When you’ve imagined a small, Infiniti-badged premium hatchback, as you do nearly every night before taking a warm bath and having some furtive ‘me time,’ chances are you likely thought of it based on some Nissan platform. Well, you’re wrong. It’s here, and the Infiniti Q30 is a Benz.
Well, it’s not just a Mercedes-Benz. You may remember that Mercedes-Benz and Renault-Nissan have a technology partnership, and one of the most notable products to come from that partnership has been the Mercedes A-Class, which we’ve seen here as the CLA and GLA.
The new Q30 is based on this same platform, so you can sort of think of it as the four-door hatch version of the Mercedes-Benz CLA, which is hardly a bad thing. Hell, that alone makes it more interesting than almost any recent Infiniti I can think of.
The Q30 in the US will only come with a 2.0-liter, 208 HP/258 lb-ft engine, though the rest of the world can pick from a pair of 1.6L engines making 120 and 154 HP, and 1.5 and 2.2-liter Diesels. More exciting is that the Q30 will be available with a six-speed manual (seven speed DSG is optional).
So, looking at these pictures, we’ve got a brown, four-door almost-wagon (it’s still a hatch because it lacks a cargo-area window, and that’s one of my rules) with decent power (optionally Diesel) and a manual transmission. That’s pretty damn close to the autojournalist-ideal brown Diesel manual wagon right there.
Styling-wise, it looks like Infiniti has toned down their normally nightmare-inducing Predator’s mouth front grille treatment, and are going for a very curvy, draped fabric/biomorphic sort of style, with a lot of sinuous modeling on the side panels and very flowing lines.
The car has the Infiniti-signature heavily-kinked C-pillar, which actually doesn’t look so forced or out of place here.
There’s two versions planned, Premium and Sport, with Sport riding 15mm lower and a bit stiffer, but the same engine. Pricing has yet to be announced, but we’ll likely get that and more details when it’s presented at the Frankfurt Motor Show in the next few days.
It’s a small four-door hatch with a peppy engine and the option for a manual that shares a platform with a Benz. It’s the first Infiniti I’ve been remotely interested in since they stopped putting all those intricate little vines on their badge.
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