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Will the Genesis Essentia, the halo sports coupe from the brand, be an EV?

Back in 2018, Genesis showed off the stunningly gorgeous Essentia Concept at that year’s New York Auto Show. The car gathered a lot of attention and it gave us a glimpse of the luxury brand’s then-future design language, which has since appeared in the G80, GV80, G70, GV70, and the upcoming GV60.

Many wondered, though, was this sexy all-electric coupe just for show, or did Genesis intend to bring this to market? The answer is both. Hyundai’s luxury division used the car to debut the brand’s trademark look and will bring it to production. If there’s one thing to remember about Hyundai Motor Group and its three brands are that their concept cars almost always end up becoming production cars. What will the Essentia be when it goes into production? An electrified halo sports coupe.

What will the Genesis Essentia be called in production form?

There have been many speculations about what Genesis’ halo coupe will be called. Based on trademarks filed by Hyundai Motor Group within the last few years, GC70 and GT70 are safe bets. However, Genesis could also keep the Essentia name or use a different nameplate.

Genesis Essentia exterior

In typical Hyundai Motor Group fashion, don’t expect the Genesis Essentia’s exterior design to change much as it transitions into a production vehicle. That sexy low-slung appearance, long hood, and fastback roofline are all staying. What won’t make it into the final product is the lack of side mirrors and butterfly doors. Genesis could employ side cameras mounted on conventional doors in markets that allow them or conventional side mirrors in regions like the U.S. where they’re currently not allowed.

Genesis Essentia interior and tech

Things will change a lot more when it comes to the interior. Expect the familiar look and layout found in the G80, GV80, and GV70. Like those three vehicles, the Essentia will have its distinguishing design cues to keep it from looking like it just got lifted from one vehicle and plopped into another. That means a massive 14.5-inch touch screen on top of the dash that you can also control via a touch pad, a rotary shifter, a 3D digital gauge cluster, and a minimalist look. A full range of driver assistance features should come as standard, giving the car some degree of semi-autonomous capability.

The rest of the interior should be lusciously appointed with high-quality materials, sumptuous diamond-quilted Nappa leather upholstery, and real wood and metal trim. Sports seats with extra bolstering to hold you in place during enthusiastic driving will likely be standard, too. Depending on how roomy the Essentia’s cabin is it could be a strict two-seater or a 2+2. The concept had the latter configuration and it may remain when the car goes into production. Just don’t expect to put adults back there because those seats will most likely be extremely tight for anyone except children.

Genesis Essentia platform, powertrain, and performance

Genesis will most likely keep the Essentia an EV meaning it will be one of the cars underpinned by the new E-GMP architecture. That platform is built specifically for EVs and would enable Genesis to extract the most performance. As with most modern EVs, the battery will be placed under the floor to keep the center of gravity as low as possible. The Essentia could also get Hyundai Motor Group’s biggest battery packs to support two powerful electric motors mounted at each axle, effectively giving it AWD.

In the news release detailing the E-GMP platform, Hyundai Motor Group notes that in some applications, a vehicle riding on this architecture can hit 100 km/h or 62 mph in less than 3.5 seconds. We suspect that this may be the production Genesis Essentia considering that figure is in high-performance sports car territory. However, the car will likely come in multiple flavors with different battery sizes and single or dual-motor configurations. The figures described in the release could be an Essentia with the largest battery and a dual-motor layout.


The production version of the Genesis Essentia should be a tech, design, and engineering showcase. A halo vehicle that flexes Hyundai Motor Group’s research and development muscle in the form of an alluring electric sports coupe. This car could also highlight how flexible the E-GMP platform is, further cementing the Korean conglomerate’s place in the auto industry and Genesis’ position as a serious rival to the established luxury players.

Written by Stefan Ogbac
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