In 1988, Nissan released the third-generation Maxima with a bold tagline — “Four-Door Sports Car.” A year later, American TV viewers were introduced to Nissan’s Infiniti brand with commercials that showed a pond.
You win some, you lose some.
That Maxima was indeed a brilliant car. And Nissan finally decided that showing luxury cars was a good way to sell luxury cars. That said, part of me wishes the Infiniti brand had failed, as the Q50 might now be a Maxima. Certainly, I don’t wish anyone at Infiniti to lose their jobs, but I have a love for the Maxima that is unfulfilled by the current model. I never expected to find my ideal sports sedan wearing an Infiniti badge.
Just weeks after Cadillac launched the ATS-L with their unfortunately composed tagline “Coming With Length“, Infiniti has launched their own rival, the Q50L.
Just as the B&B suspected, the Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge is indeed powered by a twin-turbo V6, and it comes from the Nissan GT-R. With all-wheel drive and a 7-speed gearbox (of an unspecified nature), the Eau Rouge should blast to 60 mph in under 4 seconds. Can’t outshine its big brother, can it?
The Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge was one of the more underwhelming concepts at NAIAS. Apparently we’ll find out what’s under the hood at the Geneva Auto Show. The video above shows off the concept’s engine sounds, and it has a distinct exhaust note that certainly doesn’t sound like a V8 engine. What’s most striking are the very audible wastegate sounds, confirming that it is a turbocharged engine. In the Baby Boomer era, the V8 rumble was the audible manifestation of speed and horsepower. For the new generation, it’s the wooosh and psshhhtt of turbochargers and blow-off valves.
Though Nissan has been selling cars with the Infiniti brand in North America for over two decades, you haven’t been able to buy an Infiniti in Japan. That’a about to change as Nissan will start selling the Infiniti brand at Nissan dealerships in their home market, according to a Nikkei report.
Consumers will still be able to order the Infiniti G37 until the end of 2013, despite the looming introduction of the all-new Q50. According to Automotive News, the Nissan owned brand is doing this so as not to create a disruption – the G37 sedan is Infiniti’s best selling model. In 2012, G sedans made up about 40% of the brand’s total sales in the U.S., with 45,828 being sold. The Q50 went on sale across the U.S. this week. Both it and the G37 are assembled in Japan. The decision to keep the G37 in production and on sale, at least temporarily, was made after consulting with its 200 dealers in the U.S. on the launch of the Q50. (Read More…)
In the nascent contest between the Lexus IS and Infiniti Q50, the Infiniti appears to be in the lead. Full details here, thanks to our guest editor Mark Stevenson
Blame Canada! Infiniti Canada’s website blew the cover of the Infiniti Q50 before the big reveal at Detroit. Since I’ll probably be stuffing my face with free bacon when the press conference is happening, here’s a photo gallery to make up for the lack of instantaneous coverage.