2009 Hyundai Genesis or 2009 BMW 750i? Part II
May 29, 2009
I understand if you think nobody would ever choose our long-term Hyundai Genesis V6 over our long-term BMW 750i. But in the words of the great Bob Falfa, "I ain't nobody dork."
Yesterday I posted that I had gladly swapped our 750i for our Genesis. Man, did it bring out the haters. I was called crazy, unreasonable and accused of writing something untrue just to get a rise out of our readers.
Thank you to those that came to my defense and the defense of the Genesis.
The truth is I really do prefer the Hyundai. I've spent quite a bit of time in the 750i now (not to mention that a 2001 740iL with the sport package is one of my dream cars), and the more I drive it the less I want to. It's hard to explain, but I'm just not in sync with the machine. It has several combinations of tune that the driver can choose; Comfort, Normal, Sport and Sport+. And I don't seem to like any of them. I find myself constantly changing modes looking for a sweet spot that never comes.
It's like Goldilocks. This one is too firm. This one is too soft. But "this one is just right" just ain't there.
I have a hunch the Sport Package and 19-inch runflat Goodyears on our test car have quite a bit to do with this, but it's just a hunch. The car's overall damping doesn't seem to be the problem, it's the intrusion of the road's surface into the driver's seat and steering wheel that trouble me.
Somehow the 750's steering is missing that magical combination of road feel and isolation I've enjoyed in BMWs for years, including our two long-term M3s and our 135i. There's just too much noise in the wheel and it adds a crude quality to the mix that is out of character for a BMW or any luxury sedan at this price point.
Sure it outperforms the Genesis. And everytime I nail the throttle in the twin-turbocharged BMW all is forgiven for the few seconds my head is pinned to the back window, but I've never been in the Hyundai and felt like it needed more power. Plus, I prefer its steering and its suspension tuning in the real world. My world, where there are rippled concrete freeways and constantly changing road surfaces.
Of course the 750i will leave the Genesis for dead on a mountain road, but I don't drive to work in the twisties. So some of you might think I've lost it, but the reality of it is that the most expensive car with the most prestigious nameplate isn't always the one you prefer to drive.
In fact I did not regret my decision last night, as the Genesis and I cut through the rush hour traffic. And so I'm spending the weekend in the Hyundai. I'll let you know how it goes on Monday. Personally, I think it looks pretty cool in my driveway.
Scott Oldham, Edmunds.com Editor in Chief @ 7,786 miles