2009 Hyundai Genesis 3.8 V6

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It appears that the Genesis Coupe thread is generating a lot of traffic. So, it's only fair that we also discuss its sibling, the Genesis Sedan. With that said, what are your thoughts on the Genesis Sedan? Have any of you looked at it in person? Taken a test drive? If you have, does it live up to the strong reviews from the media? Let's discuss.
 

The Critic

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Here's my $0.02: I looked at the Genesis with my dad several months ago. We looked at the V8 version with the tech package. I felt that the interior had fantastic materials with excellent build quality. Unfortunately, the interior lacked the sophisticated feel that I would expect from a car in this price range. My dad drove the 4.6 version and was quite impressed by it, but I didn't drive it. I rode along in the back seat and felt that the ride was decent, but the suspension was a bit lacking in refinement, especially on rough roads. Aside from those two shortcomings, I think the Genesis is a great value. The V6 is probably a more logical choice since it doesn't give up much performance compared to the V8, plus it isn't as nose heavy (better weight distribution). I plan to go back to the dealer eventually and test drive the V6 version. Also, I think it's very likely that the Genesis will have excellent reliability. Hyundai is trying to demonstrate to the market that it can build a solid vehicle for the luxury segment, so reliability is likely to be one of their top priorities. They are probably trying to follow the same path that Lexus took with the LS400 in the early 90s-- build a bulletproof vehicle that offers fantastic value compared to other vehicles in its segment.
 
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The problem for Hyundai is they do not have a global reputation for quality, which is what Toyota had when they introduced the Lexus brand. Lexus sought to take Toyota quality to the next level, create a new luxury brand from scratch and sell cars against Mercedes and other luxury brands at a lower price. Hyundai is not in a position to accomplish any of this except for focusing on price. I'm sure the Genesis is a very nice car and well made for a Hyundai. But, all they have to sell here is price; not brand, not quality, not design, not performance, not image. Every automaker on the planet wants to emulate Lexus, so shooting for an LS400-like product introduction is not unique. How Hyundai will convince consumers that the Genesis is now a Lexus competitor will be quite a challenge.
 
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I'm not anywhere near the market for a vehicle like the Genesis sedan or the Lexus LS. If I were I'm sure I would look hard at the Genesis. Around here there are lots of Lexus, BMW, and Mercedes. The only Hyundais I see are generally Elantras and Santa Fes. I will be interested to see how Hyundai does with establishing a foothold or whether their branding will hurt them (both because of a lack of quality history and because of brand snobbery in the luxo segment).
 
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I sat in one at the DC Auto Show, so I can only really comment on interior feel and design and there is no doubt the feel and design of the interior is far ahead of Lexus or Acura. If it were between those three brands, no question I'd buy the Genesis. It's up there with basically the entire Audi range and the new Cadillac CTS. The Lexus GS had a great 80's VCR-style clock and tape deck, though...
 
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Drive one. Go out and drive both, the V-6 and V-8. You will walk away with a smile. The only American car that is close is the CTS. But the CTS is much smaller.
 
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There was one parked on the street in front of the dealership I visited last weekend during my Coupe experience. I didn't sit in it because it was locked, but peering through the window didn't leave me with a great impression of the interior. The color choices on the model I saw were...I guess an acquired taste. It was two-tone gold and brown inside. Instead of a nice muted tan, beige or cream, it had an unpleasant yellow-gold tone to it. I wasn't a fan. I'm a fan of Infiniti's way of designing a center stack....one solid line from the top of the dash all the way to the driver's armrest. The design of the Genesis reminds me much more of the way Lincoln used to do it...of which I wasn't a fan. Observing the fit and finish of the outside, everything looked very well screwed together. The car is a tasteful blend of Lexus GS, Mercedes S and the rear is very Infiniti M. I can't say I'm a fan of that generic and VERY Mercedes-esque grille. I'm not usually a big fan of emblems, but it needs something to break up the monotony. I'm unsure now what it's main competitor is because I can't figure out what size category it fits in. It doesn't look as big as a Lexus LS. Is it a GS competitor? Infiniti M? Maybe they created their own category with this car.
 
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The biggest problem with Hyundai's/Kia's are that they depriciate must faster than most of the other cars. It costs $42 grand but by the time you drive off the dealership lot its lost 5 grand already.
 
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