Remember Infiniti – the company that created the legendary G35 compact sports sedan and the FX that arguably started it all for go-fast crossovers? The last decade has not been kind to the Japanese luxury automaker and the brand saw a steep decline as they let their existing models linger past their best before date. Not willing to become obsolete, Infiniti is revamping their model lineup, and this week we have borrowed what we expect to be their volume seller – the 2022 Infiniti QX60 Sensory AWD.
Infiniti has done away with the curvy styling on the outgoing QX60, in favour of a model that looks more chiseled and modern. The QX60 follows the their latest design language set out by the QX50 and QX55 crossovers and is quite a sleek looking vehicle to our eyes. The slim LED headlamps and sculpted body lines mask its size very well and the clean rear end design is a huge improvement over the last generation. The only questionable design element is chrome accents on the rear bumper where one would normally see exhaust outlets, which garnered some confused looks throughout the week.
Carrying over from last year’s model is Infiniti’s tried and true 3.5-litre V6 engine producing the same 295 horsepower and 270 lb-ft. of torque. It is enough power to move the QX60 along, but those looking for a sporty experience are recommended to shop elsewhere. The most remarkable powertrain improvement lies in the new nine-speed automatic transmission in place of the dreadful CVT. Good riddance; the CVT served a purpose but really had no place in a luxury vehicle. The QX60 Sensory comes standard with a Tow Package that increases max towing capacity to 6,000 pounds instead of the standard 3,500.
While the new automatic unit is not particularly responsive, it is noticeably more refined and is a much more suitable pairing with the creamy smooth V6 engine. We treaded through some rough winter weather with the QX60 and encountered zero issues thanks to its Intelligent All-Wheel Drive system directing power where traction is most needed. The QX60 also handles nimbler than it looks with composed body control and light but accurate steering. There are five different drive modes (Personal/Sport/Auto/Eco/Snow) but we found minimal difference between them for our regular commute.
The QX60 is rated at 11.9L/100km in the city and 9.5L/100km on the highway, with a combined average rating of 10.8L/100km. Unfortunately, no matter how hard we tried, we could not replicate the figure and our test average came to 13.5L/100km. The extreme cold shares a lot of the blame here, but naturally aspirated V6s have never been known for being efficient either. The trade off for linear power delivery could be worth it for some. Premium grade gasoline is required for the 2022 Infiniti QX60.
Being a luxury three-rower, the QX60 offers great space for the first two rows. The standard climate-controlled and massaging front seats in the QX60 are incredibly comfortable, and families who want maximum comfort and do not need the seventh seat can opt for the top-of-line Autograph AWD for captain chairs in the second row. Third row occupants will find difficulty getting in and out from the standard middle-row bench, and the space is on par with most three row SUVs in its class – meaning they should only be for small children and short trips only. Cargo space is rated at 411 litres behind the third row and opens up to 1,178 litres when the back row is folded.
Infotainment is delivered using the new Infiniti InTouch system through the 12.3-inch touchscreen display atop the centre console. The system layout is intuitive to use with acceptable image quality and supports wireless Apple CarPlay and USB-based Android Auto connectivity. Our tester is equipped with the optional 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and the 10.8-inch head-up display that helped to keep us stay informed with minimal distractions. Also standard on the QX60 Sensory is the Bose Performance series 17-speaker sound system and the wireless phone charger to keep those playlists going.
All QX60 models come standard with Blind Spot, Lane Departure and Predictive Forward Collision warning systems, as well as Forward Emergency Braking with pedestrian detection, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. Sensory trims receive Front Pre-Crash Seatbelts, Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection, Blind Spot Intervention, Land Departure Prevention, ProPILOT Assist for semi-autonomous driving, front parking sensor, and Intelligent Cruise Control. These systems go a long way in helping us feel more confident and we hope to see them make their way across the model lineup in the near future.
With a starting MSRP of $54,995 for the base Pure AWD trim, the Infiniti QX60 offers value against its chief rivals – the Lexus RX 350 and the Acura MDX. Step up to the Sensory trim and the sticker price goes up to $64,995, with our as-tested total being $65,745 when the $750 Grand Blue paint job is factored in. The 2022 Infiniti QX60 Sensory AWD hits the sweet spot with its long equipment list and well sorted overall package, and we hope it can signal the Japanese luxury automaker’s return to prominence.