The Infiniti G Series dates to 1991, with the Infiniti Performance Line (IPL) debuting in the fall of 2010 with the 2011 edition of the G37 Coupe.
The 2012 edition remains much same. The IPL version of the high performance luxury car features a retuned, more powerful engine, more aggressive body work, new wheels and better handling.
The Weekly Driver Test Drive
Driving a luxury sports car, even one defined as a "entry level premium coupe," attracts immediate attention. Further attention seemed to follow me during my test week, I think, because of the G37 IPL's exterior color.
The color is called Malbec Black. And while Infiniti can call its color what its wants, the color is not black. Rather, it's a deep purple, with richness changing shades of color depending on the light of the day.
As one Inifiniti fan posted in a forum, "I just saw the new Malbec Black color on a G35. I want a new paint job for my car now."
Beyond its stunning exterior color and handsome styling, the G37 IPL Coupe is a driving pleasure. Specifically, the IPL destination means 348 horsepower (18 horsepower more than G37 sibling), upgraded front and rear bumper/fascia design, integrated fog lights and black finishers, sculpted side sills, rear spoiler and chrome exhaust tips and 19-inch IPL split 7-spoke graphite-finish wheels with low-profile Bridgestone performance tires.
Add it all up the G37 IPL powers down the road with a growl. It has superior braking, maneuvers through traffic and has a commanding presence.
Several drivers seemingly wanted to race, particularly during one three-hour trek south on Interstate 5 from Sacramento to the Monterey Peninsula. I periodically had the cruise control set just below 80 mph and several drivers darted past just to take a look. That's a not-so-subtle compliment to the 2012 Infiniti G37 Coupe IPL.
Silk Obi (read: brushed aluminum) interior trim.
Vastly adjustable and comfortable leather-trimmed seats.
Intuitive navigation system.
Overall exterior styling reminiscent of Aston Martin.
Analog clock, the Infiniti signature.
Difficult to enter, exit rear seats.
"Paint can" tailpipes excessive.
Slight acceleration lag.
Facts & Figures, 2012 Infiniti G37 IPL
Acceleration: 0-60 mph, 5.3 seconds.
Airbags (6) Dual-stage front seat, side impact and roof-mounted curtain side-impact.
Antilock brakes: Yes.
First aid kit: No.
Fuel economy: 36 mpg (city), 37 mpg (highway).
Government Safety Ratings: Not rated.
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price: $51,250.00
Manufacturer's Web site: www.infinitusa.com
Price As tested: $52,345.00
Warranty: Bumper to bumper, 4 years/60,000 miles; Powertrain, 6 years/70,000 miles; Corrosion, 7 years/unlimited miles.
What Others Say:
"Based as it is on the fine-driving G37 coupe, the IPL’s upgrades make it hands-down the best G coupe Infiniti has ever offered in the U.S." —- caranddriver.com.
"The first car to wear the violet and red IPL logo is the 2011 IPL G Coupe and frankly, the modifications do make a difference. The IPL Coupe handles better, sounds more aggressive, revs more freely, and boasts an additional 18 horsepower along with six more pound-feet of torque." —- MotorAuthority.com.
"When I first heard about Infiniti doing this IPL G coupe, I got excited. Then I read about it to have my feelings tempered, and now I've driven it to confirm my concerns. To be fair, it's still an entertaining and fun car to drive." —- Autoweek.com
The Weekly Driver’s Final Words:
"If it's a fast, confident, handsome sports coupe you're seeking and you've got 50 grand to spend, buy this car."
All images © James Raia