New York Auto Show 2008 – 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe
A New Coupe, A Year Away
Hyundai spent their New York auto show time introducing their new rear-drive sporty coupe, the Genesis Coupe. Related to the Genesis sedan on sale this summer, the coupe arrives in spring 2009.
Genesis sits on Hyundai’s first in-house rear-drive car platform. The stylish coupe tames down its looks from the concept introduced in Los Angeles in November 2007, but mostly in losing hood scoops and refining lights, front grille, and spoiler shapes. What Hyundai held back for introduction was that the powertrain lineup includes a turbocharged and intercooled 212HP 2.0L I4 as the base engine. The 3.8L V6 arrives as expected, but most figured the second powertrain would be the sedan’s V8.
Going I4/V6 instead of V6/V8 allows Genesis Coupe to go after the likes of Infiniti G37 with a lower price tag, though BMW handling was the target. Making both the I4 or V6 available in the SE model, with its “track-tuned” suspension and manual transmission, means those looking more spirited driving aren’t forced into the more expensive and thirsty engine. The I4 should help Genesis Coupe start with a low base price (not announced), and be easier on the fuel economy and insurance rates. Those elements can be particularly important for the younger buyer Genesis Coupe should attract.
The lack of V8 will keep Genesis away from direct competition with the Ford Mustang, Dodge Challenger, and Chevrolet Camaro, but Genesis Coupe doesn’t have history and Hyundai seems to working to cultivate a luxury image over a performance image. And Hyundai can make an impact against Mitsubishi Eclipse and Nissan 350Z with this entry. Offering a V8 was critical for the Genesis sedan to be positioned as a luxury sedan, but not for this sporty coupe.
Besides, Hyundai has the V8 in the system and it should package in the coupe as well as the related sedan; holding it back allows the possibility of creating a superhot coupe should Hyundai see enough demand, perhaps suggested by the more aggressive nature and go-fast look of the 2007 concept (photo here and here).
The Details, In Brief
The Genesis Coupe, like most Hyundai products, will be nicely equipped. Final pricing is quite some time away, but Hyundai promises the least expensive 300HP car in history. The base GS will take the I4, the midlevel GT the 3.8L V6, and the SE more standard equipment, stiffer suspension, uplevel brakes, and either engine. The SE also gets standard Brembo disc brakes with four-piston calipers; the concept’s twenty-inch tires were replaced by standard eighteens and optional nineteens. Modern options will include a smart key with push-button start, HID headlamps, and heated seats, but the USB and 3.5mm mini-jack ports will be standard.