2004 New York Auto Show: Infiniti M45 Concept

The production version of the 2006 M45, which goes on sale in a year, will closely resemble this concept shown at New York. The slow-selling M45 will dump the dowdy Q45 platform in favor of a stretched, widened, and reinforced version of the Midas-touch FM-platform that underpins several successful new vehicles from Nissan and Infiniti. Power will come from either a 4.5-liter V-8 producing an estimated 340 horsepower, for the M45, or the familiar 3.5-liter V-6 in the M35. All-wheel drive will be available in six-cylinder cars, and a rear-steering system will be offered in sport package versions of the M45 and the M35. Enthusiasts may be disappointed in the mandatory five-speed automatic in the M45, since Infiniti’s target competitor, BMW, offers both six-speed automatics and manuals in the V-8-powered 545i. Aside from that deficiency, the new M45 promises to threaten the established German players in a way the outgoing M45 never could.