First Look: 2014 Nissan and Infiniti Hybrids
Nissan recently invited us to preview their world product lineup, and had almost every production car they make available to drive. Yes, there was a GT-R, and yes, of course, I drove it. But with an eye towards the mainstream, we’ll look at Nissan’s Pathfinder, and Infiniti’s Q50, both of which receive hybrid powertrains for 2014.
Given its mild-mannered new looks, it seemed inevitable that the 2014 Nissan Pathfinder was going to go all Hybrid on everybody. But fear not; it’s still very much a Pathfinder at heart.
A slight drop in horsepower, now 250, comes from a 2.5 liter supercharged inline 4 and a 15 kW electric motor. But most impressively, passenger and cargo room remain the same.
Fuel economy is estimated at 26 MPG in mixed driving with an Xtronic CVT, and regenerative braking.
PATRICK LUCAS: Like any good hybrid, the transition from gas to electric and back and forth is pretty much seamless. And regen braking you can feel a little bit, but that just comes with the territory with a hybrid. So you’re really getting the performance and capability of the original Pathfinder. Now you’re getting fuel efficiency and a much quieter ride.
For only 3 grand more, Hybrid just may be the best path to take for your next Pathfinder.
The latest out of Infiniti’s camp is their all new Q50.
Formerly the G sedan, it is the first step in a new direction for Infiniti. And while designs like the new Mazda6 and Lexus IS may have stolen its thunder, the Q50 is a sharp looking sedan that carries over the brand’s sport-meets-style DNA, and graduates it to the next level.
PATRICK LUCAS: I am in the Infiniti Q50, which is the first Infiniti model to see a redesign after the new naming scheme and I got to tell you, it’s a lot of fun. This is the hybrid model, which actually has more horsepower than the standard Q50 and this thing feels tight, compact, it feels very sporty considering that it’s a hybrid.
And that hybrid powertrain is a 3.5 liter V6 and 50 kW electric motor netting 360 horsepower. And hallelujah! No CVT! A 7 speed automatic will provide you with some blissful shifting, and up to 31 combined MPG.
The interior sees perhaps the most drastic changes, and looks more the part of a top-tier contender than its former G-sedan predecessor ever did.
Stay tuned as we go more in depth on both of these green machines, in the coming months on MotorWeek.