2011 Infiniti M56 Long-Term Road Test


2011 Infiniti M56: Touchy, Touchy

September 09, 2011

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After spending almost a week in a very off-road capable but not particularly sporting SUV, it was refreshing to hop in the Infiniti M56 and have real power at my disposal in traffic. I'm talking REAL power here. What a terrific V8. Good sounds, smooth, and did I mention its power?

But, the M56 does have a few faults, some that might actually keep me from buying it.

As you might have guessed, this is another throttle tip-in story. There's actually more to it than that, though. In sum, the M56 is kind of spastic. In Sport mode it's ridiculous how abrupt it is leaving the line. Switching to Normal is better and more manageable, but still jerky if you hit the throttle with any force. Of course you could try Eco mode, but that's just plain silly, as the throttle seems to actually put force back against your foot. Good way to give your right leg a workout, though.

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Compounding abruption matters here is an automatic tranny that's particularly hunty. I mean, why does it shift down at the slightest provocation? It's got a brawny V8 to just power right through it. My solution here was to just run it in Manual mode and do the shifting, up and down, myself.

Heck, even the brakes can be touchy. And then there's the power steering wheel switch, which moves the wheel at lightning speed. I don't know about you, but I prefer mechanisms that operate slowly so that I can find the exact right setting. The M56's steering wheel blows right by that spot. I mean, what's the rush here?

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Mike Monticello, Road Test Editor @ 15,517 miles.

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