The automotive press awarded the Y50 Infiniti M several best-in-class awards in direct comparisons against its competitors in the midsize luxury segment. For instance the M45 fared well against the BMW 545i/550i, Acura RL, Mercedes-Benz E500/E550, and Lexus GS 430/450h. Reviewers cited the M35 and M45's driving involvement and handling dynamics over the GS and E-Class while having superior ergonomics to the 5 Series; furthermore the M was equipped and priced competitively against its German rivals. , while the M35 also received strong reviews. Despite entering a very crowded, competitive segment in which almost every member has been recently redesigned, the M managed to claim several key distinctions. The M is near or at the top of its class of every interior dimension, actually breaking into the United States Environmental Protection Agency "large" category depending on which option packages are selected.
The M35x won Consumer Reports top luxury car pick for 2006, taking the top spot from the 2005 Lexus LS 430.