The 2021 Infiniti Q50 Was Praised by Critics but Consumers Aren’t Sold

With so many better luxury cars on the market, there’s little reason to choose an Infiniti. At least, that’s what popular opinion suggests. Many critics and consumers alike consider Infiniti cars like the Q50 sedan to be less reliable and not as fun to drive. 

However, Consumer Reports has a different opinion. Testers gave the 2021 Infiniti Q50 a high score overall, even giving it the coveted CR Recommended award. Despite this, why was the Infiniti Q50 included in the top 5 least satisfying cars on the current market?

Why customers aren’t happy with the Infiniti Q50

According to CR surveys, only 44 percent of drivers are likely to recommend the newest Q50 sedan. Previous years of research show that most drivers had fun behind the wheel, but were only halfway sold on interior comfort. The majority of owners surveyed also didn’t think that the Q50 was worth the retail price.

A few different critics were also unimpressed with the Infiniti Q50, including Car and Driver. While testers praised the sedan’s exterior styling and smooth powertrain, they didn’t think its handling was anything special. Like many consumers, C/D testers also felt that the infotainment system was a nightmare to use.

Many other luxury vehicles come packed with functional technology, so this flaw really isn’t acceptable for the Q50. Folks at The Car Guide also hated the infotainment system and also felt that the Q50’s interior was bland. They also said that the steering was too artificial to be enjoyed.

What Consumer Reports liked on the 2021 Infiniti Q50

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Like many others, CR had no problems with the Infiniti Q50’s standard powertrain, a 300-hp twin-turbo V6. Inside the Q50 Red Sport, this engine produces up to 400 hp. Both are paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission, which CR reported to make responsive (yet slightly unrefined) shifts.

Even the base engine proved speedy in CR’s road test, racing from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds. In contrast to popular opinion, CR’s testers actually felt that the steering wheel provides adequate feedback, especially while rounding corners. The suspension is predictably firm, but CR was still satisfied with the sedan’s composure over hard bumps.

The Infiniti Q50 also has a solid set of brakes, and the cockpit has better visibility than many other sedans. CR also gave the 2021 Q50 a perfect reliability score, which helps to justify its above-average price tag.

In addition to better visibility, the Infiniti Q50 is one of the roomiest sedans recently tested by CR. Drivers have plenty of space to move their head and legs around without issues. Unlike most sporty sedans, two adult passengers can be seated comfortably in the rear row.

CR was also satisfied with the Infiniti Q50’s safety features. Forward automatic emergency braking and collision warning are the only standard offerings, but plenty more are available upgrades. It also got great scores on crash tests from the IIHS, though it wasn’t tested at all for small overlap damage.

It still fails in some aspects

Even CR had to agree that the Infiniti Q50’s infotainment system is a mess. While testers appreciated the dual-screen setup, its complicated menu layout requires a steep learning curve. Testers also felt that the system suffered from slow boot times, and it’s hard to locate some basic functions at all.

The Q50’s trunk is also too small and the seat cushions are too firm to provide long-term support. The cabin is also slightly noisier compared to the quiet interiors of other luxury sedans. The Infiniti Q50 might be a great vehicle in CR’s eyes, but we recommend test-driving it before committing to buy.