Hyundai’s new Genesis Coupe already gets everything right, but it just keeps getting better for tuners. Their latest announcement says they will be releasing a Genesis Coupe R-Spec, which is basically a blank slate for tuners and racers to go to town or leave as-is. The R-Spec starts off by getting rid of a few of the standard non-essentials: Bluetooth, auto headlights, cruise control, a trip computer, chrome interior accents, and steering wheel audio controls.
Then they add some fancy go-fast parts, which will surely excite those of us who want to take the car to the track: Track-tuned suspension, 19-inch gunmetal alloy wheels with performance summer tires, Brembo brakes, limited-slip differential, and R-Spec badging. Unfortunately, the R-Spec will only be available in black, white, or red.
The R-Spec will include the 210 horsepower, 2.0-liter turbo engine, and 6-speed manual transmission. An automatic trans will not be available, but why would you want it with this anyway? The low-pressure turbo engine gets 30 mpg on the highway and hits a top speed of a mediocre 137 mph. All Genesis Coupes, including the R-Spec, comes standard with Electronic Stability Control, Traction control, ABS, Brake-Force Distribution, and Brake Assist, much like Toyota’s Star Safety System.
So we have a base Genesis Coupe, stripped of a few non-essentials and fitted with some track parts. What a clever approach Hyundai is taking to reach out to tuners. The R-Spec will cost an incredibly reasonable $23,750, which is $1,750 more than a base Coupe and $3,000 less than the 2.0T Track model. On a side note, I hope some of the parts they removed are optional; I’d still want cruise control and a trip computer, for example.
So you buy this blank slate Genesis Coupe ready to tune – now what? Well, seeing as how the turbo is being described by Hyundai as “low pressure,” the first thing I would do is boost the PSI to the highest possible safe pressure. There’s also been a lot of talk about how the ECU will be tuned, which will be something I hope Hyundai thought about a lot. After that, you can likely start with the normal stuff – air intake, custom exhaust, etc. It already has great Brembo brakes, 19-inch wheels, a limited-slip diff, and a tuned suspension, so no need to worry about that at first. It will also be interesting to see what sorts of body kits show up for the Coupe, although I don’t think it needs one.
The real question is whether or not Hyundai themselves will provide these performance parts Scion-style, or if they’ll leave it all up to third-party companies. Providing their own would be more expensive for us but would give us reassurance with no voided warranties and the guarantee they’re installed correctly.
Regardless, I think Hyundai is doing a fantastic job with the Genesis Coupe, and pending a test drive; it might be my next car. Based on the numbers, specs, and looks alone, they’ve hit all the nails on the head here, and the R-Spec is a great idea despite the fact that they could have done it a better way. I wish they would offer the orange color shown on the Genesis Coupe Concept.
Look for a review of the Genesis Coupe here in the near future, I’m waiting desperately for it to show up on our review car schedule.