The INFINITI G35 sedan and G37 coupe have similar styling and mechanical underpinnings for 2008, but there are some important differences between the two. The sedan includes a 306-horsepower, 3.5L V6, while the coupe gets a new 330-horsepower, 3.7L version with hydraulically controlled variable valve timing. In both the coupe and sedan, buyers can choose from a six-speed manual gearbox or a five-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters.
A feature uniquely available on the coupe is the 4-Wheel Active Steer (4WAS) system, which adjusts the steering gear ratio and rear suspension geometry depending on vehicle speed and steering input to improve handling. There's also a rear viscous-slip differential available.
The interior of the coupe has electroluminescent instrument lighting, a standard seven-inch in-dash monitor, and leather seating in Wheat, Graphite, or Stone tones. There are also several distinctive options to dress up the interior of the coupe, including "Washi" paper trim and African Rosewood trim.
Both the coupe and sedan are available in Base, Journey, and Sport models. Journey models add several key interior conveniences, such as automatic climate control, power seats, and a six-disc in-dash changer, while the Sport model brings performance equipment including 19-inch wheels (18-inch on the sedan), a sport-tuned suspension, the limited-slip differential, and aluminum pedals. A Sport Package is also available on the Journey, including many of the features of the Sport model.
Noteworthy options include an Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS) with bi-xenon lamps, to help illuminate into dark corners, a rearview monitor, intelligent cruise control with preview braking, a touch-screen navigation system with real-time traffic function, a Bluetooth hands-free interface, and a "Studio on Wheels" audio system, with subwoofers and a 9.3-gigabyte hard-drive.
As we spun down winding mountain roads, exercising the famous 3.5-liter V-6 and shifting with its paddles, we inwardly smiled, as the exterior of our gray 2008 Infiniti G35 didn't hint at the power and performance within. It is a sleek and curvy modern design. We like the way the hood nestles caplike between the two front fenders. However, the general shape of this sedan makes it look like a car for the everyday commute. Perhaps it looks like a car that middle managers might use to take team members out to lunch, or a car that won't attract much notice from the local authorities.
But the G35 is more than just engine growl and traction control lights. Infiniti has been taking its cabin technology seriously, and that's clearly shown in the G35. Our test car was fitted with the latest navigation system, Bluetooth cell phone integration, and a stereo that could play from a wide variety of different audio sources, such as MP3 CDs, iPods, and even CompactFlash cards.
The Good The 2008 Infiniti G35 offers a variety of digital music options, such as internal hard drive, iPod integration, and CompactFlash. Its hard-drive-based navigation system includes live traffic and shows rich graphics. The car handles exceptionally well, with responsive and precise steering.
The Bad The interface for the internal-hard-drive-based Music Box feature doesn't make it easy to find music, and the Bluetooth cell phone integration can't import contacts. The car could get better gas mileage.
The Bottom Line The 2008 Infiniti G35 is comfortable in a commute and fun for sport driving, while its cabin tech options are on the leading edge, offering rich navigation, good music options, and Bluetooth cell phone integration.
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