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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.Permalink | Email this | Comments
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.Permalink | Email this | Comments
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.Permalink | Email this | Comments
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.
What's the point in an automaker pouring millions into an F1 team if it can't leverage a little star power? In Infiniti's case, it's not even running its own F1 team or even supplying engines. Instead, it's sponsoring the Red Bull Racing outfit that's out there defending both its titles. (That said, we wouldn't be surprised if Infiniti's involvement turned into an engine rebranding initiative for next season.)
As any marketing whiz could tell you, sponsorship is only worth as much as you promote it. So while Red Bull's world champion Sebastian Vettel was in Shanghai for the Chinese Grand Prix, he took a couple of Infiniti's finest for a spin.
Vettel being Vettel, he didn't just drive around the block: he took to the Shanghai International Circuit. (Or, at least an Autocross setup on the circuit's back lot.) And while he wasn't about to set any lap records behind the wheel of the G37 sedan or FX50 crossover, he seemed to enjoy the experience, hanging the G37's tail out making some smoke for the crowd. Follow the jump to watch the video footage and check out the still shots in the gallery below.
[Source: Infiniti]Permalink | Email this | Comments