Infiniti FX35 : The Car That Redefined Luxury Crossovers

Infiniti FX35

Table of Contents

The Infiniti FX35 emerged as a trailblazer in the luxury crossover SUV market, reshaping perceptions and setting new benchmarks. As a fusion of sleek sports car aesthetics and the robust functionality of an SUV, the FX35 has captured the imagination of drivers who crave both luxury and performance. This article takes an in-depth look at the Infiniti FX35, diving into its history, variants, and the unique blend of style, comfort, and power that sets it apart in a crowded field of luxury vehicles.

 

Overview

Infiniti, Nissan’s luxury vehicle division, introduced the FX35 as part of their ambitious venture into the crossover SUV domain. Launched in the 2003 model year, the FX35 brought a fresh perspective to Infiniti’s mid-size luxury segment. Unlike the similarly sized Nissan Murano, which is based on the Nissan Altima platform, the FX35 shares its foundation with the rear-wheel drive Nissan 350Z, highlighting its sportier ambitions.

The FX35 was a product of what designers termed “cool fusion” – a combination of a substantial SUV lower body with a sleek, elegant upper body akin to a classic sports car. This design philosophy was evident in its aggressive styling, luxury car comfort, and sports car performance.

 

History

Infiniti FX35

The history of the Infiniti FX35 is a story of automotive innovation and style. It debuted as a bold statement in the luxury SUV market, challenging conventions with its distinctive design and performance. As mentioned before, the FX35’s journey began in 2003, marking Infiniti’s foray into a new vehicle category that blended the attributes of an SUV with the performance of a sports car. The model replaced the QX4 and quickly established itself as a major player, competing with rivals like the Porsche Cayenne.

Infiniti’s designers aimed for a “Bionic Cheetah” look, combining the robustness of an SUV with the elegance of a sports car. This design ethos is reflected in its performance too, with the FX35 offering a choice of two powerful engines – a 3.5-liter V6 (the FX35) and a 4.5-liter V8 (the FX45). The vehicle’s innovation was not just limited to performance; it was the first passenger vehicle to introduce a lane departure warning system, a testament to Infiniti’s focus on safety and technology.

In 2006, the FX series received significant updates including an exterior facelift and a plethora of new standard features enhancing both performance and luxury. The 2009 redesign introduced more powerful engines and a completely revamped interior, elevating the FX35 to new heights in luxury crossover design. This evolution underscores Infiniti’s commitment to combining style, luxury, and performance in a vehicle that redefined its category.

 

Variants

The Infiniti FX35 has seen various incarnations, each bringing something unique to the luxury crossover market. The FX35 was powered by a robust 3.5-liter V6 engine, offering 280 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque, combining substantial power with smooth handling. This model was available in two drivetrain options: Rear-Wheel Drive (RWD) and All-Wheel Drive (AWD), catering to different driving preferences and conditions.

A notable addition to the lineup was the FX45, introduced alongside the FX35. The FX45 boasted a more powerful 4.5-liter V8 engine, producing an impressive 315 horsepower. This model was paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission, emphasizing a more spirited performance.

The evolution of the FX35 led to the development of the QX70, which further refined the balance between luxury and performance in the SUV market. The QX70 continued the legacy of the FX35, pushing the boundaries in terms of design, technology, and driving experience.

 

Exterior

Infiniti FX35 grille

The exterior design of the Infiniti FX35 set new standards in the crossover market. It featured a low-swept crossover coupe silhouette, which was both elegant and provocative. The vehicle’s stance was bold and commanding, with striking tail lights and a distinctive grille that made it instantly recognizable. The design was not just about aesthetics; it also contributed to the vehicle’s aerodynamic efficiency and road presence.

Available in a range of colors such as Autumn Copper Met, Sapphire Pearl, and Liquid Platinum Metallic, the FX35 offered personalization to suit various tastes. The vehicle’s dimensions, with a length of 189.1 inches and a wheelbase of 112.2 inches, provided a balanced and stable ride. The height and width dimensions ensured ample interior space while maintaining a sleek exterior profile.

 

Interior

The interior of the Infiniti FX35 was a realm of luxury and driver-focused design. The cabin was crafted to provide both comfort and functionality, with high-quality materials and meticulous attention to detail. The driver-centric design placed all controls within easy reach, ensuring a seamless driving experience.

The interior was spacious, accommodating up to five passengers comfortably. It offered generous legroom and headroom, both in the front and rear, catering to the comfort of all occupants. The interior design was not just functional but also aesthetically pleasing, with elegant lines and a modern layout that echoed the vehicle’s external sophistication.

The FX35 was equipped with a range of standard features, including air conditioning with dual-zone automatic climate controls, a power tilt/telescopic leather-wrapped steering wheel with radio controls, and leather upholstery. The heated front bucket seats and the 10-way power driver seat with lumbar adjustment added to the comfort, while the rearview camera and power liftgate enhanced convenience. The higher-end FX50 model added features like a remote engine start and a power sunroof, elevating the luxury experience.

 

Engine

Infiniti FX35 Engine

The Infiniti FX35 was renowned for its impressive engine options that combined power with refinement. The initial models were equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 engine, capable of delivering 280 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque. This engine was not only powerful but also efficient, providing a balanced driving experience.

As the FX35 evolved, so did its engine offerings. The later models saw enhancements in power and performance, maintaining Infiniti’s commitment to providing an exhilarating driving experience. These engines were paired with advanced transmission systems, ensuring smooth power delivery and responsive handling. The combination of potent engines and sophisticated drivetrains underscored the FX35’s position as a performance-oriented luxury crossover.

 

Specifications

Engine3.5-liter V6
Horsepower280 HP
Torque270 lb-ft
Drivetrain OptionsRear-Wheel Drive (RWD) and All-Wheel Drive (AWD)
Transmission5-speed automatic with a manumatic shift mode
Fuel Economy
  • City: Approximately 16-17 mpg (varies by model year and drivetrain)
  • Highway: Approximately 21-23 mpg (varies by model year and drivetrain)
0-60 mphApproximately 6.5 seconds (varies by model year and configuration)
Length189.1 inches
Wheelbase112.2 inches
Height65.0 inches
Curb WeightAround 4,151 lbs (varies by model year and drivetrain)
Seating Capacity5-seater

 

Driving Experience

The driving experience of the Infiniti FX35 is where it truly shone, blending sports car agility with the practicality of an SUV. Drivers of the FX35 often praised its responsive steering and firm suspension, which contributed to its nimble handling and stability, especially on twisty roads. The vehicle felt planted and confident on the highway, rivaling the performance of luxury European SUVs.

Acceleration

Acceleration in the FX35 was brisk and satisfying, with the V6 engine providing ample power for most driving situations. For those craving more punch, the V8 in the FX45 offered even more exhilarating acceleration.

Braking

The braking system was robust and reliable, instilling confidence in various driving conditions.

Ride comfort

Despite its sporty nature, the FX35 did not compromise on ride comfort. The suspension, while firm, was tuned to absorb road imperfections effectively, ensuring a smooth ride. The cabin was well-insulated from outside noise, further enhancing the driving experience.

The all-wheel drive option added an extra layer of security and performance, particularly in adverse weather conditions, making the FX35 a versatile choice for a range of driving needs.

 

Driver Aids and Safety Features

Infiniti FX35 Top View

Safety and driver assistance features were key aspects of the Infiniti FX35, reflecting Infiniti’s commitment to passenger safety. The vehicle was equipped with advanced safety technologies, including a pioneering lane departure warning system introduced in the 2005 model. This system used a camera to monitor lane markings and alerted the driver if the vehicle began to drift without signaling.

In addition to this innovative feature, the FX35 came with a comprehensive suite of safety features. These included dual-stage front airbags, front side impact airbags, and full-cabin curtain-style airbags, providing protection from multiple angles in the event of a collision. The vehicle also featured front seatbelt pre-tensioners, load limiters, and active front head restraints, enhancing occupant safety.

For active safety, the FX35 was equipped with an anti-lock brake system with electronic brake proportioning, electronic stability control, and a rear-view camera, contributing to safer and more controlled driving. Optional safety features like intelligent cruise control and the Lane Departure Warning system further augmented the vehicle’s safety profile. These comprehensive safety and driver aids made the FX35 a secure and reliable choice in the luxury crossover market.

 

Should You Buy an Infiniti FX35?

The FX35 was discontinued after 2013 which means that if you are really interested in one you will have to go for a used car. Weigh its attributes against your personal needs and preferences along with the fact that these cars are now more than a decade old.

It also has a firmer ride quality, a trade-off for its sporty handling. The fuel efficiency, particularly of the V8 model, may not meet the expectations of those prioritizing economy. Also, while offering ample interior luxury, its space might be tighter compared to some rivals. Based on all these facts, the only reasons to buy this car now would be nostalgia or a personal connection with this model and its place in the history of SUVs.

 

Conclusion

Infiniti FX35 Exterior

The Infiniti FX35 stands as a remarkable example of what happens when luxury meets performance in an SUV format. From its bold and innovative exterior to its plush, driver-centric interior, the FX35 pushed the boundaries of what a luxury crossover could be. The FX35, with its blend of style, comfort, and performance, remains a standout chapter in the history of cars.

 

Pros of the Infiniti FX35

Cons of the Infiniti FX35

FAQ

The Infiniti FX35 is generally considered reliable, with a good track record in terms of durability and longevity. Like any vehicle, regular maintenance is key to its reliability. Its Nissan-derived mechanics are known for their sturdiness, but as a luxury vehicle, some repairs and parts can be more expensive.

The FX35 can be a good choice for smaller families who prioritize style and performance. It offers comfortable seating for five and a range of luxury features. However, for families needing more space for passengers and cargo, other SUVs might be more suitable.

The fuel efficiency of the FX35, particularly the V8 models, is not its strongest point. The V6 models offer slightly better fuel economy, but overall, it is less fuel-efficient compared to some competitors in the luxury SUV segment.

Written by: Motorcardata

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