Infiniti’s G35 is a delight in every sense
The Infiniti G35’s engine is of the displacement and configuration as before — but numerous technical tweaks make it easier revving.
The triumph of Infiniti’s new G35 is that it builds on the visual impact of the original version. More tautly sculpted flanks and a hunkered-down posture render a more dramatic presence, yet most would agree that the new car’s styling is evolutionary rather than revolutionary.
What is new, and rare among automobiles falling into this category, are such attributes as exceptional communicable steering, reassuring cornering ability and balance, and eye-popping throttle response.
Many a car is described as a sport sedan. The G35 walks the walk, and briskly, too. The engine is of the same displacement and configuration as before — 3.5-litre V6 — but numerous technical tweaks make it easier revving, with a more muscular response. Horsepower has grown to 306 (from 280), torque is plentiful and the engine’s song stays sweet all the way to peak revs.
Nowhere is the partnership between driver and machine further enhanced than in the new G35’s steering. Improved chassis stiffness helps, as does a revised steering rack mount. Beyond that, steering assist varies according to road speed, not engine speed. The end result is pin-point precision, excellent feedback and cat-quick response.
Brake issues also plagued early G35s and over the years all G35s benefited from performance upgrades. The new sedan’s ventilated disc set-up, larger in the case of the G35 Sport model, impress in repeated hard braking, with a nice, firm pedal feel.
Transmission choices remain a 5-speed manumatic or 6-speed manual and all-wheel-drive is available on the G35x.
Low-rent interior finish was one of the knocks against the old G35, so Infiniti made a special effort on the ’07.
Fine touches come into play here. Switches operate with the same feel and speed. The glove box drops slowly and quietly. Aluminum trim surfaces are finished with minute swirls inspired by a form of Japanese handmade paper called Washi.
For more traditional tastes, rosewood trim replaces aluminum as an option, albeit only on the all-wheel-drive model that accounts for more than half of G35 sales.
Aside from the $43,390 all-wheel-drive G35x, the 2007 version comes in plain G35 ($39,990) and G35 Sport ($46,790) rear-drive versions.
The Sport comes with staggered tire sizes — 225/50R18 up front and 245/45R18 at the rear — plus a sport-tuned suspension and limited slip rear differential.
An optional touring package on the base G35 (standard on the Sport) includes Bose premium sound. A navigation package introduces voice recognition for climate control, audio and navigation, XM Satellite radio, MP3 capability and 9.5 gigabytes of hard disc capacity for map data.
All that, and the radio still has knobs for volume and station selection, and turning up the heat can be accomplished without having to resort to a training manual.
It’s obvious Infiniti hasn’t been resting on its laurels. This next-generation G35 is a lot newer than its evolutionary styling might suggest.
2007 Infiniti G35
Type: Full-size 5-passenger sedan, FWD
Price: $39,990 - $46,790
Engine: 3.5-litre V6 DOHC
Horsepower: 306 @ 6800 rpm
Torque (lb-ft): 268 @ 4800 rpm
Highlights: Fresh, hunkered-down styling, superb throttle response, steering feel, extra power, finely-crafted interior.