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Performance reshaped to ignite invigoration. Luxury alive to the human touch. Industry-first technology honed to anticipate. Of all the ways used to describe Infiniti's all-new halo sedan, the 2011 Infiniti M, it all perhaps comes down to one word - Inspired. Like the dramatic Infiniti Essence Concept, which served as a blueprint for the new M's designers and engineers, this next-generation M embraces the essence of all things Infiniti - style, performance, luxury, craftsmanship and technology.
The 2011 Infiniti M will be offered in M37 and M56 model designations when it goes on sale at Infiniti retailers nationwide in spring 2010. The M37 features a refined 3.7-liter V6 engine with increased power and fuel economy (versus the previous generation M35's 3.5-liter V6). The M56 also offers more power and better fuel economy from an all-new 5.6-liter V8 (versus the previous generation M45's 4.5-liter V8). Both the M37 and M56 engines feature Infiniti's advanced VVEL (Variable Valve Event & Lift) system and all models are equipped with a standard 7-speed automatic transmission. The M56 engine also utilizes Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG) technology. The M37 and M56 are available in both rear-wheel drive and with Infiniti's Intelligent All-Wheel Drive system. A special Sport Package, offered on rear-wheel drive models only, offers 4-wheel Active Steer (4WAS), sport-tuned suspension, Sport Brakes and 20-inch wheels and tires.
The 2011 M also offers a next-generation Infiniti Hard Drive Navigation System, Bose Studio Surround premium audio system, Intelligent Cruise Control (Full-Speed Range), Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Lane Departure Prevention (LDP) systems, Distance Control Assist (DCA), Intelligent Brake Assist (IBA) with Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Front Pre-Crash Seat Belts.
"The new M utilizes technology that enhances the driving experience, rather than intrudes upon it, adapting to changing conditions or the driver's mood to provide optimized performance," said Poore. "The same philosophy holds true for the design of the M's luxurious interior, which blends comfort and technology in an intuitive, completely harmonious way to provide both driver and passengers with an unforgettable experience, every time they enter the cabin."The story behind the exterior design of the all-new M is multi-layered, just like the body surface itself, which was conceived to mirror reflections from different angles to create a sense of mystery and magnetic allure.
Building on the previous M's balanced, rear-wheel drive proportions and stance - with a long, low hood and high rear deck - the new M maintains the roomy cabin of its predecessor while providing a longer, lower and wider shape. The M wheelbase is unchanged at 114.2 inches, but the width has been increased by 2.0 inches (to 72.6 inches), the length increased by 0.6-inch (to 194.7 inches) and the overall height lowered by 0.4-inch (to 59.1 inches). The front and rear tracks have been increased by 1.4 and 0.8 inches respectively (to 62.0 inches front and rear).
Along with the more aggressive dimensions, the new M's sportier appearance can be attributed to the deep body shape of the fenders and doors that give the M sedan a powerful look unlike anything on the road. The new wave-style doors are constructed from aluminium for light weight, despite the material's difficult formability. The stamping dies for each door are hand polished to maintain their precision and every door undergoes an exacting human inspection, providing a handcrafted level of quality.
Unlike other performance luxury sedans that prioritize the impression their vehicles make on others, Infiniti's intention is different - with the focus centered around the individual driving the car. Nowhere is this philosophy more apparent than in the new M's interior that adapts to different driver conditions. Created almost as a "second skin," the carefully tailored and crafted M cockpit becomes an extension of the driver.
The M's engineers and designers researched all areas of the M interior, from the space between and shape of switches and controls to the response of occupants to material softness and textures. The result is what its creators describe as a "warm human accuracy with sensuality."
Careful attention was paid to identifying the precise location for key controls, using consistent shapes and groupings for controls that work in the same manner. There are three areas of operability - the sight information area, the operation area and the easy access area.
Infiniti engineers envisioned the all-new M to deliver a more fluid, naturally dynamic performance feeling, sculpting the power of the VVEL-equipped 3.7-liter V6 and 5.6-liter V8 to release like a rising wave.
The engines' VVEL systems combine hydraulic-controlled variable valve timing and electronically controlled variable valve lift on the intake side to help improve performance and response. Throttle response is enhanced by directly controlling the intake valve, rather than using the traditional method of controlling intake with the throttle valve. The VVEL systems also offer improved emissions and fuel efficiency (over the non-VVEL designs) by substantially reducing the intake resistance that occurs when the engine's throttle valve opening is narrowed and output is low.
The M37's 3.7-liter VVEL, 24-valve DOHC aluminium-alloy V6 is rated at 330 hp @ 7,000 rpm, 270 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm, increases of 27 horsepower and 8 lb-ft of torque versus the previous 3.5-liter V6. The engine also features rigid ladder frame construction, large crank journal and pin diameters, asymmetric piston skirts, twin knock sensors, an electronically controlled "drive-by-wire" throttle system, molybdenum coated lightweight pistons, Iridium spark plugs and a symmetric twin air intake system.
All 2011 Ms come standard with Infiniti's refined 7-speed automatic transmission with Downshift Rev Matching and Adaptive Shift Control (ASC), which allows for sportier shifts during spirited driving. Solid magnesium paddle shifters are standard with the Sport Package (RWD models only).
The 2011 Infiniti M is offered in four well-equipped models: the M37 (V6 rear-wheel drive), M37x AWD (V6 all-wheel drive), M56 (V8 rear-wheel drive) and M56x (V8 all-wheel drive). The Sport Package, offered with M37 and M56 rear-wheel drive only, adds 20-inch wheels and tires, Sport Suspension, Sport Brakes, 4-Wheel Active Steer (4WAS), paddle shifters, sport seat, aluminium pedal accents, stitched synthetic leather meter hood, sport steering wheel and shift knob, unique front fascia with dark finish grille and dark headlight housings.
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