I think Hyundai made a big mistake with the 2015 Genesis.
Oh, there’s nothing wrong with the car. It’s a full-sized luxury machine that is a solid competitor in that group.
The mistake must be the price. It starts at $38,000. My test car with three hefty option packages came in at $49,950. That can’t be right. Someone at Hyundai must have made a mistake because frankly, the Genesis is a screaming upscale deal.
The 2015 Genesis is all new in a subtle kind of way. Redesigned both inside and out. The wheelbase has been stretched out by about three inches although the overall length remains the same. The outside has seen some refinements that give it a few sharper lines.
Up front, the base Genesis has a six cylinder 3.8 liter, 311 horsepower engine. That was the motor in my test car. 311 horsepower is a solid number. There was never a time when I felt it was underpowered. Of course, if you want more oomph you can bump up to the 5.0 liter, 420 horsepower V8. You’ll pay for that privilege. Base price for that model is $51,500. Of course, that price includes more than just a bigger engine. You get most of the optional packages that you have to pay extra for on the 3.8. Still, I’m not sure it’s necessary. Horsepower is always fun, but the 3.8 isn’t lacking. Both engines are mated to an 8 speed automatic transmission that drives the wheels very smoothly. All-wheel drive is now available.
Mileage is reasonable for a car in this range. 18 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. I averaged 23 mpg for my week with the Genesis. That’s pretty impressive when you think about the mileage you would have gotten ten or 15 years ago with a luxury car. Premium gas is recommended so that bumps up the cost of a refueling stop.
Inside, the interior is properly upscale. It has the requisite analog clock on the dash. I’m not sure why that seems to be the official sign of a luxury car, but that’s the modern trend. The leather seats have plenty of adjustments. I wouldn’t call the dash cluttered, but it does have plenty of buttons. Car companies are torn these days between keeping things simple and moving the controls to the display, or having a sufficient number of buttons and knobs so that those who are display-phobic can still manage the controls. The navigation was one of the better I’ve tested. Still not as good as Google Maps on my phone, but it only took a few commands to enter my destination.
If you’re looking for a quiet car, the Genesis could be it. I regularly check sound readings on my test cars. I use the same road and the same speed each week. The Genesis came in at 59 decibels which is one of the lowest I’ve tested.
My test car had the HUD display that projects your speed onto the windshield. It was part of the $3,500 Ultimate package (that’s the only optional package on the 5.0 Genesis). One of the things I liked about the HUD was that in addition to the usual information, it also gave me information about when a car was entering my blind spots. Most cars display that on the side mirrors or on the instrument display. This concept is just a little safer.
Outside, I like the refinements to the body. There is a gently curved, sharper line that runs from the headlights, down the sides to the taillights. The new grille has a touch of the Lexus style. It’s larger and dips closer to the bottom of the car’s nose. As is the new trend, there are lots of LED lights up front as well. It may not stand out in the luxury field, but it definitely fits in.
You could argue that the long-term resale of a Hyundai Genesis won’t be as good as luxury marque that has more panache. It’s likely true. But when you figure you’re going to buy the Genesis for thousands less, you’re probably not losing anything. You’re simply buying a great car at a great price.
That’s assuming that Hyundai doesn’t figure out its mistake…