2011 Infiniti FX30dS road test - Andrew Noakes - Motoring Writer

Infinitis are probably the best cars you've never heard of. It's Nissan's premium brand, and though it has sold cars in the US and elsewhere for 20 years Infiniti has only recently come to the UK. The range includes six saloon, coupé and crossover models which until now were all powered by big V6 and V8 petrol engines, offering plenty of performance and refinement but ruinous fuel consumption – which is one reason why sales so far are in the hundreds rather than thousands. Now there's a much-needed diesel alternative.

The FX30d is the diesel version of Infiniti's full-size crossover. It's a car which aims to provide the four-wheel drive grip and comfortable elevated driving position of a 4x4, but with a dash of coupé-like style. If you don't need the acres of space some 4x4s offer it's an attractive idea, and the FX offers a stylish, modern cabin with enough space for four.

The new 3.0-litre V6 diesel produces 235bhp, enough to give the FX all the performance most drivers will need – though it's neither as quick off the mark as some rivals nor as frugal. It could be more refined, too: on the open road you'll struggle to tell that it's a diesel engine, but idling at the lights there's a tingle through the pedals and steering wheel that gives the game away.

That said, the FX is an appealing package in diesel form, and Infinitis are an eye-catching alternative to the better-known premium brands. It won't be long before more people have heard of them.

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