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Hyundai Touts "World-Class Weight Efficiency" In 2010 Genesis Coupe


2009 Hyundai Genesis Coupe

2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe

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What you will see over in Hyundai's territory at the sprawling SEMA show in Las Vegas next week is the firm's first rear-wheel drive coupe, the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe, arguably its sportiest automotive entry to date. What you won't see is the smart engineering that includes liberal use of high-strength steel to keep the coupe's curb weight well below its competitors while allowing torsional rigidity that they claim is even better than, say, the E46 BMW M3 (interesting that they compare with the last-gen M3). Still, that's no small claim, and a far cry from the competitive set claimed by the dowdy old front-drive Scoupe.

Just how much lighter is the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe than its competitors? Using the high performance 3.8 model as a means of comparison, which Hyundai claim weighs 3,402 lbs, the closest in weight is the 2009 BMW 335i, which tips the scales at 169 pounds more than the Genesis. True, the 335 is a twin-turbo powerhouse, but by the numbers the Genesis Coupe 3.8 makes 10 more horsepower than the BMW, and sprints to 60 mph in just 5.7 seconds, not too far off the performance of BMW's legendary coupe. Other competitors weigh even more: 2009 Infiniti G37 - 3,616 lbs, 2010 Camaro LS - 3,780 lbs, 2009 Dodge Challenger SE - 3,819 lbs. And all of the competitors above (including the BMW) have a lower power-to-weight ratio than the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8's of 11.0. They don't talk torque in this comparison, or at what RPM the Genesis' fortified corporate 3.8-liter V-6 makes its healthy 310 horsepower, and those nuances are what allow both the BMW and Infiniti to out-accelerate Hyundai's claimed 0-60 mph times. Still, at the Genesis Coupe's presumably modest price point, this is an impressive performance story.

Light weight also pays dividends in fuel economy, a big consideration for shoppers right now. The 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 will manage a 25 mpg EPA highway rating, while the base 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 2.0T garnered a 30 mpg EPA highway rating. We detailed the 3.8-liter's internal modifications for sporting Coupe duty recently, but the 2.0-liter turbo four was purpose-built for Genesis Coupe duty. Its light-pressure turbo spools up quickly (peak torque of 223 ft-lb available at 2,000 rpm), yields 220 hp, and employs continuously variable valve timing on both exhaust and intake camshafts to push the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 2.0T to a top speed of 137 mph. Notably, both 2.0T and 3.8 models may be run on regular unleaded gasoline, and on 87 octane the 2.0T makes 210 hp and the 3.8 makes 306 hp.

Both 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupes come standard with a six-speed manual transmission. Optional is a 5-speed automatic with the 2.0T, a 6-speed auto for the 3.8. Trim levels are as follows: 2.0T, 2.0T Premium, 2.0T Track (6-speed manual only), 2.0T R-Spec, 3.8, 3.8 Grand Touring, and 3.8 Track.

In its final push to distance its new, serious sportster from the infamous Excel of the dark econocar days of the 80s, Hyundai wants you to know you may wrap your svelte 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe in the following colors: Bathurst Black, Silverstone, Nordschleife Gray, Acqua Minerale Blue, Tsukuba Red, Mirabeau Blue, Lime Rock Green, or Interlagos Yellow. In associating the 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe with famous racing circuits (and even treacherous chicanes) in Australia, the U.K., Germany, Italy, Japan, Monaco, Connecticut, and Brazil, respectively, Hyundai is making a strong claim about the performance of its first rear-wheel drive performance coupe. Let's just hope they got the suspension tuning better than its cushy platform-mate, the 2009 Hyundai Genesis Sedan.--Colin Mathews
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