Thursday 3rd December 2009

Infiniti M: 5-series Rival Unveiled

New Infiniti executive revealed in the metal; G37 saloon gets a refresh

Infiniti has revealed its new third-generation M-series luxury saloon in the metal, and it will be the first to go on sale in Europe. The new 5-series rival will go on sale in the US in spring next year, while Europe-wide sales (and yes, that includes the UK) will start in September 2010.

The Infiniti M is based on the same FM platform as the rest of the Infiniti range, which means rear-wheel drive and an engine set back behind the front wheels. Engine choices (at least for us Europeans) will be the 316bhp 3.7-litre V6 as seen in the rest of the Infiniti range and a new V6 turbodiesel, while a petrol-electric hybrid will join the range in 2011. All versions will transmit their drive via a seven-speed automatic gearbox.

Sadly, the range-topping M56S version, which will be powered by a 400bhp 5.6-litre V8 won’t be making it to the UK (or indeed the rest of Europe).

Infiniti hasn’t released exact prices or specifications, but it’s understood that the car will be aimed squarely at the 5-series and Mercedes E-class, a fact hinted at by Infiniti’s description of the M’s shape: “The M’s design is signature Infiniti, its subtle curves and complex surfacing endowing it with an emotional draw that goes beyond the colder, more austere class norm,” gushes the PR blurb. “Its deeply sculpted door surfaces and front bumper section add distinction and a sense of both aggression and intrigue.”

As is de rigeur for an executive saloon these days, the Infiniti M is packed out with trick technology. In this case that includes active four-wheel steering, adaptive cruise control, a blind spot warning system, a lane departure warning system and a climate control system called ‘Forest Air’.

This last, says Infiniti, offers “unrivalled temperature, humidity and pollution control while re-creating the gentle breezes and subtle scents of an environment known to promote alertness and relieve stress: the forest”. Er, right…

In the spirit of general housekeeping, Infiniti has also given the G37 saloon (right) a spruce-up with smarter cabin materials, a sharper front-end design and the option of four-wheel steer and four-wheel drive.

Author: Riggers

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on 7th December 2009