2007 Infiniti G35: A Clutch Road Trip Performer
November 27, 2007
Dear James of 300+ days from now,
If you should be planning on driving to Phoenix for Thanksgiving, please remember this year, which was only slightly less aggravating than listening to four hours of nothing but Fergie. Although you left at 1:30 p.m., it still took you four hours in near gridlock to reach Palm Springs. On Monday, it actually took you less time to reach Palm Springs from the opposite, twice-as-long direction.
However, be thankful that you won't be driving the Infiniti G35 Sport, a vehicle with a clutch only an American Gladiator could love. For the next few days, your left leg felt like you had been doing single leg calf raises for four hours -- because you basically were. On the upside, the clutch seemed a bit more compliant (the creaking was rare) after a few hundred miles and a few chilly nights outside in Phoenix.
Once you breached traffic, though, you finally got to enjoy the G35. Although you weren't thrilled with its front seat legroom/thigh support (the G37 is actually better), the seats were very comfortable and you had no aches or NPS (narcoleptic posterior syndrome). With its ample power, there's plenty of oomph available even in sixth, although there was nothing better than dropping down to fifth or even forth, and rocketing past a Tahoe indignantly blocking the left lane. The nav system also proved easy to program with voice commands and its real-time traffic proved helpful on the way back when you were decided whether to take I-10 or CA-60 (on the way there, traffic actually went beyond XM's traffic reporting range).
So please James, avoid a similar predicament and just celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving. It's a good bet there'll be less traffic on October 13.
James Riswick, Associate Editor @ 13,187 miles
Here are some facts:
Time from LA to Phoenix on Wednesday: 7.5 Hours
MPG from LA to Phoenix: 19.4 mpg
Time from Phoenix to LA on Monday: 5 hours
MPG from Phoenix to LA: 23.3 mpg (fourth best tank thus far)
MPG for the entire trip: 23.0 mpg
EPA fuel economy: 17 mpg city, 25 mpg highway, 20 combined