Whether you like them or not, coupe SUVs are here to stay. The idea behind them is to provide the practicality and high driving position of an SUV but the styling of a coupe or coupe-like sedan. The latest addition to this club is the all-new 2022 Infiniti QX55.
Engine – Just like the QX50 that it is based on, the QX55 has a 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine under the hood. It produces 268 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque (200 kW & 380 Nm) which is 23 hp & lb-ft of torque more than the BMW X4 30i. However, this 2.0L engine is a bit different than any other 2.0L engine out there.
The Infiniti QX55 has something called Variable Compression. Without getting into too much boring detail, it basically has an actuating arm inside the engine that’s connected to the crankshaft which in turn changes how high up the combustion chamber the pistons travel. During light throttle applications, the engine is in the high compression mode to improve fuel efficiency. Vice versa when you stomp on the throttle and the turbo produces more boost, the compression ratio decreases to allow for a larger volume of air/fuel mixture for more power. From behind the steering wheel, you don’t notice any of this happening.
The end result is power when you need it and fuel economy for every other situation. The 2022 Infiniti QX55 is rated for 8.3 L/100km (28.3 MPG) on a highway and 10.5 L/100km (22.4 MPG) in a city. Surprisingly, the highway fuel economy is the same as the QX50 but the QX55 sees a slight improvement for city driving. I averaged 10.3 L/100km (22.8 MPG) during my time with the Infiniti QX55.
Transmission – While the exterior looks very sporty, the driving dynamics aren’t so due in part to the continuously variable transmission (CVT). It does try to emulate shift points, even under normal driving conditions, but it still takes away from the pleasure of driving.
Braking – At 1,843 kg (4,063 lbs), the Infiniti QX55 is not a light SUV but even so, the brakes bring it to a stop with ease. Brake pedal feel is also good for added confidence as well as smooth deceleration. Automatic emergency braking is standard on the 2022 Infiniti QX55.
Handling – The QX55 is only available with AWD. It’s not a permanent AWD system like in a Subaru so when driving on dry roads, it’s primarily FWD to save on fuel. However, when those roads get twisty, the steering feel is not the greatest.
This top spec Sensory trim comes equipped with Direct Adaptive Steering. It’s a drive-by-wire steering system so when you turn the steering wheel, an electric motor turns the front wheels. But it’s not a steering assist like every other electro-assisted steering system. The benefit of this type of steering system is precision in a wide variety of driving situations and ease of steering at slow speeds. However, the downfall is a complete lack of feel. It’s more similar to a video game steering wheel feel than something that is connected to the front wheels. The lower trims of the Infiniti QX55 has normal electro-assisted steering so test drive both types of systems if possible before buying.
Ride Comfort – Despite this SUVs sporty exterior looks, the ride is more luxury than sportiness… which is a good thing for a vehicle like this. The suspension does a great job of absorbing bumps, ruts, and road imperfections.
Interior Space – As is the case with most SUVs, front occupants are spoiled for room. Legroom & headroom are in abundance even for my 6’4” stature. It’s the back seats where things are different from the QX50. The QX55 has the same amount of rear legroom, 983 mm, but it has quite a bit less headroom. It’s also the same story in the trunk. While the cargo opening of the QX55 is large, the total trunk space is less than that of the QX50. The QX55 has 761 L (26.8 cu-ft) of space with the rear seats up vs 880 L (31.1 cu-ft) for the QX50. With the seats folded, the QX55 has 1,532 L (54.1 cu-ft) while the QX50 has 1,822 L (64.3 cu-ft).
Noise, Vibration, & Harshness – Whether driving in a city or on a highway, noise from the outside never feels overwhelming on the inside. Obviously the engine produces more noise if you decide to put your foot down but it’s not the usual 4-cylinder drone that most engines of that type produce.
Odds and Ends
Gadgets – The 2022 Infiniti QX55 has the same dual screen layout for the infotainment system as the QX50. The top screen is for the navigation system while the lower screen is for audio, climate, and vehicle settings. The infotainment system itself is robust and responsive to fingertip inputs. My only minor gripe with it is the differentiation in the screens. The lower screen looks better with richer colours and deeper blacks. The top screen looks faded by comparison.
As for other gadgets, quite a lot of them are available as standard. Wireless Apple CarPlay and (wired) Android Auto are standard as is forward emergency braking, lane departure warning, rear automatic braking, remote start, LED headlights, blind spot sensors, heated seats, and heated steering wheel to name a few.
Interior Design – The cabin is a wash of smooth flowing lines and premium feeling materials. If it were a fashion show, the interior of the QX55 would be the main attraction. It is a beautiful interior design and a very nice place to be in.
Exterior Design – Just like the interior, the exterior design of the QX55 is a thing of beauty. Some coupe SUVs don’t work in my opinion. The GLE 63 AMG for example. That one looks disproportionate somehow. This Infiniti on the other hand is nicely sized and turns heads everywhere it goes. Of course the big drawback to this coupe bodystyle is poor rear visibility and the QX55 is no exception.
Warranty – Infiniti vehicles benefit from a slightly longer warranty period when compared to European counterparts. The basic new vehicle warranty is 4 years & 100,000 km. Powertrain warranty is 6 years & 110,000 km, whichever comes first. For more warranty information, click here.
While coupe SUVs are not as practical as the normal SUVs which they are based on, this 2022 Infiniti QX55 brings a lot of style and comfort to the table. For a small family, the QX50 will be a better bet but for those that need a bit more practicality than a car can offer but with the same style, the QX55 fits that niche very well.
Thank you to Infiniti Canada for providing the vehicle. www.Infiniti.ca