2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 R-Spec (3.8L V6 6-speed Manual)
Driven On 2/21/2012
Hyundai has proven with its Genesis Coupe that it can produce a truly capable sports car. The V6 model has gobs of power, and all versions come with plenty of standard features, making this a lot of car for the money. It just lacks comfort versus some competitors. And personality.
PerformanceThis is a performance machine, and its numbers, which are competitive with other sport coupes, back that up. Things like 0-60 in 5.3 seconds. Lateral grip of 0.89g. And a 67.4-mph slalom time. All rather impressive.
With 0-60 mph in just 5.3 seconds, the Genesis Coupe V6 is quick. Has nice, linear power all the way to redline. The six-speed manual has long but positive throws.
Decent brakes, but not awesome, especially considering the R-Spec's summer performance tires. Pedal could be firmer, but no fade or loss of power during our panic-stop tests.
Steering is precise but the weighting is on the light side for a performance machine.
A slightly loose rear end makes handling a bit twitchy at the car's limit, but there's good grip here. The Genesis Coupe can fly up a canyon road with aggression.
Throttle calibration isn't perfectly precise, and the clutch takeup point isn't intuitive. But, the clutch and shifter both have a light action.
ComfortYou don't buy a sport coupe like this one (specially with low-profile 19-inch tires) for cushy comfort. Which is fortunate, because this Hyundai is on the harsh side, even for sport coupes. The tradeoff is exhilarating handling.
The front seats have good lateral support but are fairly hard. You won't want to spend all day in these buckets. It's just a two-seater in the rear, with very limited headroom.
The ride is pretty harsh, which you can blame largely on 19-inch wheels and tires and the stiff suspension of the performance-oriented R-Spec package.
The engine isn't overly loud, but the exhaust does have a burly V6 note. Wind noise is minimal, but there's a definite thrum and occasional boominess from the tires.
InteriorThere's no doubt from the Hyundai's interior that the Genesis Coupe is an entry-level sports machine. There's nothing real fancy going on here, but also nothing particularly wrong. Materials could be better, but it looks nice and it works.
The gauges are easy to read. Climate control is a simple knob layout, and it works. Power mirror controls are in a logical, high position. Excellent driving position.
Easy to get in and out of the front seats. The front passenger seatback folds/moves forward with the touch of a lever. Still, it's difficult for an adult to get in back.
Excellent headroom up front, especially considering this is a sport coupe. Good elbow room, too. Rear seat is cramped and adults will find their heads jammed into the ceiling.
The A- and B-pillars are fairly narrow, but the thick, upswept C-pillars give some blind spots. And this car doesn't have parking sensors or a backup camera.
Door pockets are reasonably large but feel cheap. Average-size armrest bin, no front bin. Cupholders have slippery surface. Average trunk room, but rear seats do fold down.
ValueThere's some good value here. We're talking about a sub-$30,000 sport coupe with serious performance. The interior isn't fantastic and the ride is a bit harsh with the 19-inch wheels, but there's a lot of car here for the money.
Build Quality (vs. $)
This is a well-put-together car. Tight panel gaps, nice stitching on the leather. A mix of soft-touch textures but also some cheap-feeling plastics. But very good for the price.
The R-Spec comes with things like Bluetooth, iPod controls and a limited-slip differential. But it's missing niceties like a backup camera and front/rear parking sonar.
Pricing for the 2.0T model starts at $24,250, while V6s start at $28,750 for the 3.8 R-Spec, like our test car. With 348 horsepower, this is a lot of car for the money.
The EPA rated the Genesis Coupe V6 R-Spec at 18 city/27 highway/21 combined mpg. We averaged 17.2 mpg in varied driving.
The Genesis Coupe has a 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty plus 10 years/100,000 miles for the drivetrain. No competitor even comes close to Hyundai's drivetrain warranty.
All Hyundais come with complimentary roadside assistance for 5 years. The Scion FR-S comes with free maintenance for 2 years/25,000 miles, while the Hyundai does not.
Fun To DriveThis is a fun car to drive, especially if you like a thrilling run on a twisty two-lane ribbon of asphalt. The V6 engine provides more than enough power and the handling makes for big grins. Commuting is another story.
The around-town experience is marred by a harsh ride. The Genesis Coupe is at its best when driven with vigor, when its sporting abilities can show through.
This is an area where the Hyundai suffers. It's not just the V6's lack of a melodic sound. But there's nothing particularly soul-stirring about the way the Genesis Coupe operates.