Genesis Luxury Sports Sedan Opens a New Era for Hyundai

  • Reinvents luxury with premium performance, technology and quality that challenges the status quo

Hyundai Motor Co. today opened a bold new era with the world premiere of Genesis luxury sports sedan at a VIP-filled launch ceremony. With its artfully-sculpted modern exterior form and understated, clean character lines, Genesis projects an authoritative, sophisticated presence.

Developed under the BH project codename over a period of four years, Genesis represents an investment of US$600 million (approximately R4,2 billion).

“Genesis is the pride of Hyundai technology and symbolizes our determination to enter the highly competitive arena of luxury cars now dominated by the Europeans. Genesis will consolidate our position as the leader of the Korean auto industry and will pave the way forward for our leap into the global market,” said Chairman and CEO, Chung Mong-Koo.

Using the Mercedes E-Class, BMW 5-series and Lexus GS as the engineering benchmarks for the Genesis program, the development team broke with over two decades of front engine, front-wheel drive tradition and adopted a rear wheel drive configuration.


Genesis is manufactured at the company’s Ulsan plant at a new purpose built facility which adopts numerous innovations in manufacturing. One of the most noteworthy is the use of adhesive bonding which is used to supplement the traditional body welding process. The adoption of dual joining techniques—adhesive and welding—yields a significantly more rigid body than is possible using a single joining technique.

Historically, automobiles have been assembled using multiple spot welds but Genesis’ steel body breaks with this tradition. Critical seams are joined using an adhesive coating which creates a high-strength chemical bond. This is then supplemented with traditional multiple spot welds to yield unmatched joint quality and body stiffness.

This rigid body structure allowed Hyundai chassis engineers to resolve two mutually contradictory goals: to maintain precise steering and excellent handling capabilities while delivering a quieter, more comfortable ride. And to provide a super strong safety cage, Genesis engineers used two grades of high strength steel.


Genesis today comes with a choice of two engines: the 3.3-litre V6 Lambda and the 3.8-litre V6. Later in the year, the all-new 4.6-litre V8 Tao engine will join the lineup.

To maximize the spread of power, the V-6 Lambda engines utilize Continuously Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) on intake and exhaust camshafts and a new Variable Intake System (VIS) that helps cylinders breathe efficiently at low and high RPM.

The better breathing results in outstanding off-the-line acceleration and passing performance, as well as remarkable fuel efficiency. Both V-6 engines are made of lightweight aluminum providing thermal efficiency, and feature timing chains with no scheduled maintenance. Even with their impressive output, all Genesis engines are also environmentally friendly, achieving Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) certification levels.


Power is delivered to the rear wheels through an Aisin 6-speed SHIFTRONIC® automatic transmission that features an overdrive lock-up torque converter for improved highway fuel economy. The transmission offers smooth shifts and a wide spread of ratios that ideally suit both engine’s characteristics including a tall-overdrive sixth gear for quiet, efficient highway cruising.


Maintaining Hyundai’s emphasis on delivering leading safety technology, Genesis boasts world-class active and passive safety features to help both prevent accidents, and maximize the well being of its occupants in the event of a collision.

Genesis continues the Hyundai tradition of standardizing key life-saving safety technology such as Electronic Stability Control (ESC), eight airbags and electronic active head restraints.

An electronic active head restraint system will debut on Genesis. Hyundai is the first popular brand to offer electronic active front head restraints, an improvement over mechanically based active head restraint systems. Until now, electronic active head restraints could only be found on select luxury European models. Active front head restraints have been proven by the U.S.-based Insurance Institute for Highway Safety to help prevent whiplash.

Braking is provided by large four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with Brake Assist and Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD). The 12.6-inch front disks have single-piston floating calipers and the rear brakes feature 12.4-inch disks with single-pistons on V6 models.


Genesis features a suspension design that is among the most sophisticated and refined anywhere, at any price. The front five-link suspension features upper and lower arms linking the front wheels to the chassis.

This artfully articulated arrangement creates a virtual king pin axis that dramatically reduces unwanted kickback through the steering wheel as well as improving responsiveness. The five-link independent rear suspension is equally sophisticated, enabling precise suspension geometry for a premium ride and engaging handling prowess.


Genesis comes with Xenon high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights. The advantages of HID headlamps include greater lighting power, daylight-type lighting and reduced power consumption. The lamps also feature an auto-leveling function which keeps the headlights level regardless of how the vehicle is loaded with passengers or cargo. Headlamps also swivel automatically for better peripheral visibility when cornering.

Genesis’ other innovative features include:

  • Driver Information System with a 30GB hard disk drive and user-friendly multimedia jog/shuttle wheel controller provides near-instant control over navigation, audio entertainment system (CD/DVD/MP3 personal audio such as i-Pod), cellphone with Bluetooth connectivity, and DMB television. All DIS functions are software updatable giving Genesis owners easy and quick access to the expanded features and latest improvements.
  • A premium surround-sound audio system by Lexicon® with 17 speakers and a 12-channel 528W amplifier featuring LOGIC 7® technology.
    The only other automobile to offer a Lexicon® audio system is the Rolls Royce Phantom.
  • Electronic Parking Brake: simply flick the switch to engage or disengage the parking brake.
  • Auto-Hold Brakes which eliminates need for the driver to keep constant pressure on the brake pedal during stops; brakes are released automatically upon application of throttle.
  • Smart Cruise Control use radar waves to help maintain safe driving distance while cruise control feature is engaged.
  • Smart Key Technology with key proximity sensor which enables driver to simply press a button to start or stop engine.
  • State-of-the-Art Sachs sports-tuned Electronic Air Suspension raises or lowers vehicle height to optimize aerodynamics and improve road-holding during high speed driving.

Genesis is due to arrive in North American showrooms by June and in China in the second half of this year.