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Head-In-Sand Dumbass
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The dealership here has procured G35 coupe as a demo car as they're expecting a lot of sales after the MT "Car of the Year" award goes out. I was lucky enough to get some seat time in this car. The specs:

- black w/ tan interior (looks great in black btw)
- fully loaded 5AT w/ Nav, Sport Package (18's), silver interior trim, etc. etc.
- 280 hp / 260 ft-lbs (just a hair under the 350z specs)
- MSRP $36,800

Initial Impressions
You know I've never been a big fan of this car from the pictures, but I gotta say, this is a sexy sexy beast in person. You really don't notice the huge ass end of the car until you step behind it and give it a good hard look. The front end is beautifully sculpted (IMO) into a nice low, wide shape with large fender flares. It looks especially nice with the 18's (which btw, were fitted with Pilot Sports). The black is a stunning color for this car, very smooth and very rich.

Inside you find the familiar Nissan Pulsar-like steering wheel, but that can't deter you from checking out the gorgeous silver center console. It is a little quirky with the control layouts (example: the power button for the radio is on the RIGHT side of the console, not exactly typical) but for the most part it's very nice. There is no display on the center console, it's up above it in the middle of the top of the dash (right behind the pop-up nav screen). Infinity has also fitted this vehicle with their signature analog oval clock, a very classy touch that I love. We tested the nav system and it seems to work very well, although it could tell you about upcoming turns a bit sooner IMO. It's DVD-based btw, and the color screen is extremely bright and clear. Overall the interior is very plush, especially the front seats. They're thick and heavy and very comfortable with plenty of bolstering (although not nearly as much as the 330 SP seats, more along the lines of an IS300 seat with more lateral support). I DO NOT like the position of the seating controls, and I didn't check out the glovebox as Ack did. :) The rear glass prevents anyone over 5' 8" from not hitting their head on it, it's not meant for most adults I can tell you that. Also from the rear there are these little pieces of carpet that hang out from the backs of the seat bottoms of the front seats -- looks cheap, they should have tucked them away.

Driving Impressions
Starting this motor up was nothing more than pure bliss. It reminded me of the sweet sweet growl that my 330 has come to provide. The dual exhaust really gives this thing an even sound note too, from all over the cabin. It's NOT exactly quiet, but it's not too invasive either. Very nice and I can only imagine what it'll sound like with about 20k miles on the thing.

Steering in the coupe is heavier than the sedan, but just as accurate. It's still not as heavy as I'd like it, and can get a little whispy on the highway. This is a heavy car mind you, so it cruises very well.

The POWER of this thing is amazing. It has some serious thrust, I can't wait to drive the 6spd. From a stand-still the car takes off like a rocket, shifting just before redline. The manumatic shifting (whatever Infinity calls it) is very quick for a non-SMG-esque system. It's gotta be at least 2x as quick as the BMW setup. I find that the G's transmission (the auto, in both the coupe and sedan) can get easily confused though when rolling around town. If you're in 4th at 40mph and you wanna get around someone, flogging the gas will send it out of gear and eventually into 2nd, but it takes some time. It does a lot of gear hunting.

Handling is superb, right up there with my 330. I didn't take the car to its limits, but I did quite a bit of manuevering (highway on-ramp curves, fast lane changes, around-town turns, etc.). It's rock solid folks! The ride is a bit more harsh than my 330 SP but it pays off with basically no body roll through high-speed turns (something we all know the 3'er tends to give way to) and extreme stability. Again though it gets back to the steering, and I can't help but wonder how it would react in a situation where you, say, induced quite a bit of oversteer and attempted to correct for it. I wonder how much further I'd turn the wheel than I would in the 330, being that the car has lighter steering and a larger turning circle diameter. Again though, this car handles very very well in my opinion (and as some of you know I've driven a handful of well-handling vehicles, i.e. M3, M5, M coupe, 330, S2k, to name a few). It's also worth noting that the car doesn't FEEL as heavy as it is, and seems to be setup to handle its weight quite well (minimal pitch and roll).

To end this ridiculously long post...
I must say this is a great competetor for the 3-series, more specifically the 330. The power is awesome, the handling is superb, and the interior/exterior styling is in my opinion quite stylish. At the sticker price of $36,800 for the car I drove, I'd say it's worth just about every penny. But I'd opt for the 6spd (actually more expensive, believe it or not, as it comes with an LSD and some other items) and would definitely be doing a 350z steering wheel swap as my first mod. :D
 

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Nice write-up, Chris! So, now for the Million $$ question:

If you were in the market, would you choose it over the 3-series?
 

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And one question: How do you feel about the brakes? When I was test driving the sedan, they seemed to be a bit sensitive.

Thanks for the write up
 

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BMW + twisty road = fun
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If there is one car (in my price range) that would sway my purchase of a new BMW in the next couple of years the G35c is the car. I'm curious on how well the 6sp performs... this car will be fun with a manual trans.
 

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Head-In-Sand Dumbass
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Tim, it would absolutely make the consideration list. However some other cars such as the Saab 9-3 Vector would also be on the list, so take it for what it's worth. :) No seriously, I would really look at it hard even though I love my 330.

Dave, the brakes were excellent. I too thought the sedan was WAY too touchy. Not very good pedal feel at all, which makes it hard to modulate the brakes appropriately. The G35c had a very similar feel to my 330. Also I believe the 6spd manual comes with the Brembo brakes, and this car didn't have them.

Also one other note... the Infinity traction control system is pretty sweet. It's much less invasive than our DSC systems. It'll actually let you get the tail out ever so slightly before bringing you back around, and it's very predictable.
 

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Here since day one
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Great job on the write-up Chris . . . it was so well done it could have come right out of Car & Driver :thumbup:
 

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Adolescent On-Call
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webguy330i said:
The front end is beautifully sculpted (IMO) into a nice low, wide shape
It's my impression that the front end of this car appears tall and narrow. That's what struck me most, last night, when I last passed a G35. I think it's partly the effect of the raked headlights.
 

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Into the dark ages
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great write up...but what does invasive mean? :eeps:

well i gotta hand it to them...to convince a BMW owner to consider their latest car as being equal to the 3series is impressive. i hope BMW has something in the works to raise the bar. wait..maybe Chris Bangle was it! :eek:
 

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Head-In-Sand Dumbass
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Pete, Alan, Chris -- thanks for the props! :thumbup:

machmeter, the angled side profile does give that impression, but the reality of it is that the thing is WIDE. You'd have to squat down and look at it straight on from the front to tell. It's 71.5" wide according to Infiniti, while the 330ci is 69.2" wide... the M3 coupe is 70.1" wide. :yikes:

Oh and Chris, check out definition #4 dammit. :p
 

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Nick Burns, the Comp Guy
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I'd agree with a lot of that, but if the center console is anything like the sedan's, it's cheap as anything.

Flimsy low quality plastic is what is used to make that console.. maybe they upped it a notch on the coupe, but I doubt it. I have a high expectation of build quality nowadays.. :)
 

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-The Mouth-
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Chris I too took a G35 sedan out for a test drive. The dealer in my area just got the coupes in yesterday so I havent driven one yet. I had similar feelings about the car. looks big yet feels light on it's feet.Steering is MUCH lighter than a 3 series. The stability control system is VERY cool and the dealer showed me how it works by doing this: we went to a parking lot he cocked the wheel all the way to the left and floored it with the stability control off .. result: ALL OVER the place. Then he did it again with the the stability control ON and the car completely floored stayed in a complete circle for several turns until he finally let go. It definitely works and the best part was it didn't feel like it was there at all. I guess it's 5 sensors with the 5th being in the center of the car controlling the yaw.
Overall I was impressed with the outside more than the inside. The sedan I took out had the Aero package on it. which includes a bigger more open front bumper(more air flow) some body pieces added and air diffusers underneath the car that "sink" it at about 65 MPH creating "zero lift" .The interior I was FAR from impressed with. felt quite cheap. The seats were supportive but dash controls and bits (especially those on the steering wheel were made of VERY cheap plastics) and the "on" knob on the right???? And the analog clock has always been a thing I didn't like .. I think it's because my families' 1986 Honda Accord had one... Never liked that thing. Any way I feel that this car is a definite contender but I'll keep my 3 even if it does have 184 instead of 160 (180 in the coupe)
:thumbup:
 

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3seriesbimmer said: "and the "on" knob on the right????"

On the G35, hitting the radio "on" button isn't necessary. If you press AM, FM, CD, etc. it automatically comes on.

The G35 is a great car with a lot of power and room for a good price. BMW had better expedite 3-series enhancements to combat this. However the G35 sedan lacks several refinements:

- no telescoping steering wheel
- no self-leveling Xenons (low beams are factory-aimed low to avoid dazzling oncoming cars)
- no fore/aft adjustable headrest
- no lighted steering wheel buttons
- no adjustable theigh support
- seat heaters work slower and more limited coverage than 3-series

Infiniti can and probably will address these in time. However it shows that beyond performance, there are refinement issues that affect the real world driving experience.

-- Joe
 

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Yup, yesterday I saw my Nissan Dealer setting up a silver G35 Coupe being posed up at the front lawn, with the xenon's on. They look beautiful, almost jewel-like. An odd thing to notice I know, but still. The car looked absolutely stunning overall, there were several cars pulling over to the side of the road just to take a look. :yikes:

I'm gonna go down there maybe this evening, find out when a 6-speed model is in. :thumbup:
 

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;p
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i saw the silver one at the show room, looked bland. but when i saw the black one i was like :yikes: , it was breathtaking
 

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Don't worry, be happy
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11,616 Posts
webguy330i said:
The dealership here has procured G35 coupe as a demo car as they're expecting a lot of sales after the MT "Car of the Year" award goes out. I was lucky enough to get some seat time in this car. The specs:

- black w/ tan interior (looks great in black btw)
- fully loaded 5AT w/ Nav, Sport Package (18's), silver interior trim, etc. etc.
- 280 hp / 260 ft-lbs (just a hair under the 350z specs)
- MSRP $36,800

Initial Impressions
You know I've never been a big fan of this car from the pictures, but I gotta say, this is a sexy sexy beast in person. You really don't notice the huge ass end of the car until you step behind it and give it a good hard look. The front end is beautifully sculpted (IMO) into a nice low, wide shape with large fender flares. It looks especially nice with the 18's (which btw, were fitted with Pilot Sports). The black is a stunning color for this car, very smooth and very rich.

Inside you find the familiar Nissan Pulsar-like steering wheel, but that can't deter you from checking out the gorgeous silver center console. It is a little quirky with the control layouts (example: the power button for the radio is on the RIGHT side of the console, not exactly typical) but for the most part it's very nice. There is no display on the center console, it's up above it in the middle of the top of the dash (right behind the pop-up nav screen). Infinity has also fitted this vehicle with their signature analog oval clock, a very classy touch that I love. We tested the nav system and it seems to work very well, although it could tell you about upcoming turns a bit sooner IMO. It's DVD-based btw, and the color screen is extremely bright and clear. Overall the interior is very plush, especially the front seats. They're thick and heavy and very comfortable with plenty of bolstering (although not nearly as much as the 330 SP seats, more along the lines of an IS300 seat with more lateral support). I DO NOT like the position of the seating controls, and I didn't check out the glovebox as Ack did. :) The rear glass prevents anyone over 5' 8" from not hitting their head on it, it's not meant for most adults I can tell you that. Also from the rear there are these little pieces of carpet that hang out from the backs of the seat bottoms of the front seats -- looks cheap, they should have tucked them away.

Driving Impressions
Starting this motor up was nothing more than pure bliss. It reminded me of the sweet sweet growl that my 330 has come to provide. The dual exhaust really gives this thing an even sound note too, from all over the cabin. It's NOT exactly quiet, but it's not too invasive either. Very nice and I can only imagine what it'll sound like with about 20k miles on the thing.

Steering in the coupe is heavier than the sedan, but just as accurate. It's still not as heavy as I'd like it, and can get a little whispy on the highway. This is a heavy car mind you, so it cruises very well.

The POWER of this thing is amazing. It has some serious thrust, I can't wait to drive the 6spd. From a stand-still the car takes off like a rocket, shifting just before redline. The manumatic shifting (whatever Infinity calls it) is very quick for a non-SMG-esque system. It's gotta be at least 2x as quick as the BMW setup. I find that the G's transmission (the auto, in both the coupe and sedan) can get easily confused though when rolling around town. If you're in 4th at 40mph and you wanna get around someone, flogging the gas will send it out of gear and eventually into 2nd, but it takes some time. It does a lot of gear hunting.

Handling is superb, right up there with my 330. I didn't take the car to its limits, but I did quite a bit of manuevering (highway on-ramp curves, fast lane changes, around-town turns, etc.). It's rock solid folks! The ride is a bit more harsh than my 330 SP but it pays off with basically no body roll through high-speed turns (something we all know the 3'er tends to give way to) and extreme stability. Again though it gets back to the steering, and I can't help but wonder how it would react in a situation where you, say, induced quite a bit of oversteer and attempted to correct for it. I wonder how much further I'd turn the wheel than I would in the 330, being that the car has lighter steering and a larger turning circle diameter. Again though, this car handles very very well in my opinion (and as some of you know I've driven a handful of well-handling vehicles, i.e. M3, M5, M coupe, 330, S2k, to name a few). It's also worth noting that the car doesn't FEEL as heavy as it is, and seems to be setup to handle its weight quite well (minimal pitch and roll).

To end this ridiculously long post...
I must say this is a great competetor for the 3-series, more specifically the 330. The power is awesome, the handling is superb, and the interior/exterior styling is in my opinion quite stylish. At the sticker price of $36,800 for the car I drove, I'd say it's worth just about every penny. But I'd opt for the 6spd (actually more expensive, believe it or not, as it comes with an LSD and some other items) and would definitely be doing a 350z steering wheel swap as my first mod. :D
With the above post in mind, as I read it and re-read it this morning, I just got back from a test drive of a G35 Coupe 6 Speed. IT was Laser Red with tan interior, and the performance package and aero spoiler were its options.

It is definitely a LOT of car for the money. The throws on the 6 speed were short and crisp, and it has gobs of acceleration.

I am seriously considering getting rid of the 330i, and either getting a ZHP, or maybe even this G35 Coupe. But, maybe at the end of the day, logic will tell me just to stay put and enjoy the beautiful car I already have. :D
 

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3 things about the G35c that kept me away.

(1) Lease rates (though not bad, don't match the 3series)
(2) Very loud in the back seat. If you make long trips with a third person in the rear and they aren't a car fanatic they will go absolutely nuts with the sound.
(3) Trunk space is VERY limited. It looks pretty darn tiny.

Z
 

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I recently drove a G35 coupe w/ 6-speed. The dealer in Windsor had a demonstrator.

It was a very nice all round car. I loved the seats - they look and feel good. The shifter was excellent, sort of notchy, but with a lot of feel and feedback.

The engine wasn't very smooth, it was lopey at idle. I thought the performance of the car was fine, but not spectacular.

I really enjoyed the G35 coupe, but I don't think I would buy one because I think it's too expensive. It may be unfair, but I still think you should get a break on price if you are buying Japanese. Not because Japanese cars are worth less, but because they have a history of selling more car for less money; I've been conditioned to think this way.

So I sort of had sticker shock when the dealer said "around C$57k". They wanted about the same as I paid for my 2000 MY Corvette, and I just don't think of the G35 as playing in that league.

Jay
 

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Don't worry, be happy
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BTW, the G35 Coupe I test drove had a $4K "market adjustment" tacked on to it. Having been lurking over at the Infiniti site (freshalloy), the coupes seem to be going for sticker, with rare instances MAYBE a couple of hundred off.

I laughed at the market adjustment, and after the salesman asked me a few questions in an attempt to gauge what I knew and didn't know about the car, he told me he could sell me the car at sticker ($36K, which would be loaded except navigation).

EDIT: I saw Jon Shafer's salesman (Bearimmer?) posting about his negative experience on this board over at the Infiniti board. :rofl:
 

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Ryan330i said:
BTW, the G35 Coupe I test drove had a $4K "market adjustment" tacked on to it. Having been lurking over at the Infiniti site (freshalloy), the coupes seem to be going for sticker, with rare instances MAYBE a couple of hundred off.

I laughed at the market adjustment, and after the salesman asked me a few questions in an attempt to gauge what I knew and didn't know about the car, he told me he could sell me the car at sticker ($36K, which would be loaded except navigation).

EDIT: I saw Jon Shafer's salesman (Bearimmer?) posting about his negative experience on this board over at the Infiniti board. :rofl:
ryan your car is a 2001 which means it is definitely old enough to say good bye to without any guilty thoughts . . . If I were you I would seriously consider the G35 coupe . . . that car is beautiful and it is a serious contender especially for a fully loaded price of $37k.
 
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