The new Infiniti M is one sexy, sultry machine. It looks tight, taut, and ready to pounce. It really makes a strong design statement, which is exactly what Infiniti should be doing. The interior is especially enticing, with an ambience that is at once ultramodern yet traditionally posh. I dare say that Infiniti and Jaguar are now leading the way in cabin design, a mantle once held by Audi. Or, at least, they are the equal of Audi.
As Joe DeMatio states, the Infiniti M exudes refinement and style both inside and out. From almost any angle, the exterior styling is absolutely striking, and the cabin is both luxurious and supremely functional. The 330-hp V-6 is powerful enough to rocket the M37 forward at a pace sufficient enough to make you wonder whether the V-8 engine is worth the extra expense.
I was positively blown away by the M37. Even the active steering, which normally frustrates me to no end, was acceptable. I'd still prefer traditional steering if I were to own an M, but this is the least offensive application of Infiniti's system I've experienced.
After spending about an hour taking back-to-back turns between our 535i and this M37, I have to agree with Phil. The BMW may still be the better car in technical terms -- the powertrain is smoother and the non-active steering is more communicative and predictable -- but the M37 is the sedan I think I'd rather own. The Infiniti's curvaceous yet restrained exterior should prove to BMW's design house that there is a happy medium between the uncompromisingly modern Chris Bangle styling of the last 5-series and the sober, ho-hum lines of the current one. It's the same story inside, where Infiniti matches BMW's quality but adds a dose of "wow" with its rich-looking wood inlays and dual-cove instrument cluster.
I've seen press photos of the M time and time again, but I was absolutely floored when I approached this M37S in the parking garage the other night. Admittedly, I thought there was a technological glitch; my key fob kept flashing the lights on what I swore (from a distance) was a Jaguar XF. An odd mistake, perhaps, but the two are similar -- swoopy, midsize luxury sedans that help redefine each brand.
Having driven both eight- and six-cylinder versions of Infiniti's biggest sedan, it's clear that the M37 makes virtually no compromises compared to the 420-hp M56. Perhaps the only need to step up to the V-8 is the six-cylinders slightly unpolished power delivery. The 330-hp V-6 isn't as silky as or as torquey as the turbocharged BMW inline six-cylinder. Still, the 3.7-liter V-6 makes plenty of power and is agreeable when you aren't stressing it.