2017 Infiniti QX30: Monthly Update for January 2018
by Jonathan Elfalan, Road Test Manager
Where Did We Drive It?
Our long-term 2017 Infiniti QX30 didn't travel far last month, spending most of its time around the Los Angeles and Orange County sprawls of Southern California. The staff continues to be divided on the Liquid-Copper-Rose-Gold-Pink-Champagne paint, but there's no question about its ability to draw people's attention.
Even in such a low-mileage month, our staff wasn't short on observations, ranging from a quirky electronic glitch to an interesting feature that likely no QX30 owner in the U.S. has used. (Tell us if we're wrong.) We get into these in the logbook comments below.
What Kind of Fuel Economy Did It Get?
Turning over just 584 miles in January, primarily while commuting, resulted in a loss of 0.1 mpg in our lifetime average. Our monthly fuel economy average of 22.5 mpg nudged the needle south, and it was a far cry from our best monthly average of 27.4 mpg. Of our 54 fill-ups, we've managed to hit the 30 mpg highway target on just two occasions.
Average lifetime mpg: 23.9 mpg
EPA mpg rating: 25 combined (21 city/30 highway)
Best fill mpg: 30.9
Best range: 411.7 miles
Current odometer: 14,437 miles
Maintenance and Upkeep
No maintenance needed. With an engine oil and oil filter change interval every 10,000 miles, our QX30 is good to go for another 5,500 miles.
"Ignoring the Champagne color, the QX's styling is quite elegant and certainly less gawky than that of the Mercedes-Benz GLA equivalent. The interior is pleasant, too. The main downsides are inherited from Mercedes-Benz: the door-mounted seat controls and the small infotainment screen. Someone asked once how a tall guy like me fit. 'Better than expected' is what I came back with. From outward appearances, it looks like it'd be cramped, but I fit pretty well once inside. I do have to duck a bit as I get in, but that part is self-evident from the outside." — Dan Edmunds, director of vehicle testing
"Our QX30 has a keyless entry system that does not require the driver to press the key fob to unlock or lock the door. Provided the transponder-equipped key is near the door, merely touching the handle can lock or unlock the door. But on the driver's side front door, this system does not recognize requests activated from the door handle, though we can still operate the door locks using the key fob. The transponder system works since we can still open the door normally from the passenger side. Our hypothesis is that the door-pull harness somehow got unplugged from the rest of the assembly. We'll report our findings after we've fixed the issue." — Calvin Kim, road test editor
"Configuring vehicle settings in our QX30 requires more exploration than others. Normally the central infotainment system, which has both a rotary knob and a touchscreen, would do more of the heavy lifting, but a surprising number of features — from the lights to the locks and driver aids — are accessed only through the smaller instrument panel menu. This is something you can adapt to, but it's not quite as convenient as using the larger touchscreen system."— Jonathan Elfalan, road test manager
"The Infiniti QX30 drives and handles agreeably, with adequate power and alert reflexes. But a few inherited Mercedes-Benz traits represent rough edges that deserve to be smoothed. The first of these is the ride, which feels a bit tense over the broken concrete roads found near my house. The other is the dual-clutch automatic transmission, which can feel a bit lurchy at low speeds and when throttle inputs are wavering and indecisive. Fix these two things (and the wider-than-you'd-expect U-turn radius) and I'm in." — Dan Edmunds
"Getting back into the QX30 with 10,000 more miles logged on its odometer, I noticed a slight degradation in shift quality. While in Eco mode, low-speed kickdown requests are downright glacial and result in engine-rpm hang. Sport mode resolves many of the speed issues, but it also produces frenetic engine revving. I'm wondering if this could be a calibration issue exacerbated by degrading transmission mount bushings." — Calvin Kim
"Fun fact: The P setting on the headlight dial is yet another giveaway of our QX30's German DNA. When selected, only one side of the car's front and rear parking lights will be illuminated. This is a popular European feature that people normally use when parking on a particularly narrow street at night. Leaving only the outboard light on makes your car more visible to passing drivers, without running down the battery quite as quickly. I've still yet to see anyone in the U.S. use such a feature." — Jonathan Elfalan