Good value and well-equipped without stinting on the luxury

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.

Steve Cropley

Steve Cropley Autocar
Title: Editor-in-chief

Steve Cropley is the oldest of Autocar’s editorial team, or the most experienced if you want to be polite about it. He joined over 30 years ago, and has driven many cars and interviewed many people in half a century in the business. 

Cropley, who regards himself as the magazine’s “long stop”, has seen many changes since Autocar was a print-only affair, but claims that in such a fast moving environment he has little appetite for looking back. 

He has been surprised and delighted by the generous reception afforded the My Week In Cars podcast he makes with long suffering colleague Matt Prior, and calls it the most enjoyable part of his working week.

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pconte 26 November 2012

Infiniti vs. Lexus vs. Acura

From a "Yank" prespective, and to put it simply ...

Pay a premium, but get good residual value, for a Lexus if you want a soft, plush ride and admiration for the "badge" from people who don't really know anything about cars.

Get an Acura, if you want a "practical", economical mid-lux sedan. But understand that the same know-nothing, badge-followers won't know the difference from an Accord.

Get an Infiniti if you want to DRIVE, brother! (And pay a sensible price and not be run broke on maintenance.) Expect a "Huh?" as the most common reaction. But the aggressive styling still gets attention.

-- Paul, in Eugene, Oregon USA

iandava 2 November 2008

Re: Infiniti EX37

Greg1 wrote:

Sorry Julian, actually Acura and Infiniti have more re-badged products than Lexus (Acura being the most blatant). Yes, when Lexus first started out, some of their models were re-badged, but I believe the current line-up (and as of a good couple of years), is totally independent.

As a UK citizen I have resided in the USA for over seven years. I am a self confesed car nut, owning over 35 cars in some twenty years. I have also been the proud owner of a 2005 Nissan Murano, and no less than two G35 Sedans (2003 & 2007). I quickly established that Infiniti was indeed a premium brand, with equally premium customer service. Currently, Infiniti does not have any re-badged products, at least not here in the US! As previously stated, the Murano has a front drive chassis, while all Infiniti's are rear drive (unless you opt for AWD). Like all auto manufacturers, platforms (not drivetrains) are utilized on several models, as are the engines. But as far as body panels, interior styling, materials etc etc, no Infiniti does not have any re-badged products. Infiniti fit & finish is exceptional, and what makes them truly stand out from the crowd (Merc. & BMW) is there unique styling, both inside and out. As their marketing campaign states, "If your neighbour don't like it, we've done the right thing". Personally, I don't want to be part of the crowd, I like to be different, I like power (306 bhp in US), I like comfort, I love the handling, technology and innovation of all Infiniti cars. My philosophy is 'You only live once', so who cares about having no diesel, these are drivers cars, and I highly recommend taking a test drive, you will be very pleasantly surprised.

Greg1 15 October 2008

Re: Infiniti EX37

julianphillips wrote:
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.

Sorry Julian, actually Acura and Infiniti have more re-badged products than Lexus (Acura being the most blatant). Yes, when Lexus first started out, some of their models were re-badged, but I believe the current line-up (and as of a good couple of years), is totally independent.