2008 Infiniti G35

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Review: 2007 Infiniti G35

This 2007 review is representative of model years 2007 to 2013.
By Dan Jedlicka of MSN Autos
Rating: 8

Bottom Line:

Infiniti brings its 2007 "G" sedan up to date with sleeker styling, more power and an improved interior to give it a better blend of sport and comfort.
Pros:
  • Nicely revamped
  • Fast
  • Roomy
Cons:
  • No folding rear seatbacks
  • Small inside door handles
  • Annoying express-up power windows

The new G35 sedan from Nissan's upscale Infiniti division has been brought up to date, with more power, sleeker styling and a better interior.

The G35 lacks the brand prestige of Lexus and major German rivals, but is a good alternative to them. It lacks the resale value of those competitors, but undercuts them on prices.

The G35 sedan costs from $31,450 for the Base rear-wheel-drive model with an automatic transmission to $33,950 for the all-wheel-drive G35x trim level with an automatic. Also offered is a manual gearbox. In between are Journey and Sport trim levels.

Fast Moving Industry
The last-generation G35 sedan was considered exceptional only a few years ago, even winning Motor Trend magazine's 2003 Car of the Year award. But things have been moving fast in all auto industry segments, and the "G" began to look and feel rather dated by 2006.

Infiniti thus has revamped the more rigidly built new G35 sedan. (The rear-wheel-drive coupe version not discussed here keeps its 2003-06 design and 280-298-horsepower V6 for 2007.)

Horsepower of the sedan's strong 3.5-liter V6 has been increased to 306, and it comes with rear-wheel drive or in all-wheel-drive (AWD) form.

More Sensual Styling
The car looks more sensual, with such items as a restyled grille and headlights. And, thankfully, the previously subpar interior is much improved.

Even the Base G35 has plenty of comfort, convenience and safety equipment. It includes automatic climate control, leather upholstery, power front seats, cruise control, AM/FM/CD/MP3 player, keyless access and starting and power mirrors, windows and door locks with remote keyless entry.

Standard for the G35x AWD are dual-zone automatic climate controls, heated front seats, heated mirrors, automatic headlights and locking center differential.

The Journey adds to the Base version dual-zone automatic climate control, a 6-disc CD/MP3 changer and automatic headlights.

Racier Sport Version
Move to the Sport trim level and, compared with the Base version, it provides a better power driver's seat, limited-slip differential and a sport suspension with wider tires on larger 18-inch (vs. 17-inch) wheels. The Sport also has an active steer system for improved handling.

All versions get a bunch of safety features, including traction/anti-skid control, front-seat side airbags, front/rear side-curtain airbags, tire-pressure monitor and anti-lock brakes with a brake assist feature.

Key Options
Key options include a Premium package, which costs $2,350 for the Journey and Sport and $2,150 for the AWD trim level. It contains a power sliding sunroof, upscale audio system and heated front seats for the Journey and Sport.

A $2,100 Navigation package for the Journey, Sport and G35x AWD has a navigation system with a touch screen and voice recognition, besides a hard drive for music file storage and XM satellite radio.

Smooth Automatic
The engine transmits power through a 5-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift feature. It upshifts so smoothly in automatic mode that pauses between gear changes often are unfelt. However, there are brief intermittent delays during hard-throttle downshifts.

The 6-speed manual transmission works with a rather stiff clutch. It's offered only for the Sport, which also can be had with the automatic transmission. The manual fits the Sport's personality best, but it's a good thing that buyers of this G35 version have a choice between it and the automatic transmission.

Strong Acceleration
While the G35 doesn't have a V8, it provides V8-style acceleration, streaking to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds. Importantly, there are gobs of reserve power for passing on highways.

Fuel economy with the automatic and rear-wheel drive is an estimated 19 mpg in the city and 26 on highways, or 19 and 25 with all-wheel drive. The Sport with the manual gearbox delivers an estimated 19 and 27. Premium fuel is recommended.

The speed-sensitive steering is precise and a little heavy, but not objectionably so. The accelerator and brake pedals initially felt touchy, but I soon learned to operate them smoothly.

Confident Handling
Handling encourages spirited driving, and the ride is compliant. The standard tires and suspension should be fine for most G35 owners. Those considering the Sport trim level with its firmer suspension and lower-profile tires with less forgiving sidewalls should try before buying.

Four tall adults easily fit in the G35. Front seats offer good support, particularly in the Sport version. A large front console eats into occupant space but has conveniently placed dual cupholders with a cover. However, there's only a moderately sized console storage bin.

The rear seat is roomy and contoured to hold occupants in place. A pull-down center armrest covers the hard center rear seat area.

Impossible to Stop
Entry to the quiet, upscale interior is assisted by oversized door handles, but inside door handles should be larger. Front doors have storage pockets and bottle holders, but I found the power windows impossible to stop with their controls when they were in the express-up mode. That's not the case in the express-down mode, so go figure.

A classy analog clock decorates the center of the dashboard. Some controls are small, but they're easily operated after you get used to them. Large outside mirrors help rear visibility. But steeply angled windshield posts partly obstruct visibility in sharp corners, making it necessary to watch for pedestrians crossing a street in front of the car when it's turning a corner.

No Flip-Forward Seatbacks
The trunk is large, but has a rather high opening. Its lid glides up on struts and has an inside cover to prevent an unfinished look. There's a center pass-through area to the rear seat, but no fold-forward rear seatbacks to enlarge the cargo area.

The hood also goes up smoothly on struts and has a thick underhood cover for sound insulation.

The G35 sedan offers a lot of performance, features and style for the money. Infiniti probably could charge more for the car if it had a more upscale nameplate.

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BB06 - 8/30/2014 3:25:24 PM