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#5

in 2009 Luxury Large Cars

Avg. Price Paid: $18,496 - $23,753
Original MSRP: $45,800 - $54,650
MPG: 17 City / 25 Hwy
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2009 Infiniti M Interior

This interior review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.

Infiniti's passenger cabins have been steadily improving for years, and now rival the industry's leaders for luxury. The look inside is more modern luxury than old-world luxury, with tight, smooth leather that eschews the French seams of many European luxury sedans. Auto writers praise the highly-adjustable seats. Infiniti doesn't offer a single user-interface that controls entertainment, climate and navigation systems like Mercedes' COMAND or Audi's MMI system. Instead, each system has separate controls.  Some say that makes the console too crowded, but others appreciate not having to learn an unintuitive interface system.

  • "The M35 has a spacious cabin that comfortably seats four adults. Materials quality is first-rate, with rich leather and pleasing wood appointments." -- Edmunds
  • "M's cabin has a warm, upscale ambiance, fitting of its price. Interior trim consists of satin-finish wood or real metal, precise-movement switchgear, and ample soft-touch surfaces." -- Consumer Guide
  • The "lush-life interior," is "generally hush-quiet." -- Chicago Sun-Times
  • "Its interior styling backed up by dramatically improved materials and overall execution." -- Road and Track
  • "The M35 X and its siblings are all remarkably plush, featuring supple leather interiors trimmed with brushed aluminum, supposedly for more youthful, technologically oriented buyers; or finished with elegant rosewood for older, more traditional customers who know that life's bits and bytes are relatively meaningless without its poetry." -- The Washington Post

Seating

Most reviewers appreciate the 10-way power-adjustable heated seats. Sport models get their own, more supportive but equally-adjustable seats. Rear seat room is close to the class average, but as with most cars, four will be more comfortable than five.

  • "Generous room on supportive seats. The standard power tilt and telescopic steering wheel helps fine-tune driver positioning." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Even in base trim, the front seats are firm and supportive, with plenty of power-adjustable settings. Opting for the sport package enhances the M's sporting persona by adding more aggressive bolstering for the front seats as well as distinctive interior trim." -- Edmunds
  • "Sitting in the car is akin to fitting one's body into a rich, comfortable glove." -- The Washington Post
  • "The seats promise firm support and ample cushioning. Outboard occupants get plenty of legroom, headroom and foot room, but the center spot in the backseat is high and hard, with no headroom to speak of." -- Cars.com
  • "The back seat could use a longer cushion for better thigh support, and the center of that seat is too hard for comfort." -- Chicago Sun-Times

Interior Features

The interior of the 2009 M is built of high-quality materials and thoughtful details. But auto writers focus as much on what it doesn't have as what it does. Infiniti hasn't built a driver interface like BMW's iDrive. Each system -- navigation, climate, and stereo -- has its own controls. That creates a button-heavy panel that some reviewers dislike. It can take the driver's eyes from the road. But others appreciate the easy-to-understand controls and are thankful for the lack of a confusing iDrive-like interface -- which, frankly, some drivers find more distracting than Infiniti's approach.

  • "The gauges are bright and legible, but the plethora of center stack controls is a bit busy-looking. Even so, you'll probably find them easier to operate than some of the menu-based systems in German luxury sedans." -- Edmunds
  • "An example of success is the sexy instrument panel, in which the gauges are ringed by orange lights. Start the car, and a series of lights fire in order on the ignition control. The needles of the instrument-panel gauges simultaneously jump to the top of their ranges then fall back again, and the orange lights flash. You feel like you're in the Batmobile, and it's talking to you." -- Forbes
  • "Bright and clear gauges. Most controls are logically arrayed on keyboard-like shelf, but they are numerous enough to demand study. Some are a reach away, and sunshine can neutralize indicator lights. Closer to the driver are traditional audio knobs and buttons." -- Consumer Guide
  • "This is a high-tech car, but here, unlike in the BMW, the technology makes sense." -- Business Week
  • The Advanced Technology Package includes "a remarkable 14-speaker Bose surround-sound stereo, which has the band virtually playing in the car with you." -- Car and Driver
  • "Most staffers found the nav system intuitive and easy to use and the rearview monitor and its predicted course lines invaluable." -- Motor Trend

Cargo

The 2009 M's trunk is fairly large for a luxury sedan, many of which have smaller trunks. It can accommodate 14.9 cubic feet of cargo, with the undersized spare tire in place. The rear seats do not fold down.

  • "Good trunk volume, and its lid hinges don't intrude. A short aperture means drawer-like access. Sufficient interior storage." -- Consumer Guide
  • "When equipped with the optional full-size spare tire it only holds 11 cubic feet of cargo." -- New Car Test Drive

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