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Infiniti QX70 drops V8 for 2015, holds line on pricing

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2015 Infiniti QX70 - front three-quarter view, blue

QX70 was the only application for the 5.0L, making it a tough sell in the boardroom.

It was always easy to chuckle a bit at Infiniti’s branding of its FX crossover as a “bionic cheetah” – until you drove the thing. It was something of a revelation when it came on the market in late 2002 – certainly visually, but also in terms of performance, particularly in V8 guise. The Porsche Cayenne burst on the scene at the same time, and between the two of them, they vividly illustrated that the idea of a performance utility vehicle wasn’t the oxymoron it first appeared to be.

Now in its second generation and recently rebranded QX70, Infiniti’s Acinonyx Venator is back for 2015, but it’s losing some teeth – last year’s 390-horsepower, 5.0-liter V8 will no longer be available, leaving the 325-hp, 3.7-liter V6 to soldier on as the model’s sole powerplant.

But don’t despair, sports (utility) fans, the 2015 QX70 still promises to be an entertaining drive. Kyle Bazemore, Infiniti’s senior manager of communications, tells Autoblog, “We’ve taken the equipment that was only available on the V8 and made it available on the V6 for the first time.” Those features come as part of an option pack that includes 21-inch dark-finish alloys with matching exterior highlights, paddle shifters, heated and cooled front sport seats and adaptive lighting.

So why no more eight-cylinder models? Bazemore says that “The vast majority [of sales] were V6s. The V8 was a low percentage, so we decided to focus on the V6.” The shift to the 3.7-liter should also help Infiniti somewhat with its Corporate Average Fuel Economy goals, as it achieves up to 17 miles per gallon city and 24 highway, versus last year’s all-wheel-drive only V8 model and its 14/20 ratings. And as Bazemore reminded us, the QX70 was the only application for the 5.0L, making it an even tougher sell in the boardroom. We’ve always had a soft spot for this particular Infiniti V8 and its burly soundtrack, but the automaker’s logic is hard to fault.

In any case, pricing for the rear-drive 2015 Q70 starts at $46,845, and the AWD model starts at $48,295 (both prices include $995 delivery), just as they did for model year 2014.

Continue reading Infiniti QX70 drops V8 for 2015, holds line on pricing

Infiniti QX70 drops V8 for 2015, holds line on pricing originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 23 May 2014 18:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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May 23rd, 2014

Report: Next Infiniti FX to gain interior volume

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2013 Infiniti FX37 front three-quarter

The Infiniti FX, soon to be renamed QX70 thanks to the Japanese brand’s convoluted naming scheme, is currently in the midst of its second-generation. And while we like the compact, sporty crossover’s driving character a lot, it lacks the “utility” part of the CUV moniker. That lack of cabin space will be addressed in the future, though.

Automotive News recently sat down with Nissan’s global design boss, Shiro Nakamura, to talk about the future of what he called “the icon of Infiniti.” And while Nakamura-san admitted the FX/QX70′s worth to the brand, its sales have long been something of a disappointment. “Exterior and styling-wise, it’s very strong as an icon. But to be honest, its sales volume has not been as big as we wanted,” a reality Nakamura believes is due largely to its tight cabin relative to its competition.

Finding the right balance might be difficult, though. The FX/QX70 is selling extremely well in both China and Russia, according to Nakamura, because of its looks. Altering that style in order to increase interior space risks alienating a new and important group of buyers for Infiniti. The designer put it best when he told AN, ” It is selling well in China and Russia because it stands out. So we want to maintain that striking look.” As it stands, we’ll likely be living with the current vehicle for a few more years – AN doesn’t expect the third-generation of the FX/QX70 to arrive until 2015 or 2016.

Next Infiniti FX to gain interior volume originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 03 Sep 2013 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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September 3rd, 2013

Video: Evo finds the measure of Infiniti’s limited-edition FX Vettel Version

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EVO editor Harry Metcalf with Infiniti FX Vettel Version

Most of the noise over the Infiniti FX Sebastian Vettel Version has centered around its €120,000 ($155,000 U.S.) price and its exhaust noise. Evo Magazine editor Harry Metcalfe quiets things down with a soup-to-nuts look at where the extra money has been spent on this Vettel-fied Infiniti crossover (in the UK it costs £105,600 on-the-road, nearly doubling the price of the FX50 it is bred from).

There’s lot of detail: the aero mods were guided by Vettel’s desire for his tribute FX to hit 300 kilometers per hour, the carbon fiber is manufactured by Brabus, the additional rear spoiler adds £4,800 ($7,650) to the already hefty £100,800 base price ($168k!), each alloy is 4.6 kilograms lighter than a standard wheel but hides standard brakes, and so on. All of that is followed by a question: “Can I say it’s £50,000 better?” You’ll find the $80,000 answer in the video below.

Continue reading Evo finds the measure of Infiniti’s limited-edition FX Vettel Version

Evo finds the measure of Infiniti’s limited-edition FX Vettel Version originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 23 Oct 2012 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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October 23rd, 2012

Official: Infiniti previews Sebastian Vettel edition FX ahead of Frankfurt debut

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Infiniti FX Sebastian Vettel edition concept

With 390 horsepower on tap and a five-second 0-60 time, the Infiniti FX50 crossover really doesn’t need much in the performance department. But merely “fast enough” isn’t a term you’d commonly associate with Sebastian Vettel.

The defending Formula One World Champion drives an FX in his down time, serves as Infiniti’s brand ambassador and has lent a capable hand or two in the development of the latest concept car coming out of the Nissan luxury division. The special Vettel edition has been anticipated for a few months now, but will finally be unveiled at the rapidly approaching Frankfurt Motor Show next month.

Just what specifications the special edition will encompass remains to be seen, as the short press release after the jump is conspicuously light on details, but from the solitary image released so far, we can tell it looks like one very mean performance crossover, with new aero bits, lighting, wheels and badging among the changes.

Continue reading Infiniti previews Sebastian Vettel edition FX ahead of Frankfurt debut

Infiniti previews Sebastian Vettel edition FX ahead of Frankfurt debut originally appeared on Autoblog on Sun, 28 Aug 2011 15:07:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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August 28th, 2011

Sebastian Vettel-designed Infiniti FX50 coming to Frankfurt [Video]

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Formula One’s Sebastien Vettel is the youngest driver to ever win a world championship. He’s a worldwide phenom and now he’s just designed a crossover SUV for Infiniti. Wait, what? More »

August 25th, 2011

Infiniti Freshens FX for 2012

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Infiniti’s FX line of crossovers, now in its second generation, is entering its fourth model year-in other words, it is high time for an update. For 2012, the changes are few. Most notably, a new grill and front fascia. Inside, the FX sports an updated instrument cluster, and heated seats are now standard in all models. Also standard is the Infiniti Personal Assistant. Reached by the owner’s cell phone, you literally have 24 hour access to a personal assistant, who can provide you with directory assistance, directions, weather updates, dining suggestions and reservations, travel arrangements and emergency assistance. Infiniti Personal Assistant comes with each FX, and is free for the first four years of ownership.

For 2012 Infiniti is offering the FX35 Limited Edition, with its own unique color, 21″ wheels, auto leveling dark tint headlamps, aluminum roof rails and pedals. Production is limited to 550 cars.

Otherwise, all else is the same with the FX. As before, the FX is available as the FX35, featuring a 3.5L V-6 good for 303hp, with the option of rear or all-wheel drive. The FX50 sits at the top of the food chain with a 5.0L V-8 boating 390hp with all-wheel drive. All FX’s share a seven-speed automatic. As for pricing, a rear wheel drive FX35 has a base price of $43,450USD, the FX35 with all-wheel drive is $44,900, the FX35 Limited Edition is $51,550, while the FX50 will run you $59,350. Interested? The 2012 FX’s should be hitting the showroom floor this October.

August 16th, 2011
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