it’s a facelifted version of what was available elsewhere in the world. So, it’s based on an older design and has less of the creative ostentatiousness that even fresher Genesis models are known for.


Nevertheless, you’ll wonder what on earth we’re complaining about if you’ve never seen a Genesis interior before. The G70’s is still impressive, and if you have Hyundai expectations on the brain, it’ll leave you suitably wowed and seriously tempted.

All we can say is that if you aren’t familiar with Genesis cabins and you think this one is impressive, check out some of the rest of the range.

Our test car included a red and black upholstery, although other colour combinations are offered depending on which model you go for. Furthermore, the steering wheel looks inviting to hold, with some silver garnish adding to the attractiveness.

There is more silver on the centre console by the gear lever, which looks suitably upmarket. And the 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen shoots from the top of the dashboard – thankfully with plenty of physical buttons underneath it to control other features, such as the climate control system.


The touchscreen system is simple to use, although it's not class-leading. But it is responsive with minimal lag and has various features such as live congestion information on the SatNav maps. One annoyance is that Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both wire-only, with no wireless option available.

Our test car came with a digital instrument display, which is crisp, well designed and not distracting.

Overall, it’s a good effort from Genesis, which, although slightly dumbed down compared with some of its newer cars, is still more than enough to leave you bathed in luxury.

The build quality is reasonable, but there are more cheap materials and scratchy plastics on show than you’d get on a German premium car.


Practicality & Boot Space

It is a cinch to find a comfortable driving position, especially in the front, thanks to the electric adjustment in the driver’s seat.

There is ample space, too, and even taller drivers won’t struggle. Visibility isn’t bad out of the front. But the rear is compromised by the thick pillars as a result of the shooting brake shape, with its bulbous rear end and sloping roofline.

In the back, the space is satisfactory but not outstanding. In fact, the shooting brake rear end makes the car look like it ought to be roomier. But three adults in the back remain something of a squeeze, and taller passengers might struggle somewhat.


The boot space is adequate, with 465 litres offered, expanding to 1,535 litres with the rear seats folded down. But the former figure is only 135 litres more than you'd get in the G70 saloon. Like the amount of space in the back, it just feels it ought to be a bit more.

On the plus side, the back seats fold in a 40:20:40 split, which is more convenient than the standard 60:40 style of bench offered in most cars.


Safety

Safety body Euro NCAP crash-tested the Genesis G70 Shooting Brake in 2021 and gave it a five-star rating.

It scored impressively well, racking up an 89 per cent grade for adult occupants, 87 per cent for children and 88 per cent for safety assists.

All models are packed full of safety tech, with rear blind-spot collision avoidance assist, forward collision avoidance assist, smart cruise control with stop and start and lane following assist. You also get highway driving assist, countless airbags, rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera, which includes dynamic guidelines on the screen.

There is also an optional Innovation Pack, which adds a blind-spot view monitor, a surround-view monitor and front parking sensors.


Options

White is included as standard, although ‘Siberian Ice’ (basically a fun way of saying “grey”) is a few hundred pounds extra.

The metallic colours – black, white, silver, red, grey-green, dark blue, royal blue and dark red – are also in the few hundred pounds ballpark, while matte silver is over a thousand pounds.

Not all those shades are available on lower models for reasons that aren't immediately obvious.


On the Premium Line model, you can choose a different design of 18-inch alloys, while you can upgrade to 19-inches on the midrange Luxury Line model. The top-of-the-range Sport Line – 19-inches as standard – also offers an alternative set of the same size.

Inside, Nappa Leather with quilting is available for Luxury and Sport Lines, and you get a choice of up to five colour schemes depending on the model.

There is also an Innovation Pack, which adds a 12.3-inch 3D digital cluster display, a head-up display, an intelligent front-lighting system, a wireless phone charger, plus the additional safety kit we mentioned earlier.

The Convenience Pack adds heated seats, a heated steering wheel, an electric rear tailgate opening and a premium air filter to the entry-level version.

A sunroof costs not far off the thousand-pound mark, while a spare tyre is peanuts to purchase.

Mid-range Luxury Line and above can have a Lexicon Premium Audio System for a few hundred pounds and the Comfort Seat Pack for not far off two thousand pounds. This bundle adds an air support cushion and electric cushion extension for the driver with an electric side bolster, electric tilt and memory function for the steering wheel and driver seats.


Rival Cars

We have already mentioned the apparent alternatives: the BMW 3 Series Touring, the Audi A4 Avant, and the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class Shooting Brake. However, some may prefer the C-Class Estate if choosing a Merc.

All of these rivals are superior to the Genesis G70 Shooting Brake in terms of the refinement of the engines and the handling.


The higher up the trim levels you go, the stronger the German rivals’ case gets. So, even if the top-of-the-range G70 Shooting Brake is within your budget, you might want to look at some of the Teutonic alternatives, especially as higher-spec versions have four-wheel drive.

A Volvo V60 is well worth looking at, too, although it’s more expensive than all of the Germans at entry-level.


Verdict & Next Steps

The Genesis G70 Shooting Brake is a car whose box-ticking abilities really depend on what you’re comparing it with.

In terms of opulence and encouraging a second glance from passers-by, the likes of BMW, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and Volvo can't hold a candle to it with its Bentley-inspired badge and front end.

However, the engines aren’t amazing, the fuel economy isn’t impressive, and the handling is nowhere near as refined as its European rivals.

But it’s cheaper than most of them; it's very well-equipped at entry-level, has a well-designed interior and, although it isn't the biggest car, despite the capacious-looking boot, it’s still a practical vehicle.

Like the rest of Genesis' lineup, the G70 Shooting Brake is an intriguing car. And, although its first punch at its challengers hasn’t quite hit the target, it’s got close enough to make choosing what to lease a bit more difficult.

If you can put up with something that’s nice rather than exceptional but want a car that stands out from the crowd, this is it.

Nevertheless, we can’t help but think we’re best off waiting a few years for the next version – hopefully with some hybrid or all-electric powertrains, a bit of extra refinement – and probably an even swankier interior, too.

Where to next?

View our latest Genesis G70 shooting brake lease deal  - from just £385.73 per month inc VAT**

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*Score based on Select’s unique meta score analysis, taking into account the UK’s top five leading independent car website reviews of the Genesis G70 Shooting Brake

**Correct as of 29/06/2022. Based on 9 months initial payment, 5,000 miles over a 48 month lease. Initial payment equivalent to 9 monthly payments or £3,471.57 Ts and Cs apply. Credit is subject to status.

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