Infiniti caught all of us by surprise when they released an almost production-ready QX concept at the recent Detroit Auto show. This development comes just months after the automaker gave us another surprise with the release of the QX Sport Inspiration concept at the 2016 Beijing Auto show. The current Infiniti QX50 design is not bad-looking but the new design takes the crossover SUV to a whole new level, styling-wise. The design is characterized by a muscular and upright stance, which makes the outgoing model look bland. The concept looks almost production ready, meaning the automaker may be planning to use it on the next generation QX50 crossover either for the 2018 or 2019 model years. Read along to find what the 2018 Infiniti QX50 promises to offer to crossover enthusiasts:
2018 Infiniti QX50 Exterior
The 2018 Infiniti QX50 exterior resembles that of the QX Sport Inspiration. Generally, the two models share the shape and bodylines. The only difference between the two models is that the QX50 looks more production-ready. The QX50 concept has replaced some of the extreme features of the QX Sport Inspiration with simpler designs. Nonetheless, a majority of the original features remain unchanged. The model’s design language is referred to as “Powerful Elegance” by the automaker. Infiniti argues that the design is characterized by flowing surfaces, firm and muscular lines, proportional clarity not forgetting elegance artistry.
The crossover SUV features a double-arch grille, a clamshell hood, crescent-cut D-pillar, a more vertical rear hatch as well as coupe-like roofline. I understand the vertical rear hatch is meant to add more practicability as it will create more cargo space. Generally, the QX50 concept is also taller and wider compared with the QX Inspiration Sport concept, which translates to a roomier cabin.
The vehicle that was showcased was adorned in a Forged Bronze paint hue. This paintwork uses three times of metal flake compared to standard paintwork and its results are clear for all to see. The paintwork looks awesome on the model and I hope it will be on offer when the production model hits the dealerships.
2018 Infiniti QX50 Interior
Infiniti has excelled in achieving a balance between providing comfort and utility, which many automakers in this segment fail to achieve. Infiniti has managed to equip the crossover with high-end materials and yet leave sufficient space for cargo and passengers.
Upholstery is top notch; in fact, the automaker went a step ahead to patent its new style (dot quilting). Materials used include leather and wood. According to Infiniti, each piece of wood or leather is applied with intent to create new upholstery trends in the premium crossover segment. Three types of leather (genuine leather, synthetic nubuck and semi-aniline) are used in the cabin and are applied in different colors. White is featured on the dashboard, seats and door inserts; brown on the other hand is used on the vehicle’s upper pillar as well as the headliner while blue is applied for the mid-lines and center console.
Production models will likely feature a new graphic user interface for the infotainment system. The infotainment system will feature info readouts for the audio system, navigation, an array of driving aids as well as the status of the model’s VC-Turbo power-plant.
Almost every new model these days is going the “autonomous” way; the QX50 concept is not left out either. According to Infiniti, the QX50 will be hooked u with advanced technologies that will help the driver exercise full control of the crossover. Likely features include adaptive steering, automatic emergency braking and lane assist. These systems will be aided by cameras, radar and laser mounted at strategic locations on the vehicle.
Engine Specs and performance
The most exciting news comes from under the hood where Infiniti has fitted a Variable Compression Turbo mill. Variable compression enables an engine to deliver a high output when needed while still keeping fuel efficiency optimal. A 2.0 L, 4-cylinder VC-Turbo engine will be used. The engine has been said to combine the high output of a V-6 with the efficiency of a hybrid engine. The engine will produce 268 horses and 288 lb-ft of torque. The engine will be mated to an intelligent all-wheel-drive system. The engine produces 27% better fuel efficiency compared to a turbo V-6 mill with a similar displacement.
Price and release date
Being a concept, no price was offered. In addition, Infiniti has not disclosed whether the design will be used for a production QX50 anytime soon. However, since the model looks almost production-ready, the next-gen QX50 may show face in 2018 as a 2019 model car.