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Infiniti FX

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Infiniti FX
6/10

Overall
verdict

Infiniti is finding its stride with cars like the FX30d, shame the marketplace is so banjaxed at the moment.

Additional Info

  • The flagship premium Nissan fires its guns at the Range Rover Sport, but falls short.
  • Top Gear wildcard

    Porsche’s Panamera Diesel fills the brief as an odd-looking car if you can live without the height and 4x4.

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What is it?

Car design inspired by training shoes. The FX’s overblown looks suggest that its lines were penned by those more used to drawing hi- top pumps than designing cars. It’s surprisingly refreshing as a result, the comedy proportions and weird surfacing rather appealing. It’s been a big success in the USA, where the audience isn’t averse to trying new things. Here in Blighty we’re a bit more conservative, with the FX appealing to a handful of buyers demanding difference.

Driving

Infiniti’s unfortunate timing popped an overtly styled, petrol-only, SUV- heavy line-up into a marketplace imploding with bad credit and declining expendable income. Not the time to launch an unknown marque into the mix, then. The first FXs were all petrols, which made them fast, but far from frugal. That’s changed with the introduction of the FX30d, an FX you can get your head around. And you should, as it’s an entertaining steer. That wide stance and huge contact patch thanks to massive tyres means it grips gamely – even more so if it’s equipped with the CDC damping. The steering is decently quick and accurate and the ride’s remarkably composed. The 235bhp 3.0-litre diesel is man enough with an 8.3-second 0–62mph time and 132mph capability, but if you want truly silly pace for its silly face, the FX’s 385bhp 5.0-litre V8 is a genuine Porsche Cayenne chaser. The only thing really limiting the fun is its width, which is too wide to enjoy on our narrow, winding country roads

On the inside

It’s difficult not to feel a bit cheated inside as, after all the exterior flair, the interior’s a bit ordinary. All familiar Infiniti then, with its Nissan DNA evident in places and plastics which don’t quite ooze the quality of its European premium rivals. It’s not far off though, and it’s certainly not so bad you’d discount it as an also-ran. The FX might be massive outside, but the cabin isn’t quite
as accommodating as its exterior scale suggests. There are plenty of gadgets to play with though, it coming fully loaded with kit.

Owning

That standard kit list makes the FX look like decent value alongside its more established European rivals. In GT guise you’ll get heated and cooled leather seats, 20-inch alloy wheels, a rear-view camera and parking sensors. Choose the S and you can add even larger alloys, CDC damping control and active rear steering. If you’re a gadget fiend tick the Premium box for Infiniti’s cool all-round camera-view system and a Bose stereo system. Running costs will be high, it’ll be a job to get near the official quoted 31.4mpg combined consumption figure. Residual values are still a relatively unknown quantity, too.

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