The Genesis coupe is a really great effort by Hyundai. Like Zenlea, I noticed a lot of people checking it out. It's far less generic-looking than the Genesis sedan and has some original exterior details that give it some personality, like the cool downward kink in the rear side window. It looks great, plus it increases the rear side-glass area giving back-seat passengers a little more light, never a bad thing in the typically cramped rear seat of a small coupe. The cabin is comfortable, and it didn't take long for me to feel right at home. My only complaint is that the steering wheel didn't adjust for reach. The majority of the interior materials look and feel really good, and fit is excellent. The multimedia screen is a bit small, but the plastic shroud surrounding it, while not overly attractive, did a good job of reducing the annoying glare that can happen on a sunny day.
The Genesis is quick when pushed, but first and second gear give out - and get excessively loud - well before the redline. Throw it in sixth gear on the highway, though, and the revs stay low and engine noise is restrained to acceptable levels. Unfortunately, quite a bit of tire noise that makes its way into the cabin; this is especially true on wet roads. Driving on the highway through small puddles after a hard rain, I was convinced that a window was open on several occasions. The Genesis coupe's biggest flaw is its poor suspension tuning -- at least in the stiffer Track model we sampled. Over the weekend, I drove on some of the worst roads the City of Detroit has to offer and nearly came away a few teeth short of a mouthful; the ride is downright brutal over broken and potholed pavement. Even the smallest imperfections and minor undulations unsettle the Genesis coupe.
The underlying coarseness of the Genesis coupe brings to mind our Four Seasons Infiniti G37 coupe. While the G37 is infinitely more poised over rough pavement, the Genesis actually has a smoother action to its manual transmission and less engine vibration and harshness. The Hyundai's steering has a better weight to it, too, and it's more direct and communicative than the Infiniti's. Plus, throttle and clutch feel are also much better in the Genesis, making shifting smoothly a far easier task than in the six-speed-manual-equipped G37.
As with the sedan of the same name, Hyundai got a lot of things right on the Genesis coupe but stumbled a bit when tuning the suspension. A more compliant, controlled ride would make the two-door Genesis a much more enjoyable car on our rough Michigan roads.
Jennifer Misaros, Production Editor