Back to the future as old engine plant gets up to speed

Peter Atkinson |

The new Genesis G70 Sport is powered by a twin-turbo V6 that hits 100km/h in just 4.6 seconds.
The new Genesis G70 Sport is powered by a twin-turbo V6 that hits 100km/h in just 4.6 seconds.

Here’s something you don’t see every day – a new car released with a bigger engine than the previous model. Yes, bigger.

It is not since the days of dear-old V8 Holden Special Vehicles that a model was deliberately rolled out with a more powerful (and thirsty) car than the one it replaced.

The search has been relentless during the past decade for cars to be more economical, without giving up the fun factor.

And a result, vehicles become more powerful and in many cases more efficient, while relying on ever smaller, higher-tech power plants.

But here’s the good news.

Korean luxury brand Genesis – which is also forging a range of electric machines – has gone back to the future to unleash a new machine that brings firecracker performance married to impressive levels of style and luxury.

It’s called the G70 sport – a handsome and very plush mid-sized sedan set to shake up that luxury segment.

Just for the heck of it, Genesis has bolted a tried-and-tested, high-output twin-turbo V6 into an otherwise very sensible machine.

It’s not as if Genesis doesn’t have perfectly good low-emissions alternatives. For instance, the company’s GV60 – a high-tech SUV built as an electric vehicle from the ground up is way more sensible than the G70. And faster.

But the G70 is one of those rare machines that turns back the clock, just a little bit, with every drive. 

Interior of the Genesis G70 Sport
The Genesis G70 Sport is roomy in the front but lacks space in the rear seats and boot. (HANDOUT/GENESIS)

If you’re wondering about how a luxury brand such as Genesis can suddenly roll out such a performance machine, the answer is simple. They stole it.

Well, steal might be a bit strong.

The 3.3-litre, twin-turbocharged V6 is built by Kia, first used by the company’s cultish performance machine, the Stinger. Genesis has somehow acquired a truckload or two of these hair-chested V6s (the car you have now there’s no such thing as an Aussie V8).

For once, this appears to be a case of the manufacturer finding spare hardware and nowhere to put it. And it’s found a very good place indeed under the bonnet of the G70.

This G70 badge has been around since 2017 but underwent a major change of direction as a luxury sports sedan in 2023.

To achieve this, Genesis trimmed the model range for the G70 from a handful of choices to just two – the first a punchy two-litre, four-cylinder turbo that closely resembles the outputs of the cracking four-cylinder engine that powers Hyundai’s sporty “N” range of performance small cars.

And then there’s the test model tested – the G70 Sport.

The hand-grenade acceleration, reminiscent of the Stinger but delivered in a more refined, civilised way, and the dynamic appeal supported by lashings of luxury – from beautiful quilted-style supple leather seats to premium, 15-speaker audio, a full suite of electric safety aides and impressive road manners.

With a beefy 274kw and a thumping 510m of torque, all delivered through a very well calibrated eight-speed automatic transmission, the G70 obliterates the old 0-to-100 yardstick – hitting triple figures in 4.6 seconds. Snappy.

But what designers have gained in style and comfort, the updated model has given away some practicality – with less space in the rather tight rear seats and the same problem with the smallish boot.

At 188cm the front seats were nicely accommodating, but then required limbo moves to find comfort in the rear pews.

Fuel consumption is another sacrifice – officially it gulps down 10.2 litres per 100km of premium unleaded which is nothing to write home about.

But on the upside the G70 is beautifully sculpted – well-proportioned with an athletic, wonderfully balanced silhouette.

Inside the sleek cockpit is adorned with matching 12-inch video screens as the place to tune the audio or make a phone call.

Maybe ring up the folk from Kia and ask where their engine has gone.



It’s long, elegant lines make the Genesis look a bit more robust than it actually is. While the two seats up front are great, things are a little squeezy down the back, including in the modest boot space. The price you pay for those pin-up looks.


With 274kW and 510Nm, it is something of a rocket with huge punch when accelerating through the midrange. It will hit 100km/h in a raspy 4.6 seconds.


This is where you pay for that twin-turbo V6 – it enjoys a sip of Premium Unleaded. Officially it slurps 10.4L/00km.


The extra stuff added for the 2023 redesign have added substantially to the new model’s price. The G70 2.0T starts at $81,000 plus inroads; while the G70 Sport will set you back $88,000 – making it more than acceptable value.