2017 was the 15th and closing mannequin 12 months for the Infiniti QX70, previously generally known as the Infiniti FX. Unhappy, unhappy the day.
However is the QX70/FX, a dramatically curvaceous tackle the trendy thought of a crossover, useless and gone for good? Maybe not. “We are actually asking ourselves what’s the QX70’s position?” Infiniti president Roland Krueger rhetorically requested Automotive Information, “And what ought to it’s?”
Perhaps these questions come a 12 months or two or 15 too late, however the truth that Krueger even broaches the topic suggests a excessive diploma of willingness to reinsert the automobile again into Infiniti’s lineup. If Nissan’s upmarket model might copy the diploma of success the FX earned early on in its tenure — greater than 30,000 had been offered in America in 2004 — then the rebirth can’t come quickly sufficient.
“We take into consideration what it was created to be, because the FX,” Krueger says, “however what ought to it’s now?”On the peak of the FX’s success, the boldest Infiniti was a four-door SUV coupe earlier than four-door SUV coupes had been (hilariously named) four-door SUV coupes. The BMW X6 didn’t arrive as a direct rival, albeit additional upmarket, till 2008. By that point, Infiniti FX gross sales had fallen 59 p.c because the 2004 peak.
Because the QX70, with ever extra plentiful competitors, Infiniti averaged fewer than 6,000 annual gross sales, a far cry from the 26,000 annual gross sales the FX averaged throughout its first half-decade in the marketplace.
Thus, whereas it could appear apparent for Infiniti to fill the hole between the QX60 and bigger QX80 with a substitute for the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE, Infiniti might not really feel there’s area in that slender area of interest. That’s why Roland Krueger, the successor at Infiniti to present Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen, is asking the query.
Ought to QX70 equal one thing else altogether?
Whereas Infiniti HQ makes an attempt to reply that query, the corporate’s subsequent SUV activity pertains to the alternative of the long-lived QX50, previously the EX, with a second-generation mannequin subsequent 12 months. Extra well-liked in outdated age as a lengthened mannequin, the QX50 required a listing build-up whereas Infiniti waits for the brand new variant to reach. “We’ll have sufficient stock to expire simply as we launch the brand new QX50,” says Randy Parker, Infiniti’s North American vp.
Infiniti confirmed an idea that precisely previewed the second-gen QX50 on the North American Worldwide Auto Present in early 2017. Earlier than that mannequin’s arrival, the QX50 was placed on hiatus for the 2018 mannequin 12 months.
Timothy Cain is a contributing analyst at The Fact About Vehicles and Autofocus.ca and the founder and former editor of GoodCarBadCar.internet. Observe on Twitter @timcaincars and Instagram.