For years, Infiniti has just chugged along, snagging up its share of buyers who fell off the BMW and Mercedes bandwagon. Recently, however, Infiniti has been working harder at giving the big boys from Germany an honest run for their money, and the new Q50 is set to give the 3 Series and C-Class a reason to check their blind spots.
We already learned the aggressive pricing of the new Q50 2.0t and the wild Q50 Red Sport 400, but we hadn’t yet learned where the volume-selling model, the 3.0t, would fall. Infiniti puts that mystery to bed today with the announcement that the mid-range, 300-horsepower Q50 will start from just $39,900. That puts it a whopping $5,900 under the BMW 340i and just $950 higher than the less-powerful Mercedes-Benz C300. Opting for all-wheel drive tacks only another $2,000 to the price tag.
Buyers can also go with the Q50 Sport, which pushes things up a notch with its better-tuned Direct Adaptive Steering system, driver-selectable Dynamic Digital Suspension, a sport-styled front fascia, 19-inch sport wheels, enhanced brakes, sport seats, aluminum pedals, and magnesium paddle shifters. This model starts from just $43,900 and rises to $45,900 with all-wheel drive.
It’ll be an interesting year to see how buyers respond to Infiniti’s changes. In 2015, the brand’s sales rose 13.8 percent, placing it seventh among all luxury car companies in total sales. While it may not grow enough in 2016 to jump up any positions, I am willing to bet that Infiniti will see even more growth this year and close the gap between it and the top-selling brands.
Stay tuned for updates.