About ten years ago, I started writing that Korean cars---Hyundai and Kia---were roaring up in the rearview mirrors of the established Japanese automakers---Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Mazda---and would soon be as just as solid a choice to buy. That came true. Now, it's the Europeans' turn to worry.
Hyundai's luxury-sport wing, Genesis, has just introduced its first true sport sedan, the G70. And I just finished a week driving the highest-performance version, the G70 3.3T Dynamic Edition.
Powered by a 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 that makes 365 horsepower, with an eight-speed automatic transmission with paddle-shifters and rev-matching software, the G70 3.3T can get from a standing start to 60 miles per hour in 4.5 seconds. That is only one-tenth of a second slower than the BMW M340i I told you about a week ago.
None of that is by chance. Genesis benchmarked the 3-series when designing the G70. The dimensions of the two cars are within just a hair of each other.
The G70 is a cousin of the Kia Stinger, but shorter and tighter, with a trunk rather than a hatchback and meant to be more luxurious without diluting the sport. And again, that combination is what puts the BMW 3-series squarely in the G70's crosshairs. The base model takes on the 330i. The 3.3T is aimed straight at the M340i.
While I praised the M340i's "bank vault" solidity and still find it appealing, the G70 feels every bit as planted on a winding road, but also more nimble.
The other advantage the G70 3.3T Dynamic Edition has is price. $50,250 is where it begins and ends. There are no options. The M340i begins at an even $54,000 and the one we drove ended up, after options, at $67,070.
Here's what you get for your $50,250 in the G70 3.3T Dynamic Edition:
- Drive mode select with Custom mode setting.
- Vehicle stability management.
- ESC with traction control and brake assist.
- Blind-spot collision warning with rear cross-traffic collision warning.
- Lane-keeping assist.
- Driver attention warning.
- Surround-view monitor.
- Rearview camera with parking guidelines.
- Parking distance warning.
- High-beam assist.
- Hill start assist control.
- Brembo braking system with performance brake pads.
- Rack-mounted motor-driven power steering with variable gear ratio.
- Electronically controlled sport suspension.
- Limited-slip differential.
- 19-inch sport alloy wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport summer tires.
- Dual muffler exhaust.
- Proximity key with pushbutton start.
- Automatic full LED headlights and LED taillights.
- Low-beam assist.
- LED daytime running lights.
- Heated outside mirrors with LED turn signal indicators.
- Power-folding auto-dimming outside mirrors.
- Auto-dimming inside rear view mirror with HomeLink.
- Wide sunroof.
- Microfiber suede headliner.
- Black Nappa leather seating surfaces with sport quilting and contrast stitching.
- 16-way power driver's seat including four-way lumbar.
- 12-way power front passenger seat including four-way lumbar.
- Heated seats and ventilated front seats.
- Integrated memory system.
- Power tilt and telescoping steering wheel.
- Perforated leather-wrapped steering wheel.
- Dual automatic temperature control.
- Heads-up display.
- Smart cruise control with stop-and-go.
- Seven-inch color LCD multi-information display.
- Eight-inch touchscreen navigation system.
- AM/FM/HDRadio, SIriusXM Satellite Radio (90-day trial).
- Lexicon 15-speaker auto with Quantum Logic Surround and Clari-Fi music restoration.
- Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
- Wireless charging.
- Three USB ports (two front, one rear).
- Rain-sensing wipers.
- Hands-free smart trunk with auto open.
- Electronic parking brake.
- Aluminum interior trim.
- Copper headlight bezel accents.
- Dark tint headlight covers.
- Dark chrome grille and window trim.
All that, plus Hyundai's 10-year/100,000 mile powertrain warranty. With $995 inland freight and handling, the bottom line on the window sticker reads $51,245. And to underscore the value equation, about five grand of what's standard in the G70 3.3T can only be had as extra-cost options on the M340i.
Don't get me wrong---the M340i is a brilliant car---one I'd like to have. And someone who'd drop 67 grand for a BMW 3-series is probably not going to cross-shop a Korean alternative to save $16,000. But for drivers who want that performance and whose budget is a lot friendlier to a $51,245 purchase than to a $67,070 outlay---there is a lot to be said---non of it excuses---for the Genesis G70 3.3T.