Into my third estate on the go, though, I have come to remember how much I enjoy cars like this. It’s lower than so many crossed- over alternatives, and unlike the G70 saloon, which is a global car, Genesis’s German-based team designed and made the estate specifically for Europe so that they could tune it just for the likes of us.
A kerb weight of 1787kg is towards the upper end of where I’d like it to be, but otherwise we’re very much in the agreeable territory I’d have wandered into as a travelling regional sales and service manager. Forward my calls to the car: I have fax machines to sell in a modern industrial park at the other end of the M4.
At least, that would have been the case before benefit-in-kind tax rates for combustion and electric cars diverted quite so massively and has EV drivers paying a 2% benefit-in-kind tax rate, and G70 Shooting Brake drivers paying tax on 37% of the car’s value on account of the 2.0-litre turbo’s 217g/km CO2 output. Which means it’s a car for the private buyer. Which means you don’t see very many.
In fact, I’m not sure I’ve seen another since it arrived with us. That should be no huge surprise. If Genesis, the posh branch of Hyundai, is committed to us Europeans like Lexus (of Toyota) was, and Infiniti (parent: Nissan) ultimately wasn’t, these things take time. Decades, not just years.
Lexus has sold cars in the UK since 1990, when it moved 582 of its groundbreaking LS luxury saloons. Last year, it sold a little over 10,000 cars, which is pushing on for £500 million worth, so business well worth having, but still less than a tenth of the number of BMWs sold here, 33 years after the LS’s launch.
Globally, Genesis now sells more than 200,000 cars a year, which makes it about a third the size of Lexus and a tenth of BMW – both impressive numbers given it has only existed since 2015. But last year, the UK accounted for just 1000 of those. So it’s a niche prospect.
None the worse for it, in my view. And I think it deserves a wider audience than it’s getting. So far, while it’s early days, the G70 is proving a rewarding car to live with. It did take a few minutes to find and disable a shocking number of bongs.