Production-ready Infiniti QX50 SUV unveiled

Jan 12, 2017, 00:14
Production-ready Infiniti QX50 SUV unveiled

Care has been paid to the QX50 Concept's interior, with soft-touch plastics, high-gloss woods and "fine attention to detail" being the order of the day.

The cabin has a handmade feel and is the result of two Japanese approaches to craftsmanship: "mitate" - the practice of curating and bringing together the best materials - and "shitate", the desire to tailor the combination of materials, bringing out the best.

Although this final, less radical image of the QX50 show vehicle is rather less dramatic than the teaser sketches, numerous same design features are apparent, including the aggressive intakes either side of the front grille and the strong line that runs from the front headlamp to the rear side doors.

Infiniti has fitted the concept with three different leathers - genuine, semi-aniline and synthetic nubuck - including quilted leather for the door trims. Inspired by classic buttoned leather sofas, dot quilting is sewn into place at individual points. The dashboard is finished in open-pore ash wood.

Because Infiniti plans to use a relatively compact drivetrain in the next-generation QX50, the QX50 Concept boasts a cabin-forward design that maximizes interior space.

The seats feature an ergonomic hexagon motif, while promising maximum back and shoulder support for occupants.

The engineering inside the QX50 Concept is even more intriguing than its design.

Biggest headline of the new Infiniti QX50 is likely to be its engine - the brand is targeting a launch for its VC-Turbo 2.0-litre petrol engine with the auto.

Several of these features are now offered in production models, but the QX50 Concept bundles them together in what Infiniti describes as "the first production-ready incarnation of a technology package that will be developed further in future production models".

Central to the strategy for the development of all future "co-pilot" systems is that they should ensure the driver retains ultimate control over their vehicle - in keeping with Infiniti's focus on driver engagement, said a statement from the company.

"It's a very popular part of Australia's new-car market and we'd certainly love to have a competitor for Infiniti in that sector", he said.

Outside of appearances, the QX50 Concept's mechanical and technological features are more significant. The brand expects the 2.0-liter engine to provide the performance of a six-cylinder engine with the torque and efficiency of a diesel engine.

The HMI displays the engine's current status as it intelligently chooses appropriate levels of performance and high efficiency. With the VC-Turbo engine in the QX50 Concept, Infiniti is targeting power output of 268 horsepower, with fuel economy that is 27 percent better than V6 engines in that power range.

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