The launch of the 2019 Genesis G70 luxury sedan has been a little unusual. Genesis introduced the car in South Korea earlier this year, but decided to show the car for the first time in the U.S. at the 2018 New York International Auto Show, which is where we had a look at it.
Related: More 2018 New York Auto Show News
From the outside, the G70 is an attractive little beast, but the styling elements aren’t exactly new — that front end is a good mix of Maserati Ghibli and Infiniti Q50, while the back end combines elements of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and the rear-wheel-drive BMW 3 Series. Unlike the Kia Stinger, this is a sedan with a proper trunk, not a hatchback with an open cargo area. The overall look is appealing, but not terribly distinctive, and isn’t likely to stand out too much in the crowded, competitive compact luxury sedan field that has lookers such as the Alfa Romeo Giulia.
Inside, it’s also something of a mixed bag. There were two flavors of G70 on the floor in New York, one a luxury trim and the other skewed toward sporty performance. Both interiors had a mix of top-notch materials and mid-grade trim pieces, but nothing you’d point to as substandard. The Mercedes-Benz C-Class still holds the benchmark for interior luxury appointments, but the G70 still looks better than anything from Acura or Infiniti. When you spec the top interior options, you get lots of quilted and stitched leather on the seats, dash and doors, which classes the place up quite a bit, but we wonder how well this quilted trend is going to age down the road.
The biggest issue with the G70 is the accommodations for backseat passengers — in this regard comparisons to the Alfa Romeo Giulia are apt, as neither has sufficient leg or toe room for real-size adult humans. I could not sit in the backseat if I adjusted the front seat for my normal driving position. It’s that tight; it’s almost more of a 2+2 than a five-passenger compact sedan. The Stinger, with its longer wheelbase, isn’t nearly as tight — but then it’s also reportedly considerably heavier than the G70.
We’re looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the new G70 later this summer as we know the powertrains it’s going on sale and we find them pretty fantastic: a 252-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder or 365-hp, twin-turbo 3.3-liter V-6 with rear- or all-wheel drive and eight-speed automatic transmission (or a six-speed manual). With its rear-wheel-drive chassis and lighter weight, we’re hoping that the excellent experiences we’ve had with the Stinger are only amplified with this new sports sedan.
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