Infiniti FX 2012 gets new front grille, revised standard feature

FOR the year  2012,  Infiniti FX is largely unchanged. It gains a restyled front grille and fascia, updated gauge illumination and revised standard features.

The 2012 Infiniti FX sport-luxury crossover Sports Utility Vehicle  (SUV) is offered in three trim levels: FX35, FX Limited Edition and FX50. The V6-powered FX35 can be had with either rear- or all-wheel drive, while the V8-powered FX50 is only offered with AWD.

Standard features for the FX35 include 18-inch alloy wheels, automatic xenon headlights, foglights, a sunroof, power-folding heated outside mirrors, keyless ignition/entry, a power liftgate, leather upholstery, full power accessories, eight-way power front seats, heated front seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and a manual tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with audio controls.

Also standard are dual-zone automatic climate control, a back-up camera, Bluetooth for phone and an 11-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system with a six-CD changer, an iPod/USB connection, an auxiliary audio jack and satellite radio.
Options for the FX35 include a Premium package, which features aluminum roof rails, driver seat memory, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering column, a 360-degree parking-camera system, front and rear parking sensors, a hard-drive navigation system with real-time traffic and weather, among others.

Based on the all-wheel-drive FX35, the 2012 FX35 Limited Edition is differentiated by exclusive paint, 21-inch wheels, adaptive xenon headlights and some of the features from the Premium package, including driver seat memory, the navigation system and the parking camera system. Additional option packages aren’t available for the Limited Edition.

The FX50 generally includes all of the above plus a more advanced climate control system with air filtration, quilted leather seating and ventilated front seats.

Technology package  which requires the Deluxe Touring package for the FX35 adds automatic wipers, adaptive cruise control, adaptive headlamps, forward collision warning, intelligent brake assist and a lane-departure warning and prevention system. A twin-screen rear-seat entertainment system is a stand-alone option for all FX models.

A Sport package is available for the FX50 only, and adds dark-tinted exterior trim, active rear steering, adaptive two-mode suspension dampers, solid magnesium paddle shifters and sport front seats.

The 2012 Infiniti FX35 is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 303 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. The FX50 is powered by a 5.0-liter V8 that produces 390 horse power  and 369 lb-ft of torque.

A seven-speed automatic with manual shift control is the only transmission available. Rear-wheel drive is standard forthe FX35; an all-wheel-drive system with a rear bias to preserve the vehicle’s sporty handling capabilities is optional. The FX50 is only offered with All Wheel Drive.

Standard safety features for the 2012 Infiniti FX35 and FX50 include antilock disc brakes, front seat-mounted side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, traction control and stability control. A lane-departure warning and prevention system is optional, as are adaptive cruise control and intelligent brake assist.

Mini Cooper  extend safety, optional highlights for 2012

For 2012, the Mini Cooper offers the “Mini Yours” series of high-end customization options. A leather-covered dashboard, unique wheels and leather upholstery with contrasting striping and piping are among those optional highlights.

The 2012 Mini Cooper is available in two-door hatchback and convertible body styles. Each is available in three trim levels: Cooper, Cooper S and John Cooper Works (JCW).

Base Cooper comes standard with 15-inch alloy wheels, full power accessories, keyless entry, air-conditioning, cruise control, a height-adjustable driver seat and  leatherette (vinyl) upholstery.

Others include  floor mats, a tilt-and-telescoping leather-wrapped steering wheel, multicolor ambient lighting and a six-speaker stereo with a CD player, HD radio, satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack.

The Cooper convertible models add 16-inch alloy wheels and a full power convertible top that includes a sunroof feature. The Cooper’s Sport package adds 16-inch wheels on the hatchback and 17-inch wheels on the convertible, fog lamps, traction control, a rear spoiler, sport seats and hood stripes.

The Cooper S adds 16-inch wheels, a turbocharged engine, firmer suspension tuning, fog lamps, sport seats and alloy pedals. The Cooper S Sport package adds 17-inch wheels, xenon headlights, traction control and hood stripes. The John Cooper Works includes a more powerful turbo engine, upgraded Brembo brakes, an aerodynamic body kit and cloth upholstery.

A limited-slip differential and a firmer suspension can be fitted to both the S and the John Cooper Works.
Major optional features (some of which are grouped in packages), according to emons motoring experts  include adaptive xenon headlights, a dual-pane sunroof, automatic climate control, heated front seats, keyless ignition/entry, a 10-speaker Harman Kardon surround-sound audio system, Bluetooth and an iPod interface.

Others include different wheels, parking sensors, cloth or leather upholstery, a navigation system and a multitude of different interior trims and materials.

New 2012 Mini Cooper comes with a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine good for 121 horse power  and 114 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual with hill-start assist is standard, and a six-speed automatic is optional.

Mini estimates a manual-equipped hatchback will go from zero to 60 mph in 8.4 seconds (9.7 seconds with the automatic).

All 2012 Mini Coopers come standard with antilock disc brakes, stability control and front-seat side airbags. Side curtain airbags are standard on the hatchback, while the convertible features pop-up rollover bars and larger front side airbags that extend to head height.

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