Facelifted for 2016 with new front- and rear-end designs, INFINITI’s seven-passenger, three-row luxury crossover descended from the JX that debuted for 2013. Sharing its structure with the Nissan Pathfinder, it gets a stronger V6 engine for 2017.

Pricing and Equipment

The QX60 comes with either a regular gasoline engine or a hybrid powertrain, with front- or all-wheel drive. Prices start at $44,095 (destination charge included) for the regular front-drive model. All-wheel drive goes for $45,895. An upgraded 3.5-liter V6 with direct injection now produces 295 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque (up from 265 hp and 248 lb-ft), coupled to a continuously variable transmission (CVT). INFINITI offers only one trim level, but several option groups are available.

The basic QX60 includes:

  • 3.5-liter V6 and CVT
  • Front-drive or all-wheel drive
  • Rearview camera
  • Leather seating
  • 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Three-zone automatic climate control
  • Six-speaker audio
  • Moonroof
  • Power liftgate

The QX60 Hybrid uses a supercharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine coupled to a 15-kW electric motor and a CVT.

Performance Pros

  • Use of a CVT rather than a conventional automatic transmission will please some potential buyers, but disappoint others. CVTs tend to draw opposing opinions for their lack of shifts and tendency to hold a high rpm under hard acceleration. Nissan/INFINITI’s version does its job well enough, but doesn’t help make the QX60 seem refined.
  • Of the four selectable driving schemes, Sport mode provides “virtual” gear ratios for the CVT, emulating a six-speed automatic. That should at least partially placate those who disdain CVTs.

Performance Cons

  • A QX60 isn’t as refined on the road as some rivals. Though acceptable for its class, the ride is firmer and less composed than expected in a luxury crossover.
  • Handling trails that of rivals. Steering lacks crispness and road feel, while roadholding ranks as no more than adequate. The QX60 leans in brisk turns, and tends to yield a “plowing” sensation if driven forcefully.
  • Eco mode can annoy, because the pedal pushes back against the driver’s foot if he or she attempts to accelerate too energetically. We're sure it sounded good on paper, but the execution is occasionally frustrating.
  • The Hybrid's isn't all that efficient compared to the gas model, returning 26 miles per gallon in the city, 28 mpg on the highway, and 26 mpg combined with front-wheel drive. The V6-powered model, meanwhile, nets 21 mpg city, 27 highway, and 23 combined. Both powertrains demand premium fuel.

Interior Pros

  • Adults in the front and second rows can expect comfortable seating and ample interior space.
  • Substantial sound insulation keeps the cabin pleasantly quiet.
  • Wide-opening doors ease entry/exit, as does a somewhat low step-in height.

Interior Cons

  • INFINITI’s infotainment system falls short of setups in competitive vehicles.
  • Though relatively easy to access, the third row is still somewhat low and a tad short on cushioning – most suitable for youngsters.
  • Despite higher cost, the QX60s cabin looks much like its Nissan Pathfinder cousin, though detail work is substantially better.

The Most Pleasant Surprise

Second-row seats slide fore and aft by 5.5 inches, to reapportion leg space between second- and third-row passengers. Even if a child seat is installed, the third row is accessible.

The Least Pleasant Surprise

Valuable safety systems, including automatic emergency braking, come in the Driver Assistance or Deluxe Technology packages, but they’re available only in conjunction with Premium and Premium Plus option groups – the $1,850 Driver Assistance Package actually adds $6,550 to the QX's price, while the $7,300 Driver Technology Package realistically adds $12,000 to the bottom line. The QX60 got a five-star overall rating from NHTSA, but only four for the frontal crash-test.

The Bottom Line

Spacious and stylish, tastefully modern, the QX60 is quite similar to the less-costly Nissan Pathfinder, though interior materials are higher quality.