Infiniti M35 Hybrid Scheduled for Production in 2011

Beginning in 2011, a hybrid gas-electric version of the Nissan Infinity M will be available for purchase. The Infinity M35 Hybrid luxury sedan will be Nissan’s first hybrid model in production.

Nissan is currently looking forward to the debut of their all-electric vehicle, the Leaf, in 2010, and has said repeatedly that hybrids are not the solution to the problem of environmental efficiency for the auto industry. Nissan has always stated that vehicles that are completely electric, like the Leaf, are the only way to transition to completely emissions-free automobile travel, which many feel is necessary to address the world’s environmental concerns.

The M35 is, however, a solution for luxury buyers who’d like to have all the power and features of a high-end automobile in a more fuel efficient vehicle. A press release about the hybrid from Infiniti says, “The M35 Hybrid has been designed and engineered to add to, not take away from, the driving experience, a key part of any Infiniti’s appeal.” [Subtext: Most hybrids take away from the driving experience.]

The M35 is equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 with an electric motor and a lithium ion battery pack in a full hybrid drivetrain which is capable of some all-electric propulsion.

With this vehicle, Infiniti can take its place among other carmakers that have taken the plunge into the green luxury market. Japanese automaker Honda attempted to market its Accord V6 Hybrid, which it decided to discontinue in 2006. Since that time the concept has become much more popular.

Also offering V6 luxury hybrid sedans are Lexus and Mercedes, and more models are expected in the future as more buyers become willing to pay more for the quality and gas mileage they desire. More offerings are expected from Porsche, Ferrari, Rolls Royce and Aston Martin.

With more models from more automakers comes the promise that luxury car shoppers won’t have to skimp on the features they love in exchange for green technology. They’ll be able to have the spacious interiors, luxury details, latest technology and all the power combined with fuel efficiency and lower emissions.

The Infiniti M35 Hybrid will arrive in dealer showrooms in spring of 2011, one year after the new gas powered model debuts. No pricing for the hybrid is available yet, but the base model for the gas powered version is $48,500. The hybrid is expected to be priced around $50,000 and will qualify for a $1,000 fuel tax incentive.

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