2011 Infiniti M56 Long-Term Road Test


2011 Infiniti M56: Interior Harmony

June 27, 2011

M56-interior.jpg

Seems like we all have a collective crush on the M56's interior. Warren recently praised its bum coolers and James enthused on the audio system, including the two personal speakers in front seat shoulders. Several readers also commented on their fondness for the interior.

I hadn't been in the M56 for quite awhile. In between, I'd put some miles on the 528i, Equus, and TSX, and sat shotgun for awhile in the new A6. But the M interior is something else.

Maybe I'm a sucker for that cascading center stack and the convex audio faceplate, which looks both totally modern and minimalist retro. Or the wavy leather-wrapped hood shading the gauges.

What's most striking is how Infiniti designers made something cohesive out of this asymmetrical riot. Check out how the elements in the front passenger compartment -- the soft-touch material, chrome strip and ash trim -- meld into the door panel and an elongated, fading teardrop. It really looks like the last flourish of a complex kanji, coming off a brush dipped in ash and aluminum. Even the stitching pattern of the seat bottoms reminds me of undulating kelp.

Only complaint? The branding in the seat backs. I already know what I'm driving. If I wanted everyone else in the cabin to know, I wouldn't hide it between my shoulder blades. Just this side of tacky, but forgivable when enveloped in so much other aesthetic love.

Dan Frio, Automotive Editor

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