The luxury car segment has long been the leader in automotive safety technology, as discerning buyers and higher base prices allow the carmakers to do more than is possible in more cost-conscious cars. Mercedes-Benz and Volvo in particular have earned reputations for being leaders in the safety technology field. Now Infiniti is making its bid to join them with the announcement of the M sedan's place among the first to offer a trio of new technologies that form a New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) standard for 2011 and later vehicles.
Lane departure warning, forward collision warning, and electronic stability control are the three technologies deemed mature enough to be included in the new NCAP safety ratings. But merely having the acronyms onboard won't be enough. They'll have to meet specific performance requirements to get the credit for the NCAP Crash Avoidance Program.
Though they're not standard on the 2011 M, all three technologies are available as options. Electronic stability control is standard on all Ms, but the lane departure warning and forward collision warning are bundled in a $3,000 package that also includes blind sport warning, blind spot intervention, pre-crash tensioning seat belts, adaptive front lighting and a handful of other convenience and safety features.
The Technology Package also requires bundling the Premium Package, however, which adds another $3,350 to the price of the M. The Premium Package includes hard drive navigation with touchscreen display, XM satellite radio, traffic and weather, and a Bose stereo system among other upgrades.
Check out our previous coverage of the 2011 Infiniti M for more details on the powertrain and other features.