In a systematic move to re-introduce itself to our local market, Infiniti has recently launched it FX range of SUV cars. Similar to what the 'Lexus' brand is to Toyota, the Infiniti brand of cars can be described as Nissan's more 'luxurious' face. Coming up against the big guns in this sector, namely Audi's Q7, BMW's X5 and the Mercedes ML range, the new FX certainly has a lot to prove. With SUVs becoming increasingly popular and the family-of-five 'car of choice' these days, the FX contributes to a widened range of possibilities and choice in this class.
The Infiniti FX has a refreshingly different appearance when compared to other SUV cars for sale in this segment. Buy a car like this and you're bound to be asked questions like: what model is this and what type of car are you driving? Not yet a familiar sight on our SA roads, the Infiniti FX is quite exotic looking to many. An imposing front grill and a long wheel base and bonnet give the FX an assertive and sure-footed stance. The side air scoops give it real character and also enhance the car's performance by reducing lift on the front end of the car and in so doing, optimizing traction and acceleration. With a raised ride height and 21 inch wheels, the Infiniti FX looks every bit the part of a sporty SUV, but its non conventional flowing design lines and tasteful bits of chrome accents gives it real 'stand out' appeal in this segment.
The Infinti FX is fitted according to four different specification levels, namely: GT, GT Premium, S and S Premium. Leather upholstery is standard throughout the FX range, with the driver seat offering a fully electric 10-way memory function and storing info on seat, steering wheel and exterior mirror position. Cello Maple wood trim throughout offers a touch of class and magnesium paddle shifters give the FX a sporty feel. There is an integrated infotainment package with a 10 GB Infiniti Music Box which can store up to 300 CDs, a USB port for an iPod and MP3 player and Bluetooth connectivity.
Three engines are offered in the FX range - a 5 litre V8, a 3.7 litre V6, and a 3 litre turbodiesel V6. All are mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission. The 287 kW/500 Nm (5 litre V8) is capable of 0-100 km/h in 5.8 seconds. The 235 kW/360 Nm (3 litre V6) accelerates from 0-100 km/h in 6.8 seconds with a combined cycle of 12.3 litres per 100 km and 291 g/km of CO2 emissions. While the top-of-the-range 175 kW/550 Nm (3 litre turbodiesel V6) takes 8.3 seconds to go from 0-100 km/h and uses 9 litres per 100 km.
Clever technologies are at work in the Infiniti FX ensuring excellent road holding and safety. Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC) monitors following distance by visual and acoustic signals to the driver. The Intelligent Brake Assist (IBA) will slow the FX until a optimum following distance is regained and in slow moving traffic, the Low-Speed Following feature (LSF) intelligently brakes the FX to maintain the correct distance to the vehicle in front. Other safety highlights include: Four-wheel active steering, Lane Departure Prevention (LDP), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), an intelligent Traction Control System (TCS), Adaptive Continuous Damping Control (ACDC) and an Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) which constantly monitors steering and braking.
With South Africa's SUV market booming the way it is, the Infiniti FX is a welcome alternative to the well-known and popular German brands currently on offer. At R 676 000 for the Infiniti FX37 GT, pricing is in line with competitors and, with its in-your-face styling and alternative good looks, Infiniti hopes its new FX will attract more than one German-loyal SUV buyer to venture over to its side. (Prices are subject to change according to various factors so please consult your dealer for the latest price.)