Welcome to the new kid on the block. Infiniti is to Nissan as Lexus is to Toyota – a whole new brand for the Japanese company’s most upmarket models.
It’s been a relatively low-key launch over here in the UK, with half a dozen different models –including 4x4s and saloons – trickling through the quite small number of showrooms.
The head-turner has proved to be the G37 GT Premium convertible – a handsome coupé cabriolet sportscar with easy to operate quick folding metal roof for wind in the hair motoring.
Coming at £42,734 on the road, the car’s top-ten standard features are electrically adjustable leather seats with both heating and cooling functions; adaptive climate control with automatic air recirculation; a window deflector for driver comfort; handsome 19-inch alloy wheels; a smart i-key; bi-xenon adaptive cornering headlights; ‘self-healing’ scratch-shield paint; a rear view camera plus rear parking sensors; a premium Bose sound system with 13 speakers, including those located in the front seat headrests and, finally, a connectivity package that includes HDD navigation, with a Michelin Guide programmed in and featuring Music Box, iPod and USB connections.
Another four grand added seven-speed auto transmission, intelligent cruise control and maple wood interior trim to the test vehicle’s spec.
This is a full four-seater, with plenty of room for backseat passengers. It is roomy and packed with comfort features. The price to be paid though is a boot space that shrinks to nearly nothing when you lower the hood.
Obviously aimed principally at an American audience, the G37 is well suited to UK roads too. Suitably brisk in a straight line, it corners confidently too. The ride is hard but not harsh and steering response is good too.
Gear changes from the seven-speed auto box are so smooth that you barely notice them – and they can be over-ridden by steering wheel mounted flappy paddles.
Power comes from a smooth-running 3.5 litre V6 petrol engine that yields a quick 6.4 seconds 0-62 mph sprint time and a top-speed that is electrically limited to 155 mph.
Fuel consumption in the combined cycle is 24.8 mpg – not bad for a sportscar that will be looking to steal some sales away from the likes of Porsche and BMW.
Take my word for it, this is a proper GT, at its best when the open road is exactly that – open, winding, exhilarating. Have fun.