2009 Hyundai Genesis: Little Things That Make You Feel Like Home
May 06, 2009
I'm in a rush to get somewhere, pretty much all the time. So on those occasions when I get to drive one of our long-termers, I don't usually have time to study the nuances of the car's functionality. Controls that aren't backlit properly, aren't where you expect them, or cryptic symbols drive me batty. I want adjustments to be straightforward: seat, mirrors, radio settings -- you know, the little things that make a car feel more like home.
And it's there where the Genesis started to impress me. As a chronic channel surfer, I liked that controls for volume up/down and radio station selection were all part of one button on the left of the wheel. Simple as it sounds, I also appreciated that the mirrors were controlled quite easily from one button on the armrest. (I don't enjoy mirror or window controls on the door or on the console between the front seats.) Ever been in a car and reach to lower the front window, only to lower the back window instead -- every time you do it? I have. None of this is an issue in the Genesis. Even the nav system was pretty straightforward.
The Genesis isn't trying to dazzle me with electronics that take a graduate degree to figure out. So despite the fact that Hyundai is going for the upscale market, it appears to be remembering its humble roots and not get all high-falutin' about it. It would be that much harder to take the Genesis seriously if it did.
Does this mean I'd buy the car? Maybe, but not necessarily. Sure, the leather seats are great (really!), the ride is super comfortable, the handling plenty sufficient for my gotta-get-there-now maneuvering. The thin, chrome trim around the vents is a nice touch and the paint is, well, sparkly. But there's nothing in the design -- inside or out -- that I found particularly inspiring or that blew me away with its luxury. It's a good car. It's a good value. Often, that's more than good enough.