The mid-size luxury crossover market is a competitive environment with entries from just about every single automaker from across the globe. Today’s Daddy’s Digest car review takes a look at the 2022 Infiniti QX60 Sensory AWD, which is all-new for this year and gets parent company Nissan’s premium treatment.
What’s New For 2022
For all intents and purposes, everything inside and out. Sharing underpinnings with the Nissan Pathfinder, the 2022 QX60’s platform and chassis aren’t quite new from the ground up, but feature many updates including ones that bring added rigidity – this generally translates to improved performance and safety.
While the 3.5-litre, 295-horsepower gasoline V6 engine is carried over, the continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) has been eschewed in favour of a nine-speed automatic sourced from German gearbox manufacturer ZF. This means that this transmission is similar to one found in the likes of the Acura MDX and Land Rover Discovery Sport.
Features and Pricing
With trim levels called Pure, Luxe, Sensory, and Autograph trim levels, the QX60’s Sensory AWD trim level is the third highest out of four – with a base price of $64,995 Canadian before taxes and fees. Pure models start at $54,995 and an Autograph will run you $67,995. Beyond certain paint colours that will run you a few hundred dollars extra, no further individual options or packages are available in each trim level.
Features on the Sensory model include 20-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights and taillights, rain-sensing wipers, a camera-based smart rearview mirror, leather seating surfaces with power memory adjustment for both front seats, a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel with power tilt and telescoping, a power liftgate, manually-operated rear second-row sunshades, and a power-operated third-row seat return.
The QX60’s three-row format and overall dimensions are the kind of thing people go for when they insist on not getting a minivan. It’s a few inches longer than the likes of the Acura MDX, Lexus RX 350L, and Volvo XC90. It’s smaller than a Buick Enclave and is about the same size as the Cadillac XT6 and Lincoln Aviator.
Styling-wise, the QX60 is a little bit closer to its Pathfinder sibling than the previous generation. While the front end is quite unique, the taillights and rear three-quarter view show similar design cues to the lower-end Nissan. The wheels are quite similar, too.
All in all, the Infiniti is a bit more refined and elegant in its look, and the relatively conservative appearance should age well in the long term. The Acura MDX edges it out in terms of overall road presence, which could potentially be a factor when purchasing a luxury vehicle.
While the interior on the previous generation 2022 Infiniti QX60 was pretty decently upscale when it came out for the 2013 model year, it was let down a little bit by the end of its model run in the present day. The 2022 QX60 moves the needle far away from its predecessor, with excellent material quality and an aesthetic that’s pleasing to the eye.
The infotainment has been rejigged with a 12.3-inch infotainment touch screen. While it’s good that there are dedicated knobs for volume and temperature controls, all other climate control and seek/track controls are of the piano black touch variety. While there is haptic feedback with each “button” press, it doesn’t quite compare to the ability to use muscle memory to minimize distraction when trying to adjust things on the road.
The gauge cluster readout and head-up display are 12.3 and 10.8 inches in size respectively and further add to the nice interior touches of the QX60. It’s rounded out by features including a panoramic moonroof, Apple CarPlay (wireless) and Android Auto, wireless phone charging, massaging front seats, and Bose audio.
Because the QX60 is a bit bigger than its other Japanese competition, seating for bigger and taller occupants will be a little bit easier. There’s room for seven passengers in a 2/3/2 format. There is ample space for full-sized adults in the second row, although, like most other three-row crossover SUVs, the third row can be tight on longer trips.
For Dads and Families
We spent our week of testing using the QX60 as a family mover. This included the use of a rear-facing infant bucket, which can be known to take up a considerable amount of rear legroom in both the second row, as well as the front seat directly in front of the child. Thankfully, this wasn’t an issue in the QX60 at all, and six-footers should be able to sit reasonably comfortably in front of a child seat.
With regards to child seat installation, LATCH lower anchors are easily accessible in the second and third rows. There are five LATCH anchors in the second row, and the central seating position shares its anchor with the driver’s side inboard anchor. This means that parents looking to go three-wide must anchor either the middle or driver’s side outboard seat using the seatbelt – LATCH anchors are not to be shared between two car seats. Top tethers are available on all second and third-row positions.
Cargo space is plentiful on the QX60, and while it does shrink quite a bit with the third row up, families who keep the third row folded most of the time are an ideal fit for the midsize Infiniti. The power-operated third-row seat return is a great feature – popping a latch and letting gravity take care of seat folding is easy, but the power return takes out the lifting required to get the third-row seatback upright again.
For dads and parents who enjoy a good audio system experience with their drive, the premium Bose audio provides a good kick and has plenty of clarity and good sound staging (the ability for your ears to pick out sounds and instruments as if it was a 3D space).
Canadian fuel economy ratings for the QX60 come in at 11.9 litres per 100 kilometres in the city, and 9.5 litres per 100 kilometres on the highway. With lots of short trips and idling in cold weather, observed economy came in considerably higher at 13.8 litres per 100 kilometres. The QX60 does get an 11-horsepower bump over the Pathfinder but requires premium fuel in order to do so.
As with just about all premium crossovers in this segment, a full gamut of driver-assist features are common. Infiniti’s ProPILOT Assist system includes forward-collision warnings with automatic braking and pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring with collision avoidance steering intervention, rear automatic braking, rear cross-traffic alert, lane departure warning with lane-keeping assist, navigation-based speed limit assist, adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beams.
In practice, the ProPILOT Assist system is able to provide lane centring and adaptive cruise functions with highway driving that could be regarded as Level 2 autonomous control. ProPILOT Assist isn’t quite as accurate as other systems on the market, with quite a bit of bouncing in between the lane markings. As with any Level 2 autonomous system, full driver attention and control are required at all times.
Despite the test vehicle being equipped with winter tires, the 2022 Infiniti QX60 features a very quiet cabin that’s noticed the most during highway cruising. Even when cruising along at speeds matching the upper threshold of fast-flowing traffic, drivers and passengers will feel as if they were doing below the speed limit.
Ride quality is relatively firm, and impacts over potholes and poorly maintained roads will be felt a little more than would be ideal. Handling is about what you’d expect in an SUV of this size, and both the QX60 and its Pathfinder sibling drive pretty large. Even though they’re not too far off the dimensions of the competition, they feel a little more unwieldy in tight spaces.
A natural comparison would be with the 2022 Infiniti QX60 against its Nissan Pathfinder stablemate. While both offer similar levels of practicality, the Infiniti offers extra interior quality as well as extra refinement and quietness on the road. The previous generation QX60 and Pathfinder had a bigger delta in terms of luxury feel, but this gap has closed somewhat for the 2022 model year. This isn’t a knock against the QX60 – it’s just that the Pathfinder is a lot better than it used to be.
Compared to the Acura MDX, which is also all-new for 2022, the QX60 fights a close battle. They go neck and neck in terms of pricing, and the Acura looks a bit sportier compared to the Infiniti’s softer, more elegant stance.
The Lexus RX 350L is another popular choice in this segment with an excellent hybrid powertrain available, and while it’s good all-around – take note that the third row is more or less useless in terms of legroom for passengers.
The Kia Telluride’s top SX Limited trim should be a wildcard comparison for any buyer considering a QX60. For about the same price as the base Pure trim, the Telluride SX Limited is every bit as competitive and lacks only the brand panache that the premium makes can offer.
The Bottom Line
The 2022 Infiniti QX60 Sensory AWD is a much-improved car over the previous generation that it replaces – this should be almost a given considering that the last model came out 9 model years ago. It’s a comfortable, quiet, and luxurious three-row family cruiser that is priced competitively amongst its peers and is worth considering for any family who’s looking for something nicer that is a better value for money than many European rivals. As of right now, it’s the shining star in the Infiniti lineup.