Car Review: 2013 Infiniti QX56 4WD

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Among the full-size SUV crowd, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better looking entry than the 2013 Infiniti QX56 4WD with its top to bottom inspired design. After spending a week driving the QX56, you’ll realize just how much luxury can be squeezed into a condo on wheels.

EXTERIOR

The exterior of the 2013 Infiniti QX56 4WD is simply stunning, as the folks at Infiniti have put together the complete package with this high-end machine. The Infiniti QX is designed to attract and hold viewers’ attention, conveying its underlying sense of power and strength. The bold, front chrome grille is flanked by automatic on/off bi-functional xenon headlights with windshield wiper interlock and integrated front fog lights. Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS) with auto-leveling headlights and headlight washers add to the list of options.

Other exterior features include LED taillights, heated and power-folding sideview mirrors with integrated turn signals, courtesy lights and reverse tilt-down feature, body color running boards, body color integrated front and rear splashguards built into the wheel arches, roof rails, a power-sliding tinted glass moonroof and a power rear liftgate. A front underbody spoiler, functional rear liftgate spoiler and redesigned side mirrors help provide aerodynamics of 0.36 Cd and zero lift. The QX’s strong presence is accented by the powerful wheel and tire combinations, including 22-inch, 9-spoke forged aluminum-alloy wheels with 275/50R22 all-season tires that demand respect.

INTERIOR

I have friends who spent big bucks on designing their homes or condos that can’t touch the luxurious feel of the 2013 Infiniti QX56 4WD! The QX’s world-class inner sanctum offers a comfortable space and personal controls for every occupant. It features standard 7-passenger seating capacity, with 8-passenger capacity available with the second row 60/40-split folding bench seat. Leather-appointed seating is standard for all three rows. Even more luxurious semi-aniline leather seating surfaces in our Deluxe Touring Package with new third row perforation and stitching added for 2013 to match the front two rows. The driver’s seat is 10-way power adjustable, including 2-way power lumbar support. It features a standard dual occupant memory system for the driver’s seat, steering wheel and outside mirrors. The front passenger’s seat is 8-way power adjustable, including 2-way power lumbar support. Heated front seats are standard, with climate-controlled (heating and cooling functions) front seats and heated second row seats, and the second row captain’s chairs offer a tip-up function for easy third row entry/exit. Also standard is a heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel which drivers will truly appreciate in colder months, and a 16.6 cubic foot cargo space for luggage is provided with the third row seat up. When the third row seat is folded, the flat load floor offers a wide versatile space for carrying cargo and recreational gear.

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First Drive: 2013 Infiniti JX

The crossover market is exploding, and CUVs with three rows are getting more popular as buyers with families look for options that can fit the kids and more adults.

We first saw Infiniti’s planned entry in this segment last year when they unveiled the all-new Infiniti JX concept at the Concours D’Elegance at Pebble Beach. We were impressed then with the look of this all-new vehicle, and last week we had the opportunity to drive it at the Infiniti drive event in picturesque Charleston, South Carolina.

The new JX is targeting buyers with kids who don’t want to sacrifice luxury and style, filling a gap in Infiniti’s crossover and SUV portfolio. The designers also emphasized space and flexibility in the interior along with cutting edge safety features.

Exterior

The exterior of the JX looks sleek and stylish and is consistent with the design language we’ve come to expect from Infiniti, including the distinctive LED tail lamps. It’s a far cry from some of the boxier or bulkier vehicles from competitors that sport three rows. One new feature that we’ll be seeing more of is the crescent shaped rear side window which adds a nice touch to the vehicle. Overall, the look is a real winner that should be a huge hit with the target market.

Interior

Infiniti engineers focused on space and flexibility with the interior, with particular emphasis on easy access to the third row seats. They created a mechanism that lets the second row seat tilt in a manner to provide the most space, and another to allow users to tilt the seat even when a car seat is strapped in (without the baby of course!). Not having to remove the car seat is a significant convenience for many parents, and adults can easily get in and out of the third row, so grandma will happily jump in the back with the kids. Third row air conditioning was also added, along with two DVD monitors for second row passengers. Throw in Bose technology with the speaker system and you have a luxurious experience for the entire family.

The technology packages are impressive, and the My Schedule feature lets you coordinate your Google Calendar with the map and other functions in the vehicle. So you can set an appointment on your PC calendar and then just instruct the vehicle to “map it” once you get inside. Very convenient! This should be even better once they come up with an app to coordinate all of this.

Performance

The new JX was not engineered to be a performance vehicle, but rather was built for the target market with sufficient and competitive horsepower. I had the chance to push the vehicle at higher speeds and it performed just fine with solid acceleration and solid handling. Moms and dads driving the car certainly won’t have any complaints.

It’s in the safety area where Infiniti has come up with some impressive innovations that will certainly please the target customers. The Backup Collision Intervention is something you’ll be seeing in the commercials for this vehicle. Basically, if you’re backing up at low speeds, the sensors will pick up something behind you or an approaching vehicle and stop the car for you even before you notice the hazard on you rear view camera. I had the opportunity to test it and it worked great. The key is that the driver is going no faster than five miles per hour backing up, but this should do if for most backup situation in the driveway or in a parking lot. Another helpful feature lets alerts the driver if someone or something is right next to the vehicle.

Overview

Infiniti has nailed this one and it should do very well in this segment. The JX is an impressive vehicle and it has all the luxuries buyers will want, and some they didn’t realize they need.

  

Join Bullz-Eye.com for an Ohio State vs. Michigan Twitter party

Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Thad Matta (R) stands with Jared Sullinger during their NCAA East Regional college basketball game against the Kentucky Wildcats in Newark, New Jersey March 25, 2011. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

One of the oldest rivalries in college sports will be renewed this Saturday, February 18, when No. 19 Michigan hosts No. 6 Ohio State at 9:00PM ET. And along with Infiniti and The Bachelor Guy.com, Bullz-Eye.com will be hosting a Twitter party during the game!

Join us on Twitter this Saturday night @bullzeyedotcom and talk college hoops with us. We’ll also provide opportunities for you to win prizes, including a $50 Visa Gift Card and Infiniti Branded Basketball, as well as a grand prize of $100 Visa Gift Card and Infiniti Branded Basketball.

To be entered to win, all you have to do is vote in Infiniti Coaches’ Charity Challenge at ESPN.com/Infiniti. After casting your vote, tweet who you voted for to @InfinitiNews and include the hastag #CoachesCharity.

Easy, right? The best part is that your vote goes to a great cause as well.

Infiniti is a proud partner of NCAA Men’s Basketball and is donating $5,000 to each of the charities involved in the Coaches’ Charity Challenge. The coaches’ charity with the most votes will receive $100,000, so be sure to check out ESPN.com/Infiniti to check out all of the charities involved so that you’re ready to vote on Saturday night.

See you around tip off!

  

Infiniti teases big news for the Frankfurt Motor Show

Auto shows are where automakers like to make a big splash with new product and announcements. And at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, it won’t be any different, as it appears Infiniti is gearing up for some big news. Check out the video below for hints of what’s to come!

  

The Ultimate Car Show at Pebble Beach

I knew I was in for a treat when I traveled to Pebble Beach this past weekend with Infiniti. Any trip to the beautiful Bay Area that included a visit to the iconic Pebble Beach golf course would be memorable. But visiting during the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance provided a completely unique experience. The Concours ranks as the most prestigious classic car show in the world. I was stunned by the number of beautiful cars that were on display. It’s a car enthusiast’s dream event, but anyone who appreciates great cars would have an unforgettable experience.

Infiniti took the opportunity around this event to introduce two impressive concept vehicles, including the JX Concept crossover which made its debut at an elegant evening event and the Etherea concept which was introduced for the first time in North America. The Etherea was introduced on Saturday morning on the 18th green at Pebble Beach, which would be the location for the Concours on Sunday (see photo below).

The Concours is the signature event for car enthusiasts, so all weekend we saw a virtual parade of amazing vehicles. Everywhere you turned you could spot old and new Ferraris, Bugattis, Rolls Royces, Aston Martins, Lambos and more, along with classic American cars as well. In the days leading up to Sunday, tons of vehicles we on display. One of my favorites was this 1968 Dodge Charger R/T:

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