Infiniti pulled the covers off of its QX50 SUV ahead of the L.A. Auto Show late November, debuting at the same time its new VC-Turbo variable-compression engine, which uses an innovative piece of technology to offer both economy and power.
The 2019 QX50, which rides on an all-new front-wheel-drive-based platform, looks almost exactly like the concept car that preceded it, sporting Infiniti’s signature “Powerful Elegance” design language and some distinctive proportions.
It boasts a version of Nissan’s ProPILOT Assist technologies, which allow it to basically go semi-autonomous during highway driving.
But perhaps most importantly, it offers the first production-ready example of a variable-compression engine, which Infiniti says “combines the power of a 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline engine with the torque and efficiency of a four-cylinder diesel engine.”
To explain, the gasoline VC-Turbo engine can change its cylinder compression ratio on demand – from as low as 8:1 to as high as 14:1 – adjusting its power band on the fly to offer more performance when desired; or to instead ramp up fuel efficiency.
As a result, it delivers a class-leading 268 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque; but is also expected to return 11 L/100 km (26 mpg) combined (on models equipped with optional AWD).
Infiniti will launch the 2019 QX50 into Canadian dealerships in spring 2018. Pricing details have yet to be revealed.