Infiniti QX55: The QX50’s much awaited Coupé sibling
Infiniti revealed their latest model, the QX55, in Yokohama and expectations are high for Infiniti’s first SUV Coupé.
With everything in 2020 being closed, cancelled or locked down, there isn’t much choice on what to do after a long day spent “working from home.” Smart move from Infiniti to reveal their latest QX55 around an evening of soul music and conversation over some wine with Infiniti Chairman Peyman Kargar, Senior Vice President of Global Design Alfonso Albaisa and General Manager of Product Strategy Eric Rigaux. Aloe Blacc’s smooth singing accompanied by dynamic clips of the QX55 was a nice way to end the day - or to start your day depending on your time zone; a reveal so enjoyable that it was almost too short.
Back at the Nissan Global Headquarters about a month after the launch of their QX60 Monograph, the stage was now transformed into a festive studio with digital red velvet curtains and spotlights surrounding the star of the show, the QX55.
So what about it?
This new addition to the Infiniti family finds its inspiration in the Infiniti FX, released in the early 2000s. Infiniti’s key word here being “provocative,” this new QX55 attempts to capture a younger audience through a more daring design. The crescent line on the C-pillar that is found on the QX50 is no more. This smoothened window frame not only reinforces the design connection to the FX, it also allows it to adopt a sleeker coupe style. As for some good news, this Dynamic Sunstone Red paint will be available as a standard colour.
Walking into the steps of the QX60 Monograph,
the QX55 shows off its signature double-arch grille with a new origami-inspired pattern. At the back, we recognize the digital piano key pattern of the QX60 Monograph, which on this model is much more pronounced. The taillights are stretched into the quarter panels and though absolutely unrelated, this design does resemble the wings seen on representations of Egyptian Gods. The QX55 offers a striking view at the back all thanks to this bold, creative styling which pleasantly balances out the familiar face at the front.
All of this is emphasized by the strong, defined lines on the sides of the car which start from the headlights and keep on going across the door handles all the way to the taillights. Finally, the roof-mounted spoiler gives an extra sportiness feeling to the whole package. Simply said, you can think of the QX55 as a more stylish, subtle and coupe like version of the QX50.
Inside, no drastic changes from the QX50
but we find a few novelties such as the infotainment system now equipped with wireless Apple CarPlay. The dual touchscreen also hosts an interface for Android Auto, though not wireless. The interior is spacious and the backseats slide to allow for more legroom or more boot space depending on your needs. All three trim levels, Luxe, Essential and Sensory come with a small sunroof, allowing more light into the interior. As for the Sensory grade up on the Nissan Gallery stage, the red and graphite two-tone interior also displayed a mix of material with a contrast between leather and open-pore wooden trims on the dash and doors. As the most luxurious trim available for the QX55, the Sensory trim also comes with a 16-speaker Bose sound system.
The QX55 offers AWD as standard
and comes with a variable-compression 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, producing 268 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque. The FX’s V6 and V8 engines are now gone, leaving the front stage for something more fitting to the current engine trends: smaller and fuel efficient. It won’t be breaking any grounds in terms of performance but it does carry on the FX’s midsize SUV legacy through its design. Staying faithful to Infiniti design codes while introducing some new ones, the QX55 will mark Infiniti’s first take on Coupe SUVs and it is also worth noting that it will be Infiniti’s first production model to come out under the Nissan NEXT transformation plan.
The QX55, which will be available in North American showrooms early next year, will be competing against Mercedes’ GLC Coupe and BMW’s X4, both respectively starting their prices at $51,650 (£39,070) and $51,600 (£39,030). The Infiniti model will have the upperhand when it comes down to pricing as the Luxe trim should be starting its prices somewhere around the $40,000 (£30,500) mark.
Without deploying any all-electric strategies, the QX55 will become an essential element in the Infiniti lineup. New Coupe lines accompanied by new design elements will not leave people unimpressed.