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2013 Infiniti M Hybrid Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2013 Infiniti M Hybrid was new.


Performance: 8.2

Reviewers say that the 2013 Infiniti M35h is one of the most fun-to-drive hybrid luxury cars on the market. They note that the M35h offers a combination of power and fuel economy that most luxury large cars can’t match, as well as capable handling and a comfortable ride.

  • "The M Hybrid, which Infiniti claims is the world's fastest full-hybrid, delivers on its promise of combining the fuel efficiency of a hybrid with the engaging driving dynamics of a performance sedan." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Getting behind the wheel of the M was something I looked forward to every morning, and riding in the passenger seat with my husband driving was equally pleasant. The M is simply smooth as butter." -- Cars.com
  • "Just the faintest of shudders can be felt when the transmission transitions from pure-EV to gasoline mode, and the brakes still feel linear and direct despite the system’s by-wire complexity and added effect of the regenerative braking.” -- Car and Driver (2012)
  • "Electric-only operation is smooth and silent and the sensation of extra vehicle mass, while noticeable, does not dominate the M Hybrid's feel on the road." -- Edmunds (2012) 

Acceleration and Power

The 2013 Infiniti M35h is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine and an electric motor, which together produce 360 horsepower. The engine and electric motor are paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive. The EPA reports that the M35h gets 27/32 mpg city/highway, which is better than the BMW ActiveHybrid 5’s fuel economy, but not quite as good as the Lexus GS 450h’s.

Most reviewers agree that M35h offers ample power and swift acceleration. One critic notes that transitions from gas to electric power are smooth, while another writes that the seven-speed transmission provides seamless shifts and a great driving experience.

  • "Transitions between running on the gas engine and the electric motor were nearly undetectable, both by sound and by feel, something I have yet to experience in any other hybrid." -- Cars.com
  • "The discrete shifts from the seven-speed gearbox make for a very natural driving experience as the revs climb with vehicle speed. If you've ever been irked by the seemingly arbitrary rubber band-ness of CVT-equipped hybrids, you'll love the M Hybrid." -- Edmunds (2012)
  • "Lean into the throttle and acceleration is immediate and smooth; it gently jostles you back into the supportive throne. While the hybrid doesn't feel as quick as the M37 and certainly not as brisk as the 4.6-second-to-60 M56, don't throw this hybrid into the pile of boring gas-electric road machines just yet." -- Motor Trend (2012)
  • "It's not quite as fast as the mighty V8-packing M56, but with the gas pedal pinned to the floor and both the engine and motor humming in coordination, the car is quicker than you'd expect." -- Popular Mechanics (2012)

Handling and Braking

Reviewers generally report that the 2013 Infiniti M35h offers balanced handling, as well as a comfortable ride. One test driver says that the brake pedal can be a little touchy, but the M35h earns praise for its accurate, well-weighted steering.

  • "This would be a great car for my annual seven-hour birthday drive from Denver to Telluride, Colo. The vehicle feels connected to the road, yet manages to smooth out undesirable feedback." -- Cars.com
  • "Although the brakes can rip your dentures loose if you’re not judicious with the pedal, the system feels more or less natural -- at least by Infiniti standards." -- Car and Driver (2012)
  • "The M Hybrid also employs a new electro-hydraulic power steering system -- another fuel-saving, world's-first technology. ... As we felt during our short flogging, the helm proved smooth, weighty, and precise." -- Motor Trend (2012)
  • "The non-sport suspension (only modified for the higher curb weight) gives the M35h surprising sure-footed agility." -- Autoblog (2012)

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