The two models share a platform and a pair of engines, but the upcoming Genesis G70 sport sedan gains something its Kia Stinger cousin lacks: a manual transmission.
Given that we’re talking about a rear-drive Korean sedan sold under a fledgling marque in a market that couldn’t love SUVs more if the damn things dispensed free cash from the dash vents, we’re expecting big, big demand for the stick-shift variant.
Thanks to the automaker’s Canadian website and the online sleuthing of one Bozi Tatarevic, we now know buyers in North America gain a three-pedal entry-level G70, billed as the 2.0T Sport. This is a rear-drive-only proposition, powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder making 252 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. (Other four-banger trims, like the Elite, Prestige, Advanced, and Dynamic, generate 249 hp.)
In the case of Genesis’ U.S. division, the model appears in VIN decoder documents filed to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, as well as on the EPA’s fuel economy page.
It’s a little odd to see Genesis offer row-your-own G70 while Kia’s Stinger sticks with an eight-speed automatic as its only gearbox. The Stinger bowed first, carrying the flag for the brand’s newfound sporting image. Genesis, on the other hand, positions itself as the dignified and mature division in Hyundai Motor Group’s stable. Maybe it’s a case of Kia not being a luxury marque and Genesis wanting to match BMW in every way possible, though nothing’s stopping the Kia from borrowing the G70’s manual sometime in the future.
Of course, that assumes the stick-shift G70 has a future. The dwindling presence of manual transmissions in German sport sedans means that, before long, it might not matter if there’s a stick on hand. We wouldn’t be shocked to see the option dropped in a year or two.
The brand’s AWD G70 models appear this spring in 2.0T guise or equipped with the twin-turbo 3.3-liter V6 (365 hp, 376 lb-ft), thoughÂ â€” according to Genesis CanadaÂ â€” the 2.0T Sport hangs back until summer.
Interestingly, the G70 2.0T Sport, which can be optioned with an automatic in the U.S., drops driver assistance technology from its list of standard features. These safety aids appear on higher trims. Besides giving a shrinking crowd of purists the transmission they desire, it seems the upstart brand really wants to lower the entry price on this gateway model.
Genesis may be Hyundai Motor Group’s luxury division, but it hasn’t ignored the company’s tradition of poaching customers with a value proposition.
[Images: Genesis Motors]