The big new 2017 Infiniti Q60 has been given a world premiere at this week’s Detroit auto show, revealed as just the latest in a run of promising new models for the Japanese luxury marque.
The Q60 stands above all other Infiniti models on the totem pole, however, destined as it is to become the brand’s most important mark of progress.
Power in Infiniti’s new lifestyle cruiser will be provided by a choice of three petrol engines: a turbo four, a naturally-aspirated six and a flagship twin-turbo six.
Opening the range is a 155kW/350Nm 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, followed in the middle of the range by the 223kW/400Nm twin-turbo VR30 V6.
At the top of the range is the more powerful version of the VR30, delivering 298kW and 475Nm of torque. The turbo-six model also boasts a staggered tyre arrangement and active grille shutters for reduced aero drag when cooling isn’t a priority.
All three are equipped with a revised seven-speed auto, which, depending on the variant and market, sends power either to the rear wheels or to a rear-biased all-wheel drive system.
Infiniti says the AWD system is designed to distribute torque equally between the front and rear wheels in its standard setting, with power able to be sent entirely to the rear if desired.
Two suspension systems will also be offered, with the optional Dynamic Digital Suspension package offering multiple settings for the adaptive dampers.
Performance figures for the Q60 are still to be released.
The Q60 will be offered with 19-inch wheels as standard, with 20s available as an option.
The cabin presents a familiar Infiniti environment, with a bisected dash design and lashings of aluminium and black wood. Higher-spec models get silver glass fibre accents, matched to the additional option of white or red leather.
Advanced sound insulation and noise cancellation is also promised - although engine noise will still have access to the cabin - and there’s also a new 13-speaker Bose audio system for those less interested in the engine’s song.
Speaking with CarAdvice in Detroit, Carlos Ghosn, chief of Renault Nissan - the parent company of Infiniti - said that the Q60 will play a key role in building the brand's presence.
"With all the technology we’re putting in, with the design that is going to attract even more customers to Infiniti, it will enlarge our market share," Ghosn said.
Infiniti is really unique as a brand and we want to continue to be a brand for some people that is unique.
As for a direct rival to the BMW M4, beyond the current 298kW flagship model, don't expect that to appear right away - if at all.
"No I think it's already very sporty," Ghosn said. "Obviously it’s going to have a life on its own, but that’s what we’re going to be launching."
Watch for more on the Q60 - particularly acceleration data and weight figures - to come in the weeks ahead.
The new Q60 will make its Australian debut in the fourth quarter of 2016. The twin-turbo six is confirmed for Australia, but plans for the four-cylinder variant are still to be confirmed.
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