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2021 Infiniti Q50 Review

The 2021 Infiniti Q50 is a comfortable sedan with ample horsepower. However, the Q50 places low in our luxury small car rankings because it’s not as upscale as most of its rivals, it has an unimpressive infotainment system, and it rates subpar for predicted reliability.

Pros & Cons

  • Powerful pair of engine choices
  • Spacious and comfortable seating
  • Overly complicated infotainment system
  • Below-average predicted reliability rating
  • Poor fuel economy

New for 2021

  • Wi-Fi hot spot now standard
  • More newly standard driver assistance features in Luxe trim
  • New Sensory trim replaces Sport trim

Rankings & Research

The 2021 Infiniti Q50's #11 ranking is based on its score within the Luxury Small Cars category. Currently the Infiniti Q50 has a score of 7.4 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 49 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 7.5
Performance: 7.5
Interior: 6.6
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 9.7 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

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Is the Infiniti Q50 a Good Car?

Despite its ranking, the Infiniti Q50 is a fine car. Its positive attributes include two great twin-turbocharged engine choices and roomy, comfortable seating. However, it lags behind most other luxury small cars in cabin quality, user-friendly technology, agility, and fuel economy.

Why You Can Trust Us: 49 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 49 Infiniti Q50 reviews – along with reliability ratings, fuel economy estimates, and more – to help you decide if the 2021 Q50 is the right new car for you.

This 2021 Q50 review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2014.

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our staff has more than 75 years of combined experience in the auto industry. To ensure our objectivity, we never accept expensive gifts from carmakers, and an outside firm manages the ads on our site.

Should I Buy the Infiniti Q50?

Though the Q50 is priced competitively for the class, you're better off going with any number of rivals. The BMW 3 Series and Genesis G70 offer more thrilling performance than the Q50, while the Mercedes-Benz C-Class has an opulent interior and an extensive features list.

Compare the Q50, G70, and C-Class »

2020 vs. 2021 Infiniti Q50: What’s the Difference?

Changes to the Infiniti Q50 for the 2021 model year focus on feature additions and a new trim level. A Wi-Fi hot spot is now standard in all models, and the Luxe trim gains driver assistance features such as blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, and a surround-view parking camera system. Lastly, the Sensory trim replaces the 2020 Infiniti Q50 Sport trim.

Compare the 2020 and 2021 Q50 »

Here are the key changes for the Infiniti Q50 over the last few years:

  • 2017: Sport trim introduced
  • 2018: refreshed interior and exterior design; trim levels renamed
  • 2019: gained standard forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking; Q50 Hybrid model discontinued
  • 2020: turbocharged four-cylinder engine discontinued; Android Auto and Apple CarPlay introduced and added to standard features list
  • 2021: Wi-Fi hot spot now standard; Luxe trim gains several features; Sensory trim debuts; Sport trim discontinued

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2018 Q50, 2019 Q50, and 2020 Q50 reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Best New Car Deals and Best New Car Lease Deals pages to learn about savings and discounts you can find on new vehicles.

How Much Does the Infiniti Q50 Cost?

The 2021 Infiniti Q50 has a starting MSRP of $36,600. There are two other trims that feature the standard 300-horsepower engine, and they retail for $41,700 and $47,600. The car's lineup culminates with the 400-horsepower Q50 Red Sport, which starts at $55,750. All models come standard with rear-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive a $2,000 option.

Overall, the Q50's price range is in line with many other cars in the class.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Infiniti dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Infiniti deals page.

Infiniti Q50 Versus the Competition

Infiniti Q50 vs. BMW 3 Series

The BMW 3 Series is one of the sportiest and most fun-to-drive luxury small cars. It features razor-sharp handling and two potent engine choices, along with great fuel economy from its standard powertrain. There's also a plug-in-hybrid variant for the eco-conscious. The 3 Series offers more high-tech options, a larger trunk, and slightly better interior quality than the Q50. The BMW is the better car overall, and though it's several thousand dollars more expensive, it’s the smarter choice.

Compare the Q50 and 3 Series »

Infiniti Q50 vs. Mercedes-Benz C-Class

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class is the benchmark for luxury in this class. Its elegant cabin is reminiscent of pricier Benz vehicles and helps justify the C-Class' above-average MSRP. While not particularly athletic, this Mercedes pampers you with a plush ride and serene interior. It's also one of the class leaders in technology, with a solid list of standard and available infotainment and driver assistance options. Mercedes offers the C-Class in coupe, sedan, and convertible versions, in addition to high-performance AMG models.

Compare the Q50 and C-Class »

Compare the Q50, 3 Series, and C-Class »

Q50 Interior: Spacious but Not Stunning

Q50 Cargo Space

The Infiniti Q50's trunk measures 13.5 cubic feet, which is about average volume for the class. All models above the base trim feature a 60/40-split-folding rear seat that allows you to carry long, skinny items. However, this pass-through area is small. Additionally, the trunk is shaped oddly because of the pronounced humps for the rear wheels.

How Many People Does the Q50 Seat?

The Q50 sedan seats five people. Passenger comfort is arguably the best aspect of the interior, as front occupants enjoy supple seats and an enjoyable, multi-adjustable position.

The second row offers a decent amount of legroom for the class, as well as sufficient headroom for taller people. It's also easy to get into or out of both rows.

Q50 and Child Car Seats

There are two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats and a tether anchor for the rear middle seat. It's easy to find the lower anchors, and most types of child car seats can be installed in the second row with little effort.

Q50 Interior Quality

Infiniti fills the Q50's cabin with the requisite soft-touch surfaces and quality materials you expect in a luxury car, but the total package is merely adequate. Other segment rivals have a more upscale and modern cabin. You'll also notice some road and wind noise permeate the interior of the Q50.

Q50 Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The Q50's center stack is dominated by a dual-screen infotainment setup that’s more impressive visually than it is useful. The system isn’t very intuitive and can be distracting to use. About its only positive is that it has dedicated displays that can run separate functions at the same time.

The upper display measures 8 inches and is the hub for navigation and Android Auto or CarPlay smartphone integration. However, the navigation graphics are outdated, and response times are laggy.

The lower 7-inch touch screen controls most other media as well as climate settings. There are redundant physical buttons flanking the display for better ease of access.

  • Standard infotainment features: 7- and 8-inch touch screens, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, HD Radio, satellite radio, a Wi-Fi hot spot, voice recognition, Bluetooth, and two USB ports
  • Available infotainment features: navigation, a 16-speaker Bose premium stereo, and two rear USB ports
  • Additional standard features: dual-zone automatic climate control and proximity keyless entry
  • Other available features: remote start, a moonroof, a universal garage door opener, and ambient interior lighting

Read more about interior »

Q50 Performance: A Beast Off the Line

Q50 Engine

The Infiniti Q50 comes standard with a 300-horsepower twin-turbocharged V6 engine. That's the most powerful base engine in the class, and it helps this car accelerate swiftly. The engine is mated with a seven-speed automatic transmission that clicks off precise shifts that ensure you’re in the correct gear. If you feel the need for more speed, turn your eyes to the Q50 Red Sport 400. This model features a retuned version of the base engine that produces 400 horsepower.

Q50 Gas Mileage

The downside to the Q50's awesome engine is subpar fuel economy. The rear-wheel-drive base model gets an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway, while the rear-wheel drive Infiniti Q50 Red Sport gets 20 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. All-wheel drive Q50 models return 19 mpg city and 27 mpg on the highway, and Red Sport AWD models get 19/26 mpg city/highway.

Most other luxury small cars come standard with a smaller turbocharged four-cylinder engine and are more fuel-efficient than the Q50.

Q50 Ride and Handling

This Infiniti has good road grip and a poised demeanor that inspires confidence around turns. However, it has unresponsive and light steering. The Red Sport’s optional drive-by-wire adaptive steering system also disappoints. Some critics note that it can feel too numb for a sports sedan.

Ride quality is on the stiffer side, and you'll likely feel bumps and shocks from rough pavement transmitted into the cabin.

Read more about performance »

Q50 Reliability

Is the Infiniti Q50 Reliable?

The 2021 Infiniti Q50 has a below-average predicted reliability rating of 2.5 out of five.

Infiniti Q50 Warranty

Infiniti covers the Q50 with a four-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Read more about reliability »

Q50 Safety

Q50 Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2021 Infiniti Q50 five out of five stars in the rollover test. The NHTSA also conducts frontal and side crash tests, along with issuing an overall safety rating, but the Q50 has only undergone the rollover test for the past several years.

At the time of writing, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has not crash tested the 2021 Q50, but the similar 2020 Q50 received a Good rating in the four crash tests conducted.

Q50 Safety Features

Standard advanced safety features:

  • Forward collision warning
  • Forward automatic emergency braking
  • Rearview camera

Available advanced safety features:

  • Blind spot monitoring
  • Rear cross traffic alert
  • Reverse automatic emergency braking
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Lane departure warning
  • Lane keep assist
  • Surround-view parking camera system
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Front pre-crash seat belts

Read more about safety »

Q50 Dimensions and Weight

The Q50 is 15.8 feet long, and its curb weight ranges from 3,685 to 3,998 pounds.

Where Is the 2021 Infiniti Q50 Built?

Infiniti builds the 2021 Q50 in Japan.

Which Infiniti Q50 Model Is Right for Me?

The 2021 Infiniti Q50 comes in four trims: Pure, Luxe, Sensory, and Red Sport 400. All models feature a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine; in the first three trims it produces 300 horsepower, while the Red Sport 400 makes 400 horsepower. A seven-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive are standard, and all-wheel drive (AWD) is a $2,000 option in any trim.

There's a big jump in price for the Luxe trim compared to the entry-level model, but it's worth it to get additional features such as heated front seats, blind spot monitoring, and adaptive cruise control. The standard Q50 is fairly light on amenities for a luxury small car.

Infiniti Q50 Pure

The 2021 Infiniti Q50 Pure starts at $36,600 and comes with synthetic leather upholstery, eight-way power-adjustable front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, proximity keyless entry, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, alloy wheels, forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking, and a rearview camera.

The standard dual-screen infotainment system includes Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, HD Radio, satellite radio, a Wi-Fi hot spot, voice recognition, Bluetooth, and two USB ports.

Two rear USB ports and remote start are optional.

Infiniti Q50 Luxe

The Infiniti Q50 Luxe retails for $41,700. Additional standard features include a moonroof, a split-folding rear seat, a heated steering wheel, heated front seats, and a universal garage door opener. Driver assistance features in the Q50 Luxe include blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, rear cross traffic alert, reverse automatic emergency braking, a surround-view parking camera system, and rear parking sensors.

The optional Seat and Sound package costs $2,500 and includes genuine leather upholstery, a 16-speaker Bose premium stereo, driver's seat power lumbar adjustments, and ambient interior lighting.

Infiniti Q50 Sensory

With a base price of $47,600, the Q50 Sensory features sporty exterior styling, sport leather upholstery, front sport seats, open-pore wood interior trim, a 16-speaker Bose premium stereo, navigation, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, and memory settings for the driver's seat, steering wheel, and outside mirrors.

Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400

The range-topping Q50 Red Sport starts at $55,750 and comes standard with semi-aniline leather upholstery, aluminum pedals, paddle shifters, upgraded brakes, and an electronic dynamic suspension.

The $1,950 Proactive package adds an electronic steer-by-wire system, lane keep assist, adaptive headlights, front pre-crash seat belts, and an illuminated front grille emblem.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Infiniti dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Infiniti deals page.

See 2021 Infiniti Q50 specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2021 Infiniti Q50’s sharp styling, thrilling acceleration, and ample seating space help make it a compelling luxury small car. However, a mixed interior quality, cumbersome infotainment layout, and less-than-satisfying handling hurt its appeal in a competitive class.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "The Infiniti Q50 has a curious and often confusing mix of design. On the performance side, the engine is powerful, but the lifeless steering and middling tires quash any sporting intentions. Inside, you'll find comfortable seats, but the clumsy and cluttered two-screen infotainment system will exasperate even the most tech-savvy users. Other sedans are simply more cohesive and refined for similar money." -- Edmunds
  • "If you're looking for a blend of comfort and performance, the Q50 3.0t Luxe or Sport with all the optional packages delivers just about everything you'll need." -- Autotrader (2020)
  • "The Q50’s greatest attribute is its performance-per-dollar ratio. With a standard 300-horsepower twin-turbocharged V6 under the hood, the Q50 out-muscles most of its entry-level rivals, and does so at a price costing thousands less." -- Kelley Blue Book (2020)
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2021 Infiniti Q50

MSRP: $36,600 - $57,750

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