Hyundai’s Genesis luxury arm has been churning out enviable concept cars. The 2018 Essentia Concept is first in mind, the brand’s initial attempt at a grand touring sports car. Moreover, the Genesis X Speedium Coupe Concept, the pinnacle of the brand’s “Athletic Elegance” design philosophy (according to us), remains fresh in our memory banks for simply being a gorgeous car.
But now, Genesis has unveiled a full-scale model of the X Gran Berlinetta Vision Gran Turismo (VGT) Concept. It made its virtual debut at the 2021 Monterey Car Week, a year before Genesis wowed our senses with the X Speedium Coupe Concept. It looked good in the gaming world, and we reckon it looks equally stunning in the flesh, proof that Genesis designers are taking their A-game to Polyphony Digital’s Gran Turismo 7 with all guns blazing.
Qué Bonito Coche
The Genesis X Gran Berlinetta VGT Concept has muscular haunches that belie its gaming origins. Racing cars in the natural and virtual worlds have many aero-enhanced appendages to fortify their hardcore intent, some of which border on the extreme. But we’re talking about a GT car for Gran Turismo 7, the seventh iteration of the original PlayStation game that became the pinnacle of racing games, and the X Berlinetta VGT Concept looks the part.
The most striking aspect is it doesn’t look like a concept at all, much less a racing car for gaming. The anti-wedge, cab-backward proportions bring to mind the glorious Toyota GR GT3 concept that could morph into a Lexus. At the same time, the rear stance relives memories of the Jaguar XJ220’s magnificent back end.
“Our goal was to create a timeless design rooted in the essence of motorsport,” said John Krsteski, Genesis Senior Chief Designer. “It has become a catalyst of inspiration for our other programs.”
Genesis presented the life-size X Gran Berlinetta VGT Concept at the Gran Turismo World Series World Finals in Barcelona, Spain, wearing a stunning Magma Orange paint. Other prominent features include an extended dash-to-axle ratio (reminiscent of Captain Nemo’s “Nautilus Car” from The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen), continuous LED driving lights that link the quad headlights and front grille, and a delicately curving rear spoiler. The hopelessly curvaceous body shell resulted in a 0.34 drag coefficient.
Hybrid V6 Powerplant
With all that dash-to-axle room, it wouldn’t be amiss to assume a V12 or V16 lurking underneath the X Gran Berlinetta VGT Concept’s hood, but you’d be wrong. Instead, it has a front mid-mounted Lambda 11 V6 engine with Genesis E-SC hybrid technology.
The V6 gas engine produces 870 horsepower and 790 lb-ft. of torque, while the hybrid system adds 201 horsepower and 196 lb-ft. of torque. All told, it has 1,071 horsepower and 986 lb-ft. of torque at its disposal, with the gas engine spinning at a heady 10,000 rpm. Who needs a weighty V12 when you can have a hybrid V6 with more horses?
Genesis didn’t share any other performance figures in Barcelona, and we’ll have to wait for the car’s debut on Gran Turismo 7 (January 2024) to find out if Genesis is ready to join the burgeoning hypercar GT segment.
Purist Cabin Design
The Genesis X Gran Berlinetta VGT Concept has an ultra-minimalist interior with just the right touches of premium luxury. It has a “digital panoramic interface” with a surround digital monitoring system to “provide unobstructed views of nearby vehicles,” said Genesis. Meanwhile, the carbon fiber cabin has strategically placed soft touch points and quilted and padded bolstering so as not to pinch your love handles.
Get The X Gran Berlinetta VGT Concept
Fans and players of Gran Turismo 7 can have the Genesis X Gran Berlinetta VGT Concept delivered to their garages starting in January 2024. The process begins by clicking on the campaign banner on the GT7 world map and watching the Manufacturer’s Cup broadcast from December 2nd, 19:00 CET onwards.
Alvin Reyes is an Automoblog feature columnist and an expert in sports and performance cars. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.