The Hyundai Genesis has been taking home awards since its introduction, but 2012 is the year that this sedan favorite shatters the competition with stunning new styling, direct injection technology developing one of the world’s most powerful V6 engines and a new eight-speed automatic transmission. It’s a package you’d spend tens of thousands more to try to match elsewhere.
Let’s start with the V6 in the Genesis 3.8 four-door (MSRP $34,200). The Genesis 3.8-liter Lambda engine receives a staggering 15 percent boost in horsepower thanks to Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) technology that boosts its output from 290 to 333 hp. The 3.8-liter also provides that down low passing torque with an increase from 264 lb/ft to 291 lb/ft. For an apples-to-apples comparison, take a look at the Genesis and its specific output, measured in horsepower per liter of engine displacement: The Genesis V6 delivers 87.6 hp/liter while the BMW 528i only offers 80 hp/per liter, and the much more expensive Mercedes-Benz E350 can only provide 76.6 hp/liter. This all comes with a highway fuel economy increase from 27 mpg to 29 mpg.
Next up, in the Genesis 4.6 is the 4.6-liter Tau®
V8 engine, which underwent significant revision recently including induction and tuning enhancements that increased peak output from 375 to 385 hp. A variable intake system, iridium-tipped sparkplugs, anti-knock control and multi-port fuel injection further add to the sophistication of this engine. An EPA-estimated 26 mpg highway can be expected of the 4.6-liter V8.
Regardless of which engine you choose, the powerplant is teamed with a Hyundai-developed eight-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC®
manual shifting. Precisely calibrated gear ratios provide a transmission efficiency gain of six percent and work to provide both acceleration and economy without compromising either. Once you drive a Genesis with an eight-speed transmission, you’ll wonder why the competition soldiers on with just six speeds.
With the powerful engines and segment-leading transmission come advancements in ride and handling as well. Adjustments to the suspension provide handling characteristics that don’t override the requirement to provide a true luxury car ride. On Genesis 3.8 models, body roll control is enhanced with a thicker, 18mm stabilizer bar. The brakes also improve on both the 3.8- and 4.6-liter models. With the V6, brake diameter increases to 13.0 inches and Hyundai uses high-performance four-piston brake calipers. On the 4.6 model, the front brake diameter increases to 13.6 inches for optimal braking performance.
The Genesis also underwent an exterior transformation for 2012, featuring a new front grille and a bolder front fascia. Larger intake openings force air where it needs to go, and the headlamps are redesigned with LED accents. Seventeen-inch alloy wheels are standard, and the rocker panels have been sculpted for a sportier look. Side mirrors are power folding and provide a puddle lamp feature, which helps illuminate the area around the car. The taillamps have been reshaped, and dual asymmetrical exhaust outlets integrate with an all-new rear bumper fascia.
Inside, the Genesis provides a supremely comfortable atmosphere for the driver and four passengers, quieted to library levels with features like acoustic laminated glass. The driver enjoys a multi-adjustable seat that provides both heating and cooling while the rest of the passengers, even those in the rear, have heated seats at their disposal.