What’s Hot: For the 2016 model year, Infiniti has stretched-out the brand’s entry-level compact crossover, offering more leg room for rear passengers due to its longer wheelbase. Also, the vehicle’s price has been lowered and only two trims are being offered. The automaker is also touting its barely noticeable exterior touch up.
The performance-oriented Infiniti is available in a rear wheel drive or an all-wheel drive configuration and has one of the most powerful engines in the segment. The driver-oriented vehicle offers an engaging driving experience that many of today’s crossovers do not.
The QX50 offers loads of utility space when the rear seats are folded down, as well as the latest comfort and safety features.
What’s Not: The vehicle requires premium fuel and lacks the option of a fuel-efficient 4-cylinder engine. And unlike most of the crossovers that have a higher ride height, the QX50 seems more like a sporty wagon that is disguised like a crossover. In 2017, Infiniti is introducing a vehicle with a higher ride height that shares a platform with the Mercedes-Benz GLA.
Drive Or Drive-By: For those who adored the Japanese styling of Infiniti’s old G-series, they’ll be enamored with the roomier performance-oriented QX50, which basically is off of the same platform. The premium 6-cylinder engine, still offers the same classic styling with loads of optional features available. It’s no wonder why this tight-handling vehicle recently had a record sales month.
Competition: Audi Q3; BMW X1; Buick Encore; Land Rover Discovery Sport; Lexus NX; Mercedes-Benz GLA; and Volvo XC60
Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $43,535 (base model $34,445)
Seating Capacity: 5
Standard Safety Features: airbags; ABS; LED Daytime Running Lights; a stability control system; a rearview camera; a traction control system; and a tire pressure monitoring system
Standard Equipment (Base Model): 18-inch wheels; rear wheel drive; leather seats; power heated front seats; power moonroof; a manual operated tilt/telescopic steering wheel; a dual zone automatic temperature control system; power adjustable heated outside mirrors; and a push button keyless ignition system.
Technology package: a radar-activated cruise control system; an electronic blind spot system; a lane departure warning system; a forward collision braking system; and aluminum brake/gas pedals
A deluxe touring package: 19-inch wheels; a high intensity discharge headlight system; Xenon headlights; an adaptive forward collision braking system; 8 way power passenger front seat; a coat hanger on driver’s seat headrest; and premium interior stitching
Premium package: a 11-speaker Bose with CD/DVD player; an advance climate control system; dual memory system for driver’s seats; entry assist for driver’s seat and steering wheel; a power operated tilt/telescopic steering wheel; and aluminum roof rails
Premium plus package: an Infiniti navigation system; a 7-inch infotainment screen; and an around view monitor
Illuminated kick plates
Other Trim Level: Only One.
Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: a 6-speaker AM/FM/CD with satellite radio
Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes
USB Connectivity: Yes
Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 4 years or 60,000 miles
Powertrain Warranty: 6 years or 70,000 miles
Standard Engine/Horsepower: 3.7-liter, 6-cylinder/325-hp
Recommended Fuel: Premium
Standard Fuel Mileage:
Jeff Fortson is an auto analyst and editor of a car-buying website for women and minorities. To learn more about his popular car-buying workshop and/or to price a new-vehicle, drive on over to www.JeffCars.com. Follow him on Twitter/JeffCars.
PHOTOS: Infiniti/Jeff Fortson