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FEATURES | 8 out of 10
Our takeaway from the JX is that its powertrain and handling might leave something to be desired, but its convenience features won't.
...this is a case of large wheels (20-inchers in this case) adding a bit of a ruckus to an otherwise quiet ride. We’d be quite happy with the 18s, thank you very much.
Kids in the back can stay thoroughly entertained on long road trips with dual 7-inch DVD screens built into the front-seat head restraints so as not to obstruct the driver's rear view.
The 2013 Infiniti JX is priced in a band from $40,000 to more than $50,00, with a base price for the simplest front-wheel drive version of $40,450 plus a mandatory TK destination charge. The all-wheel drive model adds $1,100 to that starting price.
That gets you not only the seven-passenger utility with leather seating, but pushbutton ignition, a standard six-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system that plays MP3 files and comes with three free months of Sirius XM satellite radio, a USB port, and speed-sensitive volume adjustment. The standard center display uses a 7-inch color screen, and drivers can control the infotainment and other aspects of the JX using the controller below the screen.
A glass moonroof with an electrically powered sunshade is standard on every model, as is a rear-view monitor for reversing.
Beyond the base version, there are five trim level options. The Premium level (adding $4,950) is expected to be the big seller, with and without the Theater option that adds two monitors for second-row video viewing, located in the backs of the front-seat headrests for an additional $1,700.
The Driver Assistance Package, at $2,200, adds Rear Collision Intervention and TK, along with a smart Eco Pedal that resists hard acceleration under certain driving circumstances. Infiniti has made this a standalone option that can be ordered without other packages, reasoning that it will appeal to all families, wherever they fall in the model range.
The Deluxe Touring Package (for $2,550) adds 20-inch alloy wheels, a Bose WaveGuide audio system with a specially designed amplifier to occupy minimal room under the load deck to maximize underfloor storage space, a fixed-glass roof above the third row, cooled front seats, heated second-row seats, and rain-sensing wipers.
Finally, the Technology Package ($3,100) includes everything in the Driver Assistance Package plus Lane Departure Warning and Correction, Blind-Spot Warning and Intervention, and seat belts that automatically pre-tension in anticipation of an accident. It requires that the Deluxe Touring Package be specified as well.
The telematics package includes one year's free service for destination assistance, in-vehicle access to Google Calendar, and alerts if the car exceeds a pre-set speed or travels outside specific geographic boundaries. With the JX, Infiniti is also offering a service known as Infiniti Personal Assistance. For an additional fee, it offers instant connection to a live human concierge, who will do his or her best to answer any query the driver may have.
While the infotainment and telematics system had a nice crisp display in the center of the dash, we found the menus convoluted compared to the best of the breed. The combination of touchscreen commands, buttons around the perimeter, and dials and knobs was particularly unintuitive. We didn't have time to do a thorough analysis of all functions, but we recommend that buyers spend some time working through the commands they would use most often to ensure they're comfortable with the interface.
Kludgy infotainment system aside, the Infiniti JX offers a free Personal Assistant and good-quality, high-end audio.