Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
August 21, 2013
Read any recent reviews of Hyundai vehicles? If you have, then I'm sure you have noticed a trend. A number of reviews (including mine) have included some variation of this line: 'Hyundai is a fast learner and the next or refreshed model will be great.'
Case in point, the Genesis Coupe. When the Genesis Coupe went on sale in 2009, eyebrows were raised. A year before, Hyundai unveiled the Genesis sedan and people were trying fathom the idea of a rear-drive Hyundai. Much like the sedan, the Genesis Coupe was mostly well-received aside from a few problems; the gearbox was a bit of a mess, the brakes needed some work, and the handling was a bit of a handful. Fast forward to 2012 and Hyundai gave the Genesis Coupe a massive refresh to address those problems.
I recently spent a week with a 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 Track to see if the mantra of 'the next model will be better' works or not, and find out if it deserves to be on the list of sports cars.
The Genesis Coupe is a pretty good looking coupe. Hyundai's 'fluidic design' makes a noticeable appearance with sharp creases and a distinctive character line along the doors to the rear. The rear end is short and comes with a rear spoiler to accentuate its sportiness. There is one part of the Genesis Coupe that you either love or hate and that is the front end. For the 2013 model, Hyundai changed up the front end with a new hexagonal grille, new HID headlights and fog lights, and new hood with faux hood scoops. The new look does give it more aggression, but it also makes it look somewhat ugly.
Inside, the Genesis Coupe is all business. You slip into nicely bolstered leather front seats with power adjustments that hold you in if you decide to have a bit of fun. You'll also take in sporty touches such as a brushed trim along the center stack and a trio of gauges that show ECO (fuel economy), torque, and oil temp. The gauges are a bit hard to look at a glance thanks to their low position on the center stack. Also, I'm trying figure out why Hyundai put an ECO gauge since there is a average fuel economy screen in the trip computer.
My tester came equipped with a seven-inch touchscreen that houses Hyundai's BlueLink infotainment system and navigation. I found the screen to be somewhat of a reach, but the system responded quickly and provided excellent graphics.
As for the back seat, that's best left for small children, items, and your imaginary friends.
You have the choice of two different engines for the Genesis Coupe. The base is a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder, while a 3.8L Direct-Injected V6 is the top engine. My tester came with the 3.8 and it packs quite the punch with 348 horsepower and 295 pound-feet. To say the engine is intoxicating to play with is a massive understatement. To start, the 3.8L loves to pull. Hit the accelerator pedal and the Genesis coupe snarls into life and moves you at a serious rate. 60 MPH is dealt within 5 seconds. Hyundai has also fitted a sound enhancer that brings the howl inside. It made me bury the throttle to the floor many times during the week.
Where the Genesis Coupe hits a wall is the optional eight-speed automatic. While it's smooth and knows what gear it should be in when driven sensibly or hard, it's the transition between the two that trips up the transmission. It seems the programming goes into schizophrenic phase and cannot decide what to do for a moment or so and then it figures it out and moves on. Not what I was expecting.
Fuel economy for the 2013 Genesis Coupe 3.8 Track is rated at 16 City/25 Highway/19 Combined. My average for the week was around 20.2 MPG in mixed conditions.
The Genesis 3.8 Track comes equipped with a track tuned suspension which makes it a love and hate relationship. You'll love how the Genesis Coupe is able to corner on your favorite road. You'll hate how stiff it is when your driving back and forth daily. The same applies to the steering. You'll enjoy the heftiness and feel it provides when you're attacking the road. However the heavy weight is verging on too much when your driving around on regular roads. It's a give and take with the Track model. Those looking for something not as harsh should look at the Genesis Coupe 3.8 Grand Touring.
As for the brakes, the Track model comes equipped with a Brembo brake package. This braking system is very well done and brings the Genesis Coupe to a stop in short time.
The mantra of Hyundai builds a great car the second time around rings very true with the 2013 Genesis Coupe. It wasn't that the original model was bad, there was just a lot of room for improvements. Hyundai made those improvements and created a car that fully belongs in the sports car class.
Disclaimer: Hyundai provided the Genesis Coupe, insurance, and one tank of gas.
Model: Genesis Coupe
Trim: 3.8 Track
Engine: 3.8L GDI Dual CVVT V6
Driveline: Rear-Wheel Drive, Eight-Speed Automatic Transmission
Horsepower @ RPM: 348 @ 6,400 rpm (Premium) / 344 @ 6,400 rpm (Regular)
Torque @ RPM: 295 lb-ft @ 5,100 rpm (Premium) / 292 lb-ft @ 5,100 rpm (Regular)
Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 16/25/19
Curb Weight: 3,613 lbs
Location of Manufacture: Ulsan, Korea
Base Price: $34,250.00
As Tested Price: $35,290.00* (Includes $895.00 destination charge)
Carpeted Floor Mats - $110.00
iPod Cable - $35.00