The introduction of the Hyundai Genesis back in 2009 proved that the South Korean automaker could produce a credible luxury sedan. More and more, Hyundai has been reaching beyond the mainstream, value-priced models for which it's been best-known for three decades. In 2011, the company added an even larger and more posh Equus sedan.
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2016 Hyundai Genesis Sedan Overview
What's New for 2016
Last year, the Genesis got all-new styling. Standard LED daytime running lights and high-intensity-discharge headlights have been added for 2016. The Genesis 5.0 is now available only in Ultimate trim. An available suite of active-safety features includes automatic emergency braking, a head-up display, blind-spot detection, and lane-keep assist.
Choosing Your Hyundai Genesis
Two distinct powertrains are available: a 3.8-liter V6 rated at 311 horsepower, and a 5-liter V8 that generates 420 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque. Both engines mate with an eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is available, but only on the Genesis 3.8.
Fuel economy is estimated at 18/29 mpg (city/highway) for the V6, but only 15/23 mpg for the V8. All-wheel drive drops the V6 to 16/25 mpg.
Starting near $39,000, the 3.8 model includes nine airbags, 18-inch alloy wheels, leather seating surfaces, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated 12-way power front seats, a backup camera, 7-speaker audio system with HD and satellite radio, 8-inch touchscreen navigation display, pushbutton start, Hyundai's BlueLink telematics and a 4.2-inch multi-function display in the instrument cluster. Bi-xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights, LED daytime running lights, power-folding mirrors, paddle shifters, and electro-luminescent instruments also are standard.
All-wheel drive is a $2,500 option, which also includes heated rear seats, heated steering wheel and heated headlight washers. The $3,900 Signature Package adds a panoramic sunroof, power adjustment for the steering wheel, power rear sunshade, ventilated front seats, blind-spot detection with rear cross-traffic alert, and a 14-speaker Lexicon surround-sound audio system. The rearview camera display contains park guidance.
Obtaining the Tech Package requires the Signature Package, adding lane-departure warning and lane-keep assist, automatic emergency brake assist, high beam assist, adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, and a 7-inch multi-function display in the instrument panel.
Finally, the Ultimate Package builds upon the Tech Package, including matte finish aluminum and wood trim, a head-up display, a 9.2-inch touchscreen navigation display, 17-speaker Lexicon audio, and a power trunk lid.
For some $15,000 more than the price of a V6 model, the Genesis 5.0 brings V8 power. Now offered only in Ultimate trim, the Genesis 5.0 includes just about everything that’s available in option groups for the V6 models, including comfort/convenience items as well as active-safety features.
While $39,000 or so might already sound like enough to pay for a Hyundai, the Genesis 3.8 can be loaded with additional technology that would make some other luxury cars envious. Moving up to the Genesis 5.0 adds plenty of noteworthy features that cost extra with the V6 model, but pushes the price near an eye-opening $54,000.
2016 Hyundai Genesis Sedan Review
Loaded with technology, powerful engine choices, and a comfortable roomy interior, Hyundai’s mid-size luxury Genesis four-door sedan offers a viable, cost-effective alternative in a crowded segment.
Pricing and Equipment
The 2016 Hyundai Genesis sedan is available in two basic models. The Genesis 3.8 starts at $38,750 and is powered by 3.8-liter V6 engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard; all-wheel drive can be added for $2,500.
The Genesis 5.0 Ultimate starts at $53,850 and is powered by a 5-liter V8 and the same eight-speed automatic transmission. V8-powered Genesis sedans are only available with front-wheel drive.
While the 5.0 Ultimate comes loaded with every bell and whistle already included, Hyundai uses a packaging system to add features and enhancements to the Genesis 3.8.
Feature packages include:
- A 3.8 Signature Package for $3,800. Included is a power tilt-and-slide panoramic sunroof, integrated memory system, power tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, auto-dimming outside mirrors, blind spot detection with rear cross traffic alert, a Lexicon 14-speaker surround audio system, and much more.
- The $3,500 3.8 Tech Package adds luxury and convenience. Highlights include premium leather seats, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, smart cruise control, a haptic steering wheel which communicates with the driver through vibrations, and a 7-inch LCD multi-information display.
- The $3,500 Ultimate Package improves the interior with genuine matte-finish wood and aluminum trim, a heads-up display, a premium 9.2-inch touchscreen and a Lexicon 7-speaker audio system. The exterior gets a power trunk lid.
Prices do not include a $950 freight charge.
- All models of the 2016 Genesis are fitted with a manually shiftable eight-speed automatic transmission that minimizes power loss by employing a lock-up clutch in gears 2 through 8.
- Two engines are available: Hyundai’s capable 3.8-liter V6 that produces 311 horsepower and 293 pound-feet of torque and the 5-liter V8 with 420-horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque.
I was able to spend some time behind the wheel of all three versions of the Genesis and while they all share the same luxury DNA and build quality, I found each example to have unique strengths: I enjoyed the relentless tire-spinning power and suspension-dampening capabilities of the V8. The cornering of the all-wheel drive V6 was second to none, but lacked a little of the drama that I enjoy when I really push a real-wheel drive V6.
Fuel economy isn’t the best, especially in the all-wheel drive and V8 models. It ranges from the reasonable (18 mpg city and 29 mpg highway for the rear-wheel drive V6) to the moderate (16 mpg city and 25 mpg highway for the all-wheel drive V6) to the thirsty (15 mpg city and 23 mpg highway for the V8).
The sophisticated, spacious interior of the 2016 Genesis proves the premium modifier that the brand uses in its marketing. The best-in-class 123 cubic feet of passenger volume means that the midsize Genesis technically qualifies as a full-size sedan. Adding to the airy, open feeling is the available expansive panoramic moonroof.
- The leather seats are roomy and comfortable. During an extended trip, I found that they displayed the balance of support and comfort that you would expect in a sporty luxury car. I also had the chance to spend a leg of the five-hour driving tour as a rear-seat passenger and discovered that the Genesis would be an excellent choice for realtors, livery drivers, and families with teenagers who play basketball.
The 2016 Genesis is loaded with standard and available safety and convenience-oriented technology. Hyundai’s Safety Sensory Surround System includes smart cruise control with start/stop, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning with lane keep assist, blind spot detection, back up camera and rear cross-traffic alert, and an available heads-up display to monitor them. During my five-hour drive, I was able to test all of the systems short of the automatic emergency braking feature. Hyundai has done an excellent job integrating the technology in a largely unobtrusive manner. That said, Hyundai is aware that some owners will not desire all the unsolicited driving advice and switching systems on or off is easy to do.
- The 2016 Genesis features an electroluminescent gauge cluster featuring standard 4.3-inch or optional 7-inch TFT LCD displays, providing pertinent instantaneous information to the driver.
- Buyers opting for the premium navigation system will be able to enjoy a segment-first 9.2-inch 720p HD resolution touch screen. Powered by Intel, the lightning fast infotainment system is easy to use and includes 30GB media storage via USB.
The rear seats do not fold down to provide more cargo space, something very popular in the segment.
The Most Pleasant Surprise
Surprisingly, my personal favorite is the base rear-wheel drive V6. I felt that the power was more than adequate and the driving experience was almost as exhilarating as the V8, but the four additional miles per gallon and its incredible price-to-value ratio tipped the scales in the least expensive model's favor.
The Least Pleasant Surprise
The dramatically poor gas mileage in the V8 trim -- 15 mpg city -- is just not enough these days.
The Bottom Line
Hyundai has come a long way over the past decade, delivering some of the most exciting new vehicles on the road today. The 2016 Genesis sedan takes the manufacturer’s new found glory to the next level by offering a luxurious interior and incredible driving dynamics with a relatively affordable price tag. The amazing warranties only sweeten the deal.