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Infiniti Q45, page #2

Infiniti Q45 Price Analytics

About Infiniti Q45

The Q45 was a car of firsts for Infiniti. As well as being one of two debut cars for this luxury brand's American introduction for 1990, the Infiniti Q45 was also the first rear-drive luxury car from a Japanese automaker to directly compete against European sports sedans. The "Q" featured firm suspension tuning, a powerful V8 engine, a quick-shifting automatic transmission, an inviting cabin and a distinctively bold demeanor. Although mostly a critical success, its sales never challenged those of its Japanese rival or the other segment leaders, as consumers were put off by odd initial advertising, muted styling and a lack of prestige associated with the brand.

Following several years of dwindling sales numbers and a questionable second-generation version that emphasized comfort over performance, Infiniti attempted to restore the car to its athletic roots for the third generation. The heart of these Q45s was a specially designed 4.5-liter V8 burbling with 340 horsepower and 333 pound-feet of torque. These numbers put the Q in good company alongside other premium luxury sedans, and a standard adjustable adaptive suspension allowed drivers to tailor the ride for more control around corners or more cushion on the highway. Although the third-gen Infiniti Q45 was certainly capable and comfortable for long-distance travel, it wasn't a match for more performance-oriented competitors when the road turned twisty.

The Infiniti Q45 was discontinued after 2006, but a fourth-generation model is rumored to be in the works. As a used model, the Q still might be worth a look, especially for shoppers interested in an alternative to the luxury sedan status quo. Sales were never great, however, and it will likely take a little extra effort to locate one of good standing.

Most recent Infiniti Q45

The third-generation Q45 was sold for the 2002-'06 model years. It featured a 340-horsepower V8 running through a more sophisticated five-speed automatic transmission. This third-generation Q45 arrived with distinctive "Gatling gun" HID headlights and much sharper styling than the previous Q.

The interior of the late-model Infiniti Q45s was airy, light and spacious. Furnished with vast tracts of wood, brushed aluminum accents, leather and a simple instrument cluster, it surrounded its occupants elegantly. Passenger room was ample throughout, and the power-adjustable driver seat never ceased to provide both comfort and support behind a power tilt/telescoping wheel that accommodated various driver postures with ease. Regrettably, though, many of the Q45's features were controlled by a joystick-based interface that must have seemed good to Infiniti's designers in principle but was clumsy to use in the real world.

Despite generally favorable reviews, however, sales remained poor over the years. In 2005, fewer than 1,200 were sold in the entire United States. For that reason, those shopping for a unique and satisfying performance luxury sedan you won't see on every block -- or any block -- are apt to find the third-gen Q an outstanding value on the used car market.

Minor evolutionary changes carried the Q45 through the years until 2005, when it received a freshening with restyled front and rear sheet metal, new headlights/foglights and LED taillights. Inside, there were new contoured, double-stitched seats, white luminescent gauges, chrome accents and dark maple trim. Underneath, there was a recalibrated transmission and new 17-inch alloy wheels.

In its final year, the 2006 Infiniti Q45 went out with a flourish: A new Sport variant featured active rear steering, performance-oriented suspension tuning and 19-inch alloy wheels. The active steering system monitored vehicle speed and steering input, and used motor-driven controls to adjust the rear suspension geometry to improve handling performance and response. Other changes this year included further revision to the five-speed automatic transmission (now with downshift rev-matching), Bluetooth connectivity and the addition of a lane departure warning system to the optional Premium Package.

Past Infiniti Q45 models

The first Q45 came to market in 1989 as a 1990 model, impressing those who valued distinctive style and performance, thanks to its 278-hp, 4.5-liter V8. In fact, it was one of the first Japanese luxury sedans to blend better-than-average performance with luxurious trimmings and simple-but-elegant styling. It's not an overstatement to say the Q helped redefine the modern luxury sedan.

The Infiniti Q45 offered two flavors initially -- base and Q45t. The Q45t touring package had chassis upgrades, a rear spoiler, BBS alloy wheels and HICAS four-wheel steering. The 1991 Q could also be had with a semiactive suspension (the Q45a). Due in part to a notoriously suspect, product-free initial advertising campaign, however, there weren't enough potential buyers turning into actual buyers. The Q45a model was dropped in 1996. (If you do find yourself looking at a Q45a, know that its active suspension components are complex and will require additional maintenance.)

In an attempt to increase sales and profitability, the second-generation Q45 adopted a more sober philosophy and moved to a new mainstream platform in 1997. Along for the ride were a more conventional appearance and a smaller, less-inspiring 4.1-liter V8 producing 266 hp. The original car's all-multilink suspension morphed to include struts up front, and was further tuned for a comfort bias. But none of this did much to help the car's sales, as they remained far below its competitors.

The sedan's appearance evolved again in 1999 with restyled sheet metal, HID headlights up front and an analog clock again gracing the dash; 17-inch wheels and an electronically adjustable suspension were standard on the Q45t. All Q45s of this era included a leather-lined cabin with exotic wood grain trim, Bose/CD audio and driver-seat/steering wheel position memory; a sunroof and heated seats were also available. The 2000 Q45 Anniversary Edition trim level was the flagship of the line, and the anniversary model was replaced by a Luxury trim in 2001.

At the time, we said that the second-generation Infiniti Q45 offered luxurious appointments, stylish sheet metal and a relatively low price. A Q of this vintage will probably work best for those drivers primarily interested in a luxury sedan that can provide a quiet and comfortable highway ride.

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Cadillac snags de Nysschen from Infiniti, names him new president

Fri, 11 Jul 2014 10:59:00 EST

Johan de Nysschen, the (now former) president of Infiniti, has officially jumped ship. The 54-year-old, who also spent time as the chief executive for Audi USA, has taken the position of president at Cadillac, following a two-year stint at the Nissan-owned luxury brand. In his new role, the 54-year-old will be responsible "for all aspects of Cadillac globally," according to a statement from General Motors.
"Johan brings to our company vast experience in the development and proper execution of luxury automotive brands," said GM President Dan Ammann, de Nysschen's new boss. "With over 20 years in this exact space, especially in the development of the Audi brand, his track record proves he is the perfect executive to lead Cadillac for the long term."
"I have for some time now been impressed by how the new General Motors has been transformed into a formidable force in the industry," de Nysschen said in a statement. "The combination of strong corporate leadership and exceptional engineering resources presents the perfect combination to restore Cadillac to its place among global premium brands."

Infiniti's Palmer announces QX30 small crossover production

Mon, 30 Jun 2014 10:55:00 EST

The name of the game these days in the luxury marketplace is premium compacts. BMW has the 1 Series and 2 Series, Mercedes the A-Class, B-Class, CLA and GLA, Audi has the A1 and A3, even Lexus has the CT 200h. Among the last to get in on the action is Infiniti, but that's all about to change.
Nissan's luxury brand has been working towards a premium compact for some time, revealing the Q30 concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show last year and signing a new deal with Daimler to help develop and produce it. Now it seems that both it and a crossover version have been approved for production.
The news comes from Andy Palmer, Nissan's UK-based COO, chairman of Infiniti and one of the company's top executives under CEO Carlos Ghosn. Late last week Palmer tweeted the following:

Mercedes and Infiniti confirm joint production in Mexico [w/video]

Mon, 30 Jun 2014 08:45:00 EST

It's official, folks: After initial reports last week indicated that Mercedes-Benz was preparing to begin assembly at the Nissan plant in Aguascalientes, Mexico, the two parent companies have announced just that. Only instead of using the existing Nissan plant at the site (in operation since 1992), Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance have announced a joint venture to build a new one alongside it.
The latest stage in the growing French-German-Japanese collaboration is part of a new collaboration that will see Infiniti and Mercedes jointly develop and build a line of compact premium vehicles, with the first Infiniti models set to roll off the assembly line in 2017 and the first Benzes to follow a year later. Neither party announced exactly which models that would encompass, but Mercedes already has a robust line of small vehicles (including the A-Class, B-Class, CLA and GLA), and Infiniti has long been toying with the idea of slotting in something smaller below the Q50.
The billion-euro project, split evenly between the two industrial giants, is set to create 5,700 new jobs in Mexico. In addition to the Aguascalientes project, Infiniti and Mercedes are also undertaking joint production of four-cylinder engines (initially for the C-Class and Q50) in Decherd, Tennessee, from which they will be exported around the world. By the time the new factory in Mexico reaches full capacity in 2021, it will have the capability to produce 300,000 vehicles annually. That's on top of the 850,000 vehicles the existing facility is capable of handling.

Airbag recall widens to include BMW, Chrysler, Ford and Toyota

Mon, 23 Jun 2014 15:45:00 EST

The recall of faulty airbag inflators supplied by Takata has exploded today to grow to seven automakers. In most cases, only models in certain high-humidity regions were affected because the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found in its investigation that moisture played a roll in determining whether there would be a problem. However, some companies opted for national campaigns. The exact number of affected models for these campaigns isn't yet known at this time.
BMW is recalling an undisclosed number of 325i, 325Xi, 330i and 330Xi models from the 2001 through 2005 model years and the 2001-2006 model year versions of the 325Ci and 330Ci for the driver side and passenger side inflators. Only vehicles currently registered in Florida, Puerto Rico, Hawaii and the US Virgin Islands are covered under this recall.
Neither Chrysler's filing with NHTSA nor its press release list the specific models affected, but a company spokesperson told Autoblog that at this time it only covers the driver and passenger side inflators for the 2006 Dodge Charger in Florida, Puerto Rico, Hawaii and the US Virgin Islands

US-built Infiniti Q50 engines to go into Euro-only cars

Thu, 12 Jun 2014 13:28:00 EST

Back in March, Infiniti announced that it would be adding a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder to its Q50 line for European and Chinese buyers. Now, we know where that engine will be built.
Nissan's Decherd, TN facility will receive the $319-million investment, which will see a separate, dedicated line for the Infiniti engines. According to Automotive News, this is more than a line running alongside the Nissan operations - the Infiniti facility will sport its own unique architecture and interior lighting, in a bid to distinguish the premium line from its mass-market parent company.
The logistics of all this do seem, on the surface, quite screwy. Building a new engine on one continent for a car built on another that will eventually go on sale on a third doesn't seem too bright, although there is a catch here. The new engine will also find its way into the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which will kick off production in Vance, AL later this year.

Infiniti readies Juke-based ESQ crossover specifically for China

Wed, 11 Jun 2014 15:29:00 EST

When most luxury automakers started getting into SUVs and crossovers, they started at with the largest models, but have gradually been getting smaller. Think Lexus and the LX, Audi and the Q7, or BMW and the X5, and you'll see what we mean, because each of them has been steadily downsizing its crossovers ever since. But Infiniti is going even smaller. At least, in China, anyway.
That's where the luxury marque from Nissan will soon be offering the new Infiniti ESQ. The smallest of Infiniti crossovers has been developed in China, exclusively for the Chinese market to meet Chinese tastes. It shares its underpinnings with the Nissan Juke, but instead of starting with the base model, Infiniti China has started with the more potent Juke Nismo - complete with 1.6-liter turbo four producing 197 horsepower - and added on premium accoutrements. The exterior that appears to be differentiated by a new grille and wheels, featuring the ESQ logo instead of Infiniti's, but the same quirky styling that sets the Juke apart. Though all we can of the interior is the steering wheel, you can bet that Infiniti gave the ESQ a more luxurious cabin space, too.
Infiniti's global communications manager Stefan Wienmann told Autoblog that the company is "expanding [its] portfolio not only globally but also specifically in China," adding the ESQ to a market-specific lineup that includes long-wheelbase versions of the Q50 sedan and QX50 crossover. "We see specific sales opportunities in this segment," explains Wienmann, adding that a targeted project like the ESQ "also enables us to gain experience in positioning a new premium model to the 'new millennials', a customer group that is very important to us."

Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge to cost over $100,000?

Fri, 06 Jun 2014 19:15:00 EST

Enthusiasts have been clamoring for Infiniti to build a car like the Q50 Eau Rouge for years. In concept form, it employs the GT-R's much-loved 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6, tuned to produce 560 horsepower and 442 pound-feet of torque, with the whole works slid underneath fetching luxury sedan bodywork with carbon fiber aero aids. At this point, the model is rumored to be all but certain for production. The company recently even put Sebastian Vettel in one to show it off. However, Infiniti President Johan de Nysschen is suggesting that the model's lifetime could be brief, limited and rather expensive.
The Infiniti boss recently gave a long interview to Motor Trend that spilled a lot of beans about the Eau Rouge. While he refused to officially admit that the super sedan was on the way, he admits that he's "pushing the Eau Rouge concept for commercialization."
According to de Nysschen, if built, the production version will hew closely to the concept with the engine from the GT-R, but the seven-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive system will come from the Q70. And while that would make the Eau Rouge a performance powerhouse, it might also be a rarity on the road:

Nissan Rogue, Pathfinder and Infiniti QX60 recalled for loose lug nuts

Wed, 04 Jun 2014 09:30:00 EST

Nissan has announced a small recall affecting 334 vehicles built just a few months back. 2014 Nissan Rogue and Pathfinder and 2014 Infiniti QX60 CUVs built between March 7 and March 10, 2014 could be susceptible to a loose lug nut on the passenger side wheels.
We shouldn't have to explain why a loose lug is a bit of an issue. Thankfully, it's also a ridiculously easy fix. Nissan obviously recommends reporting to your local dealer - and it will begin notifying owners of affected vehicles - but this is one of those rare recalls that has an easy DIY element to it.
Take a look below for a brief bulletin from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Autoblog's Matt Davis named Infiniti global product and brand communications director

Tue, 03 Jun 2014 13:30:00 EST

The door that separates automotive journalism and automaker PR swings both ways, and swings often as we see journalists move over to PR and vice versa. This time, however, it's one of ours.
That would be Matt Davis, longtime European correspondent for Autoblog and frequent contributor to numerous other publications including AutoWeek, Edmunds and Esquire. He was co-founder and longtime chairman of the World Car of the Year Awards, and serves on the jury for the International Engine of the Year awards as well. Matt has resided in Milan since 2001, writing for publications around the world in a number of languages, but will now be moving to Hong Kong.
That's where he will be taking up his new position as Global Director of Production and Brand Communications for Infiniti, which relocated its global headquarters to Hong Kong from Japan more than two years ago. In his new capacity, which he officially assumes on July 14, Davis will report directly to Infiniti's general manager of communications Stefan Weinmann.

2014 Infiniti QX60 Hybrid

Thu, 29 May 2014 14:58:00 EST

Infiniti launched its seven-passenger JX crossover for the 2013 model year with the automaker's familiar 3.5-liter V6 as standard equipment. For 2014, the model was renamed the QX60, and a new variant packing a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain joined the lineup. (For those interested in the family lineage, the new arrival is a mechanical twin to the Nissan Pathfinder Hybrid, which we took for a Quick Spin last year).
Hidden beneath the hood of the QX60 Hybrid is a supercharged, 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder engine, rated at 230 horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque. The combustion engine is supplemented by a 15-kilowatt electric motor, fed by a small lithium-ion battery back (hidden under the rear cargo floor), which adds 20 hp and 29 lb-ft of torque to the mix. Added up, Infiniti rates the total system power at 250 hp and 243 lb-ft - numbers that fall just short of its combustion sibling (the 3.5-liter V6 in the QX60 is rated at 265 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque). The only gearbox is a continuously variable transmission that drives either the front or all four wheels, depending on what the buyer specs.
The 2014 QX60 Hybrid AWD starts at $46,500 (the green model commands a $3,000 premium over the gas-only model). A long list of factory options such as Roof Rails ($495), Theater package ($1,700), Deluxe Technology package ($6,050), illuminated kick plates ($440) and a Hybrid Premium package ($4,600) bumped our as-tested price to a healthy $60,780, including $995 for destination.