Infiniti's G37 Coupe debuted at the New York Auto Show in 2007 as a replacement for the G35 and the family resemblance was inescapable.
This was the second generation of the G Coupe and featured a slightly longer, wider, and stiffer body than its predecessor, with new sheet metal. It was still one of the most handsome cars on the road, however.
It was also sportier than before, with its VQ series engine developing an additional 55 horsepower. Displacing 3.7 litres, it featured Nissan/Infiniti's variable valve timing feature and developed 330 horsepower. This made the G7 a pretty lively vehicle, with a 0-100 km/h time in the six- to eight-second range.
Transmission choices were a five-speed automatic or six-speed manual. The price was the same for either one. Massive front and rear disc brakes with ABS provided above-average stopping power and you could order 19-inch wheels and tires with the Sport model; 18-inch wheels and tires were standard issue. Interestingly, the G37 featured rear tires that were slightly larger than those in the front.
Standard equipment included a full leather interior, heated front seats with eight-way power adjustment, climate control system, power sunroof, XM satellite radio and tilt-telescoping steering. The Sport model also had a traction control system, tire-pressure monitor and front side, and side curtain airbags.
Options included a rear-view back-up camera, voice-activated navigation system, an "intelligent" cruise control system that monitors the distance between you and the car in front and Infiniti's four-wheel-steering system, which electronically adjusted the geometry of both front and rear wheels, depending upon vehicle speed and driving conditions. This was aimed at driving enthusiasts and gave the G37 an extra dose of handling ability. Unfortunately, the items mentioned tended to come in packages and often, you couldn't get one without the other.
The 4WS, for example, added $5,400 to the car's price and also included upgraded brakes. Like many cars of this ilk, the G37 went forward better than it did backward; parallel parking required patience and perseverance.
The G37 also had a push-button start feature and a reasonably spacious back seat for a coupe. Deeply bucketed, the rear seats actually provided a minimum of headroom, as long as you were less than six feet in height. Getting into the back seat, on the other hand, required a bit of body English and the seats weren't designed for the long haul. A one-touch-release seat back that goes up or down helped here, and the trunk had a reasonably commodious 209 litres of storage room.
One safety recall from both Transport Canada and the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to report, and it concerns one of the most common glitches on the used-car market: passenger-side airbag calibration. Because of a possible flaw in the airbag control unit, which is located in the seat cushion, the passenger side bag may not activate properly in a front-end collision situation. This recall also affects other Nissan/Infiniti models, such as the Altima Hybrid, Murano, Rogue and 350Z and dealers will either reprogram the control unit or replace the seat cushion.
NHTSA also has some 18 technical service bulletins on file for the 2008 G37, and they cover things like headlight malfunctions and foggy headlight lenses, brake "judder" while decelerating, "unusual" engine noises, issues with the tire monitoring system, false oil level readings and difficulties filling up the gas tank when it's more than half-full.
Consumer Reports generally has good things to say about the G37 and Infiniti's entire G-series gets an across the board "Good Bet" designation. That said, the G37 Coupe is graded slightly lower than the sedan, which receives this organization's top marks for everything and its highest used-car prediction rating. Some comments from owners: "A little low for entering and exiting," "maintenance reminders annoying," "engine trouble at 15K." A smooth ride and abundant power are common areas of praise. Prospective buyers should also be aware that the G37 requires premium gas.
Market research firm J.D. Power also likes the G-series, and gives it good marks in every area. Some things, such as powertrain dependability and accessories quality, don't fare as well as the rest of the car, but there are no failing grades to be found anywhere. Again, J.D. Power rates the entire G-series here and overall vehicle dependability is above average.
From a $47,500 base price in '08, the G37 has dropped to about half of its original value. The Sport model is fetching $1,000-$1,500 more than the base version.
2008 Infiniti G37 Sport
Original Base Price: $47,350; Black Book: $30,225-$31,750; Red Book: $24,250-$25,375
Engine: 3.7-litre V-6
Horsepower/Torque: 330 hp/270 lb-ft
Transmission: Five-speed automatic/six-speed manual
Fuel Economy (litres/100 km): 11.9 city/8.1 highway; premium gas
Alternatives: Audi TT Coupe, BMW 3-Series Coupe, Lexus IS350, Nissan 350Z, Audi A4