2017 Infiniti QX30 Preview
- New subcompact crossover SUV
- Based on the Infiniti Q30
- Standard turbocharged engine and all-wheel drive (AWD)
- Designed in Japan, engineered in Europe
- Built in Sunderland, England
- On sale mid-2016
The new Infiniti QX30 subcompact luxury crossover SUV is an Infiniti Q30 equipped with AWD, added ground clearance, taller ride height, and some SUV-ish styling details. Infiniti refers to it as a premium active crossover. It is the result of a joint development partnership between Infiniti and Mercedes-Benz, a partnership in which Infiniti did the design work and Mercedes did the engineering work. In other words, the QX30 is, at its core, a Mercedes-Benz GLA250 equipped with genuinely appealing style.
Infiniti says “dramatic curves and turbulent, sculpted character lines” summarize the QX30’s styling. That’s a fair statement. You’re not going to mistake the QX30 for anything but an Infiniti, thanks to its double-arch grille, double-wave hood, and “dynamic crescent” C-pillar design.
To ensure that the QX30 isn’t confused with the Q30, Infiniti gives the QX30 a noticeably higher ride height with a rumored 7.6 in. of ground clearance, a band of rugged-looking gray cladding around the lower perimeter of the vehicle, and front and rear simulated skid plates.
Inside, Infiniti says the new QX30 adopts an asymmetric design theme with shapes and lines that twist apart as they flow away from the driver. The automaker believes that dissymmetry creates a more pleasing environment.
According to Infiniti, the QX30 will provide one of the quietest interiors in the subcompact luxury crossover segment. Furthermore, comfort was a priority, with Infiniti designing seats that incorporate the company’s spinal support research in order to reduce driver fatigue.
Infiniti says that black cloth seating will be standard in the QX30, and while that’s cool, it is likely that the version sold in America will come with leatherette or a basic grade of genuine leather. Premium Nappa leather in black or beige is an option.
By the way, if you’re seeking evidence to substantiate the Mercedes-Benz connection, check out an image of the QX30’s interior. Look at the switchgear on the driver’s door panel. Take a look at the climate control system. Gaze upon the steering wheel. Check out the key fob. They’re all straight out of the Mercedes parts bin.
Under the Hood
Infiniti confirms that the QX30 will be offered with a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT) and an AWD system that can send half of the engine’s power to the rear wheels to improve traction. The automaker also says that the QX30 has a slightly firmer suspension than the Q30 upon which it is based.
But what’s under this Infiniti’s hood?
If the “2.0t” badges seen in the photography represent a clue (and they do), then I’d say it’s a turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine. You know what else has a turbocharged 2.0-liter and a 7-speed DCT? A Mercedes-Benz GLA250, which generates 208 horsepower and scoots to 60 mph in 7.1 seconds.
According to Infiniti, the new QX30 will have a forward-collision warning system, blind-spot warning system, AroundView 360-degree monitoring system with moving-object detection capability, and an intelligent cruise control system.
In addition to an undefined Intelligent Parking Assist system, the new QX30 will contain Infiniti’s InTouch infotainment technology complete with a 7-in. display and a voice-recognition system. However, upon closer inspection, it appears that this is actually a reworked version of the Mercedes-Benz COMAND system rather than Infiniti’s InTouch system.