Many buyers want the benefits of an SUV without the added bulk. The Infiniti QX55 is one of a handful of compact luxury SUVs created to meet these calls. Its sloping roofline is reminiscent of a sleek and sporty coupe. Yet, it offers a large interior for the family and standard all-wheel drive. The QX55 bests the competition in cargo capacity. Infiniti includes a generous set of driver safety aids for extra peace of mind.
Pros: Eye-catching exterior; Smooth and quiet ride; Standard driver safety aids; Excellent cargo capacity
Cons: Not as fun to drive as rivals; Cabin styling lacks panache; Pricey Sensory trim
Powering the QX55 in all its forms is a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine. It produces 268 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque, providing the Infiniti with comfortable acceleration and control in varying weather and driving situations. It mates to a continuously variable transmission and all-wheel drive for a blend of fuel efficiency and performance. However, it isn’t as fast or fun to drive as European competitors.
Infiniti offers customers three trims to choose from when configuring their SUV: Luxe, Essential, and Sensory. Pricing starts at around $46,500 for the Luxe — low-priced for the compact luxury segment. Standard driver safety features help keep the QX55 on the road and out of harm’s way, with automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, and parking sensors. The sleek body comes equipped with automatic headlights, fog lamps, a sunroof, and a power liftgate. The cabin greets passengers with leatherette upholstery, heated front seats, remote engine start, keyless entry, and dual-zone climate control. Active Noise Cancellation helps keep outside sounds from permeating the relaxing ride. Wireless Apple CarPlay comes included, as does a WiFi hotspot for connecting up to seven devices.
The midrange Essential ($52,000) builds on the Luxe with a navigation system, leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, a surround-view camera, a heated steering wheel, and a Bose premium audio system. It also gets impressive driver-assistance technology like adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, and ProPilot Assist. This semi-autonomous system allows the QX55 to do most of the driving on the highway. At the top of the lineup is the Sensory, which retails for roughly $57,500. It features all of the features mentioned and semi-aniline leather upholstery, open-pore wood trim, tri-zone climate control, customizable ambient lighting, and a motion-activated liftgate.