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Compact and curvy QX30 sets new entry point for Infiniti

Infiniti introduces its new entry level model, the compact crossover QX30, designed to give urban dwellers enhanced comfort.

Wayne Cunningham
Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET's Roadshow. Prior to the automotive beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine.
Wayne Cunningham
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As a new entry level model, Infiniti introduces the QX30 compact crossover. Markets outside of the US will also get a hatchback model, the Q30.

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Infiniti will offer the QX30 in a variety of configurations, starting with front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive. The former can be had in Base, Luxury or Premium trims, while the latter only comes in Luxury and Premium. There will also be a separate Sport trim in front-wheel-drive only.

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The QX30 comes as the result of a development deal with Mercedes-Benz owner Daimler. As such, the QX30 shares much of its equipment with the Mercedes-Benz GLA250.

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Infiniti stamped the QX30 with its own throttle, steering and suspension tuning, and its own dashboard infotainment system.

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The QX30 also shows off an evolved grille design for Infiniti, which will also appear on the upcoming Q60 coupe.

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The QX30 gets the same turbocharged two-liter engine as the Mercedes-Benz GLA250, making 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.

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The Infiniti badge conceals a radar sensor, enabling cruise control and collision prevention.

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This all-wheel-drive version of the QX30 is lifted 1.2-inches higher than the base model.

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Headlights shown here use optional LED lamps.

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The cabin seats five, with fold-down rear seats for expanded cargo capacity.

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Ride quality lacks some of the comfort associated with a luxury brand in favor of a more sporty driving character.

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Steering input feels responsive in the QX30.

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The all-wheel-drive system automatically shifts torque to the rear wheels to enhance grip. It doesn't include a control to lock the torque split.

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Infiniti brings a very sculpted design to the QX30's body, distinguishing it from the Mercedes-Benz GLA250.

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An optional panoramic sunroof only stretches to cover the front half of the rear seating area.

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The QX30's hatchback adds cargo versatility.

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