2020 infiniti qx50 street and of
Altair Club Cars 2020 Infiniti QX50 Street and Off-Road Review (vs. Lexus NX)

2020 Infiniti QX50 Street and Off-Road Review (vs. Lexus NX)

The Infiniti QX50 features a new variable-compression turbo engine and the latest in advanced safety tech. Is it good enough to take on the best-selling Lexus NX300? We have a full review of the 2020 Infiniti QX50 Sensory AWD (carried over to 2021 unchanged), plus on-road and off-road driving impressions, 0-60 and more. Also, what’s the the burned-out box truck?

Infiniti’s qx50 brings a new variable compression engine to the party is that enough to compete against the lexus nx we have a full review including an off-road test right now on driving sports tv this is the 2020 infiniti qx50 it’s a small crossover that most directly competes with the best-selling lexus nx in fact in terms of size price and features it’s almost

A dead ringer for the lexus but in terms of styling there are two very different schools of thought here the qx50 infiniti provided for testing is the upper end sensory all-wheel drive trim this includes 20-inch wheels bose audio leather a heads up display and surround view camera system prices you see it here 54 800 us dollars including destination under the

Hood is the party piece of this crossover a variable compression four-cylinder turbo 2-liter engine this uses a special harmonic drive reduction gear to adjust the piston placements in real time this changes compression from 14 to 1 for efficiency all the way to 8 to 1 which in conjunction with the turbo provides more power up to 268 horsepower and 280 pound-feet

Of torque which is impressive for a 2-liter engine the lexus and x300 all-wheel drive also comes with a 2-liter it’s turbocharged with a fixed compression rate of 10 to 1 producing 235 horses 33 fewer than the infinity but and this is where infiniti’s engine tech comes into play both the nx and qx score an identical epa rating of 22 miles to the gallon in the

City and 28 on the highway our qx50 has a continuously variable transmission and the optional intelligent all-wheel drive system in the back the qx50 has a power liftgate that reveals up to 31.1 cubic feet of cargo capacity with the second row up the nx only has 17. fold the seats down and the infinity still has more cargo space than the nx with 65.1 cubic

Feet of total capacity that’s roughly 10 more cubics compared to the lexus under the floor the qx50 is a hidden cubby it’s rolling on run flat tires so no need for a spare the second row has some nice options for passengers including a privacy screen fold down armrest with cup holders plus dc and usb power options sadly there are no seat warmers back here but

The headroom and leg room is good up front infiniti has adopted a simpler design language than the lexus you get a panorama sunroof at this trim level and nice use of metals and leather throughout the seats are comfortable with 10-way power adjustments including heating and ventilation starting it up brings three screens to life one located in the central drive

Cluster this is used for basic vehicle data as well as the status of infiniti’s advanced safety features to configure the safety options go to the lower touch screen collision management blind spot warning plus surround view cameras with rear cross traffic and rear auto braking are all included at this trim level rear auto braking test did it steering mounted

Controls give you quick access to menus on the main screen you can alternatively use the dial controller to navigate the options touch is faster though let’s do a search this brings up a keyboard on the bottom screen while we see the results in the top screen it’s a functional but unimpressive system plug in a mobile device for android auto or apple carplay

Support this integration runs on the top screen keeping the bottom one available for other functions use the steering mounted voice control button to launch siri navigate to victor’s coffee getting directions to victor’s coffee special drive programs include sport standard eco and a personal option even though this is a cvt infiniti also included paddle shifters

So you can row your own through simulated gears now let’s see how this all-wheel drive system performs on a basic slip test from a full throttle launch the rear wheels only engage wholeheartedly after a complete rotation sport mode yields an identical result now let’s compare that against the lexus nx 300 normal drive mode traction on you can see much more front

Wheel spin from the nx and both need a full rotation for that rear to engage i would say that the nx is faster off the line here but both have similar all-wheel drive results in this test now let’s head to the mountains to see how well this infinity drives both on normal roads and the trails of the cascade mountains okay let’s feel how this engine responds this

Very special variable compression engine feels on a freeway on-ramp some power okay forget the fact that it feels really surgy like it’s it’s like this in power it also sounds awful what was that ugh infiniti is heavily promoting uh their semi-autonomous systems in these vehicles because they’ll do predictive braking they’ll even do adaptive cruise control with

Corner detection and of course lane detection with centering let’s go ahead and try that one i’m going to go ahead and hit the little car with a blue disc here it shows me that my forward my lane and my blind spot identifications are all active i just felt the lane there as i went into it it went kind of put the brakes on vibrated the wheel now i’m going to go

Ahead and engage cruise control my steering wheel has turned green in the display there and i am now following the vehicle behind me at a predetermined pace and i’m going to go ahead and let it steer itself now we have a slight corner coming up what does it do it does a pretty good job of tracking into the corner staying centered and maintaining distance to

The vehicle in front of us and now it’s telling me to put my hands back on the wheel so the system overall works pretty good historically however i have had some issues with this system this is of course infiniti is nissan’s premium brand and i have a lot more miles in standard nissans and i know that they have the same system and in that system it has a tendency

To really not like rain any rain and it usually shuts down some other systems like the one in the mercedes the volvo the subaru those can deal with really harsh conditions the nissan though it works good actually great even it does require clear conditions to do so but i think that’s actually kind of okay because you really should be the one driving not letting

The car drive for you this really should just be something for those longer trips when everything is clear and you just want a little extra assistance right right infinity and by nature of their ownership nissan is really married to the cvt and and unfortunately it’s one of my least favorite cvts because it uses bands and that creates a real kind of elastic feel

In the power so as i go into the corner and i lay on the throttle i mean there’s power there no doubt about it this engine can produce but the way it puts the power down is really uneven you have like these surges of power as you go through the power band making for a fairly awkward driving experience now the biggest selling point on this vehicle is of course

The variable compression turbo the funny thing is that it doesn’t get fantastic mileage i mean you’re looking at 28 miles to the gallon on the freeway and 22 around town that’s not something to write home about and then the performance yeah it’s good i mean 280 is a lot of horsepower out of a four-cylinder engine but other car makers do that with a standard turbo

And it’s fine this one yeah i wouldn’t buy this car just for that there are of course several drive modes uh you have a little d mode button down here and you can switch between eco which retards the throttle standard which is your everyday and what it defaults when you start the car up and sport and sport all it really does is tighten up the throttle tighten up

The steering and that’s about it this doesn’t have uh dynamic suspension so you’re not looking at you know increasing cornering performance it just kind of gives you a more brisk overall driving experience so honestly yeah whenever i drive this car i just don’t even do anything with it because standard is fine it doesn’t make a dramatic enough of a difference

To really monkey with i think it’s one of those things that’s there just so it’s there okay we got our timer up let’s go ahead and try a zero to sixty for the zero to sixty test let’s go ahead and drop it into sport just to give it the benefit of the doubt here come to a complete stop it’s a little moist out but the roads are still fairly dry and nothing we can

Really do here three two one go little surge there and forty fifty and sixty six point seven eight seconds with a two point seven on the zero to 30 break you know that’s pretty good performance actually for a vehicle of this size um especially because this really isn’t it’s not a special vehicle you know it’s not a it’s not like an amg equivalent or anything

Like that it is just a mainstream luxury crossover that has a fair amount of punch and for this i think that result is quite good the interior here i think is actually quite nice they have a lot of soft touch leather the steering wheel the dash center console here there’s no piano blacks in any of the touch points which is how it should be they have lots of

Like natural metal look you know overall this is really a nice place to hang out i have no complaints about this interior the seats are comfortable i got lots of adjustments yeah they’re heated and ventilated so you know for a luxury car in this class i think that they’ve done just a really good job with this interior and anybody who bought this vehicle would

Be totally great with this i also get this huge panorama sunroof which is kind of nice tipping its hat to performance this does come with paddle shifters let’s go ahead and make sure it’s in sport and we’ll see how these do it’s kind of a lazy rear rear because of course it’s just a continuously variable transmission and it’s emulating gears and it’s i mean it’s

Fairly quick to shift but ah you don’t get that yeah it’s just not a very pleasurable experience i mean it’s fairly quick but it kind of rolls into each gear as you do it you don’t get that you know satisfying chunk it’s just it’s lacking like this vehicle nails everything on paper but just the driving experience i like the sound of the engine the sound of that

Transmission the feel of the cvt just all these little things just kind of don’t impress but let’s see how it does with its all-wheel drive system when it’s put to a challenging condition uh by to do that we’re gonna head into the forest this being an upper end trim it doesn’t have the standard 19-inch wheels instead they’ve been upgraded to 20-inch units oh i’m

In manual shift mode and that engine just does not sound good so i have to be really careful of potholes here where a few videos ago i came out here in a land rover defender and i could just plow through here because it did not care this one yeah it’s it’s we got a kind of tippy toe here although the suspension does an actually reasonable job of soaking up the

Rough stuff actually that’s kind of impressive so the all-wheel drive system on this vehicle will push up to 50 percent of available torque to the back wheels that means that it is of course a responsive system it is not always putting power back there but depending on how you drive it does that really matter let’s let’s try throttling into this corner and see

How it responds okay it really complained a lot the traction control was like you are not doing this it doesn’t really feel like it’s pushing a lot of power back there very quickly as i’m rotating it’s steel i can still feel that understeer as i’m going into the corner it doesn’t kind of have it just doesn’t feel like much of a performer today we are going to

Do the rock climb test with the qx50 however it’s going to be a little bit different because today is going to be apparently the urban warfare edition of the course yeah i have no idea what this is doing here it wasn’t here last time so of course 20-inch wheels are not ideal for this kind of a situation but the fact is some people will take this up onto forest

Roads but definitely people will take this up skiing and this will simulate what it’s like to completely lose grip on one or more tires which is a very realistic kind of situation so let’s go ahead and give it a try now there’s no real settings here that we need to worry about i’m just going to keep it in standard mode and i’m just basically going to drive up

It i have traction control on if we run into problems i might turn that off to see if that improves the situation but otherwise here we go so this infinity uses a mid mounted clutch to transfer power to the back it’ll do up to 50 of available torque um and it does it on a responsive basis it basically detects when it needs to have some power back there and

It’ll shift the power back there and it does it fairly quickly now this is the first this is actually the biggest test for this vehicle because i’m going to remove traction from this wheel in that wheel and we’ll see how it does okay should be set up no power i’m just going to leave the throttle in and we’ll see if it can use that individual wheel breaking to

Shift power around and get us through this there we go not very dramatic did eventually get it done let’s see if we can go around it this is a different line than i’ve done in the past hopefully we can do this without you know what i want to use the cameras oh cameras came on automatically that’s handy dude that is crazy okay and around we go have i mentioned

That this has 8.6 inches of ground clearance that’s actually really good for the class i think that’s second only to the subaru crosstrek probably and of course the crosstrek is not a luxury car okay we got one more thing to test on the uphill portion let’s see how this does in the deeper divot up here going to take most of the traction off this front passenger

Side wheel get that rear wheel spinning pretty easy okay well the the vehicle actually did just fine in spite of a burned-out hulk of a van in the middle of the course we got through it super easy okay now let’s see does this have a hill descent control system no it does not so we’re just going to have to use our brakes and go back down we’ve got to be really

Careful of that overhang in the front and i don’t want to scratch the wheels there we go okay so can it do it yes is this the ideal vehicle for this kind of driving no if you are however looking for a compact luxury crossover that has a really nice interior has decent driving characteristics the qx 50 isn’t bad however the competition in this space is fierce

And i think honestly you might do better with other vehicles for driving sports tv i’m ryan douthit thanks for watching be sure to subscribe like give a comment what do you think this van was doing up here what’s what’s the story best story wins a driving sports tv hat how about that post a comment below and we’ll see you again next week both the 2020 infiniti

Qx50 and the lexus nx are very good at what they were designed for to provide a comfortable and feature-rich driving experience for upper middle class buyers in this way they both succeed however i’m not really a fan of either the lexus or the infiniti though slightly smaller and less powerful the mercedes gla we tested recently offers far better tech and more

Off-road capability at a similar price in terms of reliability yeah the lexus is probably the one you’re most likely to still see on the road 10 years from now for driving sports tv i’m ryan douthit thanks for watching we’ll see you again right here next week you

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2020 Infiniti QX50 Street and Off-Road Review (vs. Lexus NX) By Driving Sports TV

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