If you believed the 2011 Etherea concept unveiled at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show was just a design exercise, you are about to be proven wrong. It looks like the concept was just a preview for a new crossover set to be launched in the next two years.
Talking about the future model, Infiniti boss Andy Palmer said it will be placed between "the Audi A3 and Audi Q3" and that this will be made possible by a new three-way adjustable ride height system.
The new crossover will follow Infiniti’s new naming strategy and it is believed to be called Q30. The model will follow in the footsteps of the Qashqai and Juke crossovers in terms of entering into established segments with new models. Palmer made it quite clear that despite the similarities, the Q30 won’t be "a copy of the Nissan Qashqai, but a car that can span established brackets within the market."
The model will differentiate itself with a unique styling and, of course, a more luxurious styling.
Updated 05/16/2013: Today we have created a rendering for the upcoming Infinti Q30. Click past the jump to see how it differs from the Etherea concept.
Click past the jump to read more about the Infiniti Etherea concept.
Until now, Infiniti has unveiled two hybrid sports cars, but unfortunately both of them were just concepts. The first concept was the Essence, which was unveiled at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show. The second one - the EMERG-E - was shown at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show.
Now, the company plans to unveil a halo sports car in the next three years, using hybrid technology explored by the two concepts. According to Infiniti brand boss Andy Palmer, the new sports car will be specially designed for young families with that want to be environmentally friendly and still have some fun.
When talking about the future model, Palmer described it "like the Tesla sports car option, but with more flexibility in terms of range." This leaves both the possibilities opened, including a 1.2-liter gasoline engine combined with two electric motors or a 3.7-liter V-6 mated to an electric motor.
Either way, Infiniti needs this new halo car if it wants to increase sales from the current 200,000 units a year up to 500,000 by 2020.
Click past the jump to read more about the two Infiniti concept cars.
Infiniti’s strong sales performance in recent years has given the automaker reason to look forward to bigger things. And apparently, those bigger things equate to a pair of new vehicles added to its lineup.
Talking to Car and Driver, Infiniti’s new president Johan de Nysschen is looking at the possibility of strengthening its lineup with the addition of a new flagship sedan that de Nysschen describes as an "upscale, very emotional, high-performance luxury sedan." Basically, he’s looking at the possibility of developing a flagship sedan that will follow a different formula and not march to the beat of the industry.
So what does that mean, exactly? That’s the question on everyone’s mind, and understandably so because not a lot of people seem to have a clear grasp on what Infiniti is planning to do. The most ideal comparison as far as a unique flagship sedan that didn’t follow a certain design script is the Porsche Panamera. A fastback model has been thrown around, according to Car and Driver, which seems to lend to the suggestion that if and when Infiniti decides to introduce a new flagship sedan to the world, it’s going to take a different approach on its design.
Equally compelling news is consideration being put on also building a high-performance coupe based on the platform of the aforementioned flagship sedan. That’s a pretty exciting development, considering Infiniti is lacking that kind of poster-worthy sports car that other automakers have.
If there’s a chance to introduce a pair of new and exciting models that will take the Japanese automaker to another level, Infiniti should jump at the chance of building on its sales momentum.
Click past the jump to see a couple of Infiniti concepts that have been introduced in recent years
The 2013 Infinity FX37 has something of an identity problem. The FX35 was renamed to the FX37 and in 2014 it will be called the QX70. The reason for the 37’s name change is the engine displacement increased from 3.5-liters to 3.7-liters.
To make the identity issue worse the FX37’s big brother, the FX50, will also become part of the QX70 lineup. The FX50 is currently, powered by a V-8 engine, but this is likely to change next year in favor of a turbocharged V-6.
With the 37’s larger engine option the Japanese automaker is attempting to further increase the performance appeal of the luxury vehicle. This results in a focused vehicle that handles well when driven quickly.
The luxury crossover had a facelift that debuted in the 2012 model, so for 2013 the styling remains the same.
It also provides a luxury interior with plenty of leather touches. Interior parts are of high quality materials as one would expect in a luxury vehicle.
Hit the jump to read more information about the 2013 Infinity FX37.
In 2009, Infiniti replaced the G35 with the more powerful G37 Now another switch is set to take place in 2014. This time around, however, the model is not changing just the engine, but it will adopt a new nomenclature and design too.
The new Q50 has received a smooth yet dynamic design language, with LED-infused headlights, a "double arch" grille and a crescent-shaped C-pillar. For the interior, Infiniti has placed higher-quality materials and user-focused advanced technology.
In the U.S. market, the Q50 will be offered with a standard 3.7-liter V-6 engine, but customers interested in environment can opt for a new-to-the-model hybrid version that will combine a 3.5-liter V-6 engine and an electric motor.
The new Infiniti Q50 made its world debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show and will be put on sale in the summer 2013 in both standard and hybrid versions.
UPDATE 03/21/13: A leaked document guide for the new Infiniti Q50 reveals further details on the new sports sedan. The document reveals that the gasoline-powered Q50 will be offered in three trim levels: base, premium and sport, while the hybrid version will only come in premium and sport versions. Both models will be offered in AWD and RWD versions. Customers will have to choose between eight exterior colors and three interior colors combined with aluminum and wood insertions. There will also be lots of packages that will offer the clients the possibility to further customized their models: Technology Package, Deluxe Technology Package, Moonroof Package, Deluxe Touring Package and Navigation Package. Click here to see the guide.
UPDATE 04/02/13: Infiniti USA has launched an official configurator for the new Q50 sedan. Thanks to the new site, you will be able to configure each version of the new Q50, selecting trims, colors and packages.
Infiniti is going to add a new hybrid version to the QX60 premium crossover lineup. This model will make its world debut at the 2013 New York Auto Show. The new QX60 Hybrid will be priced $3,000 above the non-hybrid models, meaning the price will start at about $63,000.
The QX60 Hybrid will combine a 2.5-liter supercharged engine with a 15 kW (20 horsepower) electric motor connected to an advanced CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) and it will produce an estimated 250 horsepower. The electric motor will take its energy from a compact Lithium-ion battery, but the model will also feature an Intelligent Regenerative Braking system that partially recharges the battery during braking.
The model will be offered with advanced technologies like Backup Collision Intervention (BCI) and Around View Monitor to help keep you safe.
Full details on the 2014 Infiniti QX60 Hybrid will be unveiled during the car’s debut at the 2013 New York Auto Show.
Infiniti Performance Line (also known as IPL) was a line specially developed to offer customers higher performance version of the standard Infiniti models. Still, with 348 horsepower under the hood you can not really say we are talking about a high-performance model.
However, according to recent reports, things are about to change as the next IPL models, starting with the Q50 IPL will be developed in cooperation with Red Bull Racing team. Official from both Infiniti and Red Bull companies have confirmed that this means "genuine engineering collaboration" and not just some simple logo stickers.
We are not very sure if this means the next Q50 IPL will be indeed a serious competitor for models like BMW M3, but still it will be an extremely capable sports sedan.
In order to make an idea on how the next IPL models developed in cooperation with Red Bull team you should take a look at the FX Sebastian Vettel SUV.
Anytime you win the last three Driver’s and Constructor’s Championships in Formula One, there’s always that level of pressure (in this case, through the roof) to be better than ever before.
That pressure lies on the shoulders of Red Bull Racing, which is looking to win its fourth double championship in as many years. With three-time champ Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber at the helm, you can expect these guys to remain in the thick of the championship race and they’ve got the RB9 to help them make it four-in-a-row.
At a special gala event held at the team’s headquarters in Milton Keynes, England, the RB9 officially made its highly anticipated debut. Parts of the overall design of the RB9 were taken from its predecessor, the RB8, including that stepped-nose design that ruffled a whole lot of feathers on the grid last year.
Since regulations for this season are pretty much similar, there weren’t a whole lot of radical modifications to the RB9. In addition to the similar body, the same Renault-sourced naturally-aspirated 2.4-liter V-8 engine complete with a Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) is still in there too.
If there was any change to the new Formula One car, it’s the livery that now prominently features Infiniti on the side of the racecar instead of the usual Red Bull logo. Now that the former has become the title partner of the team - they’re officially known as Infiniti Red Bull Racing - then it only seems appropriate to have the automaker’s logo displayed where the cameras usually focus.
Other than that, the biggest focus for the team lies in continuing development of their Energy Recovery Systems.
It goes without saying that Infiniti isn’t exactly what you’d call a mainstream brand. It’s lost in the shadows of parent automaker, Nissan, and hasn’t really established the kind of independent presence that Nissan had hoped.
So, it was pretty telling when Nissan Executive Vice President, Andy Palmer, told Wards Auto that Carlos Ghosn – CEO of Nissan – gave him the green light to cancel the brand altogether. However, instead of sending Infiniti to pasture, Palmer decided to not only keep the brand but also champion for more autonomy from Nissan.
Palmer cited the kind of relationship Audi has with its parent company, Volkswagen. Despite being owned by a largely mainstream, middle-market automaker, Audi has crafted its own premium identity that’s separate from the VW brand. This independence has allowed Audi to "create a series of professionals that understand the premium market in a very premium way.”
Nissan eventually hired former Audi USA chief, Johan de Nysschen, as Infiniti president and lead the efforts in bringing some structure to the luxury brand. Since assuming the position, de Nysschen has made it clear that one of his first edicts as president is to become a brand that’s "less about volume and more about becoming a ’proper’ luxury brand.”
Does Infiniti have to do the same thing Lexus did with Toyota to create autonomy from Nissan? Not necessarily, but in order for them to achieve that objective, they need to build their models separate from Nissan’s influence.
They’ll still share some platforms and underpinnings, like the Toyota/Lexus and VW/Audi teams, but if you’re a customer you need Infiniti to offer features — styling or mechanical — that separates itself from its parent company. Without those changes, they’ll always be treated as retouched Nissans with a different badge.
Keeping a close eye on BMW’s strategies and launches, Infiniti is pretty adamant in competing with the Bavarian Giant. So, we were simply waiting for Infiniti to launch a model to compete with the upcoming 4-series.
Call it coincidence if you like but, apparently, Infiniti is working on a new coupe to rival the upcoming two-door coupe from Bimmer, according to Infiniti’s boss Johan de Nysschen. Softly confirmed to be called the Q60, the coupe will be designed along the lines of the recently announced Q50 sedan. The relationship between the Q50 and Q60 can be easily compared to the one between the 3-series and the 4-series.
“I think the coupe is an important part of the platform,” de Nysschen said. “Most certainly we are working right now on a coupe derivative of the car Q50" said de Nysschen.
Given the fact that the coupe will be a derivative of the Q50, expect the standard 3.7-liter V-6 engine to power this two-door beauty. Or if you are into going “Green,” you can opt for a hybrid powertrain that will combine a 3.5-liter V-6 engine and an electric motor.
de Nysschen hasn’t divulged any info on the prices, so we can only speculate the price to carry a premium over the Q50 sedan. de Nysschen did confirm that Infiniti expects to launch the Q60 as a 2015 or 2016 model year.
Already we can sense the tension between the Germans and the Japanese — at least in the automotive realm. So expect the rivalry between the two to be a fierce one.
Stay tuned, as we will update this review as more info becomes available.
UPDATE 1/25/2013: We have just release the first TopSpeed rendering of the 2013 Q60, which you can see above. This is our interpretation of the upcoming model and in no way an official image.