Since its introduction in 1995, the Infiniti I30 luxury sedan has been noted for its flagship styling, space and performance for around $30,000. For 1998, the volume leader of the Infiniti Division stands to become more popular than ever - thanks to a number of enhancements to its exterior and interior, the addition of front-seat side air bags and the availability of several new color combinations including a new beige cloth interior. The I30 is offered in both Standard and Touring models and with a popular Leather and Convenience option package.
"The I30 has been a hit with consumers since it was introduced, due to its balanced luxury and performance," said Tom Eastwood, vice president, Infiniti Division. "For 1998, we're upping the ante on the luxury side, without diminishing its class-leading sportiness. Add to that formula Infiniti's industry-leading Total Ownership Experience® and the I30 remains unbeatable in class."
Exterior and Interior Design
Refinements to the 1998 I30 exterior include the adoption of new halogen headlights with jewel-type lenses, taillights similar to the Q45, a new rear finisher, new center console with new cup holders, and new wheels - Q45t-style 16-inch 5-spoke alloys for the I30t Touring Model.
The I30 body is anchored by the strong styling statement of the front grille, elegant flowing lines and wide, horizontal taillight treatment, resulting in a coefficient of drag of just 0.32 - all of which helps provide a luxurious, quiet cabin and stable ride.
With a long wheelbase and a wide cabin, the I30 offers exceptional interior roominess and generous trunk capacity. Special attention was paid in the design process to the creation of best-in-class rear seat spaciousness. In the trunk, more than 14.1 cubic feet of cargo capacity is further enhanced by the I30's wide trunk opening, low liftover height and standard rear seat armrest pass-through.
The luxurious I30 interior was designed to blend sophistication and comfort with state-of-the-art ergonomics. A large instrument panel with soft, tactile surfaces houses easy-to-read analog gauges. Simulated wood trim adds an extra touch of elegance. Changes for the new model year include the addition of an outside temperature indicator to the HVAC display, a new LCD odometer with dual trip meters and the relocation of the audio system tweeters from the side view mirror to the door trim panel.
The I30's standard 8-way power driver's and 4-way front-passenger's seat feature an integrated "extended pelvic lumbar support." This advanced design provides compound support of the pelvis and lumbar, helping prevent fatigue over long drives while offering exceptional passenger comfort.
For 1998, the former Leather-Appointed Model becomes the Leather and Convenience Package option. Refinements built into this Package include the addition of the Infiniti name and logo embossing to the front leather-appointed seats, perforated seating surfaces and the addition of a new Sage leather-appointed interior color.
Other Leather and Convenience Package equipment includes a power sunroof, anti-glare rearview mirror and the Integrated HomeLink™ Transmitter.
The Touring Model (I30t) receives new 16-inch alloy wheels styled like the Q45t wheels, along with 55-series low-profile tires to give the "t" model an extra amount of "attitude."
Two areas where many mid-luxury segment sedans fall far short of their larger traditional luxury counterparts are in performance and technology. Through the innovative application of leading-edge engine and suspension designs, the Infiniti I30 offers the quick acceleration, agile handling and comfortable ride of the flagship Q45.
The 3.0-liter DOHC V6 engine, created through advanced computer modeling, produces smooth, V8-like response and performance ‹ while delivering fuel economy equal to that of some 4-cylinder models.
With 190-horsepower and 205 ft-lbs of torque, this advanced powerplant helps propel the I30 from zero to 60 miles per hour in 7.0 seconds (in independent testing). At the same time, the I30 delivers excellent fuel economy of 21 mpg City/26 mpg Highway for the 5-speed manual (available on the I30t only), and 21 mpg City/28 mpg Highway with the I30's electronically controlled 4-speed automatic overdrive transmission (Standard and Touring models).
The I30 also provides Q45-like handling and ride comfort, through use of an innovative 4-wheel independent suspension system. The MacPherson strut-type front suspension uses a sophisticated subframe-located mountings to help provide stiffness and noise/vibration isolation. In the rear, the I30's Multi-Link Beam™ suspension utilizes the best aspects of both multi-link and torsion beam suspension designs through development of a patented lateral link/control rod system. This arrangement helps keep the tires perpendicular to the road for better stability and control, while providing excellent body stability.
With its body designed in part using NASA stress analysis computer programs, the I30 provides a rigid body shell. For the 1998 model year, the I30 joins the Infiniti Q45 in offering standard front-seat side air bags.
The I30 also features standard driver and front-passenger air bags, height-adjustable front shoulder belt anchors, ALR/ELR seat belt retractors for the front-passenger side and rear outboard seating positions, child-safety rear door locks, front and rear body structure crumple zones, energy-absorbing steering column and knee bolsters.
Active safety is also an integral part of the I30 design - from the responsive power and handling of the advanced engine and suspension, to standard 4-wheel disc brakes with an anti-lock braking system (ABS).
Personal security is enhanced with the I30's standard 8-way keyless remote entry and security system, which comes with two transmitters. The system allows remote locking and unlocking of the doors, trunk lid release, interior lighting feature, lowering of front windows, and panic alarm.
For the ultimate in security and convenience, the Integrated HomeLink Transmitter system - standard on the Leather and Convenience Package and Touring Model - allows an I30 owner to control up to three RF-activated devices from the comfort of the driver's seat. System controls are mounted in the driver's side sun visor, eliminating the problem of lost or misplaced control units with its compact, integrated design. The system features rolling codes for added security.
Luxury Features/Model Availability
The 1998 Infiniti I30 is again offered with a wide array of luxury and convenience features and amenities. Standard equipment includes a CFC-free air conditioning system with automatic temperature control, power windows with driver's side auto-down feature, power door locks with selective unlocking feature, power antenna, power trunk and fuel filler door releases and cruise control with steering wheel-mounted switches.
Additionally, every I30 comes with an advanced 200-watt Bose® audio system with six speakers, CD player and cassette deck designed specifically for I30's interior.
A Traction Enhancement System with viscous limited-slip differential (VLSD), and Heated Seats Package featuring heated outside mirrors and heavy duty battery are optionally available with the Leather and Convenience Package and offered as standard equipment on the I30t.
The I30 Touring Model also adds more aggressive 215/55R16 all-season tires and a sport-tuned suspension with firmer struts and shock absorbers, and a rear decklid spoiler. The I30t comes standard with a 5-speed manual transmission - with the 4-speed automatic optionally available.
Two new exterior colors - Laguna Blue and Autumn Bronze have been added. Other available exterior colors include: Beige Pebble, Bordeaux Pearl, Cypress Pearl, Black Obsidian, Silver Crystal and White Platinum. For 1998, new Sage leather-appointed interior and Beige cloth interior colors join the previously available Black leather-appointed trim.
Comprehensive Warranty / Total Ownership Experience
Like all Infiniti models, the I30 is protected by some of the best warranties in the industry: a 4-year/60,000-mile Basic New Vehicle Limited Warranty; a 6-year/70,000-mile Powertrain Limited Warranty (protection for major engine and driveline components; a 5-year/50,000-mile New Vehicle Emission Control Limited Warranty; and a 7-year/unlimited mileage Corrosion Limited Warranty. As part of The Total Ownership Experience, Infiniti also provides buyers with a 48-month, 24-hour roadside assistance program - one of the most comprehensive available. A free Infiniti loan car is provided at participating dealers during the basic warranty period when requested with scheduled service appointments (subject to availability). Infiniti's satellite parts network also minimizes delays in service.