The GV70 gives Hyundai’s fledgling upscale brand a vital entry into the compact SUV market. Its pampering blend of sport and luxury makes it a delight to drive. If it weren’t for the nightmarish infotainment controls, many on our staff would be thrilled to own one, especially in our test model’s gorgeous Cardiff Green paint.
The GV70’s standard 300-horsepower, 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine gives strong acceleration accompanied by an invigorating exhaust note when pushed, and the eight-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly. Beyond a minor amount of turbo lag when accelerating away from rolling stops, and a bit more of a shudder than we’d like from the engine stop/start system, this is a gem of a powertrain. It yielded a competitive 24 mpg overall on premium fuel in our testing.
On curvy roads the GV70 handles more like a sports sedan than an SUV. It feels agile and tied to the pavement, aided by precise steering. This is the kind of vehicle that makes any drive enjoyable, and you’ll consider seeking out twisty two-lanes on road trips. Even when pushed to its limits around our test track, the GV70 proved highly capable, secure, and fun to drive. Despite its handling prowess, the GV70’s taut suspension soaks up bumps nicely with gentle ride motions, rather than the stiff and choppy character some sporty SUVs possess.