2017 INFINITI Q60 Review

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The Car Connection
2019
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

Aaron Cole Aaron Cole Managing Editor
June 15, 2017

The 2017 Infiniti Q60 is all about the looks—and they're worth every penny. The dramatic coupe looks great on the road and in person, with a broad spectrum of powertrains.

The 2017 Infiniti Q60 is new for 2017 after taking a year off.

The two-door returns with a similar powertrain and trim lineup as the Q50 sedan from which it's based. There's a base 2.0t model, then up to a 2.0t Premium trim with more creature comforts. Adding more content requires a bigger engine (not that we're complaining), so 3.0t Premium models and Red Sport get Infiniti's new twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 in different states of tune to extract more horsepower at the top. Optional all-wheel drive can be added at every step along the way.

The Q60 earns a 7.6 overall on our ratings scale thanks to its good looks and quality interior materials. Performance may not be the biggest draw to this coupe, despite its heady horsepower numbers, but that's no dig—it's a very comfortable cruiser. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

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Styling and performance

The Infiniti Q60 benefits from new sheet metal all the way around to bring Infiniti's new flagship coupe into our good graces again. Yes, there's a pinch on the hood that results from two lines coming from the ground, extending through the badge, and finishing on the nose. No, we can't even either.

Beyond eccentricities, the coupe's gorgeous profile and organic lines signal a great start from the automaker. Coupes are inherently good-looking to us, but this one just looks great.

Inside, the Q60 does its best to deliver on the promise the exterior makes on the outside, and for the most part, it succeeds. In top trims, the interior can be decked with white or red shades of leather that look sharp. Please take off your shoes before getting into the car. Thanks so much.

Under the hood, the Q60 sports a trio of turbocharged tools, each designed with a specific task.

The base 2.0-liter turbo-4 makes 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. It's 7.3-second run up to 60 mph isn't something to scoff at, but it's available to get all those good looks at just under $40,000.

Stepping up to 3.0t models nets the newest V-6 to the Infiniti family, a relative of the hyper-fast V-6 found in the Nissan GT-R. The 3.0-liter turbo-6 model here makes 300 hp and 295 lb-ft and may just be the sweet spot before jumping up to the Red Sport. (We'll report back once we've driven that model.)

The top Red Sport trim takes the same 3.0-liter V-6 and force feeds it to 400 hp and 350 lb-ft—and adds one more cooling water pump than 3.0t models have—and it's good enough for 5 second runs up to 60 mph in all-wheel-drive configuration. Every version comes equipped with a 7-speed automatic that has its faults, but ultimately falls in line.

We'll have to stop one degree short of calling the Red Sport a super performance coupe—in line with BMW's M4 or Mercedes' C63—only because the engine is all-too eager to make promises that the running gear just can't cash yet. The steering and handling are up to the task, but the brakes and tires? We're not convinced.

Most configurations of the Q60 will manage 25 mpg combined, which is respectable, if not class-leading.

Comfort, safety, and features

The Q60 comes into its own when its taken off the ledge and dialed into a long drive. The interior is incredibly quiet and composed, Bose's latest premium audio system is all-too eager to serve up tasty jazz notes using new sound compression software. Coltrane on Spotify never sounded so good.

Driver and passenger get the best seats in the house, rear passengers are fine in a pinch—did I mention the part about the shoes coming off?

Neither major U.S. safety rating agency has delivered a safety rating, and we're not holding our breath for one either; the last generation Q60 wasn't rated by either agency.

Base coupes are handsomely equipped with features you'd expect from a coupe that starts a short jump away from $40,000. The Infiniti Q60 comes standard with 19-inch wheels, LED headlights, keyless ignition, leatherette (vinyl) seating, power adjustable front seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, dual touchscreens for infotainment and car settings, Bluetooth streaming, and a rearview camera.

Top-of-the-line examples include advanced safety equipment such as forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and active lane control, and approach nearly $60,000 for the opportunity.

All-wheel drive is available on every trim for an additional $2,000, but don't hold out for a convertible version—we hear it's not in the cards.

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2017 INFINITI Q60

Styling

Infiniti's Q60 nails the exterior look; the interior's only fault is that it has to live up to that standard.

For 2017, Infiniti designers reworked every angle of the Q60's coupe body into a striking shape inside and out that we're smitten with. And then all over again.

We're giving it a nearly perfect score on our styling scale thanks to its drop-dead gorgeous sheet metal on the outside and an interior that comes very, very close to fulfilling the same promise on the inside. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

From the outside, the Q60's bolder news and sleeker shoulders are more pronounced.

Just below the enlarged grille, the lines from its lower front fascia ascend through the Infiniti badge and converge at a pinched point of sheet metal just above the arrow. Bookended by angry squinting eyes that double as LED running lamps, the Q60 looks more serious about its intentions on the road. Its fog lamps, which are accented by chrome hockey stick-shaped surrounds, double-time as square jowls on its newly minted mission.

The coupe smooths over the edges in profile view. The same dynamic proportions are there; its nose still inserts itself first into the conversation, but its followed closely by a steeply raked windshield and a cockpit perched closer to the front axle than some of its contemporaries. The Q60’s newest trick, a kinked C-pillar that double backs on itself is the most dramatic departure from the last generation, and in case you missed it, Infiniti chromed it.

Around back, the Q60 keeps the same short decklid and a small lip spoiler casts a small shadow over the rear Infiniti badge. Down below, the car's only right angles are found on the lower fascia, which helps the wide rear tires look wider on the road and small dual outboard exhausts are finished with a satin chrome in top Red Sport models.

The effect is striking in person—pictures don't capture how good the car looks.

Inside, Infiniti's attention to quality interior materials help bring up a cabin that can be pared down for base models. In high-contrast red or white leather, its a very nice place to be with graphite or silver accents, respectively. In white, combined with the Q60's bright cabin, the interior space looks far bigger than it actually is.

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2017 INFINITI Q60

Performance

An improved optional steering system and plenty of power on tap make the Q60 a confident coupe on the road.

The headline for the Q60 this year is the Red Sport edition that pumps an impressive 400 horsepower from a twin turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6.

It's a banner figure for the Q60 to put up, but we're more convinced with how the Infiniti coupe chews up the miles at legal speeds.

We're giving the Q60 a 7 out of 10 this year for its good road manners and an identical engine lineup that we found capable in the related Q50 sedan. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

In its base package, the Q60 comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 that produces 208 hp and 258 pound-feet of torque. The twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 engines in the 3.0t and Red Sport make 300 and 400 hp respectively, the latter gunning for spec hunters swayed by arguments from AMG and M divisions. The 100 horsepower difference between 3.0t and Red Sport models is drawn from how forcefully the turbos feed air into the V-6—mechanically, the two engines are nearly identical—and the 400 hp figure is just 25 shy of the vaunted BMW M4.

In reality, the Red Sport is an altogether different animal from those track-focused coupes from Bavaria, asking drivers to reserve their enthusiasm in favor of brief sprints, rather than laying down consistently fast lap times. The Red Sport's power comes on thick and fast, sprinting up to 60 mph in five seconds (just a tick slower in rear-drive), and it's eager to transmute its wide 265/35 R19 rear tires from rubber into smoke and stretches of black skids.

In all cases, the Q60's engines are paired to a 7-speed automatic that has made its way around the Nissan/Infiniti lineup a few times now. At low speeds we've found the automatic to be a little hesitant, at higher speeds—or when coerced with the paddle shifters on the Red Sport—it's a more willing accomplice.

Red Sport models get beefier suspension bits to help put power down to pavement, including an adaptive, independent double wishbone front setup and independent rear multi-link components in the back.

Drivers can specify a dizzying number of preferences in top-trim models, including damper settings, throttle, steering heft and ratio, and Active Trace Control, which is an electronic torque vectoring setup that helps the Q60 dash through corners.

Infiniti deployed its newest Direct Adaptive Steering "steer-by-wire" system in the new Q60, which brings the electronic rack up to par with the standard mechanical we preferred in the Q50 sedan.

Engineers from Infiniti say the new steer-by-wire system is quicker to respond to inputs and help make the Q60 more comfortable at lower speeds. Our biggest gripe with the older system was that it didn't feel like the steering wheel was connected to the front end, and could speed up the rack too fast, which made the car nervous.

For the most part, they're right: the new system has a similar natural feel compared to the base electric assist rack, and the Q60's movements have been slowed to a more progressive rate for a better, predictable response. We still found ourselves turning the steering heft all the way up to Sport+, its heaviest setting, to give our inputs more consequence and for a more direct feel. Considering most of the Q60's more advanced safety systems require the steer-by-wire system, we can say that opting for the safest Q60 doesn't require compromises in steering feel.

Brake check

Perhaps our biggest gripe with the Q60 Red Sport's performance is one that we've also found with the Q50 Red Sport—bigger boost demands better brakes. Put simply, we're not sure that the Q60 has the stoppers to withstand a day at the track.

The Red Sport gets beefier rotors front and back over standard models, but after a half-spirited sprint in the hills outside San Diego, our noses informed us that the aluminum stoppers needed a rest.

Base models of the Q60 make do with 12.6-inch rotors up front and 12.1-inch rotors in the rear, while Red Sport editions get 4-piston 14-inch front stoppers and 2-piston 13.8-inch rear brakes. Upgraded brakes should be on the short list for anyone looking to take their Q60 Red Sport to the track, although we suspect that will be a very small number of buyers.

We'll stop short of giving the Q60 a demerit for that simply because of its mission. It's clear from the outside and inside that the Q60 is a luxury sports coupe—in that specific order.

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2017 INFINITI Q60

Comfort & Quality

Big and bright, and available with great soft hides, the Q60 is a very good long hauler for two.

The 2017 Infiniti Q60 is an exceptionally appointed luxury cruiser that can be lavishly equipped with very good leather and thoughtful interior appointments.

The front seats are the best seats in the house and the Q60 can fit a surprising amount of gear within its friendly confines. Based on that, and its exceptional details, we're giving it an 8 out of 10 on our comfort scale. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Thanks to a big, bright cabin, the interior of the Q60 looks much larger than its competitors. Shod with white leather, it seems downright palatial. 

For 2017, Infiniti placed a heavy emphasis on interior material quality and feel—it works. The front seats are wide and accommodating with available lateral bolsters that can help pinch more athletic frames into place. Most drivers won't have a hard time finding a natural position behind the wheel with the standard power adjustable seats, and outward visibility is helped by the big windows. Visually placing the front tires is especially easy with bulges above the front wheels, and rear visibility isn't hugely hampered by the Q60's fatter C-pillar (although available blind-spot monitors definitely help).

Most of the touchable surfaces are wrapped with high-quality materials (leather in some places, faux-carbon fiber or wood in others) and physical buttons have a confident press and feel.

The glove box is spacious enough to swallow an iPad, and higher-end Q60's equipped with a premium Bose audio system receive good-looking speaker grilles that rival similar (and much more pricey) systems from German competitors.

Much of our time was spent in a Q60 Red Sport licked with a deep shade of blue on the outside and beautiful Gallery White leather on the inside. (Another winning combination? Deep blue with a red leather interior.)

The Q60's copious sound-deadening soaks up much of the chatter outside, and despite wide rear summer tires in back, we felt fairly well isolated from the rare Southern California rainstorm outside.

Our only ergonomic quibbles with the interior? The shifter knob feels fairly tall for the low coupe, and the bottom touchscreen's high-quality glossy display seemed like a magnet for finger smudges and smears.

The trunk of the Q60 can swallow more than 12 cubic feet of cargo, which is smaller than the BMW 4-Series' 15.1 cubes, but the Q60's back seats seem more inviting to occasional guests—even if they're giving up an inch of leg room to the 4-Series. The Q60 is just as long as the BMW coupe, albeit with a 2-inch longer wheelbase that pushes the Q60's wheels closer to the corners.

We'd consider the Q60 to be a better long-legged road trip steed, just keep the luggage off the rear seats please.

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2017 INFINITI Q60

Safety

Official data isn't yet in, but the Q60 adds several advanced safety features that put it among the top in its class.

It's too early for official data on the Q60, so we'll hold off on our official rating until scores from federal testers and the IIHS come in. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Absent those ratings, the Q60 comes standard with several good safety measures—including a rearview camera—and has a bevy of optional systems that help make it safer.

The coupe comes equipped with a standard complement dual-stage front airbags for driver and passenger, side-curtain airbags, and roof-mounted supplemental airbags with a rollover sensor. In addition to standard stability and traction control systems, the Q60 also features Active Trace Control, which helps the car more quickly turn by applying brakes to inside wheels and adding torque to outside wheels to help cornering.

Available on 2.0t Premium trims and higher are advanced safety features that include blind-spot monitors, a surround-view camera system, rear collision prevention, and forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking.

Adding an optional Technology Package to 3.0t Premium and Red Sport coupes bundles automatic high beams, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning with active lane control, but requires Infiniti's "steer-by-wire" system, dubbed Direct Adaptive Steering, to be equipped on those cars. 

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2017 INFINITI Q60

Features

The Infiniti Q60 is very well equipped in base models, but we're counting down the days until the dual touchscreen system goes away.

The 2017 Infiniti Q60 is best when considered as a luxury coupe, and even base models won't disappoint.

Starting from base 2.0t coupes, the Q60 is available in 2.0t Premium, 3.0t Premium, and Red Sport 400 trims. All-wheel drive is available on all trims.

Starting at $39,855, the Infiniti Q60 comes standard with 19-inch wheels, LED headlights, keyless ignition, leatherette (vinyl) seating, power adjustable front seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, dual touchscreens for infotainment and car settings, Bluetooth streaming, and a rearview camera.

We'll give the Q60 points for good base features, excellent options, and credit for the size of their touchscreens for infotainment and car settings. One note about those touchscreens: we think they're finicky and confusing, so we're docking a point there. In all, the Q60 gets a 7 out of 10 on our features scale. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Stepping up to 2.0t Premium models adds a moonroof and a Bose premium audio system with 13 speakers as standard. Available options on the Premium models include Infiniti's advanced safety suite (which we cover separately), navigation and navigation-assisted transmission shifts, power tilt and telescoping steering wheel, a surround-view camera system, and heated leather seats. 

Buyers looking for more will have to step up to a bigger engine found in 3.0t Premium models. Those coupes add more optional features including Infiniti's Direct Adaptive Steering ("steer by wire") system instead of the base electric power assist, an advanced air filtration system, semi-aniline leather seating surfaces and dark wood trim.

At the top of the pile, the Red Sport 400 adds unique body treatments such as satin chrome exhaust tips, staggered width 19-inch wheels, red-finished brake calipers, and standard interior accents such as carbon fiber interior trim, softer leather seats, and paddle shifters for the 7-speed automatic.

Later in the year, Infiniti will offer a Q60 Sport trim that adds many of the Red Sport's exterior and interior appointments without jumping up to the 400-horsepower version of its V-6.

All-wheel drive is available for all models as a $2,000 optional upgrade.

In our Red Sport tester, we noticed that sometimes the settings between top and bottom screen didn't necessarily jibe (particularly when setting the car's driving modes), and that sometimes simple actions required digging through a complex menu, such as selecting and setting the car's clocks.

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2017 INFINITI Q60

Fuel Economy

Base coupes do relatively well, but the Infiniti Q60 is a little behind the rest of its class.

The 2017 Infiniti Q60 manages to be fairly fuel efficient, albeit in base form.

Base coupes are rated by the EPA at 22 mpg city, 30 highway, 25 combined. Those are the coupes that we base our 7 out of 10 rating on our fuel efficiency scale, we think those will be the most popular. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Adding any more power and drive wheels predictably lowers mileage.

Coupes fitted with the larger turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 that makes 300 horsepower are rated at 19/28/22 mpg, according to the EPA. High-powered Red Sport models do nearly the same at 20/27/22 mpg.

Adding all-wheel drive drops most models 1 mpg across the board, which is a relatively small penalty for the system.

Compared to others in its segment, the Q60 isn't as efficient. Most BMW 4-Series manage 25 mpg combined or higher when equipped with a turbo-4 or turbo-6, and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupes all get 25 mpg combined with a turbo-4.

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7.6
Overall
Expert Rating
Rating breakdown on a scale of 1 to 10?
Styling 9
Performance 7
Comfort & Quality 8
Safety N/A
Features 7
Fuel Economy 7
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