Infiniti has unveiled the future at this week’s Beijing Auto Show, and it’s almost all curves and tech.
A true world effort – This vehicle was designed in Japan, China, England and the United States – there’s no mistaking the QX Sport Inspiration concept for anything but an Infiniti. While it takes some steps in a different direction than previous Infiniti concepts have, at the same time it looks much like every other Infiniti. There’s something to be said for brand continuity, and the QX Sport has it.
In keeping with the latest trend toward the crossover coupe look, the QX Sport Inspiration has a forward-leaning rear hatch while still keeping the oddly-shaped but well known “crescent cut” C-pillar that finds its way onto virtually every contemporary Infiniti. The same corporate grill found on current Infiniti models is extended visually over the front fenders and “human eye” headlights, giving a wider look to the front end. Honestly, it’s a nice, aggressive touch that sets it apart from a lot of the current herd.
Those same fenders, when viewed in profile, terminate on the trailing edge with a diagonal line that leads down to the lower sill and that, in itself, looks too abrupt and sharp to my eye for the overall “melted bar of soap” look so many Infinitis have had over the years. It’s really my only dislike on the outside of the car.
Walking around to the back, the hatch area looks like a sportier version of a Jeep Grand Cherokee or BMW X5 to me. I’m not saying it looks bad. It just looks derivative, but there’s not much you can do stylistically with the back end of a sport ute, honestly.
The interior is where the tech comes into play. The driver is ensconced in what amounts to their own pod, which, to these eyes, is a bit off-putting because of the way it separates the driver from their passengers. The tech is fantastic though, with LCD screens, fed by two cameras, on the A-pillars instead of external side view mirrors. Switchable driving modes and a touch screen between the front seats for the rear passengers’ climate control also up the luxury ante.
White and black saddle leather is draped over much of the interior, giving a richness of feel and look required of a luxury crossover vehicle, while “floating” seats make it obvious this is a concept car.
Overall, this is a nice concept with the right mix of aggression and luxury to appeal to a broad market. It’s still enough of an Infiniti to keep the old guard happy while providing enough new visual interest to bring in new customers to the brand.