The 400-horsepower club sports members from various corners of the globe, but the 2012 Hyundai Genesis 5.0 R-Spec is the first entry from a Korean automaker to cross that threshold.
Naturally, one of the first things we did when we clapped our butts into the Genesis 5.0 R-Spec was to head over to the dyno at MD Automotive in Westminster, California. As we're certain you are, too, we were curious to see how well Hyundai's most powerful engine ever stacks up to modern V8s elsewhere in automobiledom. The results are across the jump.
Hyundai didn't bother dawdling a few hp near the 400 hp barrier with the 5.0-liter Tau, either, as its rated output is 429 horsepower at 6400 rpm. As for torque, it is said to churn out 376 lb-ft at 5000 rpm. This courtesy of all the hardware you'd expect to find in a modern luxury car engine -- direct injection, continuously variable overhead cams, roller rocker arms and 32 valves.
We've got a lot to cover here, so let's just jump right into it.
Here's what we measured at the Genesis 5.0 R-Spec's wheels on the Dynojet chassis dyno:
First off, this engine was dead-consistent on the dyno. I performed twelve runs and all of them were neatly stacked atop one another, each one tracing every bump and valley you see above.
The Tau 5.0 breathes well, generating more than 300 lb-ft to the wheels from 2300 to 6300 rpm, and it draws a second breath at 4600 rpm to give it a broad powerband. Those dips at 3700 and 4600 are a bit odd but nothing to get worked up over. Maximum torque of 342 lb-ft is reached at 5150 rpm, while the peak 364 horsepower was found at 6250 rpm.
Compared to its Tau 4.6 stablemate, these figures represent increases of 44 horsepower and 43 lb-ft at the flywheel. It just so happens that we've dyno-tested an Equus with the Tau 4.6. See here.
In our testing the 5.0 spun up 43 hp and 51 lb-ft more than the 4.6. This is very close to the difference that is claimed at the flywheel. So there's that. Character-wise, the two engines are nearly identical; the 5.0 simply ratchets the curves upward.
The Equus' dyno result above is truncated due to its downshift-happy transmission. Hyundai changed things up with the Genesis 5.0 R-Spec, as its go-pedal incorporates a transmission kickdown detent at the bottom of its travel, similar to some of the German makes. As such, the Genesis 5.0 R-Spec behaved on the dyno in allowing me to extract data across the entire rev range.
There's more. Hyundai reckons that the Tau 5.0 generates more power than the Infiniti M56's 5.6-liter V8. That's quite a tall order when you consider that the Tau 5.0 gives up more than a half-liter to the Infiniti and doesn't rev significantly higher. Both are equipped with direct injection.
It turns out that we've tested an M56 on this dyno, too. Here we see that the M56 doesn't relinquish anything to the Genesis 5.0 R-Spec at any point in their respective rev ranges.
Either Infiniti is being coy with its 420 hp / 417 lb-ft rating for the M56, or the Tau V8's rating is on the optimistic side. But they can't both be right.
More food for thought. This thing's a 5.0. Ford's got a 5.0. Also, Hyundai's 429 horsepower rating is so close to the 426-hp rating of the Chevrolet Camaro SS that I just can't help myself.
Yes, this chart pits Hyundai's luxury car V8 against those of two American pony cars, and that is a very silly thing. But power is power, and the numbers ought to pencil out. Granted, this was not a same-day comparison of all three cars, although the same dyno, operator and procedure was used for all three cars.
To recap, the Ford 5.0 is rated at 412 hp and 390 lb-ft, and GM pegs the Camaro SS at 426 hp and 420 lb-ft.
Ford's got a whopper of an engine in the Coyote 5.0, but you already knew that. The Ford spikes sharply upward in the midrange right where the Genesis falters, although the Hyundai out-torques the Ford below 3500 rpm. The Ford marches steadily away from the Hyundai after 6000 rpm. This is what direct injection and luxury-car tuning can do, for better and for worse.
Torque below 3500 rpm is similar between the of the Tau 5.0 and the 6.2-liter LS3 in the Camaro, but the Tau 5.0 doesn't quite out-power the LS3, contrary to what its flywheel rating suggests.
The conclusion? All in all, the Tau 5.0 V8 is in the mix. It's ultra-smooth, quiet and consistent and isn't afraid to rev. It is delivering perhaps just a hair less power to the wheels than expected when you consider the dyno results and ratings of other manufacturers' stuff. Nothing major, and it could simply be that other manufacturers build more of a hedge into their ratings than does Hyundai. Still, Hyundai would do well to under-promise and over-deliver if/when they slot the Tau 5.0 into the Genesis Coupe.
Sort of like what Ford did with the barnstorming Coyote 5.0.