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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
Now that I've had this thing for a couple of uninterrupted weeks:


  • My wife keeps asking when I'm going to sell it and buy something bigger
  • The stereo isn't as good as the one in the G35
  • The MPG is a little better than the G35
  • I miss the depth of a sedan trunk (it held more real-world cargo), but like the hatch for dog
  • The 7-speed is a well-programed, smooth transmission
  • It really needs an LSD
  • It has tons and tons of cornering grip, but the wide front tires mute steering feel/feedback a little
  • I can't decide if it's ugly or slightly odd but good looking
  • I don't miss paddle shifters as much as I thought I would, as the shifter is well-placed and responsive
  • The 3.7 isn't nearly as refined or smooth as the 3.5
  • The seating position is a bit odd (sitting "on" as opposed to "in"), but the seats are very comfy
  • 360 degree camera is great
  • Hearing cargo move around in the hatch is annoying
  • I don't miss adaptive cruise aside from the fact that it displayed the MPH as a number in the center display, while poor person cruise does not

Overall, I like it, but I can totally see myself selling it in the not too distant future for a 3-row SUV (or preferably a wagon, if a compelling one exists... which it doesn't). :laugh:
 

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I don't know when this happened (the sig) but I hate it :mad::D

I was always surprised at how rough the VQ37 feels. I enjoy the engine otherwise and still wonder if I'd picked up a G sedan if I'd still have it.

Also yes, it's ugly. but not lunch-losing ugly, and they're rare enough that I still stop and stare when I see one. Makes me wish BMW still made a vehicle similar to the E84 X1. a B58'd lifto wagon with 6MT would be pretty much a dream family vehicle for me right now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #44 ·
I don't know when this happened (the sig) but I hate it :mad::D

I was always surprised at how rough the VQ37 feels. I enjoy the engine otherwise and still wonder if I'd picked up a G sedan if I'd still have it.

Also yes, it's ugly. but not lunch-losing ugly, and they're rare enough that I still stop and stare when I see one. Makes me wish BMW still made a vehicle similar to the E84 X1. a B58'd lifto wagon with 6MT would be pretty much a dream family vehicle for me right now.
Ha. I mean, the G35S was maybe a nicer car, and maybe I should have kept it... but I didn't. And while the pre-facelift V36 was most definitely a cleaner design, it had some weird angles from the back. I mean, it's no 1-series... :p Still, I think of "Which one's Trudi? The one with all the **** in her face?" from Pulp Fiction whenever I look at the QX50. At least the silver helps hide the chrome, and I pulled the relay for the awkwardly-spaced DRLs. Like pretty much every vehicle ever, the pre-refreshed EX35/37 looked better.

The 3.7 coarseness is mainly noticeable at idle and from 5,000-7,500. It's not bad, but it doesn't have the relative smoothness (not talking an I6 or Toyota/Honda 3.5 here) of my old 3.5. But hey, it's a powerful off-road machine, so there are some tradeoffs to be made. Uh-huh.


Ugh, that drove me nuts on my old X3. It was a great chassis but sitting so far above the roll center makes it so much less fun.
It's not quite as bad as the X3, but it feels higher than it needs to be. You know, for that commanding driving position on the way to daycare.
 

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I thought of mine as a "shooting brake", which means (at least to me) a wagon with all-weather GT performance and able to carry one or two people with luggage, golf clubs, shotguns, and fly rods... in my case it frequently was all at the same time.

My 2017 QX50 replaced a 2011 GTI, and was the first automatic I'd ever had as a daily driver. I hadn't planned on the purchase, but looked one over at the dealer while my wife's car was being serviced. I was impressed with the combo of good driving blended with utility, and bought it the next day. I was impressed by the rear seat space... it could actually hold two adults back there, something my 2007 G35S couldn't do. The wheelbase stretch made it quite a car. (If it only had a manual, like my G35).

Sadly, it only lasted about 16,000 miles, as I was t-boned in the driver's door by a 90+ year-old gentleman who didn't quite notice his red light. Car was totaled, I had a ruptured eardrum and a couple weeks later a detached retina, but all well now. I picked up a new GTI (manual) within a couple days (as nice as the QX was, I still missed the involvement offered by the VW).

The QX was truly a great all-around blend of luxury, utility, and performance. One car mag described it as 80% of a Porsche Macan at 50% of the price. The new QX50 is a different animal altogether, for different purposes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #47 ·
I thought of mine as a "shooting brake"
That's a good way to look at it. And man, that sounds like quite the wreck... glad things all worked out. How does the usability hatch in the GTI compare to that of the QX50?

That is one generous magazine
I guess? I've never driven a Macan, so I don't really know. But here's the review he referenced:

"...is sort of an unpretentious alternative to cars like the Porsche Macan, offering 80 percent of the driving experience for about 60 percent of the price."

https://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/a15106452/2016-infiniti-qx50-first-drive-review/
 

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That's a good way to look at it. And man, that sounds like quite the wreck... glad things all worked out. How does the usability hatch in the GTI compare to that of the QX50?



I guess? I've never driven a Macan, so I don't really know. But here's the review he referenced:

"...is sort of an unpretentious alternative to cars like the Porsche Macan, offering 80 percent of the driving experience for about 60 percent of the price."

https://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/a15106452/2016-infiniti-qx50-first-drive-review/

- The total cargo space with seats down is perhaps a bit smaller in the VW but works fine for me. With seats up, the QX50 allowed a shotgun in the back, laid diagonally. Need to drop a seat in the GTI.

- I guess as pointed out, the review was "generous:" 60% of the price, not 50%! The unpretentious part is also important to me. Infiniti has a pretty vague image, while Porsche is, well, Porsche... with all the good or bad it implies in the eye of the individual.
 

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Discussion Starter · #49 ·
- The total cargo space with seats down is perhaps a bit smaller in the VW but works fine for me. With seats up, the QX50 allowed a shotgun in the back, laid diagonally. Need to drop a seat in the GTI.

- I guess as pointed out, the review was "generous:" 60% of the price, not 50%! The unpretentious part is also important to me. Infiniti has a pretty vague image, while Porsche is, well, Porsche... with all the good or bad it implies in the eye of the individual.
Gotcha. Somewhat related, I figured out why the hatch feels so light: it's plastic, inside and out. Weird. I guess they did their best to keep it light, yet still managed to make something so small weigh almost 2 tons.

Since you're one of the few people who has owned one of these, I have a question: did the transmission make a slight whine from 0-10mph or so when starting from a stop in 1st? I know that some transmissions/drivetrains whine more than others (Mazda), but am curious if it's normal for this one.
 

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Gotcha. Somewhat related, I figured out why the hatch feels so light: it's plastic, inside and out. Weird. I guess they did their best to keep it light, yet still managed to make something so small weigh almost 2 tons.

Since you're one of the few people who has owned one of these, I have a question: did the transmission make a slight whine from 0-10mph or so when starting from a stop in 1st? I know that some transmissions/drivetrains whine more than others (Mazda), but am curious if it's normal for this one.
I don't recall a whine at all. The QX had a very good automatic. Shifts were pretty much right when you'd want them, and crisp without being abrupt, such as in a DSJ GTI I test drove. Really wish my wife's wagon had this gearbox rather than a CVT.
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
I don't recall a whine at all. The QX had a very good automatic. Shifts were pretty much right when you'd want them, and crisp without being abrupt, such as in a DSJ GTI I test drove. Really wish my wife's wagon had this gearbox rather than a CVT.
I didn't see this - thanks. This one still whines and seems to have two personalities that appear at random. Under normal driving, one will lock it up, shift early (2k), and stay in higher gears. I like this one. The other shifts at higher revs (3k), hunts around more often, and feels more slushy. It also has varying responses to downshifts. Sometimes it's immediate while other times it takes a sec. There's no rhyme or reason. So, I may take it in for a flush and see if it needs a software update. This may not fix it, but from this, the occasional slow to creep reverse when cold, and the whine, it seems like it might be low on ATF.

I also noticed some clunking in the steering yesterday, but only with the car off and parked in the garage. In my old G35, an actuator would engage and lock the wheel when you opened the door after turning the car off. It made a neat noise. This one does not do that, and it doesn't seem to lock the column the standard way either. I assume it's supposed to, so I was checking, which was when I discovered the knocking. I don't notice it while driving.

Generally, it's a fun car, and while it looks a lot like my old G35 inside, it's a step down in quality here and there. Noticeably cheaper carpet and floor mats, thinner door panels, a few rattles, etc. It's also proving to not be as trouble-free. But hey, CPO, and the seats are great.



The recent ~10%-less-than-I-paid offers from Vroom and Carvana are tempting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #52 ·
In an update that nobody cares about:

It's one year, 3,000 miles, and about 1,000 gallons of gas later, and it's still here. I've gone back and forth about selling it, and I think the main reason I haven't is that selling and then buying a new car is annoying... especially in the current climate. There's also nothing out there that really interests me. Why would I want to sell it? Aside from sort of wanting something electrified that doesn't seem to currently exist, small hatchbacks are such a ripoff. The bonus is that it's short enough to fit in my garage with a hitch rack installed (which has happened once?). Other than that, it's not particularly practical. It'll fit a couple hundred bucks worth of Costco under the (tan? why tan?) cargo cover, so maybe it's good enough.

On the flip side, it's a pretty fun, comfortable (seats!), and inexpensive car. It's not as sharp as my old G35, but you can tell that it's RWD and has enough power to keep things interesting. And while I'd rather have a sedan again, the back seat is huge and works well for two kid seats without impacting the front seat positioning. Can't fit a dog crate in the trunk though, which is a bummer. After the driveshaft replacement earlier in the year, there have been no issues. Even the Blackstone oil analysis came back sparkly clean. This surprised me. While it could have had oil changes done from somewhere that didn't report them (which I doubt... leased Infiniti here), the service history only had two changes listed in the first 30k miles. I also had the ATF flushed at the dealer. $$$, but it smoothed things out a touch.

Efficiency isn't a high point, but I suppose it isn't terrible given it's a 325hp, 3,800lb lifted hatchback with wide tires/big goofy wheels and very old drivetrain technology. Average 100% city, short trip (~5 miles or less) with plenty of stopping is 18-19mpg (computer says 22), 100% 65-75mph highway driving is 27mpg (computer says 29). I sort of want to try out new tires - mainly for performance and comfort reasons - plus I don't recall the MXM4s being particularly efficient, so that could be impacting things a bit. Just like my G35, a cold start in the morning makes the fuel gauge needle drop visibly. That nice startup exhaust bark isn't free, I guess.

I'm thinking about wrapping some of the silver and/or chrome on the front end in flat black vinyl, or maybe body color-ish silver. Why does every facelift ever involve adding chrome to things that don't need chrome? Honda is horrible about this, but Infiniti outdid themselves on this one. The EX35/37 was certainly a cleaner design. It's like they did a half-assed, "**** it, nobody buys these things anyway" update to the 2016 Infiniti design language... which is exactly what they did.

 

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Glad you like it Samson! I'm still a Q50 RS & QX70 fan, IMO, the FX design was so ahead of it's time I still think it looks good today - and still love the VQ sound!

We/My wife hasn't had any issues with her 3 GT, but it hasn't been as fun-to-drive as we hoped. Love the huge back seat & hatch/cargo room though.

A Stinger GT2 is/would be at the tops of my replacement list. Also love the G80. Have high hopes for the forthcoming TLX Type R too.

Last, since we're on all things Japanese/Korean...hoping Honda considers AWD for the next Accord & Civic, and...Acura drops hybrid tech (and ~50K) on the NSX.

Also, why did Honda not use the 3.5TT in the NSX for the next gen MDX, TLX, etc?
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
Glad you like it Samson! I'm still a Q50 RS & QX70 fan, IMO, the FX design was so ahead of it's time I still think it looks good today - and still love the VQ sound!

We/My wife hasn't had any issues with her 3 GT, but it hasn't been as fun-to-drive as we hoped. Love the huge back seat & hatch/cargo room though.

A Stinger GT2 is/would be at the tops of my replacement list. Also love the G80. Have high hopes for the forthcoming TLX Type R too.

Last, since we're on all things Japanese/Korean...hoping Honda considers AWD for the next Accord & Civic, and...Acura drops hybrid tech (and ~50K) on the NSX.

Also, why did Honda not use the 3.5TT in the NSX for the next gen MDX, TLX, etc?
I probably should have driven a QX70/FX before buying this. They're hard to find, especially with how much I wanted to spend. The (slightly) toned-down Special Edition trim is pretty nice looking as well. I'm sure that would had addressed some of my trunk depth complaints without much of an efficiency ding. It's still a small trunk (~24 cu ft vs ~18 in the QX50... our Rav4 is 38, but still lacks the depth to make it as useful as I'd like).

Glad that the 3GT is working out. A friend of mine used to have one, and had similar comments about the back seat/trunk. :thumbup:

I want somebody to make a wagon - like, a real one that's as long as a sedan - that I actually want to buy. And no, I'm not TCL-Cool enough for an RS6. If I want something recent that drives well, it seems like I'm shunted over to a CX-9, or some used BMW/Audi, and none of those options are particularly appealing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #55 ·
Er:



This happened upon staring the car the other day. I turned off the ignition and restarted, and all has been well. Mostly well. The display issue happened a few days ago, and today I had a dead battery (battery replaced a year ago). I can see these possibly being related... low voltage causing an issue, maybe? Voltage regulator? After the jump, it had 14.0v at idle. Any other ideas? Side note: the small, glovebox-sized jump packs are handy.

It also started doing this weird, subtle knocking noise under acceleration from like 0-10mph. It almost sounds like a CV joint going bad (do rear CV joints do this?) but it's smoother and quieter. It's also rare and intermittent. Of course. You know, so the dealer won't hear it.
 

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Er:



This happened upon staring the car the other day. I turned off the ignition and restarted, and all has been well. Mostly well. The display issue happened a few days ago, and today I had a dead battery (battery replaced a year ago). I can see these possibly being related... low voltage causing an issue, maybe? Voltage regulator? After the jump, it had 14.0v at idle. Any other ideas? Side note: the small, glovebox-sized jump packs are handy.

It also started doing this weird, subtle knocking noise under acceleration from like 0-10mph. It almost sounds like a CV joint going bad (do rear CV joints do this?) but it's smoother and quieter. It's also rare and intermittent. Of course. You know, so the dealer won't hear it.

It's a sign! Go see your friendly Mazda dealer. Haha
 

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Discussion Starter · #57 ·
It's a sign! Go see your friendly Mazda dealer. Haha
Haha. I had the exact same thought. Get out while I still can! I bringing it to the dealer on Monday for a charging system check. 95% sure it'll check out OK, because that's how things work. When it comes to reliability, my old G35 this is not. I have no idea how to have them check the knocking noise.

It looks like it would cost about $4k to Carvana this 2016 w/35k and get a local Mazda dealer 2017-2018 CX-5 Touring (black "suede" only there) or Grand Touring w/similar mileage. Seems like a lot to drop after only a year/4k miles of use, and it's not like I despise driving the thing like my old Accord Sport. But we'll see.
 

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Haha. I had the exact same thought. Get out while I still can! I bringing it to the dealer on Monday for a charging system check. 95% sure it'll check out OK, because that's how things work. When it comes to reliability, my old G35 this is not. I have no idea how to have them check the knocking noise.

It looks like it would cost about $4k to Carvana this 2016 w/35k and get a local Mazda dealer 2017-2018 CX-5 Touring (black "suede" only there) or Grand Touring w/similar mileage. Seems like a lot to drop after only a year/4k miles of use, and it's not like I despise driving the thing like my old Accord Sport. But we'll see.
You seem to value driving dynamics and power. With that, I'd hesitate a little with the CX-5. Definitely drive it on some 2 lane back roads and the highway as well to properly evaluate. The 2.5/6AT combo around town is fantastically peppy. When you get up over 60mph or face an incline, OR load it up with stuff/peeps, it starts to show its weakness. My wife had a 2016.5 GT AWD for a little over 2 years, and it was definitely one of our favorite cars to date, but definitely test drive one thoroughly. I will say that dynamically, it was the best "CUV" I've ever driven. Handled extremely well, chassis was phenomenal, dampers were tuned right, steering feel was excellent, it was truly engaging to whip around and was even prone to some pretty pronounced trail brake oversteer and throttle off oversteer.

I'd check out Durango or Jeep Grand Cherokee if you want to keep a RWD drivetrain layout and have some fun as well. These both drive well, are larger and are available with the excellent ZF 8HP automatic transmission and either the 3.6L Pentastar V6 or the 5.7L HEMI (winner winner). I'd recommend an Explorer like we have but they're not going to be cheap in the spec that you want and they've only been out for 1 model year so there are both some growing pains with them, and a lack of used inventory.

GL with the search, can't wait to see what you grab!
 

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Discussion Starter · #60 ·
4K in a year is not bad. Its about $333 per month for a luxury SUV. I would say that's pretty cheap.
Yeah, it's not horrible, and that price includes taxes and the asinine $600 dealer doc fee.

You seem to value driving dynamics and power. With that, I'd hesitate a little with the CX-5. Definitely drive it on some 2 lane back roads and the highway as well to properly evaluate. The 2.5/6AT combo around town is fantastically peppy. When you get up over 60mph or face an incline, OR load it up with stuff/peeps, it starts to show its weakness. My wife had a 2016.5 GT AWD for a little over 2 years, and it was definitely one of our favorite cars to date, but definitely test drive one thoroughly. I will say that dynamically, it was the best "CUV" I've ever driven. Handled extremely well, chassis was phenomenal, dampers were tuned right, steering feel was excellent, it was truly engaging to whip around and was even prone to some pretty pronounced trail brake oversteer and throttle off oversteer.

I'd check out Durango or Jeep Grand Cherokee if you want to keep a RWD drivetrain layout and have some fun as well. These both drive well, are larger and are available with the excellent ZF 8HP automatic transmission and either the 3.6L Pentastar V6 or the 5.7L HEMI (winner winner). I'd recommend an Explorer like we have but they're not going to be cheap in the spec that you want and they've only been out for 1 model year so there are both some growing pains with them, and a lack of used inventory.

GL with the search, can't wait to see what you grab!
I do like both of those things, but then again, I enjoy driving the Rav4, and the chassis dynamics are awful. I agree that power is a bit of a sticking point with the CX-5, but like a lot of people, I probably overvalue it. I don't really use 325hp in the QX50 very often. I get your point though - it never feels strained and always has more than enough power in reserve. Like you say, the CX-5 feels peppy around town, though I recall it being a dog merging on to the highway. That's something I do maybe once a month though, so I'm not sure how important it is. I'd get a FWD version though, which may be better in that regard.

The Durango and JGC are pretty sweet. They are likely over budget though. There's a roundabout on the way to daycare that I have some fun with (the kids make me do it), and there's a dad in a recent "sporty" trim Grand Cherokee who does the same. He gets it though there quickly... looks like it's going to tip over every time though. The front end lifts a ton.
 
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