Infiniti boasts a strong history in SUV design , the pioneering Infiniti FX45, launched in 2003, set the template for sporting SUVs over the following decade. Regarded as the world’s first mid-size multi-purpose sports vehicle, the FX is still considered an SUV design icon today.
The QX Sport Inspiration stands out in its segment with its taut lines, muscular haunches, high visual center of gravity, long bonnet and raked, coupe-like silhouette. Immediately recognizable as an Infiniti, the QX Sport Inspiration is inspired by Infiniti’s “Powerful Elegance” form language and bears the brand’s design hallmarks; including the signature double-arch grille, focused “human eye” headlights, “crescent-cut” C-pillar and masculine, fluid body sculpting. At the front, the line from the top of Infiniti’s familiar double-arch grille extends through the sharp, high-performance, “human-eye” headlights around the edge of the hood to form a character line that runs over the wide, flared front wheel arches and along the flanks to the tapered rear.
The concept promises off-road versatility, aided by its raised, 230 mm ground clearance, as well as the empowering, in-control on-road driving characteristics and cruising comfort that is expected of any Infiniti. The concept features a lean, purposeful form, with a short front overhang and wide stance, total width (excluding rear-view cameras) is 1,900 mm, while length is 4,600 mm. In profile the bodywork tapers down from the Concept’s roof (1,650 mm maximum height) toward a rear hatch that has been angled to accentuate the vehicle’s “lean-forward,” coupe-like silhouette.
From the rear, three-dimensional “blade-shaped” tail lights taper inwards to the center of the hatchback panel, echoing the organic forms apparent elsewhere on the exterior. Another design feature artfully blending form and function is the performance-inspired rear diffuser, which aids aerodynamic efficiency and is careful integrated with the exhaust outlets. At the base of the slim “floating” A-pillars, small rear-facing cameras in sleek housings replace conventional rear-view side mirrors. The A-pillars rise to flank the panoramic glass roof, which extends from the header rail to the rear hatch. The roof features a Cosmic Chrome gradation, visually blending the glasshouse into the rear roof spoiler, creating a distinctive aesthetic feature that also helps manage temperature within the cabin.
Flowing lines and advanced craftsmanship characterize the spacious and beautifully appointed interior, which follows Infiniti’s “driver-centric, passenger-minded” approach to cabin architecture. The interior’s color palette, predominantly black and white with flashes of the hide’s natural tan color; is striking, yet harmoniously blended through careful use of line, form, and texture.
The front section of the vehicle is focused on the needs of the driver, endowing a true sense of confidence and control. At the same time, the horizontally-biased interior architecture, with lines that wrap around the upper portions of the cabin, promotes a feeling of togetherness throughout. The four-seat layout emphasizes the designers’ desire to give all passengers their own personal space within the cabin, while a fifth seat in the center of the rear bench is available if needed. Despite the relatively compact footprint of the car and the coupe-like roofline, the floating front and rear seats, suspended to allow more space on the floor of the cabin, and the generous 2,800 mm wheelbase allow all passengers to travel in comfort.
A strong, twisting character line flows from the front of the cabin to the rear, tumbling downwards at the B-pillar, inspired by and echoing the organic lines of the exterior. The QX Sport Inspiration features a two-tone black-and-white interior, with black surfaces resembling the appearance of body armor, playing off against the soft and gentle forms of the brighter white surfaces.
Many of the cabin’s surfaces are wrapped in robust black saddle leather, which designers used to dictate the structure and shapes of the central control stack, as well as the lower dashboard, armrests, and luggage-space cover. Some of the hard black saddle leather surfaces are scored to replicate the sharp angles found in a crystal prism. Furthermore, hard black saddle leather also lines the floor and kickplates, with laser-cut, back-lit Infiniti logos visible upon entry.
Other interior highlights are the white leathers on the upper dashboard, nubuck leather steering (equipped with paddle-shifters) and black ultra-suede panoramic roof. A dial is available for switchng drive modes on the center console, while a pair of compact monitors integrated into the A-pillars give the driver easy view of surroundings and project images captured on the two rear-facing cameras that replace the door mirrors. Between the front seats a small touchscreen panel to provide rear-seat passengers their own ventilation controls.
The Infiniti QX Inspiration is currently on display at the Auto China, Beijing Motor Show.