2022 Infiniti QX60 features a revolutionary direct coupling all-wheel drivetrain

Alvin Reyes - Mar 11, 2021, 7:00am CST
2022 Infiniti QX60 features a revolutionary direct coupling all-wheel drivetrain

Japanese premium automaker Infiniti is constantly drip-feeding new information regarding its soon-to-be-launched 2022 QX60 seven-seat SUV. Last month, Infiniti announced that the latest QX60 is ditching the brand’s archaic CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) to make room for an all-new nine-speed automatic gearbox. This, we figure, is a necessary move to heighten the QX60’s driving dynamics without penalizing comfort, responsiveness, and fuel economy.

Now, Infiniti wants to make clear its newest QX60 will feature the brand’s most advanced intelligent all-wheel drivetrain. “We listened to our customers, and we wanted to deliver an all-new Infiniti QX60 that could perform with confidence in nearly all weather conditions,” said Eric Rigaux, General Manager, Product Strategy, and Planning at Infiniti. “Our newest Intelligent All-Wheel Drive exceeds our expectations with seamless power delivery, right when the driver expects it – or even before.”

Short of being clairvoyant, Infiniti’s newest intelligent AWD system offers near-instant response with its innovative direct coupling mechanism. Other all-wheel-drive systems employ an electromagnetic coupling that requires wheel slip to happen before engaging. On the other hand, Infiniti’s intelligent AWD uses sensors to predict wheel slip before it happens, literally. The result is a near-instant response to improve traction, grip, and driving safety in any terrain.

“The all-new QX60 is really designed to encounter a wide variety of situations with its all-wheel-drive system,” said Chris Fischer, Vehicle Performance Development Manager at Infiniti. “The system will monitor the road surface and very quickly move the power from the wheels that don’t have traction to the wheels that do.”

This new AWD system can send up to 50-percent of engine power to the rear wheels. It also has an Active Brake Limited Slip system that uses the brakes to feed torque from the left to the right wheels. It doesn’t have physical torque vectoring like the 2022 Acura MDX and its fourth-gen SH-AWD (Super Handling All-Wheel Drive) drivetrain.

Still, Infiniti’s active braking system enables better grip in icy, snowy, or slippery terrain. “If you’re stopped on ice and you push the gas pedal, the QX60 can move forward more easily and more confidently,” added Fischer.

The all-new 2022 Infiniti QX60 is debuting soon and arrives at U.S. dealerships in the first half of 2021. Drawing inspiration from the Infiniti QX60 Monograph concept first seen last year, the production QX60 will have a 3.5-liter 295-horsepower V6 engine inherited from the outgoing model. It’s also the same engine found in the 2022 Nissan Pathfinder. Front-wheel drive is standard, while Infiniti’s newest Intelligent All-Wheel Drive is an optional feature.


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