2014 Infiniti Q50 (Infiniti)
Washington — Consumer Reports says two new Japanese luxury sedans scored low marks and are not among its recommended models.
The magazine says the redesigned Infiniti Q50 and Lexus IS 250 fell short in its tests and wound up near the bottom of its rankings — below the Lincoln MKZ 2.0 EcoBoost, BMW 328i, Mercedes-Benz C250 and Volvo S60 T5.
The Q50 is intended to replace the G37 in Infiniti’s lineup, but it has fallen behind its predecessor, the magazine says. “The Infiniti G has been one of Consumer Reports’ highest-rated sedans for many years, but after its 2014 redesign and transition to the new Q designation, this car seems to have lost its way,” said Jake Fisher, director of automotive testing for Consumer Reports.
Consumer Reports said the Q50 isn’t as much fun to drive as the G37. “Handling is mundane, due in part to dull steering. The underwhelming driving experience strips the car of much of its sporty legacy. The Q50 also doesn’t ride well and isn’t particularly quiet. Its new InTouch dual-screen controls are slow to respond and interior quality is nothing special. On the plus side, the Q50 is very quick, even with the added weight of the optional all-wheel-drive system,” the magazine said.
The Infiniti Q50 posted a “very good” overall road test score but landed near the bottom of the rankings for sporty and upscale sedans.
The Lexus IS 250 scored a “good.” It was the worst road test score posted by any Lexus sedan in recent years, Fisher said.
Consumer Reports found the Lexus IS 250 “neither sporty nor luxurious.” In the trim with the small 2.5-liter V6 with all-wheel-drive the “vehicle’s acceleration lacks punch. Fuel economy is disappointing at 21 mpg overall” in Consumer Reports tests.
The review also said “Lexus IS handling is short on finesse, with vague-feeling steering that doesn’t telegraph much feedback. Road noise is elevated and the ride is neither plush nor tied-down. The interior is very tight, even when considered against the modest standards for sports sedans, with a narrow cabin, wide center console and large overhanging dashboard. In addition, the IS 250’s controls now include the fussy, distracting mouse-like controller found in other Lexus models.”
Nissan spokesman Kyle Bazemore said the company is reviewing the results.
“Infiniti's engineering team is currently reviewing the results of Consumer Reports’ test of the Infiniti Q50 and will evaluate relevant findings and consider future planned upgrades,” said Bazemore, who heads Infiniti USA communications. “Despite scoring well, the Q50 is still too new for Consumer Reports’ reliability results, which is necessary to categorize the car as ‘Recommended.’ We are confident once these results are in, our new luxury sports sedan will be on the publications’ ‘Recommended’ list.”
Complete results for the Infiniti Q50 and Lexus IS250, and results of the new Fiat 500L and Nissan Versa Note will be in the December issue of Consumer Reports, on newsstands Nov. 5 and on its website today.