Motor Trend magazine has named Nissan’s Infiniti G35 sport sedan and sport Coupe as its 2003 Car of the Year. The award, now in its 54th year, is generally regarded as the key US ‘car of the year’ award and Nissan is expected to make the most of it in advertising for its premium brand.

Motor Trend tested 27 new vehicles from the US, Japan, Germany, the United Kingdom, Sweden and Korea for this year’s competition.

Contenders were the BMW 7 Series, Cadillac CTS, Dodge Viper SRT-10, Honda Accord coupe and sedan, Civic Hybrid and Civic Si, Hyundai Tiburon [Coupe], the two Infiniti models plus the M45 sedan, Lincoln Town Car, Mazda 6, Mercedes-Benz CLK, E-Class and SL, Mercury Marauder, MINI Cooper and Cooper S, Nissan 350Z, Pontiac Vibe, Saab 9-3, Saturn Ion, Suzuki Aerio, Toyota Corolla and Corolla Matrix, and the Volkswagen Passat W8.