The Infiniti FX feels like a breath of fresh air amid the ranks of the world’s diesel-engined SUVs. It is seductively styled, albeit in a brash way. It’s also engaging to drive, even if it makes little attempt to back up that ability off road.
Where it fails, it does so quite gently. Boot space is poor considering the amount of road space it occupies and there is both less room and two less seats in the rear than there are in some rivals. Tall rear occupants will suffer from both a lack of head and legroom.
Then there’s the ride comfort – simply shocking if you get a car on 21in wheels, slightly less so on 20s. Make sure you can live with the ride before you make a decision you might regret. On the plus side, the car is exceptionally well built: from the quality of the paintwork to the finish of the interior.
Then there’s value – it might be priced toe-to-toe with more established rivals, but it out-points them comprehensively when it comes to equipment.
We’d always walk past the petrol cars and head for the diesel – it’s pleasantly refined, reasonably pokey and exceptionally refined. It’s also reasonably economical, too. It’s a shame that excellent refinement highlights the road noise kicked up by those big tyres.
The FX30d’s biggest problem is that this particular class is already chock-full of excellent cars — machines such as the new Cayenne, the Discovery and, most recently, the fine new Touareg. Without these rivals to compete against, the Infiniti would look very strong; with them, it is merely an interesting, good-looking alternative to the main players.