Test Drive: 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe

2013 Hyundai Genesis
2013 Hyundai Genesis

2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe
By Barbara & Bill Schaffer

For nearly 50 years people wanting a sporty car have been faithful consumers of the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro.? There were other similar cars along the way but those two brands have dominated the affordable and sporty rear-wheel drive market.

Until the last few years, none of the Asian automakers have even been active in that market niche, concentrating mainly on hot front-wheel drive models to appeal to?another?segment of that market.? Then there are the upscale European automakers that build the sporty and sophisticated rear-drive models but at much higher prices.

In an unexpected move in 2008, Hyundai entered the sporty rear-drive market with the Genesis sedan and coupe. ?While the two models target different markets, the coupe has had a strong appeal for enthusiasts not by offering the brute force that has been the trademark of the Mustang and Camaro, but a car with more balance and finesse.?? In our mind, the Genesis Coupe is the most fun to drive and the most civilized of the bunch.

The rear-drive platform utilizes a four-wheel independent suspension with MacPherson struts in the front and a five-link system in the rear.? Front and rear stabilizer bars do an excellent job of controlling body roll. ??The suspension is matched up with a precise hydraulic steering system and R-Spec or Track models boast vented Brembo brakes, front and rear.? R-Spec and Track models also take the suspension up a notch with stiffer springs and larger stabilizer bars. ?The underpinnings are then finished off with 18- or 19-inch performance tires.

Under the hood, the engineers provided two impressive engine choices.? The base engine is 2.0-liter DOHC four-cylinder with a new twin-scroll turbocharger (with a larger intercooler for 2013).? Rated at 274 horsepower and 275-lb.ft. of torque, the Dual CVVT engine produces a quick 5.7-second 0 to 60 mph time.? EPA fuel economy numbers with the automatic transmission are 20 mpg city and 31 mpg highway. The engine is designed to run on premium, but it will run on regular with a 14 horsepower penalty.

The optional Genesis engine is Hyundai?s 3.8-liter Lambda DOHC V-6.? With its sophisticated direct-injection system, the 2013 version is rated at 348 horsepower ? that?s a 42 horsepower increase from the previous year.? Like the four-cylinder, the V-6 is tuned for premium fuel but will run on regular with only a six horsepower loss.? The 2013 Hyundai Genesis V-6 Coupe is 0.3 seconds faster than the V-6 Mustang from 0 to 60 turning in a 5.3-second time. ?The EPA rates the V-6 at 18 mpg city and 28 mpg highway.? We actually averaged 25.7 mpg during a week of less than economical driving ? (Bill kept accelerating quickly and running the car through the gears.)

2013 Hyundai Genesis - Dashboard?????????? Both engines come standard with a six-speed manual transmission, but each has an optional Hyundai-designed and built eight-speed Shiftronic automatic transmission (a $1,250 option) complete with paddle shifters.? Our V-6 test car had the automatic, and we loved it.? The shifts were smooth and quick, shifting both up and down.

Designers get our thumbs-up for the aggressive muscular look, which we think is a real head-turner.? The Coupe is about six inches shorter than the Mustang, but beats the Mustang in most interior dimensions.? Both cars weigh about 3,400 pounds.

With a refreshed design for 2013, the Coupe gets a redesigned front fascia, grille, headlights, fog lights and LED daytime running lights.

Inside, the 2013 Coupe has a more upscale look with features like the stitched-seam dash.? The instrument cluster is now electroluminescent, which not only looks good, but is also easier to read. They too, have improved the driver-side seat system to make it easier for rear seat access.

2013 Hyundai Genesis - side viewThe 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe gives buyers high value, with three very well equipped trim levels for each engine.? The four-cylinder Coupe comes in 2.0T, 2.0T Spec and 2.0T Premium models with prices ranging from ?$25,125, including the destination charge, for the 2.0T to $29,625 for the 2.0T Premium which adds features like Brembo brakes, leather seating, push-button start, Infinity audio, navigation system, sunroof and Blue Link telematics.

Genesis Coupe 3.8 comes in R-Spec, Grand Touring and Track models with the pricing ranging from $29,625 for the R-Spec and topping out at $35,125 for the Track model with the automatic transmission.? Each has virtually no options other than the choice of transmission and a few accessories.

Like all Hyundai models we?ve driven recently, the Genesis coupe has standard Bluetooth and auxiliary inputs jacks for direct links to the audio system, plus the USB port can be used to charge digital equipment.

2013 Hyundai Genesis ??????????? A new feature Hyundai is rolling out is Blue Link telematics.? The system is activated by buttons on the rearview mirror, but can also be accessed on the web from a computer or tablet and from a smart phone.? Blue Link comes in three service levels, each offering a menu of services including features like voice operated text messaging, infotainment, turn-by-turn navigation, point of interest web searches and information about and vehicle diagnostics.? Blue Link is complimentary for a 90-day trial period, and then owners can sign up for three different levels of services with annual prices ranging from $79 for the emergency services of the Assurance package to $279 per year for the Guidance package.? For more information on all the Blue Link features go online to https://www.hyundaiusa.com/technology/bluelink/?.

Even though we?ve driven the Hyundai Genesis Coupe on several occasions, it always surprises us how much fun it is to drive, especially on challenging mountain roads, plus it always amazes us what a great value this car is2013 Hyundai Genesis

More from Our Auto Expert