GRANDER TURISMO

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Front Page - Craig Duff

1. FOUR-DOOR COUPE FOR TECHNO TYPES

From the drive-by-wire steer­ing to the elec­tronic shock ab­sorbers and adap­tive trans­mis­sion, the Q50 3.0T Sport is a show­case of emerg­ing mo­bil­ity soft­ware. It’s like play­ing Gran Turismo in the real world, with the re­sponses from the var­i­ous sen­sor-equipped com­po­nents able to be ad­justed. The re­al­ity is most driv­ers will find set­tings they like and lock them into the Per­sonal mode. In­side, a du­alscreen in­fo­tain­ment set-up is backed by 16speaker Bose au­dio. De­spite all the dig­i­tal de­vices, the park­ing brake is still the old­fash­ioned in-the-footwell type.

2. EN­GINE IS EM­POW­ER­ING

Twin tur­bocharg­ers en­dow this 3.0-litre en­gine with an ever-ready 224kW/400Nm, mak­ing the Q50 a po­tent drive with­out be­ing too ag­gres­sive un­der a loaded throt­tle. Power is sent to the rear wheels of the four-door mid-size coupe through a slick seven-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion that will change early if the drive mode is in the stan­dard po­si­tion to help achieve a claimed com­bined fuel use of 9.2L/100km. Flip it into sport and it will hang on to revs with more tenac­ity, with the feel­ing boosted by sharper sus­pen­sion and steer­ing re­sponse.

3. SPORT IS COST-EF­FEC­TIVE

In terms of buy­ing power the In­finiti Q50 3.0T Sport is hard to beat. The $64,888 drive-away deal makes an $80,800-$83,400 on-the-road price for the sim­i­larly pow­er­ful Lexus IS350 F Sport look ex­pen­sive, es­pe­cially as it mir­rors the price of In­finiti’s 298kW/475Nm Q50 Red Sport. The cheap­est of the six-cylin­der Euro­pean ri­vals is the Jaguar 35t S at more than $100,000 in your garage. In­finiti backs the Q50 with a four-year/100,000km war­ranty. Ser­vice in­ter­vals are six months/ 15,000km and the first six vis­its to an In­finiti dealer will cost $1396.

4. STAN­DARD SPEC IS IM­PRES­SIVE

Be­yond the sun­roof, which eats into rear head­room for taller adults, the Q50 is im­pres­sively kit­ted out for the money. The build qual­ity is hard to fault, the pow­ered front seats and steer­ing col­umn have plenty of ad­just­ment. The in­te­rior trim is leather and al­loy and the seats are sup­port­ive. The dual-screen dis­play in the cen­tre con­sole takes some get­ting used to but is prob­a­bly more ef­fi­cient than scrolling through mul­ti­ple menus on one screen.

5. SAFETY TECH SHINES

Pres­tige cars are ex­pected to have a de­cent set of safety fea­tures once you’ve stepped up from the base model and the Q50 fol­lows the for­mula. The adap­tive cruise con­trol isn’t too ag­gres­sive when some­one drops in to your lane and the au­ton­o­mous emer­gency brak­ing like­wise doesn’t in­ter­vene when you’re round­ing up a parked car. Ac­tive blind-spot and lane-as­sist soft­ware stops the Q50 from veer­ing out of its lane at in­op­por­tune times and the ac­tive lane con­trol will help steer the car around wide cor­ners when free­way driv­ing with the cruise con­trol set (and your hands on the wheel).

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