2011 Hyundai Genesis Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2011 Hyundai Genesis Sedan

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Hyundai Genesis Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.8 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 290 hp @ 6200 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 18/27 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2011 Hyundai Genesis

  • Whether the 2011 Hyundai Genesis is a luxury car by strict definition is up for debate, but without a doubt, the Genesis is a great choice for a large sedan or as an alternative to more established luxury sedans.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Comfortable ride; smooth, powerful engines; luxurious cabin; amazing Lexicon sound systems; luxurious cabin; top crash scores; generous warranty.

  • Cons

    Lacks brand appeal; no all-wheel-drive option; rear seat does not fold down.

  • What's New for 2011

    The Hyundai Genesis 4.6 model gets a 10-horsepower bump for 2011 along with a now-standard Technology package.

Full 2011 Hyundai Genesis Review

What's New for 2011

The Hyundai Genesis 4.6 model gets a 10-horsepower bump for 2011 along with a now-standard Technology package.


As "Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan" showed so many of us, Genesis is the creation of life from lifelessness. Well, Hyundai might not have been lifeless when it introduced the Genesis two years ago, but this rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan certainly represented a rebirth of sorts. Thanks to Genesis, Hyundai has become recognized for more than its outstanding (and much copied) warranty.

While other luxury sedans in its price range are generally smaller and have sporty handling intended to keep the driver amused, the 2011 Hyundai Genesis offers a big, remarkably quiet interior and a comfortable ride to keep passengers and the driver alike placated. After all, logic does dictate that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. An elegant interior design will quickly make everyone onboard forget the badge on its steering wheel, especially when it features the available leather upholstery and a 17-speaker Lexicon surround-sound audio system. Powering the Genesis is either a V6 or V8, both of which are smooth, powerful and reasonably fuel-efficient given their output and the car's size.

Considering its price and non-luxury badge, the Genesis would seem to compete with full-size sedans like the 2014 Buick LaCrosse, 2011 Chrysler 300, 2011 Ford Taurus and 2011 Toyota Avalon. But in actuality it's more of a bargain-priced rival to cars like the Infiniti M, Lexus ES or GS, or even the German midsize luxury models. True, there are a few downsides, such as the lack of available all-wheel drive or a fold-down rear seat. But the biggest obstacle for the Genesis is whether customers can get over the humble badge on its deck lid.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2011 Hyundai Genesis is a full-size, rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan available in 3.8 and 4.6 trim levels (the numbers denote engine displacement).

The Genesis 3.8 comes standard with 17-inch wheels, automatic headlights, foglights, heated mirrors, a sunroof, keyless ignition/entry, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, an eight-way power driver seat, a four-way power passenger seat, heated front seats, leather upholstery, a tilt-telescoping steering wheel and a seven-speaker sound system with CD player, satellite radio, auxiliary audio jack and an iPod/USB interface.

The Premium package adds 18-inch wheels, automatic wipers, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, upgraded leather upholstery, leather dash and door trim, driver memory functions, a power rear sunshade and a 14-speaker Lexicon surround-sound system with a six-CD changer and HD radio. The Premium Navigation package includes all the above items plus a navigation system, touchscreen interface, real-time traffic and a rearview camera (HD radio is deleted).

The Technology package adds to or supplements Premium package equipment with adaptive HID headlights, front and rear parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, an electronic parking brake, a ventilated driver seat, Bluetooth, a rotary-knob-based multimedia interface, real-time traffic updates and a 17-speaker Lexicon "Discrete" sound system with DVD-audio capability.

The Genesis 4.6 has a V8 engine, a wood-trimmed steering wheel and the Technology package as standard equipment.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2011 Hyundai Genesis 3.8 gets a 3.8-liter V6 that produces 290 horsepower and 264 pound-feet of torque. Rear-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic transmission with manual shift control are standard. In Edmunds testing, a Genesis 3.6 (with 10 fewer horsepower) went from zero to 60 mph in 6.2 seconds. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined.

The Hyundai Genesis 4.6 features a 4.6-liter V8 good for 378 hp and 324 lb-ft of torque with regular gas, and 385 hp and 333 lb-ft of torque with premium. Rear-drive and a six-speed automatic are again standard. In Edmunds performance testing of an '09 Genesis with 10 fewer hp, the 4.6 was good enough for a 5.9-second run from zero to 60 mph. Estimated fuel economy is 17/25/20.


The 2011 Hyundai Genesis comes standard with antilock brakes with brake assist, traction and stability control, front and rear side airbags and side curtain airbags. Parking sensors and a rearview camera are optional on the 3.8 and standard on the 4.6. In Edmunds brake testing, the Genesis 3.8 came to a stop from 60 mph in 117 feet, while the 4.6 stopped in 124. Both are average distances.

Not average are the Genesis' perfect crash scores. The government gave it a perfect five stars in all front- and side-impact categories, while the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the Genesis the best possible score of "Good" in its frontal-offset, side and roof strength tests.

Interior Design and Special Features

If it weren't for the sweeping "H" logo on the steering wheel of the Genesis, we're convinced that most drivers would think they were driving a Lexus. This is especially true for 4.6 or fully loaded 3.8 models, as they offer a full complement of modern conveniences and top-notch interior materials. Even the crisp, bright electroluminescent gauges have a Lexus-like appearance.

The dashboard itself is comprised of several sweeping arcs that elegantly encapsulate the instrument panel and center stack controls. Despite the abundance of buttons on the dash, center console and steering wheel, it's simple and intuitive to take command of these systems thanks to a logical layout that comes with either the available touchscreen or knob-and-screen interfaces. The audio quality of the available Lexicon sound system is also quite impressive.

The front seats of the Genesis provide plenty of padding and support to comfortably cosset the driver and passenger on long road trips, and the same can be said for the rear seats. In regard to the rear quarters, we are notably impressed by the ample head- and legroom. The rear seats do not fold down for added cargo space, but there is a pass-through feature for longer items that won't fit in the 15.9-cubic-foot trunk.

Driving Impressions

The soft ride of the 2011 Hyundai Genesis is a good indicator of the car's luxury leanings. Thankfully, the ride isn't overly floaty like it can be in some other luxury sedans. When called upon, the Genesis can perform evasive maneuvers predictably with little drama. The steering doesn't provide much in the way of feedback but its light and precise nature seems well-suited to this car's purpose. Engine power is also right up there with premium brands, with V6 and V8 models delivering smooth and linear acceleration. The Genesis is also a remarkably quiet car thanks to extensive sound insulation.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Love it!

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis 4.6 4dr Sedan (4.6L 8cyl 6A)

I bought this car in Jan 2013 with 19k miles. I was considering a BMW 550 or A6 4.2, but my Genesis was exactly HALF the price of an equivalent German sedan (I paid $25k all included, in mint condition, with warranty until forever). And my genesis is quieter, safer and more reliable than any BMW or Audi, too. I had some qualms about the lack of a premium badge, but now I consider it a point of pride: I look at a guy in a BMW and think of the extra $25k I have in the bank...

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Great value for money

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis 4.6 4dr Sedan (4.6L 8cyl 6A)

Purchased a CPO 2011 4.6 with all the options 6 months ago. Have put about 12K miles on it since then and love it to death. I can get 28 - 30 on the highway at speed if I'm not obnoxious with it. You definitely don't want for power or luxury goodies in this one. I always said I'd never buy anything that wasn't a BMW, but they aren't made like they used to be and this one seems to be. If you detest the 'feel' of most newer cars, check this one out. Steering that feels like your actually connected to something and isn't overly light. A ride that is communicative and design that is well thought out.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Nice car , but...

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis 4.6 4dr Sedan (4.6L 8cyl 6A)

Have owned 3 years now, 16,500 miles. It's a shame, as I really like the comfort, and value of this car, BUT ... I have had to have car jump started 6 times in 3 years. Hyundai claims that I don't drive the car enough to keep battery charged. I work part-time (1 day/week) and car may sit 2 - 3 days between use (average 100 mi/week). Was told that if car sits for a week (say at airport when on vacation) expect that battery will have discharged and need a jump. Don't see Mercedes, BMW or Lexus with this problem. Also, ride is a little stiff for my tastes.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

Genesis sedan 3.8l v-6, loaded

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis 3.8 4dr Sedan (3.8L 6cyl 6A)

Test drove BMW 3/5 series, Audi A4/6, Mercedes C/E, Infiniti G/M, Lexus IS/E/G, and bought the Genesis. If dollars were equal, I would now own a loaded BMW 535, A6, Infiniti M37, or MB E350. The challenge became the incredible value of the not-so-prestigious Hyundai! Heated and Cooled seats (not ventilated... COOLED!), back-up camera, Lexicon sound system (AMAZING!!!), HID directional lights, auto-hold brakes, adaptive cruise control... if you can live without brand prestige, the value of this car is off the charts! 20,000 miles, zero problems, accelerates very strong, drives great, and I love it. No regrets at all. Would absolutely buy it again!

Love it, love it, love

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis 4.6 4dr Sedan (4.6L 8cyl 6A)

I purchased my 2011 certified Genesis 4.6 a few weeks ago. There is very little not to like about this car. Performance is excellent, fuel economy isn't bad (averaged 29+ on my first road trip), warranty is excellent, interior is comfortable, and the car gets complements everywhere I go. Only a few quirks (ex: cruise control isn't extremely consistent and the adaptive cruise control - while a great idea - isn't very useful because as soon as someone pulls in front of you in traffic the car does a huge slow down) The navigation and stereo control takes some getting used to, but now I like it. The cooled driver's seat is the bomb in this warm weather. I have no regrets! I love it!

4 of 31 people found this review helpful

Only 8-month ownership of the

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis 4.6 4dr Sedan (4.6L 8cyl 6A)

I was convinced by my wife to buy the 2011 Genesis 4.6 and I sold it 8 months later. The ride was killing me. Couple times I traveled with my family, my 18 years old son thought we're riding on truck. Furthermore, the squeaks & rattles are also unacceptable. My wife said she will never tried Hyundai again.

Talk About The 2011 Genesis

2011 Hyundai Genesis Discussions See all Started By

I'm looking into buying a Genesis Coupe, starting to crunch the numbers, etc....

Just picked up 3.8 base 2011 sedan, traded in 2000 mercedes e320. according to brochure headlights should be High Intensity Discharge Xenon as standard feature. Does any one have a Genesis with Haloge...

Is the Genesis sedan being shown at the Chicago Auto Show? On the CAS website the new Sonata & Azera had writeups but I haven't seen anything about the Gen. Last fall I drove an '09 with those hor...

Gas Mileage


  • 18
  • cty
  • 27
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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