2011 Infiniti M56: Yes, You May
February 17, 2011
Such an arcane feature, I hardly noticed it. Our M56 features door-mounted ashtrays for rear-seat passengers. A real ashtray, too. One that doesn't tell you with an icon of a circle-slash overlaid on a cigarette that it's not really an ashtray. Not a stashbox for coins and gum wrappers.
Nope. A real ashtray for real smokers -- most likely Japanese businessmen of legitimate endeavor or otherwise -- who will use and appreciate it. A small flip of the bird to hyper tobacco morality. The M56 even has one up front with a real lighter coil. I can't remember when I last saw a lighter/ashtray in a current American or import car.
Can American automakers get away with this anymore, without getting skewered as irresponsible? No examples come to mind. If they do include a receptacle, you're implored not to use it as such. Sometimes it's lined with felt. I'm curious to see how far Fiat/Chrysler will push Italian leisure principles into its future product.
Dig that chrome accent on the auto window control, as well.
But forget smoke and fire. This car owns. It's butter. The seats, the steering, the technology, the throttle. It parts traffic for you. You hardly notice the V8 until you summon it. Then it's impossible to get off your mind.
Dan Frio, Automotive Editor