By Allyson Harwood
KBB Expert Rating: 7.7
For 2016, Infiniti built on what its 7-passenger, 3-row QX60 luxury-crossover SUV is known for -- namely impressive levels of standard equipment and innovative safety technology, including a system that applies the brakes to prevent a collision when backing up -- with sportier handling and steering. Available in front- or all-wheel drive (FWD, AWD), the QX60 comes with a standard V6 engine or a hybrid powertrain that nets better fuel economy. With the ability to tow up to 5,000 pounds, Infiniti's 3-row luxury SUV is versatile, while its roughly $44,000 starting price makes it a tempting and capable competitor to the Acura MDX and Audi Q7.
The 2016 Infiniti QX60 deserves a top spot on your consideration list if what you seek is a roomy, comfortable 7-seat crossover SUV that offers good value. Techies will appreciate its 360-degree camera and safety components that monitor blind spots and keep you a safe distance from the car ahead.
Paying the extra cost of the QX60 Hybrid won't get you Prius-like fuel economy. Its 28 mpg on the highway is good, but is only 1 mpg better than the regular QX60 and similar to what you'd get in the Acura MDX and Volvo XC90.
KBB Expert Ratings
Infiniti gave the QX60's suspension new shocks and springs and made the steering more responsive, a combination that gives the 3-row crossover SUV a sportier feel. The interior benefits from more soft-touch materials, plus use of laminated glass for a quieter cabin.
The Infiniti QX60 has always been comfortable and plush, but the biggest knock against it was that the ride was too soft, and that it didn’t have the sportiness and...
... attitude of the rest of the brand. Infiniti gave the 2016 model new shocks, springs and a new steering-rack design, and changed the ratio to make steering response livelier. The improvements made the QX60 taut without sacrificing its comfortable highway ride, and more fun to drive than before. Working on the luxury side of the QX60's equation, Infiniti added more soft-touch surfaces and used laminated glass to quiet the cabin. The engine provides smooth, ample power and works well with the continuously variable transmission. It isn't the highest-performing team in the segment, but nets an impressive 27 highway mpg. The new QX should attract buyers who want a sportier SUV, but will still appeal to families seeking comfort.
PREDICTIVE FORWARD COLLISION WARNING
Several cars will alert the driver if you are coming up too quickly on the car in front of you. Infiniti's system does this, plus it measures the speed and distance of the car two cars ahead -- more critical because you can't always see when that driver suddenly stops.
DISTANCE CONTROL ASSIST
Getting distracted in rush-hour traffic is an easy way to be involved in a fender-bender. With Distance Control Assist, the vehicle slows down for you, keeping the right amount of distance between you and the car ahead, reducing stress while making the drive safer.
The midsize-luxury-crossover SUV segment has plenty of 3-row vehicles, but the QX60 stands out because its plush, leather-lined cabin is comfortable in all seven spots. The comfortable front seats make highway miles go by in a flash, and climate, audio and navigation controls are easy to reach and use. The third row is surprisingly accommodating for two adults and, thanks to a second row that slides fore and aft, getting there is easy. Infiniti made the interior more luxurious for 2016 by adding more soft-touch materials, and using laminated glass to make the interior quieter.
The 2016 Infiniti QX60's rounded, sleek design has been updated with redesigned headlights and grille, and new fog-light surrounds. The side view shows a gently sloping roof, but that design doesn’t negatively affect the QX60's impressive interior room. One of the key styling cues of the QX60 is the bowed window frame at the back of the side windows. A smaller version of this design detail can also be seen on Infiniti's upcoming Q60 coupe. In back, the power-operated tailgate, which comes standard, makes it easier to load and unload gear and groceries.
Buyers expect a luxury SUV to come equipped with a bevy of standard features. And even the least expensive QX60 is nicely appointed, with features like heated, power-folding side mirrors, moonroof and a power liftgate. Inside, all QX60s come with a leather interior with heated and power-adjustable front seats, tri-zone temperature control, Bluetooth and USB ports, power tilt/telescoping steering column, rearview camera with 7-inch screen and 6-speaker AM/FM/CD audio. Some optional features in the regular QX60 are standard in the Hybrid, which also has a system that emits a sound to notify pedestrians that the otherwise hushed vehicle is there.
You can choose gas or hybrid, and front- or all-wheel drive, but many of the other options are bundled into packages. Navigation is optional, as are a 15-speaker Bose audio system, heated seats in the second row, heated steering wheel, moonroof over the second and third rows and a rear-seat entertainment package. There are also a lot of available safety features, including blind-spot monitoring, intelligent cruise control, lane-departure warning and prevention, and systems that can automatically apply the brakes when traveling in both forward and reverse.
The regular 2016 QX60 is powered by a smooth, 265-horsepower V6 linked to a CVT automatic transmission. This Infiniti has a Drive Mode Selector, which offers four modes -- Standard, Sport, Eco and Snow. The transmission also has a manual mode that simulates shifting gears. Under the hood of the 2016 QX60 Hybrid, you'll find a 2.5-liter supercharged 4-cylinder engine that, in combination with a 15kW electric motor, has a net power output of 250 horsepower. It, too, is fitted with a continuously variable transmission. Whether you are looking at the V6 version of the QX60 or the hybrid, you can choose between FWD and AWD. Towing capacity is rated at a laudable 5,000 pounds for V6 models and 3,500 pounds for the hybrid.
265 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
248 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/27 mpg (FWD), 19/26 mpg (AWD)
2.5-liter supercharged inline-4/15kW electric motor
250 net horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
243 lb-ft of torque @ 3,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 26/28 mpg (FWD), 25/28 mpg (AWD)
The 2016 Infiniti QX60 has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting just over $44,000 when equipped with a V6 and front drive, while the QX60 Hybrid begins at just over $53,000. The starting price of the Hybrid is about $7,000 higher than it was last year, because many premium options were made standard. Loaded with options, the QX60 can reach close to $60,000, and the hybrid SUV can top $63,000. At its starting price, Infiniti's 3-row luxury SUV is directly in line with the Acura MDX and more than $10,000 below such rivals as the Audi Q7 and BMW X5. To find out what others in your area are paying for the 2016 QX60, check out the Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price. Like the Audi, the QX60's resale value is expected to be very good.