- Infiniti’s crossover utility vehicle (CUV) is built as the result of a partnership between Daimler (Mercedes-Benz) and the Renault-Nissan alliance.
- The all-new QX30 is the smallest CUV in Infiniti's lineup.
- Three model variants are available: QX30 Sport (lowered 0.6-inch than the QX30, sport tuned with front-wheel drive); QX30 (Base, Luxury and Premium trim levels); and QX30 AWD (Luxury and Premium trim levels come with 1.2-inch raised suspension over QX30 and all-wheel drive as standard).
- Final assembly takes place in Sunderland, England.
Manufacturer Estimated Starting Price:
- The QX30 (front-wheel drive) starts at $29,950.
- The QX30 Sport (front-wheel drive) starts at $38,500.
- The QX30 AWD (all-wheel drive, luxury trim) starts at $34,400.
- Editor's Note: The latest pricing on all models is listed at the bottom of this review.
- All QX30 models come with a turbocharged and direct-injected 2.0-liter inline 4-cylinder engine.
- Power output includes 208 horsepower, 258-lbs. foot of torque.
- The engine is mated to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
- All models come with paddle shifters mounted to the steering wheel as standard.
Who’s the QX30 for?
Young professionals, urban dwellers and empty nesters are all part of the marketing plans Infiniti has targeted for its smallest crossover.
The Sport model’s interior is much nicer than it’s closely related kin, the Mercedes-Benz GLA. Hard plastics are kept to a minimum, and almost everything is wrapped in some form of stitched leather, Dinamica® (an Alcantara-like material), or imitation leather.
The cabin is bigger than you might think. The optional panoramic sunroof might have something to do with that belief. There is plenty of headroom for average-sized drivers and the rear seat can fit three children across, or two adults.
The cargo area left us perplexed. It is big enough for luggage on a couple’s weekend trip or the weekly run to the grocery store. It even can even swallow a best-in-class 19.2-cubic feet of cargo with the rear seats up. Unfortunately, the QX30 lacks any usable space for some types of leisure activity equipment, like a bag or two of golf clubs.
How Does It Ride?
- Over fresh asphalt, the QX30 is a dream. It is smooth riding and very quiet. The transmission, throttle, steering and suspension may have been transplanted from the Mercedes-Benz GLA, but the tuning of these components was all done by Infiniti engineers. This probably explains the less pedestrian drive qualities of Infiniti’s child over Mercedes’ offspring.
- Over rough cement pavement, the CUV is a bit of an audible nightmare. At 60 mph on the highway, the road noise which emanated throughout the cabin was much harsher than less expensive mainstream CUVs we’ve tested. We should note the vehicle we drove was a pre-production version. More sound deadening material and perhaps a change of the standard OEM run-flat tires would alleviate this in the production version.
- When placed in “S” (Sport) mode, the turbocharged 2.0-liter comes to life. The engine revs with increased throttle response and the electrically-assisted steering matches the performance by tightening up the steering ratio. Is it a G37 of yore? No. But it gives the driver just enough sportiness when they find themselves on a twisty road away from congested city traffic.
- No power lift gate.
- No all-wheel drive high-performance version (like Mercedes’ AMG 45 variant) for the enthusiast set.
- No golf clubs allowed (unless you are willing to fold down one of the rear seats).
The Sport model we tested came loaded with almost every option available, which meant we were able to test Infiniti’s full vehicle safety suite. We found several features within the Technology Package (blind spot warning, lane departure warning, forward emergency braking, and radar cruise control) intuitive and annoyance-free. Unfortunately, IIHS and NHTSA crash test data was not available at the time of this writing.
Trying to peg the future 1-year retention value of an all-new vehicle model is a bit of a fool’s errand without previous model generation pricing data. While it is not necessarily an indicator of how well the QX30 will perform in the used market, other vehicles in the luxury compact crossover segment have fared well.
We were able to track the one-year retention values for four models within the luxury compact crossover utility vehicle segment. Here’s how they performed over a 3-month average:
- Audi Q3 75.9% of retained value
- Land Rover Range Rover Evoque 68.2% of retained value
- Mercedes-Benz GLA 64.5% of retained value
- BMW X1 56% of retained value
While the QX30 shares a significant amount of parts with the Mercedes-Benz GLA, it does not mean Infiniti’s newest vehicle will perform the same with respect to value retention. Only time will tell how the Infiniti’s latest entry will fare.
|QX30||2.0L I4 Turbo / FWD||$29,950 USD|
|QX30 Luxury||2.0L I4 Turbo / FWD||$32,600 USD|
|QX30 Premium||2.0L I4 Turbo / FWD||$35,300 USD|
|QX30 Sport||2.0L I4 Turbo / FWD||$38,500 USD|
|QX30 Luxury AWD||2.0L I4 Turbo / AWD||$34,400 USD|
|QX30 Premium AWD||2.0L I4 Turbo / AWD||$37,700 USD|