The crosscoupe onslaught continues with Infiniti’s introduction of the QX55. Essentially an offshoot of the QX50, it’ll go up against models like the Audi Q5 Sportback and BMW X4, competing against sloped-roof models in a segment popularized by the Germans and most notable for taking a good deal of utility away from utility vehicles.
As with most of these vehicles, practicality is sacrificed for style. The QX55 loses five cubic feet of cargo volume compared with the QX50 with the seats up and a whopping 11 cubic feet compared with the QX50 with the seats folded. Headroom suffers as well, thanks to the sloping roofline. A QX55 has 36.9 inches of rear headroom, down nearly three inches from the QX50.
But if you’re interested in the QX55 for its style rather than its substance, it’ll cost you. The QX55 has an MSRP that starts $9,950 higher than the QX50.
It’ll start at $46,500 for the base Luxe trim (the QX50 starts at $36,550). Each trim level does come decently equipped, though. The base car comes standard with things like wireless Apple CarPlay, a Wi-Fi hotspot, heated seats and a sunroof.
Above the Luxe are two more QX55 trim levels: the midlevel Essential trim that starts at $51,600 and the top-of-the-line $57,050 Sensory trim. All three trims get standard AWD, and all are powered by the same turbocharged 268-horsepower version of Nissan’s variable compression engine. The QX55 should be at dealers by spring.
If you’re interested in the QX55 you can reserve one on its special site, but the site is reflective of Infiniti’s struggles over the last few years in trying to be taken seriously as a luxury brand. Things like calling people that reserve the QX55 “Tastemakers” and providing those makers of taste a choice of gifts for reserving: a transparent speaker, a five-piece luggage set or a polished copper Tom Dixon coffee brewing set.
Vehicle reservations have been a thing the last few years, with automakers bragging about how many reservations they have. However, it remains to be seen how many of these reservations will actually turn into sales.
In a play for engagement with customers, the QX55 site offers some metrics of mysterious usefulness. One shows a comparison of how long the average person sits in a car compared with how long you’ve been on the site checking out the car.
I don’t know what a customer is supposed to do with this information. Be impressed?
There’s a pie chart that shows you how many vehicles have been allocated for the first year compared with how many people have expressed interest. I assume these are reservations. The last shows the country and what major metropolitan areas the QX55 is trending in.
It all seems pretty cringeworthy, but I’ve never been accused of being a tastemaker. If you are one, I guess you should head on over and reserve your QX55.