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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883


Don Adair: Infiniti’s Q60 sport coupe makes a strong impression

Infiniti’s resigned 2017 Q60 two-door deepens the company’s portfolio of coupes that make powerful first impressions. 

The string began with the 2002 G35 coupe and has evolved through a succession of striking, slippery-silhouetted two-doors that culminate with the Q60.

There’s a fair amount drama at play in the Q60’s crisp-yet-fluid character lines, fender blisters and swollen flanks. In a kind of sheet-metal alchemy, Infiniti designers blend disparate elements into a confident, head-turning package. 

The four-passenger Q60 ($38,950) is fully redesigned. The two-door iteration of the midsize Q50 sedan, it boasts a quiet and comfortable cabin, a trio of engine choices and enough electronics to stock an Apple store.

Its lower trims, with their extensive standard-features lists, are a compelling value. Upper trims offer impressive power and dive deep into advanced safety and driver-assist programs.

Trio of engine choices

The Q60 is a rear-wheel-drive car, with available all-wheel-drive and a standard seven-speed automatic transmission. Engines include a turbocharged 208-horsepower, 2.0-liter four and a 3.0-liter V-6 that makes 300 hp fitted with a single-scroll turbocharger and 400 hp with a twin-scroll turbo.

All Q60s include LED headlights and foglights, heated mirrors, keyless ignition and entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, eight-way power front seats, Bluetooth connectivity and the Infiniti Touch dual-touchscreen infotainment interface, with its 8-inch upper and 7-inch lower screens. 

Moving up through the food chain, the features lists expand to embrace a deep array of advanced tech. All trims but the base 2.0t qualify for — or come standard with — a Driver Assist package that includes a nifty emergency-braking system that can detect pedestrians and stopped vehicles ahead of the preceding car; blind-spot monitoring; and an automatic reverse braking system that’s a godsend in crowded parking lots.

Blind-spot intervention

If the driver loses focus in traffic and tries to steer into a spot already occupied by another car, an available automatic-steering function gently nudges the Q60 back to the safety of its own lane.

Infiniti also introduces a new adaptive suspension on the Q60. To improve compliance — and hence comfort — computer-controlled shock absorbers are layered atop a suspension designed for performance, with an unequal-length control-arm front suspension and a multilink rear setup. 

Its stiffer spring rates yield a firmer than the sedan’s and the Q60 negotiates curvy stretches with poise and minimal lean. 

An optional steering system dubbed Direct Adaptive Steering (DAS) eliminates mechanical and hydraulic components and manage steering functions digitally. A precursor to true autonomous steering, DAS quickens responses but masks feel behind a flow of ones and zeroes. 

In our tester, DAS had an artificial and somewhat jittery feel. Now i its second generation, DAS gains three driver-selectable modes that allow for individual customization. Over time, owners will gravitate toward the settings they find most satisfactory.

Relaxed responses

The Q60’s platform dates to the 2013 debut of the Q50 and shows its age in the relaxed quality of its responses. Solid, quiet and composed underway, the 3,900-pound coupe has a confident demeanor but lacks the sharper dynamics of its key competitors. 

Inside, its slick tech offerings are wrapped in a dashboard design that also arrived with the Q50 and could use a refresh. Plastics are used in places that would better served by soft-touch materials and such elements as the climate-control buttons lack the refinement expected at this level. The twin-cockpit setup can feel cloistered and the center console provides minimal storage opportunities.

The Q60’s navigation and infotainment functions are managed via a pair of screens stacked in the central dash. The system works well but is not as intuitive as it might be, and differing screen resolutions undercut its visual impact.

In the end, the Q60’s powerful and elegant presence, its well-equipped and comfortable cabin and its agreeable road manners will draw buyers ready to step into the high-spirited two-door lifestyle.

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2017 Infiniti Q60 3.0t Premium
Vehicle base price: $38,950
Trim level base price: $44.300
As tested: $55,255 (including transportation)
Options: intelligent cruise; blind-spot intervention; lane-departure warning and prevention; auto-leveling adaptive headlights; 360-degree surround-view backup system; Direct Adaptive Steering; predictive forward collision warning; forward emergency braking with pedestrian detection; backup collision intervention; heated front seats and steering wheel; power tilt-and-telescoping steering system; more
EPA rating: 22 combined/19 city/28 highway
Regular unleaded fuel specified

Don Adair
Don Adair is a Spokane-based freelance writer.