RAC Cars News


Infiniti has great hopes for the Q50

By raccars Published

Infiniti's rival to the BMW 3 Series, the Infiniti, is due to hit UK roads in September and the company rather ambitiously claims it expects the car to double its overall 2012 sales figures over the next year.

Infiniti sold 500 cars in total in the UK in 2012 and has planned for 500 Q50 sales by March 2014, the end of the financial year. It believes the Q50 is its breakthrough car, that will give it visibility in the UK with an engine tailored to European driving tastes and a high performance, low emissions petrol hybrid powertrain. The company is hoping the Q50 will be a credible alternative for motorists looking to move away from the big three German brands.

The Infiniti Q50 opens with a 2.2 litre diesel model for £27,950, with a sub-nine second 0-62mph time and a 143mph top speed. CO2 emissions dip just below the 115g/km mark and fuel economy is impressive at 64mpg. Moving on from the entry level model, there is a 3.5 litre Direct Response Hybrid with 364bhp, with prices starting at £40,000. With 155g/km in CO2 emissions, the electric motor and innovative dual clutch help to deliver a 0-62mph speed of 5.3 seconds, a drivetrain set up that Infiniti believes will lead the way in future performance.

Driving dynamics are aided by a range of up to the minute technological advances, including fast response Direct Adaptive Steering, with F1 champion, Sebastian Vettel, drafted in as Infiniti's Director of Performance, to optimise handling. Rear and intelligent all wheel drive set ups are available.

Standard features include Infiniti's InTouch dual touchscreen infotainment interface, start/stop ignition technology, drive mode selection, rear view camera, dual zone climate control, Active Noise Control, Scratch Shield paintwork, 17 inch alloys and Bluetooth connectivity.

Despite its desire to increase volume, the brand intends to continue its reputation for low profile luxury and bespoke service, which it believes set it apart from its German rivals. While BMW, Audi and Mercedes are in its sights, Infiniti claims to be targeting a younger and more intrepid buyer. After the Q50, it will be gunning for the BMW 1 Series market segment, to build upon the momentum it believes the Q50 can achieve.

Along with higher sales volumes, Infiniti is working on developing and expanding its dealer network. It currently runs eight sites and has targeted others, to help it expand its reach along with its reputation.

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