This year's model is essentially a carryover from last year's, so don't strain your eyes looking for the differences. A redesign is expected for 2014, which is overdue since the G37 hasn't had a major face lift since 2008, and has grown a little long in the tooth. Especially with the arrival of the new BMW 3-series. Prices start at $36,900 with three trims available: the base Journey, the all-wheel drive G37X, and the Sport 6MT with the 328-hp 3.7-liter V6 powering all three. This is easily the most powerful engine available as standard among it's competitors and is, without doubt, one of the key reasons buyers have looked it's way since it's introduction as the G35 in 2003. Claimed fuel economy is 19 city/27 highway, which is good for the engine's output, but it lags behind most of its competitors. The fuel economy is the price you pay for the extra horses under the hood.
The base model Journey comes well-equipped, with INFINITI's 7-speed automatic transmission, 17-inch alloy wheels, leather-appointed seating, and Shodo aluminum trim as standard. You'll find Bluetooth, SiriusXM, and a USB port as standard, as well, and an available six-speaker sound system to make the most of it all. The available 7-inch color info display with rearview monitor is helpful when trying to squeeze into those tight spots on the street. All models also come with the Dual Zone Automatic Temperature Control so both driver and passenger can ride how they seem fit. Standard safety features include INFINITI's Advanced Air Bag System, Front-seat Active Head Restraints, and a 4-wheel Anti-lock Braking System. One drawback is the trunk's cargo space at 13.5 cubic feet. This has been an Achilles' Heel in the past and there is no change this year.
The newly redesigned BMW 328i is more efficient (23 city/33 highway), similarly priced ($36, 500) and about the same in the sprint to 60mph (5.9 seconds vs. INFINITI's 5.8), but it's 240-hp turbocharged I4 isn't quite as torquey as the INFINITI's and once you start adding accessories, it can get expensive. The Mercedes C-Class is very good-looking and luxurious, but if you want to even get close to the G37's 328-hp, you'll have to opt for the $41,400 C350 sport sedan. Even then, you fall 24 horses short of the mark. Not to mention that you get even less cargo space than the INFINITI with 12.4 cubic feet. The Acura TL is also great value with the price starting at $35,905. It stands apart as the only front-wheel drive offering in the comparison group and also comes with a V6 that is a little more efficient than the INFINITI's at 20 city/29 highway, but it only produces 280-hp. With it's spacious interior, similar wishbone suspension, and competitive price, it may be the sleeper of the bunch. The Lexus IS250 is perhaps the competitor with the most to prove. It's 2.5-liter V6 gets similar mileage (21 city, 27 highway), makes far less power, and has the smallest amount of interior space.