Nissan’s luxury division Infiniti continues to tease us with a slow reveal of its forthcoming large JX cross over SUV.
I’ll admit that the launch of Infiniti in the UK kind of passed me by. It felt a bit like Nissan had created the cars specifically for the US market and had then decided there was no harm putting them on sale in Europe as well. The cars themselves looked like well worn soap bars, appearing as soft edged as I was assuming the driving experience would be. And a range of large cars with more petrol engines than diesels only reinforced my thoughts that we were getting something that probably wasn’t meant for us.
Total sales of the brand in Europe up to the end of last year were just 2,500 units, so I am not alone in my views it would seem. Even with the recent introduction of diesel engines across the range, essential on this side of the Atlantic of course, the brand only expects to sell 5,500 cars in the whole of Europe this year, in spite of outselling Jaguar and Porsche globally.
So not much has changed my initial image of “Nee-sarn’s” luxury arm if I am honest, hence me not being so au fait with their range. But the JX they have been sending us images of will apparently slot in above the current range topping FX SUV, pitching against the Audi Q7, BMW X5 and Range Rover Sport. That’s some competition. I already know I am unlikely to choose a JX over any of that company, even though the JX is a seven seater; if I really needed the space I’d take a Land Rover Discovery 4, thank you.
No word on engines but the five seat FX comes with a 3.7 litre V6 petrol — a version of the engine that can be found in the Nissan 370Z — and a 3.0 litre diesel, pushing out 316bhp and 235bhp respectively. It’s safe to assume these will feature. Expect also to see the V8 5.0 litre from the top FX, coming in with 385bhp.
The JX will debut at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in the US — see what I mean? — on 18 August and should reach these shores in 2012. Price? More than £50,000. No, I can’t see them selling more than a handful either.