Infiniti QX50 Concept Preview
- Concept version of upcoming QX50 replacement
- Midsize, 5-passenger crossover SUV
- Interior uses premium materials with unusual patterns and color schemes
- Showcases Infiniti’s new VC-Turbo powertrain
- Next-generation driving assistance technologies
- New graphical user interface for infotainment system
Infiniti is moving its well-received QX Sport Inspiration Concept vehicle to the next stage of its journey to production, as seen by the Infiniti QX50 Concept that debuted at the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
Calling it a midsize crossover SUV, Infiniti plans this as a replacement for the existing QX50, slotting it neatly between the smaller QX30 and larger 7-passenger QX60.
Infiniti has named the QX50 Concept’s design language “Powerful Elegance.” In the company’s words, it is comprised of taut and muscular lines, flowing surfaces, elegance, artistry, and proportional clarity.
Taller and wider than the Infiniti QX Inspiration Sport concept vehicle, the QX50 Concept is equipped with a more vertical rear hatch to supply the added practicality expected of this type of vehicle. Additional highlights include a clamshell hood design, a double-arch grille, and a crescent-cut rear roof pillar.
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.
As far as interior design and décor are concerned, Infiniti says the interior “challenges conventional thinking…with elevated levels of modern craftsmanship.” The company describes the QX50 Concept’s cabin as driver-centric but passenger-minded, a progressive design reflecting organic forms, modern craftsmanship, and authentic materials in a carefully curated, artistic environment with a premium, handmade feel. The resulting attention to details and finishes, Infiniti says, produces a cabin with an appearance and ambience greater than the sum of its parts.
Designed to provide spacious seating for up to five people and a large cargo area, the Infiniti QX50 Concept is equipped with a trunk designed to easily hold a stroller. The driver and the passengers sit in distinctly different visual zones, and the QX50 Concept is dressed in dot-quilted leather upholstery, open pore wood trim, and a triple-tone brown, navy blue, and white color scheme.
Under the Hood:
Infiniti will install its new 2.0-liter VC-Turbo (variable compression turbocharged) 4-cylinder engine in the production version of the Infiniti QX50. Expected to deliver the power of a V6 engine combined with a 27-percent gain in fuel efficiency, initial projections peg the motor as good for 268 horsepower and 288 lb.-ft. of torque.
The QX50 Concept is equipped with an Intelligent all-wheel-drive system, biased to the front wheels.
According to Infiniti, the QX50 Concept points the way toward the future of Infiniti’s autonomous driving technologies. The company ensures, however, that drivers retain “ultimate control” over the vehicle while “delegating elements of driving to the car.”
Why is that? Because like seemingly every other car company on the planet, Infiniti is focused on “driver engagement.”
Delegated tasks might include navigating heavy traffic situations, tracking positions of surrounding vehicles, and identifying potential hazards. Infiniti also appears to be readying Car-to-X technology for future autonomous driving applications.
Infiniti says the QX50 Concept is equipped with a new Graphic User Interface that employs a wider dashboard touchscreen display for navigation, infotainment, and other vehicle technologies.