This SUV has the most strikingly beautiful interior cabin I have ever seen. I’m also afraid to get in it. I’m a spiller. The unique and gorgeous ultra suede material on the console, armrest and pillars is exactly where I like to dump my Tim Hortons with their crappy lids. The interior in the Infiniti Autograph feels like a rolling resort lounge and is actually based on one! The designers based it on a beach resort with off white representing sand, the brown for trees and the blue ultra suede for the ocean. The look I think would be universally appealing but if anyone in the back seat doesn’t like the combo you can point your nose to the mirror and tell them the colours come directly from the 2018 Pantone Color Institute’s Fashion Color Trend Report! So zip it!
While the QX50 Autograph is absolutely stunning inside its not bad looking outside either. I love SUV’s and Crossovers as do many people but find their popularity has lead to some commonality in design. Infiniti designers have done their best to create some bold and distinctive lines in the grille and side profile
Under the Hood
With all the technologies available today from electric, hybrid to fuel cell, seeing a variable compression four cylinder turbo gas engine on the spec sheet barely gets noticed – just a common four cylinder 2.0 litre turbo. Nope. Under the hood of this QX50 is the world’s first production engine that can change compression and valve timing on the go! When you need power it can switch the piston travel down to an 8:1 compression ratio and up to a 14:1 ratio to max out fuel economy. I was surprised to be using less than 10 litres/100 km combined as advertised.
On the Road again
On the highway the QX50 is super smooth and quiet. The electric Directive Adaptive Steering performs very well for comfortable handling. The seating and passenger experience feels as luxurious as it looks and the cargo space is ample. In fact it’s best in class. There are four different driving modes – Standard, Eco, Personal, where you can tailor shifting and steering responses and Sport for a faster throttle. I found myself staying in Sport mode because the acceleration response was not great in any of the other modes. Part of that comes with slower shifting sometimes found with continuously variable transmissions including this one. This is compensated somewhat by the variable compression turbo.
That little blue button
Found on the steering wheel – It’s for Infiniti’s Pro Pilot Assist feature. It provides both lane assist warnings to keep you in the lines and Intelligent Cruise Control which handles both throttle and brakes. There‘s lots of on board safety tech including predictive forward and back up collision warnings. The QX50 Autograph also has a heads up display providing basic info in the windshield while you keep your eyes on the road.
The infotainment system is ok but not great as seen in many lower priced Korean offerings. Infiniti uses dual screens with the upper screen dedicated to the Nav system while the lower touch screen controls climate and entertainment functions. It’s not really up to speed as far as connectivity as it doesn’t support Apple CarPlay or AndroidAuto. This is a shortcoming that Infiniti is addressing next year with a revamp of this system but that doesn’t help you with this model.
Where to look?
This is one of the most crowded segments in the industry so there is lots of places to look from BMW (X3), Cadillac (XTS) and the very popular newcomer from Alpha Romeo (Stelvio). If cargo space is your deciding factor the Infiniti will win. If interior looks is another factor then the QX50 Autograph wins again.
2019 Infiniti QX50 Autograph
Power train: 2.0 L VC Turbo 4 cyl. CVT All Wheel Drive
Mileage: 9.0 L/100 km combined
MSRP as tested. $60,035.00