Our cars: Infiniti M30d - March
Infiniti has a tough gig. It has been selling cars in the UK for only 18 months or so and it’s up against established players from Audi, BMW, Lexus and Mercedes-Benz.
One of the ways Infiniti is aiming to stand out from its rivals is by offering a unique buying and owning experience, and we put that to the test when we picked up our M30d from the company’s showroom in Reading.
It’s a shiny, stylish place, with modern art on the walls and comfy leather sofas on which you can relax and enjoy the ambience.Business manager Shane Sunkel conducted the handover in Infiniti’s special temperature- and light-controlled showroom (the light shows off the car in its best, er, light, while the right temperature means there’s no condensation on the windscreen, so the car is ready to be driven off).
He took the best part of an hour to show me around the car’s many functions and controls, but no time at all to show me the options I had picked, because there was only one: metallic paint. You see, Infiniti loads its models with kit. As standard, our GT Premium has a leather interior, seven-speed automatic gearbox, intelligent cruise control, blind-spot warning, climate control, sat-nav and 16-speaker sound system with a 30Gb hard drive. The car has a sumptuous interior and the 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine has plenty of poke, on paper at least.
I decided to try the Infiniti to see if the brand’s customer service and ownership experience stack up against what I experienced with my last long-term test car, a Mercedes E-Class.
I’ve racked up more than 4000 miles to date and found that the seats are incredibly comfortable, the stereo is awesome, and I’m in love with the heated steering wheel on cold mornings.
Talking of cold weather, I’m also a complete convert to winter tyres. Our M has a set (£880, fitted by the Reading dealership) and, despite being a rear-wheel-drive automatic V6, the car was properly sure-footed in the winter snow. The combination of the tyres and the car’s ‘Snow’ setting (which makes the M start off in a higher gear) meant I never had a ‘moment’ in bad weather.
So far, it’s a car that makes me go ‘mmm’.
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