By on June 5, 2012
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Finally, our long-promised video series makes its debut, with our very own Jack Baruth at the helm, doing what he does best; bullying PR people into paying his obscene room service bill putting today’s sports cars to the test on a closed circuit.

For our first episode, we took a Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 Track model to Toronto Motorsports Park, as well as a certain vehicle from “Brand P” to use as a baseline. While we were there, we ran in to a few “exotic” machines that cost far more than our humble Hyundai, but didn’t exactly perform any better.

We’re hoping to do further installments of the series. For now, enjoy Jack and his questionable wardrobe choices.

Thanks to Hyundai Canada for providing the car (which is known as a 3.8GT in the Great White North), and Chris Blanchette for his amazing video production.

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86 Comments on “TTAC Track Days With Jack Baruth Episode 1: Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8 Track...”


  • avatar
    Robstar

    Any chance on editing some captions into the video? For those of us with sleeping kids or who are hard of hearing, captions REALLY help.

    • 0 avatar
      protomech

      Have you tried the machine transcription option in the youtube video? Click the little CC icon next to the gear icon at the bottom of the video.

      Sometimes it’s just shy of brilliant, sometimes it’s laughably bad.

  • avatar
    Ubermensch

    I was surprised at how sweet that engine sounds. Nice.

    • 0 avatar
      daviel

      Very nice review – straightforward, clear. Nice job, Jack. I amMustang material next time, but I’ll drive one of these. I like your “brand P,” too.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    Very good video! If I could make one suggestion, leave the passenger window closed to avoid wind noise in the mic…of course, then you don’t hear the engine. The engine does sound good for a V6 though.

    • 0 avatar
      laphoneuser

      Love the video, but as someone who has worked as a professional editor for the past 11 years, I have to agree with the above comment about the sound.

      You guys need to invest in a wireless mic setup. Camera mic only goes so far.

      • 0 avatar
        Jack Baruth

        I’m actually wearing a wireless mic but we had all sorts of problem with extremely heavy wind (that isn’t a giant music-video fan blowing my hair) and, of course, the fact that the Genesis is running above 100mph for some portions of my in-car droning.

  • avatar
    Cleatus

    Too bad they smashed the front end of this thing with the ugly bat. And that little tear drop thing on the back windows doesnt help much either.

  • avatar
    highlandmiata

    Jack is defintely channeling a little Nic Cage as Acid Yellow there. (Though acid would never wear shorts like that, I am sure)

    Though this was informative in a sort of sound byte way, and I really appreciated the commentary on the Korean mustang issue, I’m hoping future installments are a little longer and a little more in-depth. I get that this is not supposed to be a full review, but rather a feel of what it is like at the track, but I think even more could have been done on that front. I’m sure the series will develop well in the future.

    The under the bleachers shots were cool, but I could have used a walk around of the car in full sun, perhaps pointing out interesting parts or where the styling has been refreshed (the headlights looked different, maybe better? hard to say under those bleachers…) Again, I get that this is not abou tthat, but you were teasing me with half shots there.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      I’m going to write the text counterpart to this and put it up tomorrow. Details will be provided :)

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        I’ve not driven this car yet, but it seems heavier and larger (exterior wise) than what it needs to be, and that this unnecessary extra girth and weight can only serve to hamper its performance.

        Please let us know your thoughts on this, JB.

  • avatar
    raph

    Digg’n the gold wind breaker PIMP! And sigh… I really wish Hyundai would drop a V8 in thier coupe (we know they can do it, Hyundai worked with Rhys Millen to shoehorn one in there).

  • avatar
    TheHammer

    Awful

  • avatar
    Mrb00st

    Jesus jack. That jacket. My retinas. Ouch.

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    This I am liking… although your hoodie made me laugh pretty hard, you look like you mugged the guys from LMFAO and the hoodie was the only thing that would fit you. :P

    Nice review, interesting and once you got through the silliness of the intro it was a very business-like review. And never discount how much fun you can have with the chubby ones…

  • avatar
    Zombo

    A depreciation nightmare with an instant explosion engine ? Too funny ! I’m guessing the tendency for the car to jerk on up shifts from the first generation was fixed since it wasn’t mentioned .The first years of the Genesis Coupe definitely had a simpler cleaner look to them though , IMO they refined the car and ruined the look with that homely front end treatment . Couldn’t get through a single episode of that horrible HBO show Girls – Game of Thrones all the way for the best HBO show . Hell it’s the best show on tv !

  • avatar
    YellowDuck

    So how is it that TTAC ended up at TMP? That’s my home track (motorcycles, not cars…)

  • avatar
    Detroit-Iron

    Bob: Hey! Did you ever notice that, uh, in the movies they, when they’re driving like they don’t look at the road? Like, for a long time?

    Doug: Gee, no. I’d never noticed that.

  • avatar

    That was a good five minutes.

    Nice calves.

  • avatar
    dejal1

    Nice jacket. Did they give you a bowl of soup when you picked it up?

  • avatar
    gslippy

    Outstanding. Excellent camera work, and I love the moving narration.

    There was a leftover red 2010 GC-Track at my local dealer in early 2011, selling for $25k. I know I could have had it for $24k, but it doesn’t fit my lifestyle.

    FWIW, my Sedona’s 3.8 doesn’t sound like that.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Nice work Jack. Props for the disco grade wind breaker, no nonsense delivery and not making a single Kimchi reference while reviewing a Korean car.

  • avatar
    imag

    That was surreal.

  • avatar
    challenger2012

    The Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz wants his jacket back. I hope you didn’t pay money for it.

  • avatar
    vchengap

    Great first video! Looking forward to future installments.

    BTW, loving the jacket.

  • avatar
    philadlj

    Very nice…hope to see more from this series!

    This probably marks the first time the Genesis Coupe has been compared to Hannah Horvath.

  • avatar
    Mullholland

    Nice first effort! Solid presentation and production values. Quite informative and enjoyable. BUT YOU’VE GOT TO FIX THAT LOGO (and the animated thumb cheeses it up massively).
    I remember a design contest or two that went nowhere. I recall that when the current TTAC logo was introduced, Ed told everybody to relax and that its look was still evolving. What happened? The site deserves better. Thumbs up/down is a horrible cliche.

  • avatar
    mitchw

    great stuff, JB! How about a bit about pedal placement and trail brake/throttle stuff? But don’t even try explaining the sartorial set up.

  • avatar

    This sounds persuasive. My problem, however, is that I would never actually take it to the track. When I had Neon, I did not autocross it even ONCE. Yes, really. It always was one or the other, riding someone’s car, no helmet, whatever. At least my Jeep sees real off-roading out of necessity.

  • avatar
    Thill

    Nicely done, I enjoyed the review. As a 2013 Genesis Coupe owner I thought your review was fair and balanced. Many of the likes about the car you pointed out are my likes about it as well.

    What are your thoughts on the manual transmission. The previous version of the car got beat up quite a bit for having a vague shifter.

    Thanks, and keep them coming!

  • avatar
    stuntmonkey

    Only one thing to say about this review –

    “I love goooooooooooooooooollllddd!!!”

    • 0 avatar
      USAFMech

      I was thinking more like the mole scene. “Mole. Moley, moley, moley. I want to chop it up and make guacaMOLEY!” No matter what Jack was saying all I heard and saw was JACKET! “Is it a Korean JACKET!?”. “It handles like a JACKET!” Very distracting. Otherwise, great review of the new Toyota.

  • avatar
    fredtal

    I’m not really enthusiastic about Korean cars, and to a lesser extent Japanese. This video made me rethink that a little, so I guess in that context it was a successful video and got it’s point accross. Thanks

  • avatar
    Travis

    The production was pretty damn good.

    Jack, you have really good screen presence and a good way of getting your points across with inflection, body language, and voice control.

    Spend a few more minutes scripting out what you plan on saying so you don’t use the same large words over and over and over in a short timeframe.

    Don’t wear something gaudy and stupid looking. I mean, really, what were you trying to accomplish? If it was an inside joke or this series is supposed to be half hearted, it makes some sense. If not, ditch the disco ball.

    When talking about the car, spend less time driving hard while doing it. What you say is good, but it’s too funny watching you try to say it while you’re out of breath. Some is ok. All is bad.

    Overall, pretty good video. If you actually want it to be badass, make it a little more professional. It doesn’t have to lose the Baruth-ness, just the shiny out-of-breath-Baruthness.

    • 0 avatar
      righteousball

      Vis-a-vis the LeftLane videos, I think a lot of things in this one were intentional and done for comic effect. (Who watches Girls anyway? Such a tasteless show…)

      What I’m trying to say is, I’ve seen nothing on Mr. JB’s output in the past 2-3 years that would indicate the wardrobe is his actual personal taste.

      Also I appreciated seeing him in the driver’s seat vis-a-vis the cast of Burn Notice – now I’ve got a very good sense of scale re: how big the interior is.

      • 0 avatar
        Educator(of teachers)Dan

        If it was an inside joke or this series is supposed to be half hearted, it makes some sense…

        With the exception of intercourse and racing, everything Jack does is half-hearted.

      • 0 avatar
        Travis

        I appreciate and enjoy the word play and ribbing Jack always does to the ‘competition’ and people that he feels deserve it. The wardrobe was a bit much, though.

    • 0 avatar
      tekdemon

      Even accounting for the hard driving he sounds oddly out of breath for some reason. When he’s standing still on the pavement he still occasionally sounds out of breath for some reason.

    • 0 avatar
      Furhead

      Travis, your comments are exactly what I wanted to say, thanks for saving me the time!

      I don’t think I have heard the word “kinesthetic” used so many times in 5 minute period.

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    Awesome video Jack! Too bad the redesign wasn’t around a year ago!

  • avatar

    Most surprising? Jack acknowledging the Genesis will be the longer-lived of the two cars.

    Impressed by the mid-drive narration. Were it me, I’d be all “The Genesis has new trac–ohfncksh!t” [saws at wheel] “where was I? …control, which allows…”

    • 0 avatar
      AKADriver

      I’ve read comments from Jack before – maybe it was an Avoidable Contact piece, maybe it was an ancient forum post – that he believes the 986/996 were fine cars but not built in “lifetime service” fashion as the old Brand P cars were.

      The thing about Boxsters in particular is that, at least in the case of a 2.5L early model, the resale value has dipped below the cost of some of the potential problems. Anything that would require engine long-block replacement will “total” the car. A nice 40,000 mile 50-Jahre Boxster S isn’t there yet, but a ’99 base model with six digits on the odo?

      Now, the saving grace would be if those types of failures stay rare enough to keep a decent supply of junkyard engines. That’s what has kept all those sub-$4000 944s on the road.

  • avatar
    desob

    Two thumbs up Jack, I enjoyed the take on the Genesis 3.8. As recently having been bitten by the road racing bug, pretty much my philosophy nowadays is “if it don’t go it better tow!” All my evaluations for cars has to do with if it would make a good track day or race car. I look forward to more of these from you, thanks for the effort and keep up the good work!

  • avatar
    tonykaz

    Outstanding — a great video — JB had discovered a new career — I’ve never heard anyone put a car into Context like JB . TTAC is becoming with CD could’ve been and had the potential to be but decided not to be . TTAC just keeps getting better and better . Does this have anything to do with that Needamieyer guy doing political for a year ?? congrads , please continue !!
    ps . where can I get one of those gold shirts ???
    Tony Kazmierski

  • avatar
    Emski

    Great video guys!
    Jack, have you driven a 350Z or 370Z by any chance? If so, how would you compare the Genesis Coupe with the two?

  • avatar
    dwight

    I was a passenger in a friend’s 2012 Mustang V6 and despite how awesome the car was, I couldn’t get over the huge hood that was on a “pony” car. especially when I drive a 06 civic coupe. Got in my civic and gave out a sigh of relief – glad I don’t have to drive with hood of a Cadillac DTS on a sports car.

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    A guy in a snazzy gold jacket who knows stuff about cars, driving a car around a track in the great land of Canadia.

    Awesome.

    Also spot on in your assertions about the Genesis…

  • avatar
    daveainchina

    Decent review Jack. Only comments..

    that jacket is completely pimptastic, scary looking.

    but my real comment is that it sounds like your breathing heavy too often.. ie exercising while your talking. The pauses to catch your breath as you speak were pretty distracting.

    Windnoise etc.. that didn’t bother me so much. But the heavy breathing did.

    My suggestion is that if you film some of the review in the car, do it when you are either going slower or in straight lines, not around turns. Also might want to consider doing more of the review while out of the car, for just this reason.

  • avatar
    DJTragicMike

    No helmet?? Must be in Canada or something. I love the European car review videos with a helmetless gent nonchalantly flogging a $500k supercar while chatting and waving a free hand mid-corner. I’d feel naked on track without a helmet. Maybe the technicolor dream hoodie helps.

    Do more video stuff!

  • avatar
    NMGOM

    Jack…

    Congratulations on the start of this new video series! This first episode was really good, and a much needed addition to TTAC.

    Yes, it could maybe use some refinement and “polish”, but that will come in time, with more practice, and in the way that you determine.

    Actually, your whole motif reminded my of Steve Sutcliffe from “Autocar”…. simply taking out one car at a time, and narrating his impressions and findings along the way. I realize that you had a “Standard Car P” lurking in the background, but the main emphasis was not really a head-to-head comparison, but what you thought about this particular Hyundai. I, too, have grown weary of simplistic, binary win/lose comparisons. In my view, you have taken a more mature and sophisticated approach.

    Your views were enthusiastic, fair, and balanced; and as a result, I actually do want to go down to my local Hyundai dealer to test-drive a Genesis myself. And, surprisingly, your review might also suggest that the Genesis could give a Nissan 370Z a run for its money, while still providing 2+2 seating!

    Two suggestions:
    1) Please slow down the rate of your verbal delivery just a little bit, even though I know you were trying to get a lot of info into those 5 minutes;
    2) Please consider using a conventional winding road as a substitute for, or in addition to, a test track, ….simply to let everyone know a bit more of how the car(s) would behave in more common everyday situations.

    Again, I was really happy with this video experiment from TTAC, and look forward to many more. (And, as far as I’m concerned, you can wear any type of jacket you want, but fashion is not my forte, so what do I know…. (^_^). Maybe the other guys are right….)

    ———–

    • 0 avatar
      Alex French

      I just want to echo the suggestion to slow down. I don’t mind getting less information if it means you can talk at a normal pace and let your words sink in a bit.

  • avatar

    I appreciate the review, but dislike how every reviewer of
    every car says “it needs more power”. If the thing had 500
    horses and weighed the same we would hear “we cannot help but
    imagine how nice it would be with 520 hp”. The Sonata turbo
    now makes almost double the power of my two liter with the same
    displacement.

    Stop it or you will be pedaling your fat ass around in hell on a pushbike.

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      To be fair, he says it doesn’t feel like a 348HP car should. Sounds more like the power isn’t getting to the wheels as it should.

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      mor2bz…..

      There seems to be an Axiom for Automobiles: “THERE IS NEVER ENOUGH POWER!”.

      Ironically, there may even be some rationale for this seeming prejudice.

      Take a look at the Friction Circle (traction circle) of most cars, which I realize is rarely available. You will discover that it is a compressed egg-shape, seen from the top down. That means that 90% (or more) of the cars on the road can generate a higher g-force in deceleration from braking than they can by acceleration from engine power. (This assumes that torque is proportional and lay-down of power through the wheels is no problem.)

      So, when the “Friction Circle” is close to being a TRUE circle, then you know that you have enough power for your particular car. Some cars can do that easily or come close…many super-cars for example (e.g., Bugatti Veyron; Porsche 911 Turbo). My guess (SWAG) for the Genesis Coupe is that something like 600 HP (+ or -) should do it just nicely! (^_^)…

      ———–

  • avatar
    chaparral

    Your voice sounds like a 6 liter engine trying to breathe through a 20mm restrictor.

    Get checked out for asthma. I went down about an octave and took 5 seconds off my quarter mile time when I got an inhaler.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    Solid first effort, but I agree Jack slightly out of breath is a little annoying. Check out the current “Chris Harris On Cars” series, I think he’s setting the gold standard for these types of videos at the moment.

  • avatar
    JohnTheDriver

    Awesome review, loved the delivery, reminds me of Mr. Deity. Just out of curiosity, if the “generic P-car” is so gawd awful why use it as a comparison? In fact, why would you even own one?

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      The Brand P is a great car to drive. I bought it to compete in SCCA National Solo. The problem with the car, and all Brand P cars from that era, is that the engines have a known flaw and Brand P covered it up for years with help from their lackeys in the auto press. So when you pay $61,500 for a car with a disposable engine, you tend to get angry. :)

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTheDriver

        Yea yea, IMSB explodes on contact with sunlight, I get all that. But why use it for comparison purposes and (knowing what you know) why continue to own it?

      • 0 avatar
        Jack Baruth

        Another great feature of watercooled Porkers: cliff-face depreciation! My 2004 Box S Anniversary is now worth considerably less than my 1995 993. Say $24K tops. What’s the point of selling it for $24K? What am I going to buy for $24K to drive on sunny days? A used Eos?

      • 0 avatar
        JohnTheDriver

        So accelerated depreciation is your rational for KEEPING the vehicle? Most folks cut their losses. Your logic seems a bit odd here. For 24k aren’t you within spitting distance of one of those new drop-top V6 uberstangs? How ’bout an MX-5? An FT-86 with enough left over for a rag-top mod! Be the first on your block!

        Honestly I think you need to approach the numbers differently. I dont think an 8 year-old (let’s say ‘lightly’ tracked) ‘stang sells for %40 of it’s original purchase price. And Boxsters ain’t neunelfers.

  • avatar
    AKADriver

    The comment about the car’s driving position is an important one. It goes a long way towards shrinking the apparent size of the Genesis when you’re behind the wheel. I wouldn’t say it’s quite like a Civic, as it still has a higher cowl and lower seating position than the ’88-’00 models everyone likes, but it’s much like any non-sedan-based Japanese sports coupe from that era. The effect is more like a last-gen 300ZX. It’s also very similar in weight and power to that car, but with 20 years of improvements to the handling and brakes.

  • avatar
    Furhead

    Overall, I like this new segment and hope to see more of them. But please, get rid of the gold jacket.

  • avatar
    Johnny Canada

    I can’t believe they let you in the country…must have been a female border guard.

  • avatar
    ProfessorSlow

    I liked it a lot. Couple of things:

    In car, think of using a camera facing forward shooting over the shoulder / down the centerline. You (the driver) will still be visible, the viewer can still see you work the controls, but they also get a quasi-POV of the track and get a vibe of the pace. It will also hide the unfortunate combination of that jacket, the seat belt and your belly.

    Don’t be afraid to dub over parts. Some of the in-car bits have you a bit short of breath. An over-the-shoulder shot has another advantage of not showing your mouth, so you can talk your ideas out loud and then re-record them more composedly later. Although I admit being able to actually hear the car is something I regret losing in a more heavily produced Top-Gear-ish video.

    Bonus points for casually working in “kinesthetics” at possibly three-digit speeds.

    How was the transmission, how was the side/rear visibility, and are the stock tires worth mentioning?

  • avatar
    Lemmy-powered

    I like this format.

    OK, so instead of a dashing Alain de Cadenet shouting above the roar of some old Maserati, it’s Jack Baruth in full Amber Alert get-up, droning a bit while wringing out a new Hyundai.

    But it fits with TTAC very nicely. I felt like I was in good hands, and getting the straight dope.

    Looking foward to the next one.

  • avatar
    Jack Baruth

    Thanks to everyone for the help and suggestions… we have a long list of things to do better.

    The “out of breath” thing is, I think, a function of where we had to place the microphone. We will fix and I will pay attention to how my vocal delivery affects the mike,

    I liked the idea of running a stopwatch-worthy lap while casually chatting about the car. It didn’t work as well as I’d hoped.

    The Betabrand Golden Hoodie may not return… something else is on the way.

    I can’t get any better-looking or less squeaky-sounding, unfortunately :) Everything else we can fix.

    • 0 avatar
      gslippy

      I think the gold jacket should appear in every video, either on you or on someone else in the background – an ‘extra’, if you will. The subliminal effect would be fantastic.

      And I still like the out-of-breath thing; it’s a similar effect as when the weatherman is reporting on a hurricane while standing in the middle of it. How many people can provide a running dialog at 100 mph?

  • avatar
    oldwheelsnewyork

    Jack, I was thrilled to see this series getting underway. But my enthusiasm was dampened by your comment about ‘Girls’. Comparing the weight of the car with someone you’d rather not see naked, no matter your intent, comes across as sexist and degrading.

    I think you’re an outstanding journalist, and I know you can do a whole lot better than that. One can be playful and still respect women, as your other pieces show most certainly. It took a lot of strength for me to not turn off the video once I heard that comment.

    I think this series is a great idea and well-made, and look forward to the next installment.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      I figured the comment would have less teeth coming from someone who has struggled with excess pounds ever since I gave up racing bicycles. You’re making a fair point there and we are unlikely to do something like that again.

    • 0 avatar
      righteousball

      Meanwhile your comment conjured this need in me to scream at you and say: stop trying to neuter him.

      So I’m using every ounce of my self-control to attempt to explain myself: I struggle with weight, I’m 5’7 and 200 lbs. I know tons and tons of people who would not want to see me naked, which in theory makes me the group you’re trying to (somehow, inexplicably) defend/protect from mister Jack’s humorous dig.

      But I learned the hard way that fat or thin, my self-esteem simply cannot come from what others say, and I feel that if I’m more secure with myself I wouldn’t be so easily offended by just anything.

      I wish everyone else would realize that, instead of the truth always giving way to political correctness, which I believe in the end will just contribute to an increasing “brain-fog” of the masses.

      There’s also the double A-side argument of “you may not like the sound of it but it’s true!/every stereotype has a solid origin somewhere in deep space”, but I’ll save that for episode 2 or my Meat Loaf cover band project. :P

  • avatar
    C170guy

    That engine did sound good, but the suspension looked poor.
    It appeared to be porpoising. I know you want some weight transfer to the rear wheels (RWD), but the front looks like it starts to wash-out with power understeer exiting corners. Even the best tires won’t grip with no weight on them.

    It’s almost as if the wheelbase was too short because they put a big heavy powerful car on too small of a platform, but the wheels are practically at the corners of the car already.

    Did anyone else notice that, or am I overestimating the pitching?

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      On a road course, when you are really beating on a car, even a Daytona Prototype pitches a bit. For the ponycar/entry luxury segments, the GenCoupe is pretty well-controlled.

  • avatar
    metavenue

    You’re getting some good advice on how to improve production value for the next video. I’d have your team take a look at the Chris Harris’ Drive videos, especially the one on the Mercedes Benz SL series, which are the best I’ve seen of these kind of videos.

    couple more points:

    1)I agree that you can edit down what you say – have a transcript done of everything you say in the next shoot and I’m sure you and the editor can cut the next one so you say what you want to say more succinctly and clearly 2) you can either talk cogently to the camera or drive at 120mph but probably not both at the same time 3) Fix the issues with the wireless mic by driving slower or perhaps using a wind shield thing over the mic itself 4) drop the weak jokes but keep the gold jacket. It’s the sartorial equivalent of your lime Audi


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