Where Your Author Steps Away From Infiniti

where your author steps away from infiniti

Some heavy thoughts are weighing on my mind lately; some might even call them urges. And those urges are telling me to sell a blue Datsun sedan and get something else. Should I give in?

The M35x pictured above has occupied the lone space in the garage since early November of 2013. I bought it off of eBay with a little over 52,000 miles on the clock. Today it has 66,000 miles, showing just how slowly they accumulate on vehicles I own. Since 2013, it’s required oil changes and an expensive brake service, which was $686.00. Other than gulping premium fuel like it’s something to do, it’s been trouble-free. It’s ten years old, and is quite depreciated. I don’t need the all-wheel drive anymore, as that’s what the Outback is for. As well, the M does not fit into the overall Cars Plan, as outlined in the Outback article from 2017.

For a while, I had my sights set solely on one of these:

A Lexus GS350, from 2014 or 2015. The year requirement is two-fold here: In 2014 the transmission was upgraded to an eight-speed, and 2015 was the last year before the spindle grille marred the GS’ visage. It will be reliable, and suits me in a large sedan sort of way. I had a second-gen GS430 before the Infiniti, and enjoyed it thoroughly. It’s the safe option.

But lately, a slightly riskier option (or is it?) popped into mind. It fulfills the requirements of V6 or V8 and rear-drive, just like the GS. But it has the added and considerable bonus of being a stylish hardtop coupe.

It’s the Mercedes-Benz E350, from 2014 or 2015. There are similar reasons for this two-year range for the E350: The model was extensively updated for 2014, and 2015 was the last year before the 3.5 V6 was replaced by the 3.0-liter twin-turbo E400 model. The E400, though mostly the same as the prior model save for the engine, is out of my price range.

Both cars fit what I want, and I like both. They’re both the same age, and would have roughly the same miles (20-40k) for the same sort of money, which I can afford. Given I don’t need the extra doors of a sedan, does it pay to coupe? Or, is the E350 too much of an unknown on the reliability front, when the Lexus has none of those concerns? From research, the E-Class of this era is reliable — but I still wonder. Though it bears mentioning that a coupe will always be more exciting to me than a sedan.

What’s the right replacement for the departing M?

[Images: Corey Lewis/TTAC, sellers]

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2 of 147 comments
  • SPPPP SPPPP on Feb 26, 2019

    Those choices are both OK, but I think they would both leave me wanting more excitement in the long run. I would suggest something with more power, with V8 rumble, more suited to the Midwest climate where I think you hail from, possibly more prestigious in that same Midwest, possibly more fun to drive on those crumbling roads, and most likely cheaper to buy and own in the long run, according to Edmunds. I present to you, the Dodge Ram 1500. https://cargur.us/rz1r_

  • Amancuso Amancuso on Mar 02, 2019

    I'd skip both those boring offerings and go straight for a BMW 640i or 650i coupe.

  • 2ACL What tickles me is that the Bronco looks the business with virtually none of the black plastic cladding many less capable crossovers use.
  • IBx1 For all this time with the hellcat engine, everything they made was pathetic automatic scum save for the Challenger. A manual Durango, Grand Cherokee, Charger, 300C, et al would have been the real last gasp for driving enthusiasts. As it is, the party is long over.
  • MaintenanceCosts The sweet spot of this generation isn't made anymore: the SRT 392. The Scat Pack is more or less filling the same space but it lacks a lot of the goodies, including SRT suspension, brakes, and seats. The Hellcat is too much and isn't available with a manual anymore.
  • Arthur Dailey I am normally a fan of Exner's designs but by this time the front end on the Stutz like most of the rest of the vehicle is a laughable monstrosity of gauche. The interior finishes suit the rest of the vehicle. Corey please put this series out of its misery. This is one vehicle manufacturer best left on the scrap heap of history.
  • Art Vandelay I always thought what my Challenger really needed was a convertible top to make it heavier and make visability worse.