Infiniti should be more popular in the UK than it is. No one knew what my Q50 test car was – and when I said ‘Infiniti’ many had a blank look on their face.
They sort of got it when I said Infiniti is to Nissan what Lexus is to Toyota. In other words, it is the posh arm of the Japanese motor company.
The brand doesn’t sell in large volumes at all in Britain, but head to the States and you’ll see far more Infiniti models on the road. Indeed, in spite of existing in the United Kingdom for nearly nine years, Infiniti has not made other premium car-makers quiver in their boots.
Nissan’s luxurious sub-marque has needed something extraordinary for quite some time now. It’s a brand that is meant to lure motorists away from the gamut of talented, but cautious Euro adversaries. Something, Infiniti predicts, its current star, the Q50 3.0t will be able to do.
On first examination, things are off to a good start, thanks to the car’s fetching styling. Admittedly, the gawping grill and plunging lines won’t be to all palates, but it’s an eye-catching design, nonetheless.
A new 3.0 litre V6 twin-turbo powerplant is under the bonnet, and it packs a punch, producing 405PS. This equates to a 0-62mph propulsion time of just 5.1 seconds and a top speed of 155mph.
Clout is sent to the Japanese car’s rear wheels through a seven-speed automatic ‘box. This power delivery works well, because there is very little, if any, turbo lag, resulting in some tummy tickling acceleration. Alas, the muscle is almost too much, as the rear tyres skip about a bit if you hammer the gas pedal in low gears.
The Infiniti’s 19-inch alloys look great, but they create a firm ride. That said, the model’s digital dynamic suspension takes the pain away when you hit large ruts. What’s more, the Q50’s chassis seems to like things fast – meaning everything hunkers down and feels planted and comfy at 70mph. And on twisty rural routes the Infiniti has little to no body roll, meaning some real fun can be had – as long as you don’t lose the back end!
The Infiniti Q50 3.0t is certainly a car to consider if German premium brands bore you. It has a strong engine, an adaptable chassis and tasty looks. Unfortunately, this Infiniti needs better interior kit to truly justify its £45,970 price-tag. The cheap-to-the-touch switchgear and arthritic infotainment system look awkward when compared with the flawless quality of Teutonic makes.
PROS ‘N’ CONS
Strong Engine √
Interior Kit X
FAST FACTS (Q50 3.0t Sport Tech)
Max speed: 155 mph
0-62 mph: 5.1 secs
Combined mpg: 31
Engine: 2,997 V6 Petrol Turbo
Max. power (PS): 405
CO2: 206 g/km