From £35,801
Good value and well-equipped without stinting on the luxury

Our Verdict

Infiniti EX

The Infiniti EX offers an engaging drive, but has limited practicality and high running costs

  • First Drive

    Infiniti EX30d

    This car is about so much more than the headline figures
  • First Drive

    Infiniti EX37 GT

    Agile and nicely finished but not cheap or spacious
13 October 2008

What is it?

The EX37 is tipped to be the new Infiniti marque’s biggest-selling model in Europe. It’s a ‘crossover’, mid-way in concept between BMW’s X3 and the 3-Series Touring, with power coming from a 3.7-litre 316bhp petrol V6.

The Infiniti brand is meant to be about luxury, and all models are packed with gadgets. The EX still manages some particularly impressive standard equipment, including a seven-speed automatic gearbox that has been engineered specifically for European consumers and unique self-healing ‘scratch shield’ paint.

The options list includes a system of four parking cameras to provide a bird’s eye view of the car, radar cruise control and a crash detection system which judges when a collision is unavoidable and intervenes to reduce the effects by about 20 per cent.

What’s it like?

From the first time you drive it, the EX is a cheerful, likeable car that comes across instantly as good value for its price — provided in these straitened times you still see a role for 3.7 litre petrol-propelled SUVs.

On the road, the 3.7-litre V6 engine’s 316bhp gives the EX37 a sporty character despite its kerbweight of nearly 1900 kilograms. The 0-62 mph acceleration time is just 6.4 seconds, and top speed is within an whisker of 150 mph.

The gearbox gives the car a powerful step-off when launching from standstill. And the engine’s wide powerband (thanks to variable inlet timing and lift) gives strong mid-range acceleration. On the move the EX37 feels supple, well-damped and stable. The ride is pleasantly comfortable, and cruising refinement is good.

Unlike the G37 saloon and coupe, the EX37 does without gearbox shift paddles, but the transmission always seems to have an ideal ratio available and manual control can still be taken by moving the selector to a push/pull channel.

Despite its size, the EX corners with a neutral precision and precise steering makes it easy to drive hard. It’s a well-made and rapid crossover with plenty of practical appeal – and its kudos will grow as people become more used to the Infiniti brand.

Should I buy one?

Infiniti’s Nissan origins mean the EX37 has credibility, even if the marque itself has very little name appeal at present. Prices are competitive, quality is good and – against its opponents – the EX has gadgets and performance to burn.

Taken all round, the EX looks like a more desirable and better equipped prospect than its obvious premium-badged rivals. It leaves you with a simple choice: flashy badge or value and equipment. I’d go for the latter.

Join the debate

Comments
14

14 October 2008

so this is basically a facelifted murano, with a new drivetrain, a decent chassis but they've made it ugly... why not just update the murano specs? the branding is confuddling to say the least! (how many suvs does nissan group have anyway?)

i still want one

i am a drunk student though!

14 October 2008

I shouldn't worry, with out a diesel it's not going to sell in any paticular quantities.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

14 October 2008

Infiniti is supposed to be Nissan's Lexus, it doesn't cut it from what i can see. I'd rather have a Ssanyong Rexton than the Infiniti 4x4.

14 October 2008

ssangyong rexton really? I doubt you would but anyway good luck nissan the "premium" sector is one tough nut to crack[quote Brooklands]

Infiniti is supposed to be Nissan's Lexus, it doesn't cut it from what i can see. I'd rather have a Ssanyong Rexton than the Infiniti 4x4.

[/quote]

14 October 2008

The EX is based on a rear wheel drive chassis and the Murano a front wheel drive chassis.

14 October 2008

You are quite correct. In the US (my home) Infiniti is very highly regarded - in the same league as Lexus and Acura. Being from the UK originally it is interesting to see how so called "European Premium Brands" are viewed here. Basically BMW's and Merc's in particular get a bad (justified) rap for poor reliability and off hand service. The Jap premiums basically are much more reliable and their residuals far exceed the Germans.

Now I know "its different in the UK" - but you need to get over the fact that BMW's and Merc's are anything partcularly special.

Anonymous

14 October 2008

Latest info we have is that Infiniti will be launching the diesel versions in 2010 - though it's probably a mistake not to come to market with them straight away. Especially as said six-cylinder diesel is just about to go on sale in the Laguna coupe. Autocar will be driving that in a couple of weeks time so it should give us an insight into how good an oil-burning Infiniti could be (though obviously it will be a hugely different installation).

15 October 2008

[quote TXBRIT]

You are quite correct. In the US (my home) Infiniti is very highly regarded - in the same league as Lexus and Acura. Being from the UK originally it is interesting to see how so called "European Premium Brands" are viewed here. Basically BMW's and Merc's in particular get a bad (justified) rap for poor reliability and off hand service. The Jap premiums basically are much more reliable and their residuals far exceed the Germans.

Now I know "its different in the UK" - but you need to get over the fact that BMW's and Merc's are anything partcularly special.

[/quote]

I have to agree with the above. I live in Dubai where there is a real mix of American/European and Japanese cars. Out here Infinti is thought of very highly, proibably above Lexus and certainly ahead of BMW/Merc.I have driven one of these a couple of weeks ago, ableit not Euro spec, but still awesomly fast and sorted on the road given the weight and dimensions of the car.

Love the smell of a V8 in the morning.

15 October 2008

[quote TXBRIT]

You are quite correct. In the US (my home) Infiniti is very highly regarded - in the same league as Lexus and Acura. Being from the UK originally it is interesting to see how so called "European Premium Brands" are viewed here. Basically BMW's and Merc's in particular get a bad (justified) rap for poor reliability and off hand service. The Jap premiums basically are much more reliable and their residuals far exceed the Germans.

Now I know "its different in the UK" - but you need to get over the fact that BMW's and Merc's are anything partcularly special.

[/quote]

I have to agree with the above. I live in Dubai where there is a real mix of American/European and Japanese cars. Out here Infinti is thought of very highly, proibably above Lexus and certainly ahead of BMW/Merc.I have driven one of these a couple of weeks ago, ableit not Euro spec, but still awesomly fast and sorted on the road given the weight and dimensions of the car.

Love the smell of a V8 in the morning.

15 October 2008

I hope the brand does well. Yes a diesel is important, but if I had enough dough for the tasty looking coupe, or the 4x4 for that matter, I'm pretty sure I would be going for the petrol versions. Apart from anything else, I think Infiniti sounds better than Lexus. Lexus sounds like the kind of name Ikea would give to a cheap leather sofa. Or the name of an exotic table dancer. Also, from a snobby point of view - which is surely a big issue when looking at 'premium' badges such as these - as far as I am aware, none of the Infiniti models are rebadged Nissan's in the way that some of the Lexus models have been, like the IS and whatever the Toyota Soarer was called when it was sold as a Lexus.

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Mercedes C350e Sport
    First Drive
    28 September 2016
    Petrol-electric C-Class is a surprisingly well-priced alternative to a diesel but not the greatest example of the new ‘PHEV’ breed
  • Car review
    23 September 2016
    Aston kicks off its ‘second century plan’ with an all-new turbo V12 grand tourer
  • Ford Ka+ 1.2 Ti-VCT 85
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    A rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka
  •  Maserati Ghibli Diesel
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    Maserati releases another range of updates for its range best seller, the Ghibli. We've driven the diesel version, but there's little improvement on before
  • Tipo Front
    First Drive
    21 September 2016
    New Fiat Tipo offers impressive space and practicality for a reasonable price. We try the 1.6 diesel on the demanding roads of North Wales