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2006 Infiniti M45 - Long Term Review

sfowle sfowle
Enthusiast | Posts: 507 | Joined: 05/06
Posted: 05/25/06
04:45 AM

Infiniti has high aspirations for their M45, aiming it square at the top of the mid-size luxury-sedan competition(BMW, take note). We've liked what we've seen so far but we have yet to pass final judgement on the sedan. Handling is not yet at the BMW mark, but the variety of powertrain choices is intriguing.

We're looking for your input on the car, how has it felt in your experience. Even if BMW has no reason to worry quite yet, is it in the future of Infiniti to be a true competitor to the highest echelon of the sedan market?  

vetteboy-#001 vetteboy-#001
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 05/06
Posted: 05/31/06
11:25 AM

I've had my M45 Sport for about a year now.  (One of three vehicles in the garage, not counting motorcycles.) After owning six BMW's, I can really say that this outdoes all of them.  I like having a Nav system in the car and you can only get it on a BMW if you get that awful i-Drive.  this is my second Infiniti (bought the first G35 on the lot when they first came out).  I have only 9,000 miles on the car but loved every moment of it.  It gets 19 MPG around town (23 on the highway) and that's darn good for a V-8 car.  Everything about this car works for me.  It's fast, handles great, has all of the toys (I got every available option - the air conditioned seats are AWESOME!), has great quality and seats four in comfort even on a long trip.  
If I had to pick one thing I'd change, it would be to have the same seat adjustments on the front passenger side as the driver side.  Kinda chintzy for Infiniti to save, what, twenty bucks on a nearly $60K car.  (But then, Acura does the same thing but the Germans don't).

As to "handling not at the BMW mark", I would challenge that statement.  Compared to a 7 series (which size-wise it about the same), it is much more fun to drive fast.  Compared to a 5 series, it is much better looking and has more room inside for the same price or cheaper.

I'm definitely hooked on Infiniti.  The only thing that worries me is that I already have my thoughts going in the direction of the '07 G35 which according to early press releases will also be an awesome car...  

joela joela
User | Posts: 89 | Joined: 03/06
Posted: 06/20/06
09:59 AM

I rented the M35 and found it a bit sluggish unless one jabs the accelerator. And while I'm a high-tech kinda guy, I'm beginning to understand why folks are questioning integrating AC, nav, etc., into a touch screen. Seems to add an extra layer of complexity when one-push button and knobs worked fine.  

sfcharlie sfcharlie
New User | Posts: 4 | Joined: 07/06
Posted: 07/04/06
12:26 AM

It's a refreshing break to talk about something other than psychoanalysis.

Initial impressions of M35 after 1000 miles … Exterior aesthetics: front always fun (even "sexy") to look at; side and back are ok but not inspiring sculpturally. Interior: glamorous, but (for me only; my family loves it) doesn't create that "I can't wait to sit in it" feeling that Audi A6 does. It is, however, spacious front and rear. Small opening into good size trunk and rear seats don't fold down. Engine: not surprising that it's been on Ward's Automotive Ten Best Engine list longer than any other engine (smooth supply of torque across the power-band, as they say); on the other hand, during its long life span, Nissan appears to have done little to create a better power/mpg combination (as recent German engines do), giving me between 16.5 and 18.8 in mixed (commuter highway stop and go/city/freeway speeds) driving. Excellent manu-matic transmission: really comes close to controlling shifts like a manual transmission (e.g. won't automatically kick-up to higher gear as you approach redline, and downshifts very smoothly) but (when you don't want to shift) only operates in what other cars would probably call "Sport" mode and only has five gears (the fifth of which revs relatively high even at highway speeds), contributing to the low mpg. Controls: retains some regular "buttons" for radio and climate, so you don't have to use i-Drive type multi-level menu (but when we do, we've been able to find everything without looking it up in the manual). Steering/handling: At least in base model, doesn't exactly corner "as if on rails," rather you are around the S-curve (with little or no tension in hands or gut) almost without the sense that you made it happen -- maybe a bit too much "power *** if that's an accurate description of the light, rather than tight, steering feel. When purposely "thrown around" corner, from standing start, you get momentary "Tokyo drift" of rear end, but then all those electronic stability and control systems whip it back into straight-ahead control. Nice over bumps and on rough patches of road and highway, for a car with 18-inch V-rated Goodyear summer-performance tires (which, if online tire-rating sites are correct, I might want to replace before rainy season). Great turning radius.  

sfcharlie sfcharlie
New User | Posts: 4 | Joined: 07/06
Posted: 07/04/06
04:25 AM

"It's a refreshing break to talk about something other than psychoanalysis."

Sorry ... first post ... not sure how, but I appear to have copied that in from some message I had received ... tried to edit it out of post but just ended up posting bulk of previous post again.  

CarBuff CarBuff
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 05/05
Posted: 05/17/07
01:34 PM

I came upon this thread today.  Although it is quite old, I would like to add my two cents.

When I read a post that extols the attributes of a particular make of automobile and at the same time denigrates other makes, I question whether the writer’s opinion is based upon personal experience or unsubstantiated opinion.  I do not take kindly to remarks made by magazine “experts” that are untrue or agenda based.  For, automobiles are one of my life’s passions and are a serious matter to me.

I have owned many fine cars: Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Jaguar, Lexus, Lincoln, Mercedes, and Volvo.   In March 2006 I purchased a 2006 Infiniti M45.  I have driven it daily ever since then.  Thus, I believe I am qualified to make objective as well as subjective comments about the 2006 M45 and how it compares to the other luxury automobiles I have owned.

The 2006 InfinitI M45 is the best automobile I have ever owned.   Although each of my former cars presented certain superior attributes or features that separated that car from the others, not one of them had the cumulative superiority of the M45.

It is my opinion that the M45 is superb in every category.  Its exterior is visually attractive with fluid form, has a luxuriously appointed interior, performs spiritedly with power, provides excellent road-handling, assists the driver with state-of-the-art technology and is always comfortable regardless of weather or road conditions.  Last but not least, its cost is far less than many of its competitors making it a super value.

Not even my former BMW 750il with its twelve cylinders or my former high powered Mercedes 560 could surpass the M45 in the cruising or passing speeds that I chose to drive on interstate highways.    The interiors of my former Jaguar and Mercedes 560 had luxurious interior ambiance.  Yet, in my minds eye, the M45 reaches the same degree of quality leather, wood and paneling.

The degree of road-control I got from my former Audi Quattro and Volvo was not matched by any of my other cars.  However, neither of these two makes gave a pleasurable sense of driving.  The M45 on the other hand, is a sturdy road hugger.  It is a tiger rounding curves and drives the pavement with a sure-footed stance.   Perhaps, some might think that it does not match the BMW for overall handling.  But to me, its verve surely provides me with an inner excitement

Only my former Acura and Lexus cars were similar to the Infiniti M45 with regard to the absence of mechanical failures.  These two makes were seldom in the shop.  The only times I have taken the M45 to the dealer has been for normal oil and filter maintenance.  I have had the pleasure of driving it every single day of my ownership of it.

How different the reliability of my former STS Cadillac, XJ Jaguar and three German was.  Those cars relibility factor was dismal.  They often suffered annoying mechanical failures and necessitating time in the shop.  This resulted in my having to drive loaners or rentals.   I did not spend the amount of money those cars cost me to have this experience with them.

The Lincoln and Volvo were bricks.  Nothing hurt them or prevented them from driving like land yachts.  However, I never got a sense of pure pleasure or excitement driving either make.

Recently, I test drove new models of 2007 luxury sedans.  I did so because I like to buy new cars every year or so.  When I find a model that is superior to the car I then own and drive, I sell it and buy the one I think superior to it.  After my testing this past month,  I decided to stay with my M45.  Maybe next year a car that surpasses my M will be marketed.    But, not so, in my opinion, this year.  

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