Q50 Eau Rouge Hints at Infiniti Return to Performance

Those of us who love Infiniti’s Q60 IPL (formerly the IPL G Coupe), but feel a little underwhelmed by its (relatively meager) 348-hp power plant, may want to start warming up our lead feet. At NAIAS 2014 in Detroit, Infiniti unveiled the Q50 Eau Rouge, a concept that heralds their return and commitment to developing high-performance, high-power vehicles, wrapped in high-end premium luxury.

Named for the signature ultra-high-speed corner of the famed Spa-Francorchamps race circuit in Belgium, the Q50 Eau Rouge looks, at first glance, like its current counterpart. But closer inspection reveals a number of distinctive Formula-One inspired touches, with some components coming directly from the RB9 race car developed in partnership with Red Bull Racing.

Crouched low on lightweight 21-inch forged alloy wheels, in a menacingly wide stance, nearly every component on the Eau Rouge’s exterior was created specifically for this car— with only the front doors and the arch of the roof pillars retained from the standard Q50.

Boasting custom aerodynamic carbon fiber bodywork throughout, and dark chrome detailing befitting its darker demeanor, the sculpted front wing assembly and the rear aerodynamic packaging take their cues directly from the RB9. And then there’s the paint job. A deep, rich, custom metal flake red with red tinted high-gloss clear coat. These pictures don’t do it justice. You have to see it in person to fully appreciate it.

Inside, there’s a suede high-grip sports steering wheel with Formula One-style paddle-shifters, and red-infused carbon fiber detailing all around, with more dark-chrome setting off the red cockpit.

And Infiniti knows a car that looks this ballsy should actually have the balls to back it up. So they plan to supply them.

“The engine we are evaluating for the Q50 Eau Rouge is a big personality, V-cylinder engine with forced induction,” Johan de Nysschen, President of Infiniti Motor Company Limited, tells us. “If we built this car I would expect it to feature over 500hp and 600lb/ft of torque. I think our engineers have been waiting for a project like this.”

Yeah, Johan, so have we.


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