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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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2014 Infiniti Q50S

Mon, 03 Feb 2014 11:57:00 EST

Ten years ago, nearly to the day, I took delivery of a brand-new 2004 Infiniti G35 6MT. The sporty rear-wheel drive sedan, equipped with its throaty 260-horsepower V6, slick manual gearbox and limited-slip differential replaced my 2001 BMW 330i because the Japanese competitor touted a product that was roomier, better equipped, quicker and lower priced. The G35 trumped the German in nearly every measurable category - at least on paper.
The 2014 Infiniti Q50 is the direct descendant, albeit two generations later, of the car I owned a decade ago. It is dimensionally about the same size, but it has gained more than 300 pounds of mass thanks to numerous safety upgrades and technical innovations. The additional weight is largely dismissed by a larger and more efficient powerplant that delivers an additional 68 horsepower, a welcome arrival, but the manual gearbox that charmed enthusiasts has been pushed out of the picture by a mandatory seven-speed automatic transmission.
As it has in the past, Infiniti touts its all-new Q50 as a luxury sport sedan worthy of the title. Decades ago, impressive performance statistics may have sealed the deal. Yet there is much more to the assignment today, as the model must offer premium appointments, sophistication and engaging driving dynamics if it's going to entice and capture the next-generation of young, premium buyers - much like the G35 did for me ten years ago.

Red Bull Racing unveils RB10 as pre-season testing kicks off

Tue, 28 Jan 2014 14:16:00 EST

Ladies and gentlemen, here's the car that will win the 2014 Formula One World Championship... probably. Maybe. The success of Red Bull Racing over the past several years means that the debut of its 2014 challenger is one of the more note-worthy events of the preseason, showing off the latest piece of aerodynamic mastery from Adrian Newey.
Like the Ferrari F14 T, the Red Bull RB10 features a more conventional nose, which still plunges rather dramatically ahead of the front wheels. We're seeing a very interesting split early in the season between the top teams like Red Bull and Ferrari, who are opting for a more traditional design, and the mid-pack challengers, which are being more aggressive with their aerodynamics. Seeing how this plays out during the season will be very interesting. As for RBR's design, it's attractive, but wasn't easy to pen, according to Newey, who found the turbocharged V6s a difficult piece in the new F1 puzzle.
"Whereas the V8s were a very well-known package, with these power units, the engine itself is easy enough to install, but then of course you've got the turbocharger, the intercoolers, and the electrical side in terms of the motor generator units and much bigger batteries," Newey told the official Formula One website.

Infiniti G37 to be renamed Q40; new flagship sedan confirmed

Mon, 27 Jan 2014 18:59:00 EST

Infiniti has already made it known that its aging G37 sedan will live on alongside the all-new Q50 through the 2015 model year, but little else for this sporty four door has been announced past the 2013 model year. As of this writing, there is no 2014 model shown on the company's consumer website. A new report from Car and Driver, however, indicates that like other models carried over to Infiniti's new naming convention, the four-door G37 will live out the rest of its days with a "Q" name after all.
Unlike the G coupe and convertible - renamed Q60 - the sedan will reportedly wear the Q40 designation until its ultimate demise. We reached out to Infiniti for more information, but a spokesperson only had this for us: "we have not provided any product details for post-2013 models. That will come at a later time." Previously, we had been told that the sedan would continue to live out its days under the G37 nameplate.
As for products that are actually new to the lineup, C/D says that the Q30 and the next-gen QX50 are both expected to arrive before the company launches a new range-topping flagship sedan as soon as 2016. Aside from a handful of reports suggesting this sedan exists (C/D says it's confirmed for production), there isn't much we know about it - including whether it will be called Q80, Q90 or something else entirely. It would appear there's plenty to look forward to from Infiniti's upcoming product lineup, and we are eagerly awaiting a 550-horsepower Q70 sedan and/or a production version of the Q50 Eau Rouge.

Q50 Eau Rouge to kick off series of performance Infinitis

Fri, 24 Jan 2014 08:00:00 EST

Infiniti is desperate to position itself as a brand for performance enthusiast. It's tried to create that impression by attaching its name to the Red Bull Racing team, by sprucing up the G37 Coupe and G37 Convertible as part of its lack-luster Infiniti Performance Line, and by bringing Sebastian Vettel on board to create a special edition FX crossover. But the Japanese luxury brand knows it's going to need something more comprehensive if it's going to go up against BMW and its M models, Mercedes and its AMGs, or Audi and its Quattro GmbH-tuned RS range.
That's why the Q50 Eau Rouge concept unveiled just last week at the Detroit Auto Show was so important to the marque. But Infiniti has more in store than just a concept. Nissan desires to put the Q50 Eau Rouge - named after the notoriously challenging turn at the Spa Francorchamps circuit in Belgium - into production with a 500-horsepower engine. But in speaking to Automotive News, Infiniti chief Johan de Nysschen hinted at more good news to come.
That could include a performance version of a new flagship sedan Infiniti is said to be working on, positioned above the current Q70 to fill the void left by the discontinued Q45 that capped the brand's range before it shifted its entire naming scheme behind it. The flagship sedan would need some serious muscle to challenge the likes of the Mercedes S63 AMG and Audi S8, but Infiniti seems bent on getting there. To cap it all off, Infiniti has long been rumored to be working on a halo sports car. Whether they'll all carry the Eau Rouge name, the IPL badge or some sort of other designator remains to be seen, but we'll enjoy seeing this development progress.

Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge portends seriously powerful future sports sedan

Mon, 13 Jan 2014 08:00:00 EST



"If we built this car I would expect it to feature over 500 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque."
Eau Rouge is a notoriously difficult turn at Belgium's Spa-Francorchamps Circuit that is capable of striking fear into the hearts of the most hardened driver. Naming a car after something so terrifying, therefore, strikes us as a rather poor idea.

Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge revealed ahead of Detroit

Thu, 02 Jan 2014 14:29:00 EST

As fast as Infiniti is on the track with its sponsored Formula One racecar, the automaker sure is taking its time releasing details for the Q50 Eau Rouge Concept. This performance- and aero-tuned version of the Q50 sedan is heading for a big debut at the Detroit Auto Show, and Infiniti just released a new image and some more info on what we can only hope is a glimpse at future Infiniti Performance Line (IPL) products.
Influenced by the Red Bull Racing program, Infiniti's design team gave the Q50 a substantial once over with the concept getting an entirely new body compared to the production version of the luxury sedan making it both lower and wider. Previewed by an earlier teaser, the face of the Q50 Eau Rouge Concept has a mean look with massive intakes and a carbon fiber splitter. This new image also shows off additional cues like the lightweight, 21-inch wheels as well as the carbon fiber roof, side sills and door mirrors. While we only get this single image of the Q50 Eau Rouge Concept, Infiniti promises a carbon fiber rear splitter, dual exhaust and a "large integrated rear spoiler."
There is still no word on what handling or engine upgrades are in store, but hopefully those GT-R-inspired hood vents are only a hint at something monstrous lurking beneath the hood. Check out the full press release posted below for a few more details on the car, but we expect Infiniti to drop some more info on the Eau Rouge Concept before its official debut.

Infiniti keeps us on our toes for Q50 Eau Rouge

Tue, 24 Dec 2013 16:01:00 EST

If you've been watching the evolving rapprochement between Infiniti and Red Bull Racing, and have wondered what the point was if the Japanese automaker didn't capitalize on its expensive collaboration with the world-champion Formula One team, then Infiniti may finally have the answer come the Detroit Auto Show next month.
That's where Nissan's premium division is set to unveil the Q50 Eau Rouge concept, a show car set to showcase its F1 involvement in the form of a jazzed-up sports sedan. We still don't have much to go on in terms of what the concept car will actually entail beyond a body kit, but Infiniti has launched a dedicated website for the reveal and with it, this teaser video. It still doesn't tell us much, but it's a cool animation just the same, so check it out below.

2014 Infiniti Q50's novel drive-by-wire steering system recalled

Mon, 16 Dec 2013 10:31:00 EST

The gradual replacement of mechanical components in automobiles with electronic systems brings with it definite advantages, but also poses certain potential dangers. Just think of the inevitable problems you've encountered with the computer on which you're reading these words and you'll know what we mean. But a computer crashing isn't as problematic as your car going on the fritz when its electronic systems fail.
That's what Infiniti is being reminded of with its new drive-by-wire electronic steering system. The Japanese automaker developed and installed the Direct Adaptive Steering System in its new Q50 sedan, but a small number of those cars on the road are now being recalled due to that system.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, on a small number of examples, the Q50's optional by-wire system may fail if the temperature in the engine compartment drops below freezing. There's a backup mechanical setup in place should the electronic system fail, but NHTSA says that the backup system may also fail to engage in time to avoid a crash.

Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge racing toward Detroit with Red Bull in its veins

Thu, 05 Dec 2013 11:01:00 EST

There are several ways an automaker can get into Formula One racing. It can start its own team from scratch (like Toyota did in 2002), it can buy an existing team (like BMW did with Sauber in 2005) or it can supply engines to other teams (as so many manufacturers have done over the years). Infiniti chose another direction and opted to sponsor the world-champion Red Bull Racing team.
Infiniti has undoubtedly poured millions into its partnership with Red Bull since it started in 2011, but aside from the Sebastian Vettel edition FX (which technically emerged from the company's sponsorship of the driver as separate from the team), the tie-in has yet to translate into a Red Bull-tuned (or at least -inspired) Infiniti for the road. But that's just what Nissan's premium brand has in store for us at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show in January.
Well, almost, because the concept just announced is still a step or two away from reaching your local Infiniti dealership, but here it is just the same. It's called the Q50 Eau Rouge, and it's based on the company's latest tech-laden sports sedan. It takes its name, of course, from the famous uphill section of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit where Sebastian Vettel won the Belgian Grand Prix earlier this year, but Infiniti isn't telling us much more than that.

Infiniti Q50 steer-by-wire system took 10 years to develop [w/video]

Tue, 03 Dec 2013 17:58:00 EST

Infiniti's Direct Adaptive Steering (DAS) is quite a novelty - the system employs no physical connection between the steering wheel and the front wheels under normal circumstances and instead relies on a computer, clutch and steering-angle actuator to guide vehicles down the road with input from the driver.
In our First Drive review of a 2014 Infiniti Q50 equipped with the system, we weren't overly impressed by the artificial feedback. But we can't help but be impressed with how long Infiniti spent on its development: a full 10 years, according to Autoline Daily in the video report below. A staggering 70 percent of the research and development time spent on DAS was devoted to getting the steering feel right, and unfortunately, our first impression suggests their results still leave something to be desired, as we found it lacked the sporty feeling a sport sedan should have.
The weight of DAS is comparable to that of a conventional steering system due to its complexity. For example, three ECUs are used in the first-generation DAS system to ensure there's never a loss of steering, but Infiniti is refining the technology and is working to simplify it to reduce weight. One day Infiniti hopes that only one ECU will be needed to control DAS. We just hope it doesn't take the Japanese automaker another ten years to get the steering feel right.