A few months ago, my girlfriend’s cousin Bethany told me about a wonderful travel opportunity. Her grandmother was going to let her, her boyfriend Logan, my girlfriend Eli, and me stay in her house in Carmel, California for our Spring Break. Since we would be so close to other must-see places in Northern California, we would also cross some of them off of our bucket lists.
I reached out to Page One Automotive to see which press vehicle they could have waiting for us when we landed at the San Jose airport. Their representative in the area promptly sent me a list of available options. As tempting as some of them were, I knew I needed a vehicle that could not only comfortably seat four people, but also fit all of our luggage inside. I chose the 2019 INFINITI QX60 Luxe.
After leaving the airport in San Jose, we put more than 500 miles on it. Over the course of nearly a week, we saw the charming beachside town of Carmel, the rainbow-lit wharfs of Monterey, the unforgettable architecture in San Francisco, the Santa Cruz boardwalk, the breathtaking view from Pebble Beach, and the awe-inspiring rugged beauty of Big Sur.
2019 INFINITI QX60 Exterior
There were several reasons why I picked the QX60 for our California adventure. Its design definitely made my decision easier. I wanted something upscale that would look right at home in the wealthy areas of NorCal. The QX60 fit in perfectly with its sculptural curves, rich Deep Bordeaux paint, and tasteful chrome accents, which brightened up the front grille’s frame, greenhouse surround, door handles, doors, optional running boards, and rear hatch area.
I also reserved the QX60 for its size. It has a 114.2-inch wheelbase and three rows of seats. I figured I would be able to fold the third row flat, put all of our luggage behind the second row of seats, and leave enough legroom in the second row for Eli and Bethany to be comfortable.
I was right. My test vehicle featured the optional Sensory Package. In addition to upgrades such as 20-inch wheels wrapped in 235/55R20 tires, a 15-speaker Bose audio system, and quilted leather seats that were heated and cooled in the front row and heated in the second row, it also added a panoramic roof over the second- and third-row passengers.
According to INFINITI, that roof has a minor effect on the QX60’s maximum cargo capacity. If the second row of reclining seats were fully upright, I had 40.2 cubic feet of luggage space to use (compared to 40.5 cubic feet for models without the panoramic roof). Eli and Bethany chose to tilt their seats back and relax, which slightly decreased the cargo capacity, but Logan and I were still able to fit everything inside. Once the power rear hatch opened up, I manually folded down the third row, which allowed me and Logan to fit all four of our suitcases and my duffel bag inside the rear cargo hold.
2019 INFINITI QX60 Interior
The Limited Package was a bonus. It was filled with niceties such as semi-aniline leather seating surfaces, leather-wrapped interior grab handles, and gleaming dark silver-stained wood accents.
I had everything I needed to comfortably and calmly pilot us through hectic daytime traffic, long stretches of highway, and cold, dark, and rainy nights. Despite its generous amount of interior space, the QX60’s exterior dimensions were easy to manage and weave through all of the various construction zones around San Francisco. Thanks to the Proactive Package’s Intelligent Cruise Control, I just set a speed and following distance for the two-hour drive back to Carmel and let the QX60 take care of the accelerating and braking for me. It was in the low to mid 50s most of the time we were in California so I made frequent use of the steering wheel’s heating function.
The girls had everything they needed in the back. Both of them are 5’8” and had plenty of legroom. They even had their own climate zone and various ways to charge their smartphones.
INFINITI was kind enough to equip my press loaner with a Theater Package that includes two sets of headphones, a wireless remote, and a pair of 8-inch monitors, as well as the Essential Package, which adds a variety of features, including navigation. Those largely went unused because Logan chose to pull up directions on his phone and Eli and Bethany were more than entertained by looking out the rear windows and seeing the natural wonders of the Golden State, whether they were the bright green rolling hills between San Jose and Carmel, the corridor of giant trees that arched over the highway to San Francisco, or the Pacific Ocean’s waves crashing against the rugged cliff sides that line the outermost reaches of Route 1 in Big Sur.
All four of us got a lot of enjoyment out of the Bose stereo system, though. It was so clear that we couldn’t crank up our favorite tunes – which ranged from the soundtrack to “A Star is Born” to Drake to Sylvan Esso – too high.
2019 INFINITI QX60 Performance
The QX60’s naturally aspirated, direct injection 3.5-liter V6 was more than up to the task of carrying all four of us and our gear without straining. It routed its 295 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque through a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and front-wheel drive. According to the EPA, a QX60 configured like my test vehicle is capable of getting 20 city, 27 highway, and 22 combined mpg**; I averaged 20.9 mpg through my 528.9 miles with it.
The INFINITI Drive Mode Selector gave me the choice of Eco, Snow, Standard, and Sport settings. Most of the time I had the dial turned to Standard. As we started making our way through Big Sur, I put the QX60 into Sport mode to sharpen the V6’s throttle response and bumped the shifter into its manual gate so I could choose my own (simulated) gears when I wanted them. Shift response times were satisfyingly low. Route 1’s seemingly infinite curves and elevation changes can be hard on brakes so I was even more pleased with the fact that I could quickly use engine braking instead of the QX60’s 12.6-inch front and 12.13-inch rear ventilated discs to scrub off speed.
2019 INFINITI QX60 Safety
It was up to me to get us where we needed to go on time and in one piece so it was nice to know the QX60 was loaded with safety features. Its standard equipment included an array of airbags, Brake Assist for maximum stopping power, Forward Emergency Braking with pedestrian detection, Predictive Forward Collision Warning, and Blind Spot Warning.
The Essential Package added a 360-degree bird’s-eye view of the QX60 with Moving Object Detection and front and rear parking sensors.
INFINITI’s engineers jammed Backup Collision Intervention, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Departure Prevention, Blind Spot Intervention, and automatic high beams into my media special’s Proactive Package.
2019 INFINITI QX60 Overall
Sports cars are made for driving fast. Trucks are made to haul and tow. Crossovers are made for road trips. And my well-equipped 2019 INFINITI QX60 Luxe press vehicle passed the test of an epic journey through Northern California. Go to an AutoNation INFINITI-affiliated dealer to try out a QX60 for yourself. Prices start at $44,250*; a QX60 Luxe like the one I reviewed here has a final price of $65,930.
*MSRP excludes tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.
**Based on EPA mileage ratings. Your mileage will vary depending specific vehicle trim, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.