There's no questioning the impact the 2009 Hyundai Genesis
sedan had on the automotive world when it was introduced nearly two years ago. The HYUNDAI GENESIS
launch drew a faultline that spanned the globe, with tremors and outright rumbles felt from Detroit to Germany to Japan. Rival engineers and execs are undoubtedly still standing in the nearest doorway.
Why? Because Hyundai, previously a South Korean underdog of an automaker known for its budget-slashing econoboxes, proved to the world it's capable of upping its game and competing in the rarified luxury-sedan market, and this at a time when many rivals were struggling just to keep their coffee machines percolating-unsuccessfully, in some cases.
The numbers tell much of the story. The Genesis' wheelbase is longer than those of both the Lexus Gs
460 and Mercedes Benz E
550, providing a whopping 109.4 cubic feet of interior room, a figure that matches Benz' flagship S550 sedan. Hyundai's 4.6-liter Tau V-8 engine churns out an impressive 375 horsepower and 333 pound-feet of torque, besting the 5.7-liter Hemi V-8-powered Chrysler 300c
at the dragstrip with a run of 14.1 seconds at 101.5 mph. The most impressive number of all was the $42,000 MSRP of our Titanium Grey Metallic Hyundai Genesis
All that said, it's no surprise our HYUNDAI GENESIS
sedan entered long-term duty in the Motor Trend test fleet with some pretty heavy expectations and plenty of anticipation. After all, this was a car that had nearly won our 2009 Car of the Year award just months prior. The HYUNDAI GENESIS
didn't disappoint, instantly becoming a staff favorite and rarely spending a night alone in the staff garage. Logbook notes began to pour in.
"To call the HYUNDAI GENESIS
the best Hyundai
ever would not be at all unreasonable," jotted associate online editor Kirill Ougarov. "Aside from some hard plastics in areas that will rarely be felt by occupants, the interior is filled with comfortable, quality materials."