Cooley's Logbook: 2012 Hyundai Genesis 5.0 R-Spec

We look at Hyundai's oblique answer to the 5 Series, the under-the-radar Genesis sedan in the R-Spec trim. Hyundai has made a lot of stretch goals lately, but is a budget BMW M fighter a battle they want?

I'll be the first to say I scoffed when I saw an R-Spec badge on the Genesis 5.0 sedan. Needless line extension, I thought. But, in fact, it's not such a stretch (even if the idea that this is a BMW 550i killer is.)

I like the austerity of this car: Clean and almost plain but with sumptuous interior materials. Its 429-horsepower 5.0 V-8 is actually one of the most powerful you can buy in a car under $50 grand and it comes on smoothly. The eight-speed automatic is also an impressive piece at this price, when cars like the Camaro and Grand Cherokee are still hoping to get there.

Overall, this is a nice taut boulevardier but not something I felt really great driving on interesting small roads. Think of it as a value proposition, where its $46,500 MSRP and 10/100 warranty make it a no-brainer for a wide swath of car buyers who are considering a 5 Series but aren't exactly sure why.

Don't quibble over the R-Spec compared with the straight 5.0 V-8 Genesis sedan. The extra $1,000 buys a millimeter of sway bar diameter, an inch of wheel size, and a more aggressive, yet tasteful, look. Cheap at twice the cost.

Read the full CNET Review

2012 Hyundai Genesis 5.0 R-Spec

The Bottom Line: It may look like a sport sedan on paper, but the 2012 Hyundai Genesis 5.0 R-Spec's feature additions amount to little more than a styling upgrade. / Read full review

About the author

Brian Cooley joined CNET in 1995 and always comes at technology from the real consumer's point of view. He brings his high energy, often skeptical style to all avenues of CNET coverage, with an emphasis on car tech. You'll also find him frequently on television, radio and the TV screens at Costco!



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