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SW03ES

2008 Infiniti M

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Well the new refreshed 2008 Infiniti M has hit the streets. I'm planning on getting by to take a look at one this week just for fun.

As many of you know I've always been a fan of the Infiniti M and this year they've made some great changes that addressed some issues I had with the car vs a Lexus:

1. Rain sensing wipers, finally

2. No more ugly yellow/orange lighting. The optitron gauges are white and blue as is the rest of the cabin lighting, much more attractive

3. Touch screen nav! I hate controller based nav, but now the system is controllable by the controller, touch screen, or voice prompts.

4. Better colors from the G35

5. Better base 18" wheels

6. better overall flow to the exterior although its still chunky from some angles, I'll have to see it in person.

7. AWD on the V8! Although I probably wouldn't get the V8.

This might just be the next car. I'd definately go for one over an ES350 or a GS. Not an LS though. Loaded comparably the M35 is about $50k to the ES's $45k but the interior is more attractive (to me) and the M is RWD. Infiniti has killer subsidized leases though. I could probably do one of these for like $550 a month, the ES would be closer to $700.

Long term the Lexus is no doubt a better car with better resale value and more solid reliability. But for a 3 year lease nowadays the Lexus really doesn't make sense. They don't subsidize their leases which makes them really expensive. BMWs are attractive because they have lease deals AND free maintenance. And since it'll be gone in 3 years, reliability is much less of an issue.

I dunno...

Now to buy, the Lexus is still better even with Infinitis 3.9% financing for 60 months or even better 2.9% for 36 months because of the depreciation difference and more certain ageworthiness and reliability.

Check it out:

http://www.infiniti.com/m/index.html

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I think that it is a sharp looking car. The side view reminds me of the GS a little. For the money I would lease the M over the GS too. Now the LS as you said is a different story.

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Things that are still negatives:

1. No wood/leather wheel. I really like this. The Nissan Fuga in Japan has one that matches (its the same car) that you can order (much like you can order JDM parts for our cars from Carson) but its $1,000.

2. Dealer support. This is a big one for me. Infiniti dealers are much fewer and farther between than Lexus dealers and service in general has a reputation of being lower quality. Thats one of the things I really enjoy about owning my Lexus is the service. My dealer is great and so is my service rep, I'd miss them. I drive so much I'm in for an oil change every 10 weeks or so, so I see them a lot. Theres only one dealer in my area, vs 5 Lexus dealers and its a chain I've had bad experiences with (Jim Coleman).

3. Ride. The M is a sportier ride than I really prefer, sportier than the ES and LS. Although its very comfortable and quiet.

So it'd be a tough move. I'm really happy with the Lexus and with Lexus in general, but I just kinda feel like the new cars aren't offering what I'm looking for except for the LS. The LS was a no brainer before the market slowed down but now I'd really prefer not to have a 4 figure car payment. So, my options are:

1. Keep my ES, which is fine.

2. Spring for the LS

3. Get a pre-owned 05 or 06 LS430 which I wouldn't be able to lease

4. Or look elsewhere...

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3. Get a pre-owned 05 or 06 LS430 which I wouldn't be able to lease

That would be my choice. I would find a clean pre owned LS...

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Well the new refreshed 2008 Infiniti M has hit the streets. I'm planning on getting by to take a look at one this week just for fun.

As many of you know I've always been a fan of the Infiniti M and this year they've made some great changes that addressed some issues I had with the car vs a Lexus:

1. Rain sensing wipers, finally

2. No more ugly yellow/orange lighting. The optitron gauges are white and blue as is the rest of the cabin lighting, much more attractive

3. Touch screen nav! I hate controller based nav, but now the system is controllable by the controller, touch screen, or voice prompts.

4. Better colors from the G35

5. Better base 18" wheels

6. better overall flow to the exterior although its still chunky from some angles, I'll have to see it in person.

7. AWD on the V8! Although I probably wouldn't get the V8.

This might just be the next car. I'd definately go for one over an ES350 or a GS. Not an LS though. Loaded comparably the M35 is about $50k to the ES's $45k but the interior is more attractive (to me) and the M is RWD. Infiniti has killer subsidized leases though. I could probably do one of these for like $550 a month, the ES would be closer to $700.

Long term the Lexus is no doubt a better car with better resale value and more solid reliability. But for a 3 year lease nowadays the Lexus really doesn't make sense. They don't subsidize their leases which makes them really expensive. BMWs are attractive because they have lease deals AND free maintenance. And since it'll be gone in 3 years, reliability is much less of an issue.

I dunno...

Now to buy, the Lexus is still better even with Infinitis 3.9% financing for 60 months or even better 2.9% for 36 months because of the depreciation difference and more certain ageworthiness and reliability.

Check it out:

http://www.infiniti.com/m/index.html

SW, I have only seen the tv commercials for the M, It certainly got my attention because it reminds me of the GS, Which I currently drive (That is the attraction) Besides the v8. I may test drive one in the near future, If I can find the time.

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Well the new refreshed 2008 Infiniti M has hit the streets. I'm planning on getting by to take a look at one this week just for fun.

As many of you know I've always been a fan of the Infiniti M and this year they've made some great changes that addressed some issues I had with the car vs a Lexus:

1. Rain sensing wipers, finally

2. No more ugly yellow/orange lighting. The optitron gauges are white and blue as is the rest of the cabin lighting, much more attractive

3. Touch screen nav! I hate controller based nav, but now the system is controllable by the controller, touch screen, or voice prompts.

4. Better colors from the G35

5. Better base 18" wheels

6. better overall flow to the exterior although its still chunky from some angles, I'll have to see it in person.

7. AWD on the V8! Although I probably wouldn't get the V8.

This might just be the next car. I'd definately go for one over an ES350 or a GS. Not an LS though. Loaded comparably the M35 is about $50k to the ES's $45k but the interior is more attractive (to me) and the M is RWD. Infiniti has killer subsidized leases though. I could probably do one of these for like $550 a month, the ES would be closer to $700.

Long term the Lexus is no doubt a better car with better resale value and more solid reliability. But for a 3 year lease nowadays the Lexus really doesn't make sense. They don't subsidize their leases which makes them really expensive. BMWs are attractive because they have lease deals AND free maintenance. And since it'll be gone in 3 years, reliability is much less of an issue.

I dunno...

Now to buy, the Lexus is still better even with Infinitis 3.9% financing for 60 months or even better 2.9% for 36 months because of the depreciation difference and more certain ageworthiness and reliability.

Check it out:

http://www.infiniti.com/m/index.html

SW, I have only seen the tv commercials for the M, It certainly got my attention because it reminds me of the GS, Which I currently drive (That is the attraction) Besides the v8. I may test drive one in the near future, If I can find the time.

2008 Infiniti M45x AWD

The closest Retailer based on your ZIP code:

JIM LUPIENT INFINITI

7200 WAYZATA BLVD

GOLDEN VALLEY, MN 55426

16 miles from your location Main Line(763) 546-5577

Internet Sales(763) 546-5577

Languages: english

Select a Different Retailer

Print Summary

Your Selections

Colors

Liquid Platinum Exterior

Stone Leather/African Rosewood Interior

Packages and Options

MSRP

Advanced Technology Package $2,800.00

Technology Package $3,350.00

Accessories

Splash Guards (set of four) $160.00

18-inch Polished Diamond-cut Wheels $1,010.00

Rear Decklid Spoiler $340.00

Standard Features

Expand All

Summary

18-inch wheels

275-hp 3.5-liter V6 in M35 or 325-hp 4.5-liter V8 in M45

Leather-appointed 10-way power driver's and front-passenger's seats

Bluetooth® Hands-Free Phone System

Intelligent Key with Push Button Ignition

Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC)

Mechanical

275-hp 3.5-liter 24-valve V6 engine in M35 or

325-hp 4.5-liter 32-valve V8 engine in M45

5-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode and Downshift Rev Matching

4-wheel vented disc brakes with ABS, Electronic Brake force Distribution and Brake Assist

Independent aluminum-alloy front and rear suspension

Engine-speed-sensing variable-assist power rack-and-pinion steering

Interior

Front-passenger's seats

Intelligent Key with Push Button Ignition

Bluetooth® Hands-Free Phone System

Dual-zone Automatic Temperature Control system with microfiltration

Mild-flow vent located on upper dash

Outside temperature display

Rear-console-mounted vents and floor heater ducts

Power windows with one-touch auto-up/down and auto-reverse feature

Power trunk release

Retained accessory power for windows and Moonroof for approximately 45 seconds once vehicle is turned off

Illuminated entry system with delayed fade-out

Valet key and trunk lockout feature

Front double sun visors and illuminated vanity mirrors

Overhead sunglasses storage

Dual overhead front map lights, rear-seat reading lights

Front seatback map pockets

Dual front and rear cup holders

Front armrest with storage compartment and 12-volt power outlet

Fold-down rear-center armrest with storage

Front and rear carpeted floor mats

Cargo net

Seating and Trim

Leather-appointed, 10-way power driver's and front-passenger's seats with adjustable lumbar support

Dual occupant memory system for driver's seat, steering wheel and outside mirrors, linked to individual Intelligent Keys

Entry/exit assist for driver's seat and steering wheel

Climate-controlled front seats with internal ventilation providing both cooling and heating functions

Leather-trimmed sport shifter

African Rosewood interior trim

Audio System

6-speaker audio system with AM/FM, XM® Satellite Radio, in-dash, single-feed 6-disc CD autochanger with MP3 and WMA playback capability, auxiliary RCA input jacks and speed-sensitive volume

Dual in-glass diversity antennas. The radio tuner compares the signal strength of both antennas, and automatically selects the strongest signal

Instrumentation and Driver Controls

Fine Vision electroluminescent instrumentation

Leather-wrapped, power tilt and telescoping steering wheel with cruise, Bluetooth® Hands-Free Phone System, and audio system controls

Vehicle information system with Infiniti Controller and 7-inch display for audio, climate control, maintenance reminders and Bluetooth® Hands-Free Phone System

Auto-dimming inside mirror with electronic compass

Infiniti analog clock

Exterior

Auto-on/off High Intensity Discharge (HID) xenon headlights with Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS) (optional on M35x AWD)

Front fog lights

LED taillights

Comprehensive airflow management for low 0.28 coefficient of drag (Cd) and zero-lift front aerodynamics

Aluminum doors, hood and trunk

Power sliding tinted glass moonroof with one-touch open/close, tilt feature and sliding sunshade

UV-reducing tinted glass reduces transmission of radiant heat to vehicle's interior

Remote power-opening of windows using Intelligent Key

Dual heated, power outside mirrors with reverse tilt-down and anti-glare coating

Illuminated stainless steel door-sill plates

Rear doors open a full 80 degrees for easier rear-seat entry and exit

Rear window defroster with timer

Dual exhaust with quad chrome finishers

Safety - Accident Avoidance

Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD)

Brake Assist

4-wheel Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)

Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC)

Traction Control System (TCS)

Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)

Safety - Occupant Protection

Infiniti Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) with dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and an occupant-classification sensor

Front seat-mounted supplemental side-impact air bags

Roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags for front and rear outboard occupant head protection.

Front- and rear-seat head restraints for all occupant positions

Front-seat Active Head Restraints

3-point height-adjustable front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters

Front seat pre-crash seat belts tighten under emergency braking

3-point seat belts with ELR and ALR (driver ELR only)

LATCH System (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren)

Slide-away brake pedal assembly

Emergency inside trunk release

First-aid kit in rear center armrest

Snug Kids offers recommendations for choosing and installing child restraint seats. Please visit Infiniti.com for details.

Security

Selective unlocking of driver's door, or all doors

Infiniti Vehicle Immobilizer System with an encoded transponder chip embedded the Intelligent Key

Vehicle Security System

HomeLink® Universal Transceiver offers control for compatible garage doors and home security systems Expand All

Print Summary

Base MSRP* $51,850.00

Exterior Color

Liquid Platinum

Interior Color and Trim

Stone Leather/African Rosewood

Packages and Options

Advanced Technology Package - XM® $2,800.00

Technology Package $3,350.00

Accessories**

Splash Guards(set of four) $160.00

18 Polished Diamond cut Wheels(Non Sport)" $1,010.00

Rear Deck Lid Spoiler $340.00

Configured MSRP* $59,510.00

Federal Gas Tax $1,300.00

Destination and Handling $715.00

Total MSRP* $61,525.00

Est. Monthly Payment

Not ready to contact a Retailer?

Get Pre-Approved for Financing

Request a Brochure

*All prices are Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP). MSRP excludes destination and handling charges, tax, title, license, and options. Dealer sets actual price. Please see the actual vehicle colors at your Infiniti dealer.

In certain vehicles, some options may be available as a component of a package. The same options may be available as standard equipment on other models. See the Specifications section or your Infiniti retailer for availability and requirements.

**Some accessories may require installation, which is not included in the Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price. Retailer sets actual price.

All illustrations, photographs, and specifications are based on the latest product information available. Some vehicles shown with optional equipment. See the actual vehicle for complete accuracy. Availability and delivery times for particular models or equipment may vary. INFINITI Division of Nissan North America, Inc., reserves the right to make changes at any time, without prior notice, in prices, colors, materials, equipment, specifications, and models, and to discontinue models or equipment. Specifications, options, and accessories may differ in Hawaii, U.S. territories, and other countries. For additional information on availability, options, or accessories, see your Infiniti retailer.

The Infiniti names, logos, product names, feature names, and slogans are trademarks owned by or licensed to Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. and/or its North American subsidiaries. Always wear your seat belt, and please don't drink and drive. © 2006 INFINITI Division of Nissan North America, Inc.

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Estimate Monthly Payment Subtotal [1]

Total Configured MSRP [1]

Down Payment

Trade-in [2]

Trade-in Value Calculator [2]

Terms (months) 12 24 36 48 60

Annual Percentage Rate [3]

Estimated Monthly Payment [4] $000.00

Payment Estimator Terms:

Estimated Selling Price: the price you anticipate you will pay for the Infiniti you've selected. This field will default to your model's Total Configured MSRP, but may be reduced due to special terms.

Term: The duration of your loan or lease, usually measured in months (e.g., 48 months).

Down payment: A payment in cash upon signing of a loan or lease, which typically reduces the cost of financing the model and/or pays for other amounts due upon signing the loan or lease.

Net Trade-in: The amount that your Infiniti retailer will credit you for the model you provide as partial payment for another model.

Lease mileage: A lease agreement sets annual mileage limits. Mileage beyond these limits will incur an added charge.

[1] Your Infiniti retailer will work with you to purchase or lease an Infiniti and determine your actual payment based on the Infiniti you select, the contract length, your down payment, the Retailer's evaluation of your net trade-in, rates and terms then available in your area, and your credit. Lease payments will vary depending upon your final price, state of residence, and locality.

[2] Trade-in values obtained from Kelley Blue Book are merely estimates. The precise value of your vehicle could differ from the initial estimate. The precise value of your trade-in could be higher or lower depending on the condition of your vehicle, equipment, and local market conditions.

[3] The APR shown is based on current market values. The actual rate you qualify for may vary based on your credit. You may modify the APR value for estimation purposes only.

This would be the one for me. :cheers:

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#1, until #2 &/or #3 are "no brainers" too! You know what they say...if it ain't broke, then no need to be broke. :D

Funny that you mention the stiffer ride of the M already. If you're noticing it now, you'll definetly notice it more later on. Nissan's in general seem to rattle a bit more as the mileage rolls on, and starting with a stiff ride that you notice already, might drive you nuts later on. But, having said that, you don't see too many used M's being offered for sale, which tells me something. But, you don't see too many on the road in general, which I like too.

Tough call...but Steve, you KNOW YOU'RE AN LS MAN! The M' is just a substitute for your inevitable LS!

Things that are still negatives:

1. No wood/leather wheel. I really like this. The Nissan Fuga in Japan has one that matches (its the same car) that you can order (much like you can order JDM parts for our cars from Carson) but its $1,000.

2. Dealer support. This is a big one for me. Infiniti dealers are much fewer and farther between than Lexus dealers and service in general has a reputation of being lower quality. Thats one of the things I really enjoy about owning my Lexus is the service. My dealer is great and so is my service rep, I'd miss them. I drive so much I'm in for an oil change every 10 weeks or so, so I see them a lot. Theres only one dealer in my area, vs 5 Lexus dealers and its a chain I've had bad experiences with (Jim Coleman).

3. Ride. The M is a sportier ride than I really prefer, sportier than the ES and LS. Although its very comfortable and quiet.

So it'd be a tough move. I'm really happy with the Lexus and with Lexus in general, but I just kinda feel like the new cars aren't offering what I'm looking for except for the LS. The LS was a no brainer before the market slowed down but now I'd really prefer not to have a 4 figure car payment. So, my options are:

1. Keep my ES, which is fine.

2. Spring for the LS

3. Get a pre-owned 05 or 06 LS430 which I wouldn't be able to lease

4. Or look elsewhere...

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It doesn't really ride stiff, just firmer than I'm used to. Like the GS, or the 5 series (not as stiff as the 5 series though), or the Benz E-Class. I know a few people who have them and they've had no problems with rattles, whereas I've heard of lots of problems with rattles on the new ES.

I'm definately an LS man, its just a question of cost.

That would be my choice. I would find a clean pre owned LS...

I would do that if I were buying, but I really would like to lease for the tax savings...

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Stick with your current ES for as long as you can, Steve. The housing market will continue to worsen before it eventually gets better perhaps a year to 18 months from now and as long as your ES is well-maintained and can comfortably haul your clients around, there is absolutely no business reason to replace it. You may have to fight your internal demons that periodically nag you to spring for a new ride, but it's the fiscally smart and prudent thing to do at the current time....

When you finally do decide to get an LS (which all things being equal is what I believe you'll eventually do), take the time to locate a like-new, low-mileage one that is at least two model years old. Your wallet, your budget, your depreciation schedule, and your IRAs and other retirement instruments will thank you many times over in the years to come....

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Last Saturday I went to the Arizona International Auto Show in Phoenix and one of the cars that impressed me was the Infiniti M's.

I sat in it, played with the controls, kicked the tires, and mainly compared the interior size to the ES350. I still feel I get a more spacious, luxurious feeling in the ES..........but I'm predjudiced. LOL

Tomorrow I'm driving from Scottsdale, AZ to Palm Springs, CA and than up to Santa Monica, CA. where I'll be able to test drive my cousins '08 M45 which he just took delivery. I'll report back and tell you my findings........including some pictures.

BTW: I rented a Toyota Camry SE from Hertz, and I'm using my 'Garmin Nuvi 350' GPS. I gotta tell you, I like the Garmin better than the unit in my Lexus because it's easier to program, and mainly it also announces the name of the street, highway, etc. instead of announcing just the turns........and it cost me a fraction of the amount that I paid for the NAV in the ES!

P.S. At the auto show the best, smoothest paint jobs were on ALL models of Lexus's. Most all other manufacturers offerings had varying degrees of orange peel in the paint........and that included the Infiniti's. Next to the Lexus, the closest quality paint job was on a $250,000 Bentley that was on display! :)

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Steve, if you are still showing real estate, I don't think the Infinity M would make a very good impression on customers. You want them to be comfortable and, with its harsh ride, the M is anything but.

My wife and I rented an M35 from Hertz (photo attached) for an 8 day trip through Massachusetts last May. Since I greatly enjoyed driving various years of the Q45, I was expecting that I would also like the "M" a lot. Wrong. Very Wrong. The M35 felt "darty" in a very un-BMW like way. The "M" was more "boy racer" than sophisticated touring sedan. The interior controls did not feel intuitive - the I-Drive-like controller was a pain.

I suppose the designers were aiming for mechanical sounds that were "sporty" but the engined seemed noisy and unrefined to me.

The worst aspect of the "M" was its harsh ride. Our rental car had the standard 18" wheels and the regular suspension. I can't imagine the car with the optional 19" wheels and sport suspension. And from the first day, I made sure that the tires were at their proper inflation pressure.

Although the seats had plenty of adjustments and were ventilated and cooled, I never could get really comfortable. I felt cramped and I'm not a big guy. I kept thinking I should like the "M" more. It had sooo much content and the workmanship was excellent -- but it somehow felt "cold" even with all the wood.

About the only thing I liked about the M35 was its keyless go. I had a hard time getting used to using an ignition key when I got back home.

post-2157-1196128653_thumb.jpg

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Stick with your current ES for as long as you can, Steve. The housing market will continue to worsen before it eventually gets better perhaps a year to 18 months from now and as long as your ES is well-maintained and can comfortably haul your clients around, there is absolutely no business reason to replace it. You may have to fight your internal demons that periodically nag you to spring for a new ride, but it's the fiscally smart and prudent thing to do at the current time....

Oh I agree, I'm just kicking ideas around I have no plans to trade the ES until the market turns around. I'm just a serial shopper lol. The market hasn't been THAT bad here, but things are slow and we just don't know what the next year is going to bring. We expect it to be strong through the spring but thats how it was last year, then after June it just completely died and has been that way ever since. The inventory is clearing and things are picking up which bodes well for the spring, but beyond that is anybody's guess. It has certainly been MUCH worse just about everywhere else I've gotten reports about...

The ES is paid for and I still enjoy driving it so its not going anywhere for a while.

Alan, let me know what you think.

Steve, if you are still showing real estate, I don't think the Infinity M would make a very good impression on customers. You want them to be comfortable and, with its harsh ride, the M is anything but.

My wife and I rented an M35 from Hertz (photo attached) for an 8 day trip through Virgina last May. Since I greatly enjoyed driving various years of the Q45, I was expecting that I would also like the "M" a lot. Wrong. Very Wrong. The M35 felt "darty" in a very un-BMW like way. The "M" was more "boy racer" than sophisticated touring sedan. The interior controls did not feel intuitive - the I-Drive-like controller was a pain.

I had read your original post about that and I wonder if the unit you had was an oddity, how many miles did it have on it? I've driven a couple of them brand new and while they're firmer than I'm used to I wouldn't call them "harsh" by any standards.

Maybe the one you drove had bad tires?

About the only thing I liked about the M35 was its keyless go. I had a hard time getting used to using an ignition key when I got back home.

I know, the Prius has keyless go and I love it.

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I saw an 08 at the dealer today. I was driving by and early for an appointment so I figured why not. Its gorgeous, all the changes are extremely well integrated and it really looks much more put together than the previous car.

Definately a more expensive looking car than the ES350 and GS both inside and out.

I didn't drive it, just looked at it on the lot.

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Stick with your current ES for as long as you can, Steve. The housing market will continue to worsen before it eventually gets better perhaps a year to 18 months from now and as long as your ES is well-maintained and can comfortably haul your clients around, there is absolutely no business reason to replace it. You may have to fight your internal demons that periodically nag you to spring for a new ride, but it's the fiscally smart and prudent thing to do at the current time....

Oh I agree, I'm just kicking ideas around I have no plans to trade the ES until the market turns around. I'm just a serial shopper lol. The market hasn't been THAT bad here, but things are slow and we just don't know what the next year is going to bring. We expect it to be strong through the spring but thats how it was last year, then after June it just completely died and has been that way ever since. The inventory is clearing and things are picking up which bodes well for the spring, but beyond that is anybody's guess. It has certainly been MUCH worse just about everywhere else I've gotten reports about...

The ES is paid for and I still enjoy driving it so its not going anywhere for a while.

Alan, let me know what you think.

Steve, if you are still showing real estate, I don't think the Infinity M would make a very good impression on customers. You want them to be comfortable and, with its harsh ride, the M is anything but.

My wife and I rented an M35 from Hertz (photo attached) for an 8 day trip through Virgina last May. Since I greatly enjoyed driving various years of the Q45, I was expecting that I would also like the "M" a lot. Wrong. Very Wrong. The M35 felt "darty" in a very un-BMW like way. The "M" was more "boy racer" than sophisticated touring sedan. The interior controls did not feel intuitive - the I-Drive-like controller was a pain.

I had read your original post about that and I wonder if the unit you had was an oddity, how many miles did it have on it? I've driven a couple of them brand new and while they're firmer than I'm used to I wouldn't call them "harsh" by any standards.

Maybe the one you drove had bad tires?

About the only thing I liked about the M35 was its keyless go. I had a hard time getting used to using an ignition key when I got back home.

I know, the Prius has keyless go and I love it.

I say this without having driven any of these, but it would seem that an ES to an M would be a pretty drastic change in ride (more so than ES to LS). To me, the GS, M and RL are the most direct Japanese competitors, and I thought that most critics picked the M as the sportiest of the 3. Again, without having driven them, I'd lean toward the M. I tried to see if I could find a pre-owned M35x when shopping for my IS 250 AWD, but I couldn't find any with nav for a comparable deal.

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It rides pretty similarly to the GS. The one they tested may have had the sport package which has bigger wheels and a stiffer suspension, I wouldn't buy that.

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Steve-

Of course you realize, if you buy an Infiniti you have to give up your position as Manager of LOC. LOL :)

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Hi,

I am new to the club just got a 2002 LS430 with 41K on Saturday (my car for business)

My wife drives an 07 M35 Sport

we leased it last April and we love it for the sporty and inspired/aggressive driving that we like to do on weekends and that quick errand to the store. We choose the lease based on some very affordable payments.

I must agree that for a real estate sales person the ride and size of the car would be on the edge of too firm and too small. The car is very tight and very aggressive feeling. The back seat is fine for 2 small to medium sized adults but if they are over 6' 3" or large "Frame" they would be more comfortable in an LS for sure!

For you and one other person on the weekend get away or just you out and about the M is very fun to drive and is truly sporty!

Elk

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You have the sport suspension though, the sport suspension is much firmer. I found the basic car very comfortable.

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You have the sport suspension though, the sport suspension is much firmer. I found the basic car very comfortable.

Steve, ride quality is very subjective. What one person thinks is comfortable, another might think is harsh.

Correction: We had the M35 on an 8 day trip through eastern Massachusetts including the Cape Cod area -- I had mistakenly said "Virginia" but that was a different vacation.

I think you asked how many miles the M35 we drove had on it. It was a Hertz rental car and I think it had only a few thousand miles on it - no more than 5,000. It was in excellent condition.

It is hard for me to correlate the ride of a M35 to any Lexus I have driven or ridden in. It certainly does not feal anything like the ES and RX loaner cars the Lexus dealer has provided to me and it is not as soft riding as the Gen-2 GS300 I sometimes ride it. I have never driven an IS but I suspect the M35 is more like an IS350 in the way it rides and handles. Personally, I would like to see how the M35 would feel on 17" wheels and 225/55-17 tires instead of the 18" wheels and 245/45-18 tires -- I think smaller wheels and tires might turn the M35 into a car I could enjoy to drive or at least ride in. But there are still those confusing dash controls and the pseudo I-drive to deal with.

I have very much liked the way all the Q45s I've driven rode and handled - much more fun to drive than my 00 LS although it still feels somewhat similar to drive, perhaps because of its similar size. The "newest" Q45 I have driven was a 2001 Q45t -- great handling and power but some of the interior components were not of very good quality and it was short on rear seat legroom. The dealer saleman told me that the interior quality of the Q45 was the number one complaint. I have not driven a newer Q45 -- the exterior look turns me off and it is hard to forget/forgive the poor interior quality of the earlier ones.

Steve, I'd say buy an M if you like it. Be sure to get the power rear seat and rear entertainment/audio control options for your customers to play with.

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True, but I love the ride of the LS so we're all pretty likely to look at it the same way.

I dunno, I'm a ways off from buying anything else because of the state of the real estate market right now. I go back and forth. I'll probably wind up in an LS. I've seen some really good deals on 06 LS430s with mileage in the teens that are really attractive. I couldn't lease it, but because of the lower depreciation it might make more sense to do that and then plan on keeping the thing 7-8 years. Its hard to justify buying an ES350 or an M35 when I could buy a year and a half old LS430 with 15k miles for the same money. When I bought the ES the issue was the nav system in the new ES being so much better than the system in the 00 LS400, but when comparing the LS430 to the ES350 thats not an issue anymore (the ES350 has better graphics, but the system is the same).

I'd love an LS460, but the shakiness in the market makes me hesitant about commiting to another $1,000+ monthly obligation.

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Like look at this car:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/2006-LEXUS-...1QQcmdZViewItem

Or this car, this one's a UL!:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/2006-Lexus-...1QQcmdZViewItem

There are a ton of them out there, I suppose people are trading in after 2 year leases for LS460s...

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Steve, Streeeeetchh to a 460 you won't regret it. Totaly different ride and drive. Drive the two. You will be impressed. Not that a 430 is a slug. Drive the two. Any one of the two is not a loss. ;)

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No Steve, just sit tight with your ES right now. You're well aware that the real estate market will continue to get worse before it gets better. If your ES is still safe and sound (which I'm sure it is), just stay with it buddy. Don't let these guys smoothtalk you into an unwise financial decision right now....

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