Track Tested: The 2011 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 R-Spec


Inside Line tests hundreds of vehicles a year. Cars, trucks, SUVs, we run them all, and the numbers always tell a story. With that in mind, we present "IL Track Tested" -- a quick rundown of all the data we collect at the track, along with comments direct from the test-drivers. Enjoy.

If we were going to buy a Genesis Coupe (and believe us, we've thought about it), it would have the torquey 3.8-liter V6 in lieu of the 2.0-liter turbo four, which is a tad low on power and personality. For 2011, Hyundai has made that choice even easier by adding the 3.8 R-Spec model to the lineup.

See, the 2010 Genesis Coupe 3.8 Track we tested two years ago (and again 6 months later) was already a good value at $30K. Now Hyundai has created the 3.8 R-Spec. This car has the same suspension tune, the same Brembos, the same Potenza RE050A summer tires and, yes, the very same Torsen rear limited-slip differential.

But the unnecessary stuff like leather upholstery, auto climate control and Infinity speakers are absent here. (Staples like a USB input and Bluetooth remain.) The result is a lower price tag -- $27,600, plus a $35 iPod cable and $105 floormats, taking you to $27,740 -- and about 80 fewer pounds. And that, friends, looks to be an even better value.

Vehicle: 2011 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 R-Spec
Odometer: 5,821
Date: 3/15/11
Driver: Mike Monticello
Price: $27,740

Drive Type: Front engine, rear-wheel-drive
Transmission Type: Six-speed manual
Engine Type: DOHC, 3.8-liter V6
Displacement (cc/cu-in): 3,778/231
Redline (rpm): 6,500
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 306 @ 6,300 
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm): 266 @ 4,700 
Brake Type (front): 13.4-inch ventilated disc with 4-piston fixed caliper
Brake Type (rear): 13.0-inch ventilated disc with 4-piston fixed caliper
Steering System: Speed-proportional (engine rpm), hydraulic-assist rack-and-pinion
Suspension Type (front): Independent MacPherson strut, coil springs, 25mm stabilizer bar
Suspension Type (rear): Independent multilink, coil springs, 22mm stabilizer bar
Tire Size (front): 225/40YR19 89Y
Tire Size (rear): 245/40YR19 94Y 
Tire Brand: Bridgestonebr />Tire Model: Potenza RE050A
Tire Type: Summer, asymmetrical 
Wheel size: 19-by-8 inches front, 19-by-8.5 inches rear
Wheel material (front/rear): Cast aluminum alloy
As tested Curb Weight (lb): 3,404 (55.3% front bias)

Test Results:
0-30 (sec): 2.3 (3.0 with TC on)
0-45 (sec): 4.1 (5.8 with TC on)
0-60 (sec): 5.9 (7.6 with TC on)
0-60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 5.6 (7.3 with TC on)
0-75 (sec): 8.7 (10.7 with TC on)
1/4-Mile (sec @ mph): 14.3 @ 98.0 (15.5 @ 95.8 with TC on)

30-0 (ft): 28
60-0 (ft): 111

Slalom (mph): 68.1 (67.5 with TC on)
Skid Pad Lateral acceleration (g): 0.91 (0.87 with TC on)

Db @ Idle: 42.3
Db @ Full Throttle: 78.4
Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 67.1

RPM @ 70 mph: 2,700

Tester's Comments:

Acceleration: Best launch came at 3,000 rpm to minimize wheelspin. The shifter, which has longish throws and feels a bit balky in street driving, was positive and easy to send through the gates when shifting quickly. Would hesitate and cut power for a split-second after letting out the clutch and mashing the throttle on the 3-4 upshift, which no doubt hurt the quarter-mile time a bit.

Braking: Extremely stable and secure stops, over and over. Pedal stayed firm throughout with no fade, although there was some fade later when slowing from much higher speeds during acceleration testing.

Slalom: Steering is little lighter feeling than preferred, but it's nice and quick. Chassis stayed planted until using extra throttle for the last cone, when it would power-on oversteer. ESC-on did a very good job of adding front brakes at just the right time to keep the car on track without scrubbing off too much speed.

Skidpad: Light steering is more of a problem here, as it was difficult to judge front grip level. Was easy to get too eager with the throttle and get a lot of understeer. But grip is still excellent. With ESC on, the system cut the throttle in massive amounts -- to the point that you could keep the throttle pinned.