Launching into the same price bracket as the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and the BMW M4, Infiniti's new Q60 needs a little bit extra before it can compete with the best
IT’S easy to feel a little bit sorry for Infiniti.
The badge might be a big deal in the US but it’s the weedy kid in class here in the UK.
The latest Q60 sports coupe needs to toughen up to compete with the German competition.
But the styling is good – pumped up and sporty but with premium presence aided by the gaping chrome grille, sharp LED headlamps, steeply raked windscreen and flowing roofline.
There’s a suggestion of performance, and those who opt for the 400bhp twin-turbo V6 variant get a healthy punch, driven through all four wheels for optimum grip.
Unfortunately, I was tossed the keys to the 2.0T petrol variant, which only manages 208bhp.
Progress is sprightly enough – 0-62mph in 7.3seconds – but at 1,722kg the car feels like a roly-poly American through the corners.
This isn’t helped by a confusing automatic gearbox that can shift up at the wrong times.
Taking control of it via the steering wheel-mounted paddles helps but it’s not exactly a Formula 1 experience.
On top of this, the nannying traction control system steps in as soon as the rear end shows any sign of stepping out of place. Ultimate driver’s machine this ain’t.
Best is to see this car as a comfortable, stylish cruiser.
Suspension is well judged, while the smaller petrol engine is whisper-quiet.
Infiniti’s optional drive-by-wire Direct Adaptive Steering (DAS) system is still a little odd, and seems to require too many inputs to keep it on the straight and narrow.
But few complaints inside the cabin. There’s lots of hand-stitched leather and piano-gloss plastics, while the two touch-screen infotainment systems are neatly stacked and deal with navigation (top screen) and all other functions (bottom screen).
But even the basic Premium-spec 2.0-litre Q60s cost around £34,000 and this test model, with Bose sound system and other fancy items, crested £40,000. The Mercedes-Benz C-Class, BMW M4 and Audi A4 are rivals in that bracket.
Now, that’s one group of lads I wouldn’t want to run into in the bike sheds.
HERE’S my pick of what’s on offer with less than 50,000 miles on the clock at thesun.co.uk/motors
A cheap-to-run and easy-to-drive small car. One previous owner, 21,000 miles.
Third generation of the MX-5 comes with dual exhaust pipes. 19,000 miles.
Reduced by £1,000. Available for £104 a month. Only 48,000 miles on the clock.
Parkers rated the Corolla four stars out of five. This one has done 45,000 miles.
One owner, 25,000 miles, full service history and metallic paint.
One owner, 43,000 on the clock, bluetooth, adjustable steering.
Cheap to run, easy to park. 32,000 miles and returns 54mpg.
Reader’s car of the week
ANTHONY Spragg from Cardiff sent in this rare beauty – a fibreglass kit car which was made in very small numbers.
He says: “I bought this Mini Yak in Cardiff more than 20 years ago. Only 160 were built.
“My family think I’ve spoilt the bonnet as I’ve put a picture of a yak on it. What do you think?”
If you want to see your pride and joy here send a picture and brief description to to me at email@example.com
AS THE CLOCKS GOES FORWARD
THERE was a step in the right direction this morning, but road safety charity Brake doesn’t think British Summer Time is going far enough.
It says the clocks should be put forward two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time in summer and one hour ahead in winter.
Brake calls it Single/Double Summer Time (SDST) and claims research shows it would prevent 80 deaths a year and hundreds more serious injuries.
It would also keep tree huggers happy as more of us would walk or cycle thanks to more daylight, thereby reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
Gary Rae, campaigns director for Brake, said: “It is such a simple and effective way to reduce deaths and injuries on our roads and carries so many other benefits, like increased daylight leisure time.
“I want the Government to look at this much-neglected issue again.” Makes total sense. As a biker, the most hairy times riding have been on dark, gloomy roads when other road users haven’t seen me.
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