We first looked at the quirky-but-sleek Infiniti Q80 Inspiration Concept a couple weeks ago when the premium Japanese automaker first previewed the new sports car. Now, with the Q80 Inspiration’s official debut at the 2014 Paris Motor Show, we have a bunch more pictures and more information to cover.
Most importantly, Infiniti has officially confirmed that the Q80 Concept is an actual production priority, although it’s still a design study at its core. Infiniti’s VP Francois Bancon says that one of the most appealing aspects of manufacturing the Infiniti Q80 is that it would have no direct rivals. We have to agree with him on that; the mold-breaking design and face-melting performance are more than enough to stand out from the crowd.
Let’s start with the mold-breaking design:
Infiniti says that the Q80 Inspiration was meant to deliver “feminine elegance and muscular menace in equal measure,” and they somehow pulled it off. The simple silver design almost seems to flow with the air around it, and it’s easy to imagine this car going really, really fast. The Q80 also has that luxurious floating glass roof made from lightweight acoustic glass, similar to the Toyota C-HR Concept we looked at last week.
With the Q80 Inspiration’s official debut, Infiniti has told us more about what to expect from the car’s interior. The Q80 is just as advanced inside as it is out, and you’ll find a host of futuristic technologies showcased inside the cabin.
Most notable is the incorporation of Infiniti’s driver-activated autonomous driving system, which can be activated at the press of a button next to the steering wheel. When pressed, the Q80 will use a Heads-Up Display (HUD) projected onto the windshield to offer assistance and make both visual and audible suggestions to the driver. However, the final action is always taken by the man (or woman) behind the wheel.
You won’t be surprised to learn that the underlying theme for the Q80 Inspiration’s interior is interaction. So, in addition to the autonomous driving system, Infiniti also incorporated an on-board entertainment touch-screen for not only the driver, but every rear-passenger. Meanwhile, the cabin is plush with quilted leather seating, exquisite Alcantara and leather upholstery and crisp metal accents, all brought to life through the panoramic glass roof.
Finally, many of you will agree that the best part of the Infiniti Q80 Inspiration is its performance. This car may look refined on the outside, but it’s a savage under the hood, boasting a mean 550hp from a twin-turbocharged 3.0L V6 hybrid powertrain. Apparently, this hyper-performing sports hybrid is a precursor to a whole new family of engines that’ll be introduced “within the next two years.”
The good news with all this is that Infiniti definitely wants to produce a Q80 sports car. The bad news is that it’s at least three years off, and we may have to wait as far out as 2020. Still, we should hopefully see at least one more Q80 Concept between now and then, so keep your eyes peeled for the next iteration.