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Infiniti European range launched

Published: 05 March 2008

What’s new on the Infiniti stand at Geneva?

Nissan’s upmarket Infiniti brand officially launched its European range in Geneva, essentially a slimlined and simplified interpretation of its US model line-up: G37 coupe and saloon, EX37 coupe crossover and an all-new V8 coupe crossover to sit at the top of the range: the FX50.

The latter model is essentially a scaled up EX37, though the nose treatment is notably bluffer and, to our eyes, a little too severe. As with all the model range, however, its interior is incredibly inviting – soft-touch dash plastics, plump leather seats and easy to navigate dash architecture.

European sales will begin in the fourth quarter of this year as Infiniti slowly rolls out its dealer network – a welcoming dealership experience (more akin to a ‘boutique hotel experience’, says Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn) being a key part of the brand.

Diesels and hybrid technology will follow in 2010 and the range will slowly expand to six distinct models.

CAR highlight

Infiniti held the FX50 back from press day, launching it in the evening instead. Carlos Ghosn took centre stage for the unveil while the car was lowered from the ceiling to an extravagant fanfare. All very impressive.

What were they thinking?

A man with gigantic bat wings strapped to his arms walked through the assembled crowd to start proceedings off. Could this be a nod to communications director Wayne Bruce we wonder? Sounds odd, but it was as brilliantly flamboyant as the rest of the evening.

In a nutshell

The launch of the show.

5/5

By Ben Barry

Contributing editor, sideways merchant, tyre disintegrator

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