Latest Industry News

2007 Infiniti FX35: Unsegmentable


Back in September, VehicleVoice had the chance to drive the Infiniti FX35. Our driving impressions were largely positive giving it a thumbs up for those interested in an unconventional CUV, without a whole lot of “U”. With an FX back into our fleet recently, we’re given a chance to update our impressions.

The growing “crossover” SUV segment is getting more crowned each month, with new entries rolling in like oranges. Just a few years ago, this segment was full of vehicles with little utility either in the dirt or at Costco. It seemed that the promise of car-based SUVs was going to come with less off-road capability and less real world usability.
That has changed with more and more crossover sport utility vehicles than ever. From the extremely off-road capable Porsche Cayenne and Volkswagen Touareg, to the highly functional Saturn Outlook and its Lambda platform brethren, today’s crossover sport utility vehicles are meeting unique duty cycles.
Re-enter FX35/45. It’s style is cool, and unlike any other. It doesn’t pretend to be an off-road vehicle, and it’s impossible to classify as a utility vehicle, having less cargo space than many Costco Utility Vehicles (CUVs). AutoPacific Research shows that 46% of FX owners wish their vehicle had more cargo room.
So what is it? It remains a “sports car” with a back seat. Not a true sports car for an enthusiast. More like a sports car for the “sports car lifestyle enthusiast”. In other words, it’s not meant for track days, but it certainly can be fun to drive to the mall.
Nissan/Infiniti’s six billionth iteration of the VQ V6 engine in our FX35 pulls the 4300-pound beast along pretty well. It feels good, and sounds great. In perfect VQ form, it does so giving a V8-like growl with a V6 powerplant and delivering V8-like mileage… worse than we’d like.


Inside, little has changed from our previous vehicle. While the controls are nicely laid out and pretty easy to use, one does get the sense that things are out of control. We stopped counting after seventy buttons. Seventy! Seventy is an awful lot, but we wouldn’t exchange the seventy buttons for a single iDrive mouse. Many on our staff are craving a future, where buttons can be put into the desktop trashcan, on a customizable IP. Others want a return to a few key gauges, with the necessary safety technology hidden from view.
Our model came with a $4,200 “Technology Package” which includes an audible lane departure warning system. A nice feature to add fuel to your souse’s back seat driving. Under the default setting, it has to be turned off each time you start the car. Fortunately, Infiniti’s “Quick Reference Guide” devotes one half page of the 32 page guide to overriding this default.
In a weekend drive, we were able to move a few boxes and kids, and still enjoy the FX’s growl. While the fuel station came too quickly, the overall experience is one of comfort and performance. Closer to a 5 series than an SUV. This vehicle does not cross into the SUV segment.
Stand-alone styling
Power: AutoPacific research shows 78% of FX owners satisfied with their FX’s power
Infiniti gets how wheels and tires should look with 81% of current owners satisfied with the style of their wheels
Engine growl
Binnacle and steering wheel adjust in unison
Back-up camera with parking guides
A-pillar restricts ingress/egress
V8 mileage with a V6 engine
Too many buttons on the instrument panel
Nowhere to put the keyless fob, a technology not yet here
Where’s the cargo go?

Back to top