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G35 vs. G35s

by Rob Wagner

Nissan Motors produced the Infiniti G35 and G35s, or G35 Sport, from 2003 to 2008. The sedan ceased production in 2006 and the coupe remained until 2008, when Nissan replaced it with the G37. The G35 and G35s feature the same output and engine displacement, but differ in transmission choices and suspension systems to provide each vehicle a distinct driving experience.

Background

The Infiniti G35 and G35s were part of the Infiniti G series of cars and placed on a Nissan FM platform shared with the Nissan 350Z. The G series originated as an entry-level luxury car. The G35 was the third generation of G series cars. Infiniti offered the G35 as a coupe or sedan, with a hardtop coupe arriving with the fourth-generation G37. Infiniti produced the G35 in five trim levels: the base G35, G35 Journey, the all-wheel drive G35x, the G35 Sport and the G35 Sport equipped with a six-speed manual transmission. The Sport models featured the G35s designation.

Interior and Exterior

All G35 models received a makeover for the 2005 model year that featured a sportier instrument panel with backlit gauges and aluminum trim throughout the cockpit. Rosewood trim was offered as an option. Standard equipment in the interior included a six-disc, in-dash CD audio system and MP3 playback. Brembo brakes were featured on pre-2005 models, but they disappeared in favor of redesigned larger all-wheel disc brakes and beefier calipers to reduce premature wear. The G35s had magnesium paddle shifters as standard equipment for models equipped with a shiftable automatic. The G35s also received drilled aluminum pedals, leather-stitched sport steering wheel and power-adjusted sport seats with thigh extensions. The G35s also got a different front fascia and optional rear spoiler.

Power and Suspension

The 2008 G35 and G35s featured a 3.5-liter, 24-valve V-6 engine that generated 306 horsepower and 268 foot-pounds of torque. The G35 matched the engine with a five-speed automatic transmission, while the G35s offered a choice of a shiftable automatic or six-speed manual transmission. The shiftable automatic transmission had paddle shifters, while the six-speed manual on the G35s had a floor-mounted shifter housed in the center console. The G35 rested on a conventional suspension system: double wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension system with front and rear stabilizer bars. However, the G35s came with a sport-tuned package as standard equipment with the six-speed manual version. The package featured a viscous limited slip differential, four-wheel active steer system and a sport-tuned electronic stability system. All G35 models sat on a 112.2-inch wheelbase. The G35 came with P225/55R17 95V tires on 17-inch painted alloy rims, while the G35s rode on a staggered tire configuration with P245/45R18 96W rear tires and P225/50R18 front tires with 18-inch painted alloy wheels.

Driveability

Driving impressions differ in handling, not speed. The G35 and G35s could go from 0 to 60 mph in 5.6 seconds and could achieve 13.9-second quarter-mile runs, depending on testing conditions. The G35s four-wheel active steer system and a 40 percent stiffer suspension system than the standard G35 gave the G35s an ultra-firm ride that could be hard on the backside in long-distance driving.

About the Author

Rob Wagner is a journalist with over 35 years experience reporting and editing for newspapers and magazines. His experience ranges from legal affairs reporting to covering the Middle East. He served stints as a newspaper and magazine editor in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Wagner attended California State University, Los Angeles, and has a degree in journalism.

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