Going green. The whole industry is doing it, and while cars like the Porsche 918 Spyder and Mercedes SLS AMG E-Cell prove you don't have to kill fun in the process, they're not realistic examples of what most of us could attain. The 2011 Infiniti G25, shown today in Pebble Beach, however, could find a spot in almost anyone's driveway--because in addition to being a bit more efficient, it's quite a bit more affordable.
Starting from $30,950 when it hits dealerships this September, the new small-six Infiniti sedan is $2,300 cheaper than the nearest G37, yet still delivers enough power to be fun. Rated at 218 horsepower and 187 pound-feet of torque, the G25 should prove a solid match for the entry-level BMW 328i (230 horsepower/200 pound-feet) and Audi A4 2.0T (211 horsepower/258 pound-feet), while also shaving a few hundred smackeroos from their prices.
But what about that whole green angle? The base Audi A4 rates 23/30 mpg according to the EPA, and the 2011 328i scores 18/28 mpg. Solid numbers for both cars considering the features and performance they offer, making Infiniti's job all the tougher. Official figures for the G25 aren't out yet, but according to Larry Dominique, Infiniti's vice president of product planning, it should end up around 29 mpg on the highway. The city figure is likely to settle around 20 mpg, making for a competitive, but not class-beating, combined figure.
It's also no hybrid, but you just can't get Prius-style powertrains on top of Infiniti's equipment and style inside a $30,950 sticker price. But despite the lower cost of entry, you don't have to give up the G's sleek profile or winning looks, and that same capable chassis lies under the skin, too.
The model on display at Pebble Beach today was the G25x, the all-wheel drive variant of the new entry-level G Sedan. While it'll be good for bad weather, it's also unlikely to be found for the entry price, or with quite as impressive EPA ratings as the standard rear-drive model.