G70 a Stinger with more swank

You’ve seen the Kia Stinger, now meet its swisher sister model, the Genesis G70.

POTENTIAL that an incoming V6 sports sedan from Kia will enter a direct stinging match with its Genesis equivalent is virtually non-existent, according to the latter car’s distributor.

This comes from Andy Sinclair, who as boss of Hyundai New Zealand is also head of the dominant Korean marque’s now wholly-separated luxury brand.

His comment is made hours after Seoul head office gave the world the first undisguised view of the G70, which shares basic underpinnings and drivetrains with the Stinger, Kia’s first big rear-drive sedan whose local market pricing details were released just yesterday.

The G70 is expected to reach New Zealand in early 2018, to sit with what we currently know as the Hyundai Genesis but could well by then be in its updated format with a new designation: G80.

Are the Stinger and G70 sister cars? Sort of.

The body formats are different: Genesis has a sedan whereas Kia’s car is strictly speaking a liftback. While its V6 is in identical tune to Stinger’s -  so 272kW and 510Nm – the elite Hyundai has a performance edge because the G70 is smaller and lighter overall, also riding on a shorter wheelbase and narrower track. Whereas Kia claims 0-100mh in 4.9 seconds for Stinger, the Genesis will thump up to the highway limit from a standing start in 4.7.

The Genesis focus on being considered something of an equal for the likes of Lexus, BMW, Audi and Mercedes, also means the G70 will dress far more swankily.

All this means it will assuredly place in a higher price range than the sole six-cylinder in the three-strong Stinger line, the $69,990 GT-Sport, Sinclair has indicated.

That doesn’t necessarily mean it will be massively more expensive, bearing in mind that G70 is intended to place under the G80, which in current format is essentially a $100,000 car.

As for that four-cylinder 2.0-litre engine that Kia has determined to also deliver locally in 193kW/363Nm tune?

Well, it will not be considered for Genesis, at least not for now.

“Things could change,” says Sinclair. “But at the moment we are thinking purely V6.”

G70 also comes out in all-wheel-drive but that format hasn’t been engineered for right-hand drive. But it maintains some decorum in rear-drive by having a launch control.

Also cited for the car a rack-mounted electric motor for the power steering, multi-link independent rear suspension, a mechanical limited-slip differential and dynamic torque vectoring.

It also has advanced voice recognition technology and an 8.0-inch touch-screen will provide the interface for infotainment systems like MirrorLink, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The sound system is a 15-speaker Lexicon surround setup.

Driver-assist technology includes Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA), Highway Driving Assist (HDA), Blind spot Collision Warning (BCW) and Driver Awareness Warning (DAW).

The G70 will be the start of something big for the Genesis brand, with two sports utility wagons - the large GV80 and medium GV70 - to follow, though whether they reach New Zealand before the end of 2018 is anyone’s guess. Says Sinclair: “I’d certainly like to have an SUV before the end of next year.”