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Already available in the U.S., the 2012 Infiniti M35h is finally trickling into dealerships over in Europe. Infiniti says the M35h is currently available at 45 dealerships across 21 European countries and that the hybrid M is cost-competitive with the Europe-only diesel-fueled M30d. For example, Infiniti says the M35h starts at €56,600 ($79,800 U.S. at the current exchange rate) in Germany, only €1,500 ($2,115 U.S.) more than an equivalent M30d.

Of course, M buyers that opt for the hybrid version get 360 horsepower and a sedan that's capable of scooting from 0 to 62 miles per hour in 5.5 seconds. On top of that, the M35h can hit 155 miles per hour and consumes fuel at a rate of just seven liters per 100 kilometers (33.6 miles per gallon U.S.) on the combined European cycle while emitting 162 grams per kilometer of CO2. As Infiniti says, the M35h – the world's quickest hybrid sedan – is a "no-compromise hybrid" that "marries its storming performance" with remarkable fuel economy. Interested Americans know this already, and now it's the Europeans' turn.
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RACE IS ON AS FASTEST HYBRID GOES ON SALE

The world's fastest accelerating hybrid, the reigning Formula One World Champion, his team-mate, and the demanding Nürburgring Nordschleife all come together to mark the start of European sales of the Infiniti M35h. Yes, it's a race.

On the right, Sebastian Vettel in the new M35h – 364PS of petrol/electric firepower, 0-100km/h in 5.5 seconds – and available at Infiniti Centres throughout Europe since 5 September.

On the left, his Red Bull Racing team-mate Mark Webber in the M37 S Premium ¬– 320PS of pure petrol V6 power for 0-100km/h in 6.2 seconds – equipped with the Four-Wheel Active Steer of the S Premium model.

Ahead of them both: the 20.8km and 73 bends of perhaps the most iconic, and certainly the most demanding, racetrack in the world.

Hybrid or petrol? Vettel or Webber? The winner of the very special race, arranged to mark the start of M35h sales in Europe, won't be revealed until press day (13 September) at the Frankfurt Motor Show. What can be revealed now is that Webber was "blown away" by how responsive the M35h is, while Vettel – Infiniti's first Global Brand Ambassador – said the encounter between the two team-mates on such a challenging track was "good fun".

You can see just how much fun at: facebook.com/infinitieurope

What also can be revealed is that the 250km/h M35h is the first no-compromise hybrid, a spacious four-door sedan which marries its storming performance with 7.0 l/100km fuel consumption (combined cycle) and CO2 emissions of just 162g/km.

The M35h is available at 45 Infiniti Centres across 21 European countries to typically lavish Infiniti specification – and at a surprisingly modest price premium over the equivalent M diesel model. In Germany M35h prices start from €56,600, just €1500 more than an equivalent Infiniti M30d.

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