There was something missing when Hyundai unveiled its second-generation Genesis sedan earlier this week in Detroit.
The brand began advertising its new “HTRAC” all-wheel drive system last October, saying it would debut in its upcoming luxury mid-sizer. HTRAC splits torque between the front and rear axles electronically As the world learned this week, the 2015 Genesis rides on a new platform that Hyundai spent piles of cash to develop.
That’s why it came as a shock when the specification sheets showed the 3.8-liter V6 model being offered with HTRAC, but not its 5.0-liter V8 sibling. It seems strange that Hyundai would spend so much to package all-wheel drive capability in its new platform only to squander it on a single engine when there are two available.
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But Hyundai didn’t show all its cards in Motown this week. Spokesman Miles Johnson confirmed that the company is considering a performance-focused version of the Tau 5.0-liter V8 model that will use HTRAC all-wheel drive that would arrive after the cars shown in Detroit launch in the spring.
Hyundai’s top brass hasn’t given the green light for production yet, but Johnson said “we think there may be a market demand for such a model.”
Johnson didn’t say if that model will benefit from a power increase over the 420 hp in the rear-wheel drive V8 Genesis, but Hyundai promises that the new chassis is much stiffer than before. The brand claims a long list of performance enhancements for the new generation in general like improved lateral grip thanks to a reduction in camber angles for 23 percent less tire tilt.
Presumably, the enhanced model would still use the same eight-speed automatic found on the rest of the line.
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