2011 Infiniti G25

NAPA, Calif.— One of the most popular vehicles in the entry-level luxury segment has been Infiniti’s G37. Whether a coupe, sedan or convertible, the G37 has consistently ranked among the top performers in the Infiniti line, only slightly stigmatized by the fact they are thought of as vehicles for a male audience.

Infiniti’s product planners, in their infinite wisdom saw a niche for this segment that would not only appeal to the female buyer but to any potential buyer who liked the looks and all the attributes of the G37 but with a more “sedate” powertrain. Enter the G25.

G25 has a refined 2.5-liter DOHC 24-valve V-6 developing 218 horsepower and 187 pound-feet of torque and is mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission. It’s available in RWD and AWD and has EPA estimated fuel economy of 20 mpg city/29 mph highway (19/27 for the G25x).

It has the same interior, exterior and similar standard features as the G37 and is available in three trim levels – G25, G25 Journey and G25x Journey AWD.

The concern surrounding the G25 was would perform around some challenging California roads that are easily prowled with the stronger G37. The G25 has nothing to apologize for; it took the curves, hills and acceleration with the same boldness as its “big brother.” There was no body sway at all and even though the G25 is over 100 horsepower less than its sibling there’s no noticeable delineation of power and performance driving the same route with both vehicles.

The G25 is extremely quiet and we’ve driven vehicles costing much more that didn’t have the road manners, lack of wind noise and etiquette this new vehicle has.

Interior appointments are first-class and all the controls are very intuitive. 
The 2011 G25 isn’t afraid of competition, either. It’s pitting itself against the Lexus IS250 and BMW 328i, hardly a pair of shrinking violets. Not even factoring content and performance it already bests those two with a $2,500 smaller price tag.

Infiniti seems to have nailed the price point with the base G25 starting at $30,950 and the base G25x Journey AWD beginning at $33,950. Destination and handling is an additional $875.

— Al Vinikour