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2017 Infiniti QX50 Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2017 Infiniti QX50 was new.


Performance: 8.9

The 2017 Infiniti QX50 is one of the best performing cars in the class, according to professional test drivers. It has a powerful engine with an equally impressive smooth-shifting transmission, as well as athletic handling and a comfortable ride quality.

  • "Its rear-wheel-drive platform, taut suspension and powerful engine make this SUV behave more like a sports sedan." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Among crossovers, only the Porsche Macan is perhaps sportier." -- Car and Driver (2016)
  • "The QX50 is the clear driver's car among its peers." -- Autoblog (2016)

Acceleration and Power

The 2017 QX50 comes with a 325-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 engine joined to a seven-speed automatic transmission. The standard rear-wheel drive can be upgraded to all-wheel drive. According to the EPA, the QX50 gets 17 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway, which is among the lowest estimates in the class.

The QX50 has strong power and lively acceleration. The automatic transmission shifts seamlessly and quietly, and engaging the optional Sport driving mode results in even greater performance.

  • "Just one engine is offered in the 2017 Infiniti QX50, and it's a strong one: the tried-and-true 3.7-liter V6. It's good for 325 horsepower and is connected to a smooth, 7-speed automatic transmission with regular and Sport settings for livelier throttle response (there's also a Snow mode to help deal with such conditions)." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • “The engine is one of the most powerful you'll find in the segment, shy of something like the far pricier Porsche Macan. Power comes on quickly from the V6, and the seven-speed automatic upshifts in a smooth, linear fashion while getting up to highway speeds.”-- Autoblog (2016)
  • "When I floor it, during a special Infiniti press preview event, the QX50 hustles forward, maybe lacking neck-snapping acceleration but reasonable for passing maneuvers. The seven-speed automatic shifts quietly, meting out the power so as to avoid any big torque lurches but letting the engine wind up to 7,000 rpm. The engine note isn't the most pleasant, just a ragged growl more symptomatic than designed." -- CNET (2016)

Handling and Braking

The QX50 has excellent handling and is sportier than most of its rivals. It steers sharply and still feels composed despite experiencing slight body roll through turns. The QX50 rides smoothly over rough pavement, and the cabin stays quiet from outside noise.

  • "Where most of its rivals use front-wheel-drive platforms, the QX50 is rear-drive (RWD), which grants it the feel of a performance car. Even all-wheel-drive (AWD) models are rear-biased. Rounding out the QX50's sporty feel is firm steering -- one of the dwindling few that remains hydraulically assisted vs. the more efficiency-minded electric power-assist types. It adds up to a sporty SUV that is nimble in corners but compliant enough for everyday commutes." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Despite its sporty performance, refinement levels are high. The independent front, and multi-link rear suspension are tuned for comfort, with none of the rough asphalt we experienced on one stretch translating through to the cabin, even on our model's upgraded 19-inch, five-spoke wheels." -- Autoblog (2016)
  • "The steering is very direct and precise but it's also rather heavy at lower speeds. The increased ride height means the suspension will roll slightly when you're driving aggressively, yet the QX always feels composed and nimble. It's a quiet place to spend time, too, especially when driven through rough urban terrain." -- Edmunds (2016)

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