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The successor to the G37, the Q50 was completely redesigned for the 2014 model year. Now, just two years later, it gets a new engine lineup, a revised version of its "steer-by-wire" Direct Adaptive Steering system, and an available adjustable suspension.
In terms of overall dimensions, the Q50 is actually a half-size larger than rivals like the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and a half-size down from cars like the BMW 5-Series and Jaguar XF.
The sensuality of the Q70 is translated to and amped up on the Q50, especially at the intersection of exaggerated curves and surfaces behind its rear doors. The boomerang brackets at the grille resemble those on the Lexus IS, but their hourglass shape is more cohesive with the rest of the silhouette. The double-arch grille and all-LED lighting details offer a combination of aggressive and smooth styling. The coefficient of drag is down to a low 0.26—about as slippery through the air as a Nissan GT-R.
The big news for 2016 is a new engine lineup. It includes a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 that makes 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque and a pair of twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6s. The V-6s are the first two engines in the new VR family that replaces the aging, but still competitive, VQ 3.7-liter naturally aspirated V-6. In base form, the new engine produces 300 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. In the Red Sport 400, it churns out 400 hp at 6,400 rpm and 350 lb-ft of torque all the way from 1,600 to 5,200 rpm.
The Q50's 2016 update doesn't include any changes to the interior. That's OK because the Q50 is on par with its German rivals for comfort and isolation. Engine noise is well-muted, almost too much so for a sport sedan. The quality of the interior materials is also worthy of its luxurious competitors.
The Infiniti InTouch infotainment system is the most controversial aspect of the interior. It consists of a lower 7.0-inch touchscreen and an upper 8.0-inch one. The upper screen can be controlled via a slightly different version of Infiniti’s rotary/button controller. Infiniti has made many of the controls in the Q50 redundant; though some convenience features, like the heated steering wheel, require going into a proper screen. Oddly, destinations are chosen on the lower screen, but they display on the upper one.
In effect, InTouch has dual monitors, which is an interesting choice that, in theory, could either reduce complexity or increase it. We've found it to be somewhat distracting at first, until you figure out where to expect the control or screen you're looking for to appear, and the menu structure can also take some getting used to as well. Despite its popularity on this system and Cadillac's CUE, force feedback also doesn't provide much information outside the fact that you've touched something, but not what it was.
*This vehicle is Certified Pre-Owned and is eligible for our third party warranty program.