- Infiniti unveiled its newest SUV, the QX50, at the Los Angeles Auto Show on Tuesday night.
- It features Infiniti’s new, variable compression ratio engine, better known as the VC-Turbo.
- The company says the VC-Turbo combines the thrust of a small turbocharged gas-powered engine with the fuel-efficiency of a four cylinder diesel.
- It boasts 268 horsepower and 27 miles per gallon, according to Infiniti.
LOS ANGELES – Infiniti has pulled the wraps off of its newest luxury SUV, the QX50, at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show on Tuesday night.
The QX50 adds to Infiniti’s already robust SUV lineup, but the newest version features the first production-ready example of Infiniti’s new, variable compression ratio engine, better known as the VC-Turbo.
The company, which is the luxury subsidiary of Nissan Motors, says the VC-Turbo combines the thrust of a small turbocharged engine with the fuel-efficiency of a four cylinder diesel. Infiniti achieved this by engineering the VC-Turbo to operate with a compression ratio ranging from 8:1 to 14:1. In practice, the engine adjusts its compression ratio based on driving conditions to optimize performance and efficiency. The higher the compression ratio, the better the fuel economy.
The result is an engine that churns enough ponies to run with some larger V6 engines, while generating fuel economy on par with some hybrids.
Perhaps more notably, the VC-Turbo engine has been in development for two decades – a significant departure from the auto industry’s more recent focus on hybrid and electric drivetrains – but it is also unsurprising. As Business Insider’s Matt DeBord wrote earlier this year, the internal-combustion engine is here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future.
And because of varying consumer tastes, market demands, and lingering infrastructure limitations, automakers are best-served by offering a wide range of powertrain options – gas, hybrid, and electric – in order to stay competitive. That might explain why, in 2017, a luxury car company is debuting yet another gas-powered SUV.
Some quick stats on the QX50:
- Turbocharged, four-cylinder engine with variable compression ratio technology.
- 268 horsepower, 280 pound-feet torque.
- Continuously variable transmission.
- About 27 miles per gallon, according to Infiniti.
- Features Nissan/Infiniti’s latest driver-assistance technology.
- Price: TBD
And a few more pictures: