Infiniti FX SUV (2009 - 2012) review
Read the Infiniti FX 4x4 (2009 - 2013) car review by Auto Trader's motoring experts, covering price, specification, running costs, practicality, safety and how it drives.
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The Infiniti FX isn’t conventionally attractive, but the success of the Porsche Cayenne and BMW X6 – both controversially-styled vehicles – would indicate this is no barrier to success. Like the Cayenne, the striking FX is more supercar on stilts than Tonka toy – the Infiniti has a swooping coupe-like side profile and a bold front with delicately-designed headlights and grille. The rear is much like the smaller Infiniti EX: bulbous and stylish.
As with rivals the coupe styling means rear visibility is poor but this is compensated by the high driving position as well as the Around View Monitor, a feature exclusive to the FX50S, which means you can view the front, back and sides of the car from the driver’s seat.
The coupe feel continues inside the cabin, with a curving dash that looks every inch the expensive coupe. The driving position, however, is pure 4×4 with a commanding view of the road. While the build quality seems first rate, and the materials tactile, there’s not enough premium-feeling trim in the cabin and too much plastic. However, the controls are clearly labelled and well laid out.
Ride and handling
Despite being designed as a car to use on the road rather than off it, the Infiniti can’t compete with the thoroughly sportscar-like Porsche Cayenne and BMW X6. However, it still feels agile through the bends; more so than a Range Rover, but the ride is firm and the big 20- or 21-inch alloys upset the ride comfort, making it jiggle over bumps. That said, it is capable of entertaining through the bends with responsive steering, a stable chassis that stays flat at speed and plenty of grip.
Three engines are available in the Infiniti FX. The FX30d offers the most sensible blend of performance and running costs. It’ll cover 0-62mph in 8.3 seconds before reaching a top speed of 132mph. The entry-level model, the FX37 has a 3.7-litre V6 petrol engine which will reach 62mph in 6.8 seconds before reaching 145mph, while the FX50 rivals the Porsche Cayenne Turbo with its 5.8 second 0-62mph and 155mph top speed. The diesel we tested is a little noisy when the car is stationary, but is more quiet and smooth on the move.
The Infiniti FX will retain around 40 per cent of its price new after three years/36,000 miles, which is less than a Range Rover Sport, but comparable with a Porsche Cayenne. Priced from £45,000, the Infiniti FX isn’t bad value for money, particularly given the impressive amount of equipment included as standard. Fuel and road tax bills are considerable all models, but the diesel make the most financial sense, with an average fuel consumption figure of 31.4mpg.
Infiniti might be new to the UK, but its cars have been sold across Europe with no major documented problems. The fact that Infiniti is Nissan’s luxury car division should give confidence in the car’s build quality.
The Infiniti FX scored a full five star rating in the Euroncap crash test programme, receiving particular praise for its adult protection and high level of safety equipment. Key safety kit includes tyre pressure sensors, six airbags, whiplash-reducing headrests and a speed limiter. More expensive models have lane departure prevention, which means should one side of the car veer over a set of white lines, they gently brake bringing the car onto the correct side of the road and cruise control which follows the car in front at a set distance.
Four models make up the FX range: GT, GT Premium, S and S Premium. All models include a colour control screen, rear parking camera, Bluetooth connectivity, keyless entry, dual zone climate control, electric glass sunroof, electric leather seats, 20-inch alloy wheels.
The imposing Infiniti FX is a worthy rival to the Porsche Cayenne, BMW X6 and Range Rover Sport, but crucially for buyers, it will remain a far rarer sight on Britain’s roads.