Infiniti M 2012, the performance luxury sedan, comes to the market with some minor refinements over the 2011 model plus all-new Infiniti Hybrid. The 2012 Infiniti M continues to be a showcase for Infiniti's advanced, user-focused technologies. Read more about these technologies and high-res car pictures after the jump.
Following the introduction of the all-new, ground-up, bumper-to-bumper design for model year 2011, the Infiniti M performance luxury sedan powers into its sophomore season with its bar-setting Inspired Performance firmly and fully intact. As one of the most successful launches in Infiniti’s 20-plus year history, the dramatic M37 and M56 receive minor refinements for 2012 – plus the addition of a new stable mate, the Infiniti M Hybrid.
As Infiniti’s first-ever hybrid, the 2012 Infiniti Hybrid delivers V8 performance with 4-cylinder fuel efficiency. Powered by the Infiniti Direct Response Hybrid™ System, the Infiniti M Hybrid is the first V6 true luxury performance “driver’s” hybrid – and the only such vehicle to offer more than 350 horsepower (360 net horsepower) and 32 mpg fuel economy. Estimated fuel economy is 27 mpg City, 32 mpg Highway, with Combined fuel economy rated at 29 mpg. For full details on the 2012 Infiniti Hybrid,
2012 Infiniti M37 and M56
As Infiniti’s halo sedan, the M37 and M56 embrace the essence of all things Infiniti – style, performance, luxury, craftsmanship and technology. Designed to deliver a performance luxury experience crafted to a higher standard, enhancements for the 2012 model include the addition of a new 18-inch Wheel Package, the combining of the previous M56 Sport and Sport Touring Packages into a single Sport Package, and the availability of the Graphite interior for models equipped with the Deluxe Touring Package (a total of four interior colors – Stone, Java, Wheat and Graphite – are offered depending on model).
As in 2011, the Infiniti M is offered in both M37 and M56 model designations. The M37 features a refined 330-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 engine, while the M56 utilizes a 420-horsepower 5.6-liter V8. Both 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 again available in both rear-wheel drive and with Infiniti’s Intelligent All-Wheel Drive system. The 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 2012 Infiniti M also continues as a showcase for Infiniti’s advanced, user-focused technologies, including:
- Infiniti Drive Mode Selector, a four-mode driver-selectable control of throttle and transmission mapping that helps optimize vehicle performance
- Active Noise Control, which reduces undesirable engine harmonics, providing a quieter cabin
- Blind Spot Warning (BSW), which helps alert the driver if another vehicle is detected in the blind spot area
- Blind Spot Intervention™ (BSI), a world’s first system that, provides selective braking if the vehicle approaches and adjacent lane while another vehicle is detected in the blind spot area to help the driver return the vehicle back toward the center of the lane of travel
- Forest Air™ system, which helps reduce the intrusion of unpleasant odors into the cabin and provides a more natural breeze-like airflow
- Eco Pedal, which provides driver feedback to encourage eco-driving behavior
- Active Trace Control, which adjusts engine torque and the control of braking at each of the four wheels to help enhance cornering performance
- Double-piston Shock Absorbers that control damping force according to frequency of input from the road surface
- Enhanced Intelligent Key that remembers last used audio, navigation and climate control settings for each key (in addition to linking to seat, steering wheel and side view mirror positions through the dual occupant memory system)
The 2012 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.
Sleek, Expressive Styling With an Unexpectedly Spacious Cabin
The Infiniti M’s multi-layered exterior was conceived to create a sense of mystery and allure. Its balanced, rear-wheel drive proportions and stance, along with a long, low hood and high rear deck, create an efficient aerodynamic shape – while also providing a roomy cabin. The M’s sporty appearance is highlighted by the deep body shape of the fenders and doors, which give the M sedan a powerful look unlike anything on the road. The wave-style doors are constructed from aluminum 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.
The M exterior optimizes both luxury and sport styling cues – with an expressive, signature Infiniti double-arch upright low grille and crystal-look headlight clusters, large aluminum-alloy wheels, and a wave-like trunk with a high aerodynamic performance that works like a spoiler to increase downforce. Infiniti M37 and M56 models equipped with the optional Sport Package also feature a unique front fascia, dark finish grille, dark headlight housings and 20-inch wheels and tires. Contributing to the M’s low coefficient of drag of just 0.27 (0.26 for M Hybrid) and zero lift front and rear are a series of aerodynamic enhancers, including front tire deflector, engine under cover, center floor cover, rear tire deflectors, exhaust cover, floor side fairings and rear diffuser.
Standard exterior features include a power sliding tinted glass moonroof with one-touch open/close, tilt feature and sliding sunshade, automatic on/off High Intensity Discharge (HID) bi-functional Xenon headlights with windshield wiper interlock, dual exhaust with polished tips, power-folding heated outside mirrors with reverse tilt-down feature, rain-sensing variable intermittent front windshield wipers and courtesy lamps built into the outside door handles.
An Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS) with auto-leveling headlights is available as part of the Technology Package.
For 2012, the Infiniti M is available in seven exterior colors: Malbec Black, Liquid Platinum, Platinum Graphite, Storm Front Grey, Black Obsidian, Moonlight White and Harbour Blue.
A Roomy, Welcoming Interior
Unlike other performance luxury brands that prioritize the impression their vehicles make on others, Infiniti’s intention is different – with the focus centered on the individual driving the car. Nowhere is this philosophy more apparent than in the 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 goal of the Infiniti M interior is to present an elegant yet functional design that combines artistry with precision, comfort with innovation – all in support of enhancing driving performance and passenger enjoyment. 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.
The M instrument panel features Fine Vision electroluminescent gauges, gear-like rings on the instrument cluster meters, a 7.0-inch color vehicle information display and Infiniti analog clock. Leather-appointed, heated 10-way power driver and front passenger’s seats including 2-way power lumbar support are standard, along with a dual occupant memory system for the driver’s seat, steering wheel and outside mirrors – which can be linked to the individual Intelligent Keys. In addition, each Intelligent Key remembers the last used climate control, audio and navigation settings. An entry/exit assist system for the driver’s seat and steering wheel, heated front seats, sequential welcome lighting illuminated entry system and dual-zone automatic temperature also contribute to the M’s outstanding level of standard luxury appointments.
Standard technology equipment includes Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System, Infiniti Intelligent Key with Illuminated Push Button Ignition, HomeLink® Universal Transceiver and RearView Monitor. Other interior highlights include a large center console, power windows with one-touch up/down and auto-reverse feature, power door locks with automatic locking feature, power trunk release, retained accessory power for windows and moonroof, standard XM® Satellite Radio (XM® subscription required, sold separately) and 6-speaker audio system with AM/FM/CD, Radio Data System (RDS), USB Connection Port for iPod® interface and other compatible devices, steering wheel audio controls and speed-sensitive volume control.
Listening to music or conversation in the M interior is a little easier thanks to the Active Noise Control system. Standard on all 2012 M models, Active Noise Control uses sound to delete sound – generating “canceling” sound from four door speakers (and subwoofer for models equipped with a Bose® sound system) to reduce unpleasant engine harmonics. The cabin noise levels are monitored by two microphones located in the M’s ceiling, with no action needed from the driver and passengers except to enjoy the quiet, comfortable cabin.
For buyers seeking a slightly higher level of features and technology, the Premium Package adds the next-generation Infiniti Hard Drive Navigation System with 8.0-inch WVGA color touch-screen display, XM NavTraffic® with Real-Time Traffic Information, XM NavWeather™ with Real-Time Weather and 3-day forecast (XM® subscription required, sold separately), Zagat® Survey Restaurant Guide, Streaming Audio via Bluetooth® and 9.3GB Music Box® Hard Drive. The Premium Package also adds a Bose® 2-channel 10-speaker premium audio system, heated steering wheel and climate-controlled front seats. All Premium Package equipment is standard on the M56 and M56x AWD.
The Deluxe Touring Package adds such notable features as the Bose® Studio Surround® sound system with digital 5.1-channel decoding and 16 speakers (including two personal speakers mounted in the shoulders of each front seat), power rear sunshade, unique quilted seat pattern with contrasting piping and additional seat bolstering, suede-like headliner and a premium stitched meter hood.
The Deluxe Touring Package also features semi-aniline leather – full-grain leather that contains a small amount of surface coating allowing the natural character of the leather to show through. The seats are soft and firm, like premium sofa material, and offered in three available colors – Graphite, Java or Stone. Also part of the Deluxe Touring Package is specially developed soft touch material for the armrests, door inserts, center console and kneepads. The special genuine White Ash wood trim has been enhanced with real silver powder (Japanese Ash wood trim is offered on M models without the Deluxe Touring Package).
The Deluxe Touring Package also offers the Forest Air™ system, which attempts to recreate the refreshing climate and natural breezes of a relaxing forest setting. System sensors automatically open and close air intake ports to reduce the intrusion of dust, exhaust or unpleasant odors into the cabin, while the special Grape Polyphenol filter and Plasmacluster™ air purifier help filter allergens, mold and viruses out of the cabin. Humidity control prevents the over-drying of air from the air conditioner, while Breeze Mode provides a natural airflow feeling, gently and subtly varying the airflow from the upper and front air vents.
A total of four interior colors are offered – Graphite, Stone, Wheat and Java (availability varies with option packages). Sport Package-equipped models receive unique front seat designs, sport steering wheel and shift knob stitching, and aluminum-trimmed pedals.
Advanced Powerplants, A Naturally Dynamic Driving Feel
Infiniti engineers envisioned the Infiniti 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 VVEL system combines 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 system also offers improved emissions and fuel efficiency (over 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 aluminum-alloy V6 is rated at 330 hp @ 7,000 rpm, 270 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm. 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.
The M56’s 5.6-liter VVEL, 32-valve, DOHC, Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG™) aluminum-alloy V8 is rated at 420 hp and 417 lb-ft of torque. The DIG™ system provides better wide-open throttle performance and improved fuel economy and emissions performance by reducing engine knock, improving combustion stability and offered more precise injection control.
All 2012 Infiniti M models come standard with Infiniti’s refined 7-speed automatic transmission with Adaptive Shift Control (ASC) and manual shift mode with Downshift Rev Matching, which allows for sportier shifts during spirited driving. Solid magnesium paddle shifters are also included in the Sport Package (RWD models only).
Estimated fuel economy is rated at 18 mpg City/26 mpg Highway for the M37 and 17 mpg City/24 mpg Highway for the M37x. The M56 is rated at 16 mpg City/25 mpg Highway, while the M56x achieves fuel economy of 16 mpg City and 23 mpg Highway.
A unique feature of the 2012 M is Infiniti Drive Mode Selector, an integrated control system that allows drivers to select from four driving modes, depending on mood or driving conditions, with a dial switch located on the center console. Each mode, Standard, Eco, Sport or Snow, adjusts throttle sensitivity and transmission mapping to help optimize performance.
The system also adjusts 4WAS settings (with available Sport Package) and Active Trace Control and Eco Pedal (with available Technology Package). In addition to the standard mode (suitable for normal driving conditions), the fuel-efficient Eco mode utilizes green or amber indicator on the instrument panel to provide feedback on driving efficiency.
With the available Technology Package, the system also provides feedback directly through the accelerator pedal, giving a slight pushback if driving inefficiently. The Sport mode increases throttle sensitivity and changes transmission shift patterns for sportier driving – and, with the available Sport Package, also adjusts 4-Wheel Active Steer settings.
The 2012 M again utilizes the advanced FM (Front Mid-ship) platform, which positions the engine behind the front axle, resulting in an optimized front-to-rear weight balance. Laser welding is performed at critical locations to help enhance lateral bending stiffness, torsional stiffness and suspension mounting point stiffness (versus the previous M design).
The M suspension features an independent double-wishbone design in front and multi-link independent system in the rear, along with front and rear stabilizer bars. The rear suspension geometry has been designed to provide a quiet, comfortable ride. The Sport Package’s sport-tuned suspension includes double-piston shock absorbers that provide a high damping force at low frequency vibrations for a flat ride and low damping force at high frequency vibrations for a smoother ride.
Also available with the Sport Package is the 4-Wheel Active Steer (4WAS) system, which helps provide lower steering effort at low/medium speeds and a more even feel at higher speeds. Depending on the vehicle speed and the steering angle, the rear wheels are steered in-phase with the front wheels.
The Infiniti M’s large diameter wheels and tires are positioned out near the corners of the vehicle, helping to enhance performance. Standard 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels and P245/50R18 V-rated all-season performance tires are offered on all models. Unique 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with aggressive P245/40R20 W-rated low-profile summer performance tires are available with the Sport Package. In addition, the new 18-inch Wheel Package offers 18-inch triple-split 5-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels.
Every 2012 M utilizes standard 4-wheel power-assisted vented disc brakes (12.6-inch front, 12.1-inch rear) with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA). The Sport Package includes larger 14.0-inch front/13.8-inch rear rotors with 4-piston front/2-piston rear opposed calipers.
The steering system is an electronically controlled vehicle-speed-sensing variable-assist power rack-and-pinion design. Every Infiniti M includes Infiniti’s advanced Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) with Traction Control System (TCS). VDC automatically adjusts brake pressure and engine torque during certain situations where the vehicle is near its handling limit, helping the driver to maintain control of the vehicle.
An advanced Active Trace Control system, included with the Technology Package, helps enhance the transition from braking into and then accelerating out of corners. The system utilizes the M’s VDC system to help improve cornering feel by automatically applying the brakes so that load is increased on the front wheels. The system also modulates engine torque. The Active Trace Control system also applies selective braking to help create increased steering response in S-turns and other steering operations. When Sport mode is engaged (on the Infiniti Drive Mode Selector), the level of braking applied by this feature is reduced.
For drivers seeking the enhanced performance of all-wheel drive, the M37x and M56x models feature Infiniti Intelligent All-Wheel Drive. The system uses an advanced torque split control strategy that automatically redistributes torque to the wheels (0:100 up to 50:50 front to rear) according to road and driving conditions.
Advanced Safety and Security Systems
For 2012, the Infiniti M is again offered with a number of innovative technologies, including Infiniti’s Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Lane Departure Prevention (LDP) systems.
The LDW and LDP systems use a small camera installed behind the windshield to detect lane markers in front of the vehicle, calculate its position relative to those lane markers and warn the driver of a potential unintended lane departure with a visual display and audible buzzer. If the driver does not return the vehicle back toward the center of the travel lane, the LDP system assists the driver with a gentle application of the brakes.
Also offered are Blind Spot Warning (BSW) and Blind Spot Intervention™ (BSI) systems, which are available as part of the M Technology Package. BSW illuminates an indicator light if another vehicle is detected in the blind spot area. If the driver then uses the turn signal, the indicator flashes and an audible warning sounds. BSI is another world-first safety feature from Infiniti and takes blind spot technology to the next level. If the vehicle gets close to the lane marker and another vehicle is detected in the blind spot area, the indicator flashes, an audible warning sounds, and selective braking is applied to one side of the vehicle to help the driver bring the vehicle back to the center of the driving lane. BSI operates regardless of turn signal usage.
Other available safety features include Intelligent Brake Assist (IBA) with Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Front Pre-Crash Seat Belts.
In addition, all Infiniti M models come equipped with standard Infiniti Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and occupant classification sensor; standard front seat-mounted side impact supplemental air bags; and standard roof-mounted curtain side impact supplemental air bags for front and rear-seat outboard occupant head protection.
The Infiniti M also includes standard 3-point seat belts with Automatic Locking Retractor (ALR) and Emergency Locking Retractor (ELR) (driver’s seat ELR only), front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters, front seat Active Head Restraints with 4-way manual adjustments, along with Zone Body construction with front and rear crumple zones and LATCH System (Lower Anchors and Tether for CHildren).
Five Well-Equipped Models
The 2012 Infiniti M is offered in five well-equipped models: the M37 (V6 rear-wheel drive), M37x AWD (V6 all-wheel drive), M56 (V8 rear-wheel drive), M56x (V8 all-wheel drive) and the new Infiniti M35h (3.5-liter Direct Response Hybrid™ System, rear-wheel drive).
The Sport Package (M37), offered with rear-wheel drive only, adds 20-inch wheels and tires, sport-tuned suspension, Sport Brakes, 4-Wheel Active Steer (4WAS), solid magnesium paddle shifters, sport seats with enhanced bolstering, aluminum pedal accents, stitched meter hood, sport steering wheel and shift knob, unique front fascia with tinted front grille and headlight housings. The Sport Touring Package adds the Bose® Studio Surround® system, rear power sunshade and Forest Air® System. The new Sport Package (M56) combines the contents of the Sport and Sport Touring Packages. Other available 2012 M option packages include the Premium Package, Deluxe Touring Package and Technology Package.