HEELS ON WHEELS: 2009 INFINITI G37 COUPE REVIEW



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2009 Infiniti G37 Coupe

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HEELS ON WHEELS
By Katrina Ramser
San Francisco Bureau
The Auto Channel

INTRO TO THE INFINITI G37 VEHICLE
The G37 design straddles both luxury sedan and sporty coupe, so you'll look like a Hot Mama Jet-Setter but with tons of class. Name change replaces the G35 model and reflects increase in engine size; so be prepared to go faster than before.

I drove a 2-door 2009 Infiniti G37 Coupe with all-wheel drive (AWD) and Snow Mode. It had a 330-horsepower 3.7-liter 24-valve V6 under the hood. Standard highlights included: xenon headlights with High Intensity Discharge (HID); 8-way power driver and passenger seating; analog clock; rear window defroster with timer; heated front seats. Optional features included: Premium Package for $3,000 (moonroof, Bose audio system, lumbar support, memory seating, Bluetooth); illuminated kickplates for $330; the Navigation Package for $2,200; 18-inch alloy wheels for $1,650; and genuine African Rosewood trim for $550. Total vehicle price came to $47,245.

There are many things luxurious about a coupe like the G37. What's really cutting edge about the vehicle is the Intelligent Key or key fob. Keep it on your body and all you have to do is press a button on the door handle to lock or unlock – no more clicking of the fob. For people who like to impress – and that's what cars like this are for – this stuff matters.

HEELS ON WHEELS REVIEW CRITERIA

Stylish But Comfortable Results: You'll feel cradled in the charcoal-colored leather bucket seats and not too snug with the cabin interior. Wood trimmed center console and a clock nicer than any watch I've ever owned catch your eyes. The navigation system is at a bit of an odd tilt, due to space. Second row is tight (it's a coupe, after all), but from the trunk the seats can be folded down in one pull of a lever and a simple push. (Directions on the inner truck door actually describe how you can fit two golf bags in here). Take this anyway you'd like – but I swear I got a little bit of an abdominal workout by using stomach muscles to push the door open from the crunch position buckets of the bucket seats.

Reliability & Safety Factor: Cutting edge and on-point with the following safety features: Electric Brake EBD), Brake Assist (BA), anti-locking (ABS), Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC), and Traction Control System (TCS). Plus the LATCH system for children and an industry-first called Snug Kids, which is a guide to getting your kid safety inside the specifications of the vehicle (you don't have to buy the car to download these instructions).

Cost Issues: The Infiniti G37 is a great car, and $47,245, that is what you pay for a coupe of this caliber. However, if you're looking for a cheaper car but with similar styling, you might want to try the vintage-inspired Volvo C30 at around $29,350.

Activity & Performance Ability: Push-start the engine and fall in love. A 330-horsepower 3.7-liter engine inside such a little body makes a beautiful sound. This car has no fear during acceleration and incredibly responsive brakes to match its courage. My 7-speed automatic transmission came with Drive Sport mode. The Downshift Rev Matching switches the transmission into manual for paddle shifting.

The Green Concern: For an engine of this size, I'm surprised you're getting 18-mpg city and 25-mpg highway driving for an average of around 21-mpg. You're just not toting around all that steel.

FINAL PARTING WORDS
The Infiniti G37 seems to say: Why not – you deserve it! I'm not fond of how Infiniti separately charges for the extras that should come in one big price the way most luxury cars do (I've come to understand it’s a Nissan trademark to do business this way), but it's a nice design sitting somewhere between sporty coupe and luxury sedan.

2008 Katrina Ramser

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