2009 Hyundai Genesis 4.6

Hyundai shoots far above its economy car roots with the Genesis, a car that has been much-anticipated since it was shown at last year's auto shows.

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Badgeless grille

Hiding its identity, Hyundai leaves the H badge off the front of the car.

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4.6-liter V-8

The fact that Hyundai was building a big V-8 got the attention of the automotive press. This engine puts out 375 horsepower and gets the car to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds.

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Body styling

The Genesis' styling lets it fit comfortably among Lexus and Mercedes-Benz models. It's not stunning, but generally looks unoffensive.

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Ride quality

The Genesis damps out most road jolts well enough, but you can feel the harder hits.

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Posterior statement

The Genesis is a little more bold from the back, proclaiming its big engine with twin exhausts, and sporting a large H badge.

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Cabin quality

The cabin looks amazingly good, with metal switchgear and leather along the dashboard.

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Steering wheel buttons

Buttons on the steering wheel are well-designed, easy to manipulate without getting in the way of driving.

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Instrument cluster

The gauges have a clean look, and the center display contains useful information.

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Shifter

The shifter controls a six-speed automatic. The car's application controller sits just below that, and moves similar to BMW's iDrive controller.

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High-res maps

We were very impressed by the map resolution in the navigation system.

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Traffic reports

The navigation system integrates traffic information, such as flow and incidents, but doesn't dynamically route around bad traffic.

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Alpha-numeric entry

The oval track for entering letters and digits is an interesting design, and works well.

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HD radio

Impressively, the Genesis has an HD radio receiver, and can navigate multicasts.

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iPod connectivity

The iPod interface is excellent, letting you browse artists, albums, and genres.

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Lexicon stereo

The Lexicon stereo system uses 17 speakers and pumps out 525 watts. It produces top audio quality.

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DVD playback

Along with CDs, the six-disc changer also plays DVD movies.

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Bluetooth phone system

The phone integration in the Genesis is fairly basic, requiring you to manually enter phone book information.

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