On the heels of our Infiniti FX road test, the luxury Japanese brand has finally released their compact-SUV competitor, the EX.
The compact SUV is a crossover, much like the Nissan Juke, that sees coupe and SUV styling ideas and functionality mixed. Infiniti has left 4×4 “styling” – traditionally boxy and utilitarian – by the wayside, clearly aiming for a style-over-function orientated market. Still, that sleek design is bound to add to aerodynamics on a vehicle which the company hopes will be easy to live with. Chrome touches and tinted glass, along with the 18 inch alloy wheels, add to the “exclusive” feel they’re presenting.
Five derivatives with two engine options are available in the EX range for now – the 3.0 litre turbodiesel V6 (EX30d) and the 3.7 litre petrol V6 (EX37 GT and GT Premium).
3.0 litre turbodiesel V6
Trims available for this hefty engine include the standard EX, EX GT and EX GT Premium, staggering in features and creature comforts accordingly. Performance wise the engine sees 175kw and 550 Nm of torque at a super low 1750 r/min delivered via the standard seven-speed auto box we drove in the FX. 0 – 100 km/h is only 7.0 seconds, but the EX tops out at an impressive, if slightly pointless, 221 km/h. The company reports an 8.5 litre/100km fuel efficiency and 224 g/km of CO2 emissions. If true, this gives you a decent range of about 1000km on that ever-expensive tank of fuel.
3.7 litre petrol V6
Only GT and GT Premium trims are available on the petrol derivative, which produces 235 kW and 360Nm of torque at 5200 r/min. In stark contrast to the diesel, the petrol engine seems poised for the long road rather than the dirt road, and top speed is 240 km/h. 0 – 100 km/h takes only 6.4 seconds, and fuel economy is a reported 11.3 liter/100km.
Infiniti has, so far, set up shop in both Hatfield and Melrose, with more dealerships in the works.
As we’re coming to expect with Infiniti, the features list is quite extensive.
Safety wise, the EX comes with:
ABS, EBD (Anti-lock Braking System with Electronic Brake-force Distribution), BAS (Brake Assist System), six airbags and ESP (Electronic Stability Programme). ISOFIX child seat anchor points and active head rests are also included.
EX30d GT Premium models benefit from a host of added safety features including Lane Departure Prevention (LDP), Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC) with Intelligent Brake Assist (IBA) and Forward Collision Warning (FCW), and Infiniti’s Around View Monitor(AVM).
At entry EX level (EX30d only), features include: automatic xenon follow-me-home headlights, automatic wipers, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, cruise control with a speed limiter, front and rear parking sensors with a full-colour central display with Infiniti Controller, a seven-speaker audio system with single CD, MP3,and a 2GB Music Box, USB and auxiliary ports, Bluetooth for both audio streaming and mobile phone operation, keyless access and starting via an I-Key (which includes a memory function for the driver’s seat and door mirror positions), electric front seats (8- and 4-way adjustment for driver and passenger seats respectively), a multifunction leather steering wheel, black lacquer and aluminium interior trim, dual-zone automatic adaptive climate control with rear vents, powered folding rear seats, 18-inch alloy wheels, electric folding and heated side mirrors, privacy glass, LED tail lamps and self-healing paint. The I-Key is an expression of Infiniti hospitality: when approaching the car, the encrypted signal primes the vehicle’s systems to accept a command.
Optional extras include metallic paint, polished aluminium roof rails and Connectiviti+ system (standard on GT and GT Premium models), which comprises a 30GB Hard Disk Drive satellite navigation, a single CD changer with MP3, WMA and DivX compatibility and a 10GB Music Box, a hi-resolution touch screen and a reversing camera with display, linked to the front and rear parking sensors. An electric glass sunroof (standard on GT Premium) and hand-stained Maple Wood trim are also optional.
Available at GT level in EX37 or EX30d guise, spec upgrades include electric steering wheel adjustment, leather seat facings, 10-way driver’s seat electric adjustment (with 8-way adjustment for the passenger) with memory for the driver’s seat, steering wheel and mirror positions (the I-Key gains seat position memory as well), heated front seats, tilting side mirrors when in reverse, an integrated jacket hanger (on driver’s seat headrest), 19 inch alloy wheels, Connectiviti+ system and an 11-speaker Bose® premium sound system.
Rounding off the range are the new Infiniti EX37 and EX30d GT Premium models, which gain technologically advanced features that set precedents in this class. These include Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Lane Departure Warning and Lane Departure Prevention, Intelligent Cruise Control with low speed following (LSF) and Intelligent Brake Assist (IBA) and Forward Collision Warning (FCW), and an Around View Monitor with corner parking sensors
Owning an Infiniti
Infiniti vehicles are covered by a comprehensive warranty that covers the first three years or 100 000 km of ownership. In addition, a five-year or 100 000 km maintenance plan is standard on all models.
All Infiniti vehicles are covered by a comprehensive roadside assistance programme – 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Pricing (Recommended by Infiniti)
EX30d: R595 000
EX37 GT: R626 000
EX30d GT: R635 870
EX37 GT Premium: R667 406
EX30d GT Premium: R677 276