As Hyundai continues its ascent to the top, the South Korean automaker-that-could is getting bolder every day. This time the company entered new grounds at the Chicago Auto Show with the unveiling facelifted Genesis sedan that gets a new sporty variant for the for the 2012 model year.
The new model sports the R-Spec moniker and comes with a new 5.0-liter direct injection V8 engine pushing out 429 horsepower at 6,400 rpm and 376 lb. ft. of torque at 5,000 rpm, which makes it the company's most powerful series production model ever. The V8 is mated to Hyundai's all-new eight-speed automatic transmission. While the Koreans did not release acceleration figures, Hyundai did say the car's fuel economy is estimated at 16 mpg city and 25 mpg highway.
The Genesis R-Spec also boasts a more aggressive chassis tuning with larger stabilizer bars, suspension tweaks, larger brakes and a different steering calibration, plus 19-inch wheels that can be fitted optionally with Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 summer performance tires.
The sportiest member of the Genesis family receives some very subtle styling cues such as the unique headlights with dark chrome inserts, specific alloy wheel designs and the black R-Spec embroidered floor mats. The Genesis R-Spec will be offered only in three exterior colors: Black Noir, Titanium Gray, and Platinum Metallic, each with Black leather interior and an all-black leather steering wheel.
As for the rest of the Genesis range, the big news for the 2012 model year is the updated 3.8-liter V6 engine that receives direct injection (GDI) technology and several other upgrades boosting output by 15 percent, from 290 to 333 horsepower, and peak torque from 264 lb.-ft. to 291 lb.-ft. According to Hyundai, fuel economy increases over seven percent from 27 mpg to 29 mpg on the highway.
Both the 3.8-liter V6 and the 4.6-liter Tau V8 with 385HP will be offered with Hyundai's new eight-speed automatic transmission, which helps increase the V8's fuel economy over seven percent from 25 mpg to 26 mpg on the highway.
Other changes for the 2012 Genesis sedan include refinements to the 3.8 and 4.6 model suspension damping calibrations, and the fitment of larger brakes, plus some modest styling revisions to the headlamps that gain LED accents and daytime running lights, front grille, bumpers, tail lamps, and exhaust tips.
[From Hyundai Press Release] 2012 Genesis Highlights
- New 5.0-liter R-Spec Direct Injection V8 performance flagship model added
- Most powerful Hyundai engine ever with 429 horsepower
- Unique 19-inch alloy wheel design with premium machined finish
- Dark chrome headlamp inserts
- Unique R-Spec sport transmission, suspension and steering calibrations
- Direct injection technology added to Lambda 3.8-liter V6 engine for 15 percent improved output (333 HP), improved fuel economy and emissions
- In-house-developed eight-speed automatic transmissions for all engines
- More aggressive grille and front fascia design
- New headlight design with LED accents and daytime running lights
- Sportier rocker panel design
- Folding mirrors with integrated puddle lamps
- New, brushed aluminum finish window surround
- Redesigned rear taillights
- Redesigned rear fascia with integrated dual asymmetrical exhaust tips
- New 17-inch alloy wheel design (3.8 model)
- New interior woodgrain colors for Black, Beige and Saddle leather interiors
- New Twilight Blue Pearl exterior color (replaces Sapphire Blue Pearl)