The original Hyundai Genesis sedan scored a grand slam for the Korean carmaker, winning the coveted North American Car of the Year trophy and plenty of demand for a first entry into the luxury market. But while the little coupe that shared the Genesis name was certainly fun to drive it didn’t quite find its own identity.
Hyundai hopes to resolve that problem with the 2013 update of the Genesis Coupe, giving the 2-door a more luxurious, refined and decidedly aggressive appearance and backing that up with some serious performance credentials.
The overall look and key dimensions of the rear-drive Genesis Coupe remain the same, with the 2-door featuring the long wheelbase and short overhangs of a classic sports coupe. Nonetheless, changes are visible right up front, where the 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe sports a more aggressive front fascia, trapezoid grille, lamps and hood heat extractor cues – which, unfortunately are just that; they are not actually functional.
There’s a bit more sculpting to the Coupe’s subtle Coke-bottle sides, with new 18- and 19-inch alloy wheels. And there’s more contouring to the rear, which also gets LED illumination.
But what will make the biggest impression, we expect, is what’s out-of-sight, but not out-of-mind.
The big 3.8-liter V-6 now goes Direct Injection, which helps bump the horsepower to 348 and torque to 295 lb-ft (using premium fuel). The six-banger delivers 18 miles in the City, 27 on the Highway, according to the EPA, with the 8-speed automatic gearbox. Surprisingly, the Highway number dips to 27 with the 6-speed manual.
To ensure a wide power band, the V-6 adopts Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (Dual CVVT) and a Variable Intake System (VIS) to help it breathe efficiently at both low and high RPMs.
The smaller, 2.0-liter inline-four is now paired with a twin-scroll turbocharger and improved intercooler, with that yielding 274 hp and 275 lb-ft, again with premium fuel. Mileage runs 20/31 with the automatic, 21/30 with the manual.
It wasn’t all that long ago Hyundai had to source its engines from partners like Mitsubishi. No longer, and its latest-generation powertrains are proving surprisingly proficient. But where the maker admittedly has work to do is in the area of ride and handling.
The original Genesis Coupe was one of the best of the Korean’s breed and the maker claims to have taken a step to the better for 2013 with improved low-velocity control dampers meant to improve ride comfort even while enhancing body control under more aggressive maneuvers.
The revised steering system is 7% quicker than the old version, while the 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe now adds telescopic wheel control to the original car’s tilt adjustment.
To better justify placing the luxury-segment Genesis name on the 2013 Coupe Hyundai also has enhanced interior refinement with such niceties as stitched-seam details and electroluminescent gauges. There’s a new multi-gauge cluster, in fact, providing torque readout on the 3.8 and turbo boost levels on the 2.0.
The 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupe also features the maker’s advanced infotainment system, BlueLink, with a 90-day complimentary trial. The technology allows users to subscribe at three different levels: Assurance, Essentials and Guidance, each adding new features, from basic safety and security to interactive navigation.
The Hyundai Genesis sedan went through its own mid-cycle refresh last year.