2011 Infiniti FX35 AWD

Infiniti is easily the most underappreciated luxury marque and the FX35 is an excellent example of the brand's dynamic yet cosseting character. When it comes down to the crossover segment, Infiniti can go toe-to-toe with the likes of BMW. The FX35's V-6 is a far cry from the smoothness of a BMW inline-six, but it moves the heavy metal with authority. Only the most self-indulgent drivers need to consider the optional V-8. The FX35 steers and handles nicely, yet I'm equally impressed with the ride quality.

There isn't a company in this price segment that does interiors as well as Infiniti. Not BMW, not Mercedes-Benz, and certainly not Lexus. And yes, I'm dethroning Audi. While that brand still builds solid, luxurious cabins, Infiniti loads on the luxury with superb style and manages to do so with better ergonomics. Controls are easy to find and safe to use at speed, which is impressive considering the number of driver aids and the technology in this FX35. I also love how you sit low in the cockpit, helping to mask this Infiniti's size and better connecting you to the driving experience. You could argue that the young professionals and empty-nesters driving Infiniti FX35s would be better suited with sedans or even coupes, but when a vehicle drives this well, who cares?

Eric Tingwall, Associate Editor

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