Infiniti is inching closer to a production version of the next-generation QX50, the existing version of which has soldiered on with reasonably minor changes since 2008 when it was introduced as the EX35. At the 2017 Detroit auto show in January, Infiniti’s QX50 concept will preview what the new mid-size crossover will appear like and what it may be capable of. It will not be our first sneak peek at the new QX50, either—Nissan’s luxury brand showed a comparable concept at the Paris auto show in September, following the QX Sport Inspiration’s initial unveiling in Beijing earlier this year.
Besides highlighting Infiniti’s Effective Elegance design and style language, which includes a cabin-forward silhouette, the notion also previews the brand’s newest autonomous-driving technologies. Unlike self-driving tech touted by some automakers as possibly rendering a steering wheel and pedals obsolete, Infiniti says its new autonomous tech will ensure drivers remain in handle of the autos, as component of what the brand named a concentrate on driver engagement. We’ve heard this ahead of, of course, and it translates to a sort of semi-autonomous capability wherein mundane driving tasks—stop-and-go targeted traffic, highway slogs, and the like—might be handled by the personal computer.
Infiniti is playing coy about the next QX50’s mechanicals, but in an announcement, the organization hinted that the new SUV could be a future property for the nearly production-ready variable-compression-ratio 4-cylinder (VC-T) that made its debut earlier in 2016. Adding to the intrigue, that turbocharged two.-liter engine will be displayed alongside the QX50 in Detroit. We consider the new engine’s estimated 268 horsepower makes it a probably downsized replacement for the current QX50’s 325-hp 3.7-liter V-six. Infiniti claims the turbo four could provide up to “a 27 % improvement in fuel efficiency over V-six gasoline engines of similar energy output.”