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2015 Infiniti QX60 Introduction

The Infiniti QX60 is a luxury crossover SUV with three-row seating that strikes a nice balance between practicality and self-indulgence. It’s big, and good for families, but doesn’t feel huge underway.

For 2015, the standard electronically controlled continuously variable transmission, or CVT, adds new D-Step Logic Control, which simulates shifts during acceleration, giving a more natural feeling as speed builds. The other changes are cosmetic: an available wheat-and-black leather interior, and three new exterior colors. Launched as the 2013 Infiniti JX, its name was changed to QX60 as part of an overhaul of the Infiniti model nomenclature.

QX60 is quiet, mannerly and competent on the road, if not dynamically exciting to drive. The standard Infiniti QX60 is powered by Nissan’s familiar 3.5-liter V6, rated at 265 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque, paired with the CVT. Nissan was an early adopter of CVTs and is a leader in this technology. There is also a QX60 Hybrid, using a single 15-kilowatt electric motor/two-clutch system, compact lithium battery pack, and supercharged 2.5-liter engine, yielding a net 250 horsepower.

There are quite a few mid-luxury crossovers with three-row seating. The top player is the Acura MDX with its 300-horsepower, 3.7-liter V6. It gets about the same fuel mileage as the Infiniti QX60, which is EPA-rated at 21 city/27 highway/23 combined with front-wheel drive, and 1 mpg less with AWD. The QX60 Hybrid gets 26 combined, only 3 mpg more than the V6.

At 196.4 inches, the Infiniti is 4.8 inches longer than the MDX, on a wheelbase that is 5.9 inches longer, so the Infiniti has more passenger and cargo space. Its inherently boxy shape is flattered by a laid-back windshield, curving roofline, and forward-canted rear hatch, set off by a creative zigzag in the rear roof pillar. Its face glitters with a chrome double-arc grille speaking Infiniti’s current design language.

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