Full 2007 Infiniti FX35 Review
What's New for 2007
After last year's refresh, the Infiniti FX35 sees just a few changes for 2007. Among them are a seatbelt reminder and optional iPod connectivity.
Ever since its debut a few years back, the Infiniti FX35 has been known as a sport sedan in SUV clothing. Make that avant-garde SUV clothing. For 2007, the FX35 stands pat, as last year's refresh brought a tweaked suspension for a smoother ride, a new grille and front fascia and a number of new standard features, such as a rearview camera, leather seating, a power tilt/telescoping steering wheel and a 300-watt Bose audio system.
As with its chief luxury SUV rivals, the Acura RDX, BMW X3 and Cadillac SRX, the Infiniti FX35 is more all-wheel-drive sport sedan than trail-bashing SUV. An arched roof line, squat greenhouse and big (18-inch) wheels fitted with low-profile performance tires make the appropriate performance statement. Loosely based on the FM platform used for the previous-generation G35 sedan, the FX features an all-independent suspension, a front-midship engine placement (that allows an ideal 52:48 front-to-rear weight distribution) and, of course, a smooth and strong 275-horsepower V6.
As one would expect, the 2007 Infiniti FX35 is in its element on a twisty road, where its muscular engine, buttoned-down suspension and quick reflexes make one forget they're piloting a midsize sport-utility vehicle. There is a price to be paid for having such nimble, athletic handling dynamics, however. Compared to nearly all of its rivals in the midsize luxury SUV class, the FX is down on cargo capacity and rear headroom, and doesn't offer a third-row seat.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2007 Infiniti FX35 is a midsize crossover SUV that comes in one well-equipped trim level. Standard features include 18-inch alloy wheels, xenon headlights, power front seats, a power telescoping steering wheel, a Bose audio system with an in-dash six-disc CD changer, a rearview monitor, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless entry and full power accessories. Options include a navigation system, satellite radio, Intelligent Key keyless entry and starting, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, run-flat tires, radar-based adaptive cruise control, a lane-departure warning system and Bluetooth connectivity. Some of these features are available individually while others are grouped into packages. There is also the Sport Package, which adds a sport-tuned suspension, 20-inch wheels and tires, aluminum interior trim and dark chrome exterior accents.
Powertrains and Performance
A 3.5-liter V6 making a potent 275 hp and 268 pound-feet of torque powers the Infiniti FX35. A five-speed automatic transmission with a manual-shift mode is the sole gearbox, though buyers have a choice of rear- or all-wheel drive.
Antilock disc brakes with brake assist, front-seat side airbags, full-length curtain airbags, traction control and stability control are all standard, as is a rearview monitor and tire-pressure monitor. Optional is the Lane Departure Warning System (LDW) that alerts the driver to any unintended movement of the vehicle out of a designated traffic lane. In NHTSA crash tests, the 2007 Infiniti FX35 earned top ratings, scoring five (out of five) stars for its protection of occupants in both front and side impacts. In IIHS frontal-offset testing, the FX earned the top score of "Good."
Interior Design and Special Features
Although leather seating is standard, the FX35's cabin is more sporty than it is luxurious. Compared to other luxury SUVs like the SRX and X5, Infiniti's midsize sport-ute lacks a similar upscale ambience. There is plenty of space for four adults, though the sloping roof can make headroom a bit tight for taller rear passengers. Ergonomics are mostly well thought out, though some of the buttons on the console can be confusing, as there are many of similar size and shape. Rearward visibility is poor, but a rearview camera is at the ready to make backing up and parallel parking much easier. Cargo space is tight, as there are just 65 cubic feet of space compared to the 70-85 cubic feet you'll find in most midsize SUVs.
Built specifically to excel on the pavement where most owners will use it most, the 2007 Infiniti FX35 handles more like a sport sedan than an SUV. Minimal body roll, quick steering response and the powerful V6 engine all combine to provide a driving experience that few other SUVs, even those of the luxury order, can match. When driven at the upper end of its performance limits, the FX isn't as easy to control as a BMW X3, but the vast majority of drivers will find its overall road manners exceptional.