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Discussion Starter #1
I am on the verge of buying a 2005 FX35. I have read alot about the harsh ride of the 20-inch wheels. I like the looks of the wheels and side rails much better than the 18-inchers, though. Can any of you FX owners give me your opinion on how harsh the ride is with the 20-inch wheels? I currently own a QX4 so I am used to the ride of a SUV. Do you think the Sport Suspension is rougher than an SUV or is it just stiffer when compared to the 18-inch ride? Also, does the 20-inch wheels give a smooth ride on the interstate? I do alot of traveling. I really like the looks of the FX and probably will do the deal this week. Replies would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Nothing any of us can say here will help you more than a test drive will. I'm sure that you'll find that the FX is very un-SUV like. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I appreciate your input. I have test driven the 18-inch version, but have not driven the 20-incher. First of all, I hate dealing with carsalesmen and I have been successful in the past by making the deal by phone and FAX, so I;m really trying to avoid another face-to-face on their turf contact. Also, a test drive is so short that I am not convinced it's all telling. I would trust the experience of owers over my own first impressions. I think that something may seem to be desireable on the front end, but lose some of its appeal after time. At this point, I am just wrestling with cosmetics over practicality. I know I would be happy with the 18-inch ride, but if there isn't that much difference, I would opt for the more visually appealing 20-inchers. Also, I think the 20-inchers may keep a proportionately higher resale value over the 18-inchers.
 

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Harleyguy, I was in the same boat as you, really liked the look of the 20s so thats what I went for - I initially thought the ride was a little harsh but now no complaints and wouldn't want it any different than it is.
 

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I test drove both on smooth and very bumpy roads and there is a big difference with the sport suspension and 20 inchers. I've found that on one particular highway (580 near Oakland) the ride is almost brutal. Other than that highway, I love it the rest of the time. Did you consider a non-sport with 20" wheels?

Like FromHereToInfiniti said; I'd also strongly encourage you to do more test driving.
 

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particlefx said:
I test drove both on smooth and very bumpy roads and there is a big difference with the sport suspension and 20 inchers. I've found that on one particular highway (580 near Oakland) the ride is almost brutal. Other than that highway, I love it the rest of the time. Did you consider a non-sport with 20" wheels?
If you put 20" wheels on a non-sport model I bet you wouldn't be able to tell the difference in ride quality vs. a sport model with the standard 20" wheels. No one has been able to confirm that the part numbers of the struts/springs are any different between the "sport" and "non-sport" suspensions. The "sport-tuned" suspension may just be an Infiniti marketing ploy. The ride differences between the two models are attributed to the difference wheel sizes and lower tire profiles more than anything else.
 

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Go test drive a 350z than the FX and you will think the FX is smoooth riding.

IMO the FXs ride on 20's is unique and hard to compare with anything else.

I love the feel of my FX, if I wanted a "always comfortable" ride I would have choose the Lexus.

That bit of "harshness" is what seperates this vehicle from anything out there. If that was taken away the FX would seem to feel as it was missing something.

Flame away, but this is just my opinion.
 

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GeoFX said:
If you put 20" wheels on a non-sport model I bet you wouldn't be able to tell the difference in ride quality vs. a sport model with the standard 20" wheels. ... The "sport-tuned" suspension may just be an Infiniti marketing ploy.
Can you prove that the sport-tuned suspension is simply a "marketing ploy"? I'd like to see some evidence.
 

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I've found that on one particular highway (580 near Oakland) the ride is almost brutal.

Tha part of the highway is HORRIBLE...everything chatters
 

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particlefx said:
GeoFX said:
If you put 20" wheels on a non-sport model I bet you wouldn't be able to tell the difference in ride quality vs. a sport model with the standard 20" wheels.
Can you prove this statement -or- that the sport-tuned suspension is simply a "marketing ploy"? I'd like to see some evidence.
It's a speculation based on mine and other's attempts (here and on FA) to see if the part numbers of the front struts/rear shocks/springs are any different between sport vs. non-sport FX35s. We all know that the main difference between the two packages is in the wheel size. So far, I have only been able to confirm that there are different part numbers for AWD vs. RWD springs (not struts or shocks) but that's about it.

Springs:

http://www.trademotion.com/partlocator/ ... atalogid=1

Struts:

http://www.trademotion.com/partlocator/ ... atalogid=1

Also, there was a MY 03 change in the part numbers for sport-equipped cars verified by someone on FA but that's it (hence the "softened" suspension claims by Infiniti in 04 and 05 models). If Infiniti claims that the struts/shocks are different in sport models, why is there no difference in part numbers? Are they the same parts just pumped up with extra air to make the cars supposedly feel firmer? How would you know you're getting the right parts come time for replacement? Infiniti's claim of "sport-tuned" suspension may in fact be describing just the difference in ride between 18" and 20" wheels with lower-profile tires. We can all agree that handling is improved and therefore "sportier" with the 20" wheels, right? That's where the "sport-tuned" suspension claims are based on.

All this leads me to believe that the "Sport" package only consists of the 20" wheels and cosmetic differences (silver rails, pedals, headlamps, grill, etc.). The "sport-tuned" suspension claim by Infiniti is just automaker BS to fool people that they're buying a lot more for a specific option package than they really are (in this case it's only the wheels).

I've asked this before on other posts but can anyone show me different part numbers between the sport and non-sport suspension components? hmmm...
 

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<twitch>

(Yeah, ya saw that one coming ...!)
 

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Don't forget that the wheels are not the only cosmetic change with the Sport package. You get the smoked/clear tail lights, etched aluminum trim, different grill, silver roof rails, etc... The cosmetics alone are what sold me on it = silver roof rails and those big ole tires! Definitely drive both. I did extensively - there are many dealers that will let you take an extended test drive on the two different cars back to back. I agonized over it but in the end went sport and I am VERY happy that I did :D
 

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kflanary said:
Don't forget that the wheels are not the only cosmetic change with the Sport package. You get the smoked/clear tail lights, etched aluminum trim, different grill, silver roof rails, etc...
Didn't I say this? :? Read again. I was just making the point that Infiniti's claim of "sport-tuned" suspension only consists of bigger wheels since nobody can prove that the other suspension components (the struts/shocks/springs) are any different between the sport and non-sport FX35s (except for springs in the case of RWD and AWD models ).
 

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Geez, sorry! I was just trying to express to Harleyguy that the cosmetic changes were huge to me. I love the drive of the sports model. But even if I had liked the non-sport slightly more, I still would have chosen sport for the looks. Wasn't trying to bash your post, so please don't bash mine.
 

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All this leads me to believe that the "Sport" package only consists of the 20" wheels and cosmetic differences (silver rails, pedals, headlamps, grill, etc.). The "sport-tuned" suspension claim by Infiniti is just automaker BS to fool people
I have always thought that too.

Boy, it was nice and easy when I only had to choose tech or non-tech and 35 or 45.
 

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I own fx45 and in my opinion (and everybody that took a ride in my car) the suspension is stiff and rough. I used to own e46 bmw with sport suspension and I think fx's suspension might be a little harsher (if that's a word) over bumps. Then again, it is just a matter of getting used to it. If you are looking for an opinion, sport suspension does not bother me...
I suggest you take a trip to the dealer and test drive it yourself.
 

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<Kenny mode> Say it with me now, Stiff ride=performance. 8) Get the 20''s you'll reget it later. The FX is all about performance. Too many times someone has posted about the ride being stiff after the fact...you can always pick up the 18's later as they are cheaper than the 20".

Sweet is right... drive a 350z to compare or a M3. Add the Strut brace and you'll be able to take clover leafs at 70-80 mph.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks to all for your opinions and advice. As much as I like the looks of the 20-inch wheels, I don't think the trade-off in the ride quality is worth it for me. I can appreciate the views of those who bought the FX for performance. I, on the other hand, just like the looks of the FX and I enjoy a smooth ride. So, my decision is made to go with the 18-inchers. I'll bet, though, the 2006 models will offer the 18-inchers in eight spoke gun metal and silver roof rails as an option. That's usually the way my luck runs. Again, thanks for the replies and I hope the next time you hear from me I will be a happy FX owner. Happy Holidays to all!
 

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Maybe too late?

Also, a test drive is so short that I am not convinced it's all telling.
My dealer was willing to allow a 24hr test drive, but I knew what I wanted (and what I'd pay) so there was no need - Love my dubs.
 

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Harleyguy said:
Thanks to all for your opinions and advice. As much as I like the looks of the 20-inch wheels, I don't think the trade-off in the ride quality is worth it for me. I can appreciate the views of those who bought the FX for performance. I, on the other hand, just like the looks of the FX and I enjoy a smooth ride. So, my decision is made to go with the 18-inchers. I'll bet, though, the 2006 models will offer the 18-inchers in eight spoke gun metal and silver roof rails as an option. That's usually the way my luck runs. Again, thanks for the replies and I hope the next time you hear from me I will be a happy FX owner. Happy Holidays to all!
Glad you made a decision. A FX with the 18" wheels will still handle better than most, if not all, of the midsize SUVs out on the road today. Just trade in the 18" for 20" wheels if you ever get the urge for better handling. It's a straight swap with no adjustments to the odo or speedo necessary.
 
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