Most reasonable people would agree that with up to 483 horsepower and a zero to 60 mph time of 3.7 seconds, the Genesis GV60 Performance is no slouch in the speed department. But with the upcoming Magma trim level, previewed by the new GV60 Magma Concept, is going to turn the heat way up.

During an interview with InsideEVs at Genesis House ahead of the New York Auto Show, Hyundai Motor Group's Chief Creative Officer and design boss Luc Donckerwolke gave us a preview of what to expect. 

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Genesis expands into the performance arena

Hyundai has moved fast with its Genesis brand, aiming to challenge Lexus, Mercedes, BMW and the rest. Now it's branching into the performance realm with the Magma trim levels, including the electric GV60 Magma crossover.

"A couple hundred horsepower more" the GV60's Performance trim, Donckerwolke said without elaborating too much. Genesis officials also have been cagey so far as to how the hot GV60 will put down such power except to say “improved battery and motor technology.”

But Donckerwolke did stress that the new Magma-fied GV60 won't be fast on brute force alone. 

Gallery: Genesis Magma

"The instant delivery means you have to tune the chassis extremely well," he said. "Because if you don't do it right, you are emphasizing the lack of quality of your chassis. That is something that's really important for us."

On Monday night, Genesis launched the new Magma Program, a series of high-performance trim levels it eventually aims to have across its entire lineup—not unlike BMW's M or Mercedes' AMG brands. For now, at least, these are less standalone "divisions" like those famous performance nameplates are, and more of the fastest and best-equipped trim levels that will sit at the top of the range.

Luc Donckerwolke

Case in point, the GV60 Magma. Donckerwolke said this will be an actual trim for Genesis' funky electric crossover hatchback, not a limited-production model like the gas-powered G80 Magma Sedan. (Donckerwolke blamed ever-stricter emissions regulations for that situation.) When it does go to production, it should have some of the visual tweaks from the concept—which looked essentially production-ready Monday night—including "winglets" on the roof, an aggressive rear spoiler, 21-inch wheels with integrated aero discs for brake cooling and more. It also has a much more aggressive front end than the standard GV60. 

But Donckerwolke said they didn't skimp on refinement, either. "You want to be faster, but wind noise is something you want," he said. "You don't have engine noise to, let's say, cover that up."

Donckerwolke also briefly showed off the inside of the GV60 Magma, which showed a number of upgrades over the standard car. Those included an Alcantara steering wheel, a diamond-stitch material trimmed throughout and bright orange racing-style bucket seats. (This car also had the digital side mirrors that Hyundai offers in other markets.)

And yes, thankfully, the crystal sphere survives to the hottest version of the GV60.

Genesis GV60 Magma
Genesis GV60 Magma
Genesis GV60 Magma

However, he was adamant that the GV60 Magma is not a track car.

"Obviously, you can use it on a track, but basically we prefer to have a car which has homogeneous usability, rather than [something] that feels much too aggressive on a normal drive," Donckerwolke said. And while the car shares a platform with the Ioniq 5, as well as the Kia EV6, Genesis wanted it to have its own character.

That's also why it's not a Hyundai Ioniq 5 N in an expensive designer suit. (Albeit a bright orange one.) 

"Automatically, those solutions are going to be within the same family, but the components are going to be different," Donckerwolke said. "The other cars have different characteristics that we don't want to take over. This car is tuned to be a Genesis."

A production version of the GV60 Magma Concept is expected to debut soon.

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