This morning on the 18th fairway at Pebble Beach, Infiniti debuted the production version of their their third SUV model, the EX35, following in the footsteps of the FX-series and the
QX. While one might think the RWD-or-AWD EX is a derivative of the Murano, it's actually built on a trucked-up version of Nissan's FM platform. Probably the trickest piece of equipment, besides the headreast-mounted coathanger — is the Around View Monitor System, known in abbreviated parlance as AVM. It offers a 360-degree view of the vehicle to ease parking in tight situations. An added bonus would seem to be the opportunity to hire oneself out to Google in his or her new EX, thus making the payments while mapping the world. The EX hits showrooms in December, press release after the jump.
2008 Infiniti EX35 Features Coupe-Inspired SUV Design
Engaging Environment and Advanced Technologies
The all-new 2008 Infiniti EX35, which goes on sale at Infiniti retailers nationwide in late December 2007, offers an exceptional combination of seductive design, elegant interior and advanced technology systems - including the world production car debut of the advanced Around View Monitor (AVM) system, which utilizes four small cameras to give the driver a "top-down view" of the outside of the vehicle while parking. The new EX35 also becomes the second Infiniti production vehicle, following the fall introduction of the 2008 Infiniti M, to offer the new Lane Departure Prevention (LDP) system, and the first to feature "Scratch Shield," a special "self-healing" clearcoat paint.
"This new Infiniti EX35 is a breathtaking design and a breath of fresh air in the segment, with its sculpted elegance, engaging interior and exciting performance," said Mark Igo, vice president and general manager, Infiniti Division, Nissan North America, Inc. "And if that's not enough to stand out in class, there's its exclusive technology, highlighted by the Around View Monitor and Lane Departure Prevention systems."
The EX35's sculpted elegance expresses a timeless appeal - sleek lines that portray speed, grace and finesse. Its layout combines the look and feel of a luxury coupe and an SUV's flexibility. Its sporty proportions include a long hood, short front and rear overhangs, rearward cabin and smooth coupe-like roofline arching over the windows to the C-pillars.
"The EX35 is the perfect fusion of a luxury coupe and a high-utility SUV," said Igo. "Its 'right-sized' packaging gives it excellent around town maneuverability, while the wide rear hatch and low load floor make it a versatile performer for everyday and weekend use."
EX35's exterior includes many signature Infiniti touches, including a double-arch grille, large L-shaped headlights with available Bi-Xenon Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS), integrated fog lights, distinctive LED taillights and "dynamic arch" profile. Other exterior features include a high-mounted rear hatchback spoiler, chrome-finished dual exhaust tips, an available power tilt/sliding moonroof with one-touch activation and optional roof rails and crossbars, which offer additional storage possibilities. EX35 also features a standard puddle lamp integrated in the driver's side-view mirror as part of the hospitality lighting concept.
Eight exterior colors are offered: Moonlight White, Liquid Platinum, Platinum Graphite, Black Obsidian, Scarlet Silver, Tidewater, Blue Slate and Dark Currant.
One of the unique features of the new EX35 is "Scratch Shield," a special "self-healing" clearcoat paint, which is designed to maintain its gloss-level over time. The paint repairs fine scratches, such as fingernail scratches under door handles, restoring the EX35's surface close to its original state. The process, which takes anywhere from one day to one week (depending on the surrounding temperature and the depth of the scratch), is accomplished through the use of a special highly elastic resin. This resin is combined with a conventional clearcoat to increase the paint's flexibility and strength by raising the resin density.
Elegant Interior Design
Like all Infiniti vehicles, the EX35 was conceived to offer a reinvigorating and engaging interior environment, one that is both indulgent and inspiring. The driver-focused "wave-inspired" cabin layout features an Infiniti signature "double-wave" instrument panel, easy-to-read high-contrast gauges with white-and-violet illumination and hospitality lighting with a pin LED light mounted over the center console and Infiniti-signature analog clock.
The instrument panel also features a 7-inch color display with Infiniti controller for the trip computer and additional vehicle information, including the available Infiniti Hard Disk based Navigation System with 9.3GB Music Box hard drive for music storage and playback
Other technology systems include available Bluetooth® Hands-Free Phone System, standard Infiniti Intelligent Key with Push Button Ignition and XM Satellite Radio (XM® subscription required, sold separately). Available technology features include RearView Monitor (available separately, or as part of the Around View Monitor system), front and rear sonar system, Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC) and Bose® Premium Audio System with Burr-Brown 24-bit DAC, 11 speakers including 2 subwoofers, 6CD in-dash changer and iPod® connectivity.
The interior is offered with cloth or leather-appointed seating surfaces, available in Wheat colored cloth or Graphite, Stone, Wheat and Chestnut leather appointments. A special Black Lacquer trim comes standard on the center console and center stack, with optional Maple wood trim on center console, center stack, and door panels (replacing Black Lacquer and aluminum respectively). There is also a leather and aluminum shift knob, and leather-wrapped steering wheel with controls for audio, cruise control, voice commands and Lane Departure Prevention (if equipped). Dual-zone automatic temperature control is also available.
An 8-way power driver's seat with 2-way manual lumbar support and a 4-way power passenger's seat are standard. A driver's seat memory system is also offered, along with available heated front seats and 8-way power front passenger's seat. Also available is a 60/40 split power-folding 2nd row seat (operated from front or hatch area). "The EX35's interior is all about driving pleasure and passenger comfort," said Igo. "Like the exterior, it offers a coupe-like feel but surprising utility - ideal for today's active lifestyles."
Advanced Platform and Powertrain
Under the EX35's dramatic body is an equally advanced platform and powertrain based on the latest Infiniti performance technology. Its advanced FM platform provides the same high levels of handling precision and balance as it does for the Infiniti M, FX and G Coupe and Sedan.
Every 2008 Infiniti EX35 comes standard with a fourth-generation VQ35HR 3.5-liter V6 engine (shared with the new G35 Sedan), rated at 290-plus horsepower (estimated) and 5-speed automatic transmission with manual mode, DS sport mode with Downshift Rev Matching (DRM), and Adaptive Shift Control.
The engine block features ladder frame construction, variable exhaust cam timing (eCVTCS), asymmetric piston skirts, twin knock sensors and Iridium spark plugs. Its symmetric twin ram air intake system helps reduce airflow resistance, while the dual exhaust system has been designed with equal length exhaust manifolds and reduced muffler exhaust pressure help improve engine breathing. Both are tuned to create authoritative harmonies, helping enhance driving pleasure, an exciting engine sound and expected improvements in emissions and fuel economy (versus the previous generation VQ engine).
The fourth-generation VQ engine design also includes a long list of advanced systems found on the previous design - including a Continuously Variable Valve Timing Control System (CVTCS), a "noiseless" timing chain for quiet operation, an electronically controlled "drive-by-wire" throttle system, microfinished crank journals and cam lobes, and molybdenum coated lightweight pistons.
"Like the new G35 Sedan, with which it shares its engine, the EX35's tuning strategy features a refined balance of quick acceleration that builds continuously to the redline. It's a deepening pleasure that keeps getting better as you drive, which we call Swell," sad Igo.
Every EX35 utilizes a subframe-mounted independent front double-wishbone suspension with aluminum-alloy upper and lower links, high-performance dual-flow pass shock absorbers and stabilizer bar. The rear suspension is an independent multi-link design with aluminum-alloy upper and lower links and axle housing, high-performance dual-flow pass shock absorbers and stabilizer bar.
Steering is provided by a vehicle speed-sensitive power-assisted steering system with power-assisted front and rear discs (vented front) and standard Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA). Also standard is Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) with Traction Control System (TCS), while an advanced Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC) with Preview Braking is optionally available. Available wheel and tire combinations include 17-inch 7-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels with 225/60R17 tires or 18-inch 8-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels with 225/55R18 tires.
The front engine/rear-wheel drive EX 35 is also offered with an intelligent all-wheel drive system. EX35 AWD models feature Infiniti's ATTESA E-TS (Advanced Total Traction Engineering System for All Electronic Torque Split) all-wheel drive system, which is also utilized on the 2008 M, FX and G Sedan. The system utilizes an active torque distribution management system with an active center clutch designed for smooth starts and better traction and maneuverability on snowy roads than conventional all-wheel drive systems, plus minimal compromise of rear-wheel drive performance characteristics on dry roads.
Two Advanced New Technologies
The EX35's advanced technology design is highlighted by two systems that are among the first production versions available in North America: the Infiniti Around View Monitor and the Lane Departure Prevention system (Lane Departure Prevention is also offered in the 2008 Infiniti M).
The Infiniti Around View Monitor utilizes small front, side and rear-mounted cameras to project an all-around view of potential objects on every side of the vehicle - helping reduce blind spots when parking.
"Conventional mirrors, no matter how carefully you use them, just can't provide a view around the vehicle that the Around View Monitor's four-camera system does," said Igo. "Rear bumper sonar systems help detect objects behind a vehicle, but again they can't give the view of the space around the vehicle that the AVM does." The Lane Departure Prevention system builds on the Lane Departure Warning (LDW) system that is currently available on the Infiniti FX.
Rather than just use an audible/visual warning system to alert the driver of unintentional vehicle movement outside the designated lane, the LDP system uses the vehicle's Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) system to help assist the driver in maintaining lane position if the vehicle inadvertently starts to drift outside of the lane. Both LDP and the LDW systems use a small camera installed behind the windshield to detect visible lane markers in front of the vehicle and calculate its position relative to lane markers and warn the driver of lane drift (pending lane change without use of the turn signal) with a visual display and audible buzzer.
At the same time, the LDP system assists the driver by using gentle control (generating part of the necessary yaw movement), using the VDC's brake actuator to control the brake pressure of each individual wheel to generate the intended movement.
"Infiniti has taken a leadership position in offering the first production Lane Departure Warning systems for production vehicles. We're now poised to continue the development and refinement of this technology with the EX35's Lane Departure Prevention system," said Igo.
Every 2008 EX35 also features the Infiniti Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt and occupant classification system, driver and front passenger side-impact supplemental air bags, roof-mounted curtain side-impact and rollover supplemental air bags for front and rear seat outboard occupant head protection, and Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).
Also standard are 3-point ALR/ELR seat belts (driver's side ELR only) and front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters and adjustable upper anchors, front seat Active Head Restraints and the LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) system for the rear outboard seating positions. The EX35 also features advanced Zone Body Construction with front and rear crushable zones to help disperse crash energy around the passenger compartment.
Models and Packages
The 2008 Infiniti EX35 is available in four models: EX35 RWD (cloth interior only), EX35 AWD (cloth interior only), EX35 RWD Journey and EX35 AWD Journey. EX35 Journey models include power slide/tilt moonroof with one-touch activation, front and rear leather-appointed seating surfaces, power-folding second row seat, auto-dimming inside mirror with electronic compass, HomeLink Universal Transceiver, front and rear sonar system and auto on/off headlights.
A number of packages and options are also available, including Premium Package, Luxe Elite Package, Wood Trim, Navigation Package, Technology Package, Luxe Style Package and Roofrails. "This new EX35 is simply an extraordinary vehicle, providing a personal reward for those who drive and own it," said Igo. "With power and agility available on demand, it's a perfect fit for buyers looking to add a little excitement in their everyday lives. It's also a great addition to the Infiniti lineup of vibrant performance luxury vehicles."