2017 Infiniti QX30 Premium AWD
Class: Premium Compact Crossover
Miles Driven: 258
Fuel Used: 10.1 gallons
Real-world fuel economy: 25.5 mpg
Driving mix: 40% city, 60% highway
|CG Report Card|
|Big & Tall comfort ratings are for front seats only. "Big" rating based on male tester weighing approximately 350 pounds, "Tall" rating based on 6'6"-tall male tester.|
|Room and Comfort||C|
|Power and Performance||B|
|Fit and Finish||B+|
|Report-card grades are derived from a consensus of test-driver evaluations. All grades are versus other vehicles in the same class. Value grade is for specific trim level evaluated, and may not reflect Consumer Guide's impressions of the entire model lineup.|
|Big & Tall Comfort|
EPA-estimated fuel economy: 21/30/25 (city/highway/combined)
Base price: $37,700 (not including $995 destination charge)
Options on test car: Technology Package ($2200), Cafe Teak Theme Package ($1750), LED Package ($1000), Navigation Package ($1850), illuminated kick plates ($540)
Price as tested: $46,035
The great: Sporty driving feel
The good: Nicely finished interior
The not so good: Visibility, transmission performance, interior storage, entry/exit
While we don’t know how the unlikely partnership between luxury rivals Infiniti and Mercedes-Benz came to be, we do know that what it spawned was the Infiniti QX30.
As it seems there can’t be too many compact crossovers on the market today — and that goes for rather expensive ones as well — it’s certainly understandable that any company worth its salt wants to have at least one entry in that class, and more wouldn’t hurt. So to that end, Mercedes introduced the GLA a couple of years back to join its existing GLC, also considered a compact (though a larger and more expensive one), and Infiniti likewise began a search for a smaller linemate to its existing QX50.
Unlike the GLC — which is based on a rear-drive platform (that offers all-wheel drive as well) hosting either turbo four or turbo V6 engines, the GLA rides a front-drive platform (also offering all-wheel drive) with only a 4-cylinder turbo for power. And that’s the crossover tapped to share its gene pool with the QX30.
Test Drive: 2016 Lexus NX 200t F Sport
We previously tested a 2017 QX30 Sport and found it to be a bit underwhelming. But part of its lack of allure stemmed from the fact that it was a front-drive model riding a lowered suspension, which made it more of a traditional compact hatchback than a true compact crossover. Neither of those negatives were suffered by the QX30 Premium AWD recently tested, as it not only sported all-wheel drive, but also rode on a more crossover-like raised suspension.
In terms of the ride/handling balance offered by that suspension, the QX30 favors the latter. As a result, it suffers a somewhat stiff ride over broken pavement (in part attributable to its run-flat tires), but fares well in corners with little body lean and good steering response. In other ways, this QX30 Premium mimics the QX30 Sport, so please click on the link for more details.
The virtually unchanged 2018 versions of the QX30 just went on sale as this is being written, though there has been some juggling of prices and trim offerings. And although the QX30 Premium AWD reviewed here better represents the “compact crossover” category than the Sport version tested previously, it still doesn’t strike us as the best of that breed.