World-debut technology features; sharp handling; great ride; strong, smooth powertrains.
The "M," as it's called by Infiniti, is now available in four different models; there's the V6-powered M35 and the V8-powered M45, both of which can now be had with either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The 4.5L, DOHC V8 makes 325 horsepower in the M45, while the M35 comes with a 275-horespower, 3.5L V6.
The V8 is especially noteworthy; it has titanium valves, a microfinished crankshaft, lightweight pistons and a single-stage cam drive-chain for quiet-running and robust power delivery.
Both engines come with a five-speed automatic transmission that includes a manual shift mode that automatically matches revs during downshifts for a sporty feel and better control. An independent double-wishbone suspension design in front and multi-link setup in back, along with stabilizer bars, helps handling. The doors, hood, and trunklid are made of aluminum for weight savings, which also aids maneuverability.
The all-wheel-drive system that's now offered with either engine reverts to a 50/50 distribution for standing starts and limited-traction situations, then it delivers up to 100 percent up to the rear wheels when cruising or when needed for traction. Electronic stability control is also included, with standard anti-lock brakes with electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist.
A newly available lane departure prevention system, which makes its worldwide debut on the M and Infiniti's EX35 SUV, uses a small camera to detect when you're drifting out of your lane and applies slight brake pressure to the wheels opposite the drift to gently guide the vehicle back into position.
Even though it's equally a sport sedan, the M's interior comes equipped as well as the best luxury cars, with leather upholstery matched with rosewood or aluminum trim and standard leather seating and climate-controlled front seats, plus a very long list of standard luxury conveniences.
The available Sport Package, in addition to appearance enhancements inside and out and larger 19-inch wheels and tires, includes the rear active steer system, which uses electric motors to precisely adjust the rear-suspension geometry for better control, depending on steering input and vehicle speed. Infiniti claims that the system helps bring sports-car-like agility with luxury sedan stability and ride quality.
Standout options include a Bluetooth hands-free phone system, a rearview monitor, intelligent cruise control, and heated power reclining seats in back. The top available sound system employs Bose surround sound and has 14 speakers, including two speakers mounted onto the shoulder area of each front seat.
For 2008, a new all-wheel-drive M45x model joins the existing Infiniti M35x all-wheel drive model and the rear-wheel drive M35 and M45 models. A newly available lane departure prevention system helps improve safety.
Previous M35 and M45 Sport models have been replaced by an optional Sport Package, which brings styling differences, rear active steer, and 19-inch sport wheels and tires.
The M also gets a number of enhancements, such as a revised front and rear appearance, reshaped fenders and decklid, redesigned fog lamps, new chrome trim, and new 18- and 19-inch wheel designs. Six of the eight available exterior colors are new.
Inside, the changes are equally pronounced, with new "Fine Vision" electroluminescent gauges, a revised center console, a new full gray interior color, new door trim, and new wood trim and aluminum texturing throughout. Instrument panel lighting is now in white and violet hues, and the available hard drive navigation system, with integrated digital music system, has been upgraded with XM NavTraffic live traffic-information.
Part sport sedan and part posh luxury car, the 2008 Infiniti M35 and M45 stand out from the market due to their available onboard for the technology, including a sophisticated rear-wheel steering system and a lane-departure system that actually nudges the vehicle back into its lane. Both models also stand out for having a quiet interior, a well-controlled ride, and strong, smooth powertrains.
Vehicle Price: 51,065.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
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