The M35h debuted for 2012 with a hybrid system developed by parent company Nissan. Previously, Nissan used a Toyota-derived system in the Altima Hybrid that was available in limited markets. The main competitors for this midsize luxury hybrid are the Lexus GS 450h and the Lincoln MKZ Hybrid.
New for 2013
There are no significant changes.
Apart from badges, the M35h has no features to distinguish it from the gas-only M37. Eighteen-inch alloy wheels, a power sunroof with express open and close and rain-sensing wipers are among standard features. Exterior features include:
- 18-inch alloy wheels
- Standard xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights
- Optional adaptive headlights
- Power-folding side mirrors
The M35h's cabin dimensions are the same as the M37 and M56, but the lithium-ion battery pack that powers the hybrid system's electric motor reduces trunk space to 11.3 cubic feet from 14.9.
Along with the usual power-flow display and charge-assist gauge typically found on hybrids, the M35h was the first hybrid with an audible pedestrian-warning system. Inspired by a similar feature on the Nissan Leaf all-electric car, the M hybrid emits "distinctive synthesized sounds" at speeds up to 20 mph when the M35h is operating in a nearly silent electric mode. Interior features include:
- USB/iPod connectivity and Bluetooth
- Leather upholstery
- Push-button start
- Standard backup camera
- Optional navigation system
- Optional Bose stereo
Under the Hood
The Infiniti hybrid system combines a 302-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 with a 50-kilowatt electric motor and 376-volt lithium-ion battery pack for 360 net hp, and it drives the rear wheels through a seven-speed automatic transmission.
Using a single electric motor and two clutches, the Direct Response Hybrid system's mileage characteristics are closer to those of Honda and Hyundai, whose higher mileage comes in highway driving. Infiniti says the car can drive on electric power alone up to 62 mph and as far as 1.2 miles. In mixed driving, the car runs in electric mode as much as 50 percent of the time. Mechanical features include:
- 302-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 with 50-kilowatt electric motor for 360 net hp
- Seven-speed automatic transmission
- Lithium-ion battery pack
Like the gas-only M sedans, the M35h comes with six airbags, active front head restraints, antilock brakes, traction control and an electronic stability system. Optional safety features include:
- Blind spot and lane departure warning system
- Lane departure prevention that uses light braking to prevent drifting into another lane
- Blind spot intervention system
- Adaptive cruise control
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