1989-2019

Our approach has never seen us adopt a nostalgic view of the past, but we are nevertheless proud of what the brand has achieved in the last 30 years. While we take a brief look back at what we have achieved to-date, we are just as excited as ever about the opportunities that lie ahead for INFINITI.
- Mike Colleran, Vice Chairman, INFINITI Motor Company

INFINITI: 30 Years of Challenging Convention

1985

Brand – The INFINITI story began in 1985 with the formation of Nissan Motor Company’s top-secret “Horizon Task Force”, to create a new performance luxury brand.

1989

Product – On January 11, The Q45 and the M30 were the first cars introduced by INFINITI at the 1989 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The Q45's distinctive minimalist styling featured a confident design that allowed it to do away with traditional cues like oversized front grilles and exotic wood interiors. The Q45 was powered by a high-output, 278-horsepower 4.5-liter V8 engine that was class-leading at the time. The Q45 offered innovative features including available full-active suspension, Bose® sound system, power adjustable front passenger seats, one-touch power windows, digital climate control and keyless entry.

Launched as a companion to the Q45 sedan, the M30 was also part of INFINITI's launch in 1989. The luxury sports coupe was powered by a 162-horsepower, 3.0-liter SOHC V6 and 4-speed automatic transmission. It also had an innovative adjustable suspension system.

Brand – On November 8, the INFINITI brand debuted with the promise to create a new relationship between the car and driver. INFINITI simultaneously opened 51 dealerships across the US.

Brand - INFINITI gained recognition as an industry leader in customer satisfaction following the launch of Total Ownership Experience® (T.O.E). The sum of T.O.E cannot be comprised of a list of offerings and is embodied in a “customer first attitude”.

Technology – The Q45 became the world’s first production car to feature Hydraulic Active Suspension, a ground-breaking technology ahead of its time. 

1990

Product – The INFINITI G20 was first unveiled to customers in September 1990.  

1991

Product – Launched initially in 1989, for its second model year, the INFINITI M30 was also available as a convertible, featuring an electric canvas top with fully automatic, one-touch operation.

Awards – J.D. Power and Associates ranked Infiniti #1 in its Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI)

1992

Product – Marked the debut of the second luxury sedan, the INFINITI J30 at the Los Angeles Auto Show and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

1993

Product – Arrival of the Q45t, a new Touring model, from the flagship Q45. The Q45t had available DBS wheels. 

Product – For the 1993 model year, INFINITI launched its second luxury sedan, the J30. Powered by a 3.0-liter DOHC V6 engine producing 210-horsepower, the J30's distinctive rounded design featured a sloping roofline and deck, which foreshadowed the four-door coupe styling trend. Its interior also had an elegant yet sporty feel with cockpit style controls combined with Italian leather-appointed seating. The J30 was also available as a Touring model with four-wheel steering and BBS wheels.

1995

Awards – J.D. Power and Associates ranked INFINITI as “Best Overall Car line in Initial Quality”

Awards – The INFINITI V6 (VQ) is named to Wards 10 Best Engines for the first time. Designed for optimal power, torque and fuel consumption, the VQ ranks as one of Wards 10 Best Engines for 14 years – an unrivalled achievement. The VQ was the predecessor of the INFINITI Twin Turbo V6 launched in 2015. The lightest, cleanest and most advanced V6 engine INFINITI had produced to date.

Product – Debut of the INFINITI I30 as a sketch at the Automotive Fine Arts Society (AFAS) at the 44th annual Concours d’Elegance in Pebble Beach, California. The I30 went on sale in 1996, positioned between the G20 and the J30.

1996

Awards – J.D. Power and Associates ranked Infiniti #1 in its Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI)

Product – INFINITI launches its first-ever mid-size luxury SUV, the QX4. This vehicle offered the luxury appointments our customers demanded, along with the versatility and durability of a state-of-the-art sport utility.

Product – With the introduction of the original Q45 in late 1989, INFINITI proved to the motoring world that luxury had less to do with tradition and more with how the driver and passengers feel. In creating a new Q45 for the 1997 model year, INFINITI worked to add a higher level of luxury and security to its flagship sedan.

1999

Technology – INFINITI engineers developed the revolutionary front-midship, or “FM,” platform, which placed the engine slightly behind the front axle for better weight distribution. The FM platform design, derived from racing technology, also places a strong emphasis on aerodynamics, especially on the control of airflow under the body. Combined with the upgraded version of the now legendary VQ-series 3.5-liter V6, INFINITI continued its reputation for performance.

2001

Technology – INFINITI introduced the RearView Monitor, or back-up camera, on the 2002 INFINITI Q45. This type technology was eventually mandated on all cars sold in the U.S. in 2018.

2002

Product – INFINITI launched the iconic G35 sports sedan. This vehicle was the total package of beautiful design, new technology, driver-oriented performance and a high level of luxury. Taking full advantage of the FM platform’s long wheelbase and wide track, the G35 interior offered premium space, premium comfort and premium utility. It would go on to be named the 2003 Motor Trend Car of the Year.

Product – INFINITI introduced the first-ever M45, which was only available with a standard 4.5-liter V8 producing 340 horsepower. This vehicle was positioned between the flagship Q45 sedan and the G35 sports sedan.

Product – INFINITI brought an all-new Q45 to market. This completely redesigned, third-generation model had more than two dozen enhancements from the previous version, including a higher numerical final drive gear ratio for a better acceleration feel.

2003

Product – At its debut in 2003, the INFINITI FX became one of the industry's first performance crossovers. The FX combined the best attributes of a sports car with those of an SUV. Based on the legendary platform of the INFINITI G sports coupe and sedan, the rear- or all-wheel drive FX was powered by a 3.5-liter V6 or 4.5-liter V8 engine.

Technology – The original FX offered many advanced technologies such as DVD-based GPS navigation, satellite radio, traffic-sensing cruise control, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, and, in 2005, INFINITI's world-first Lane Departure Warning system. In 2007, the FX was the first to have INFINITI's pioneering Around View Monitor system.

Awards – J.D. Power and Associates ranked INFINITI highest in the 2003 Customer Service Index (CSI) study for the third time.

2004

Product – INFINITI launched an all-new QX4. This QX4 was available in 2-wheel drive or 4-wheel drive, featuring INFINITI’s advanced All-Mode 4WD system. The All-Mode 4WD system provides a superior driving experience on and off the pavement, utilizing all-wheel drive technology derived from Nissan’s world-class Skyline GT-R sports coupe (rather than traditional truck-based systems). All-Mode 4WD was designed to instantly distribute torque to the front wheels (up to 50 percent can go to the front wheels on demand) resulting in optimal traction with improved fuel economy and enhanced cornering capability.

Technology – INFINITI added Brake Assist with Preview Braking to its Intelligent Cruise Control feature. Brake Assist with preview function was designed to help improve brake response. Whereas normally braking is activated only when the driver recognizes the need and moves his or her foot to activate the brake pedal, the preview function utilizes the ICC sensors to identify sudden braking situations (by sensing the vehicle ahead in the same lane and the distance and relative speed from it) and “pre-pressurizes” the Brake Assist system before the driver steps on the brake pedal. This helps maximize braking response and performance by reducing the normal brake system activation time lag.

Product – For almost as long as there has been an INFINITI Motor Company, a sports coupe has been integral to its model line. The INFINITI G Coupe arrived in 2003. Sharply styled and track ready, the rear-drive G Coupe was built off INFINITI's storied front midship platform where the engine is moved back towards the rear of the engine bay, which in turn improves the weight distribution platform. The original G35 Coupe was powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine – with a horsepower rating of 280 – mated to either a 6-speed manual or 5-speed automatic transmission.

Awards The G Coupe was Motor Trend's “Car of the Year” in 2003, and it was featured as one of Car and Driver's “10 Best” in 2003 and 2004.

2005

Technology – INFINITI’s Lane Departure Warning on the 2005 INFINITI FX, designed to help address the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) findings that showed more than half of all traffic fatalities were due to some type of lane departure. INFINITI then expanded and enhanced its warning system with the world’s first Lane Departure Prevention system on the 2008 INFINITI M, which helps the driver bring the vehicle back into the lane of intended travel.

2007

Product – Previewed at the New York Auto Show as the INFINITI EX Concept, the production model, INFINITI EX35, was first debuted at the 2007 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

2008

Technology INFINITI was the first automotive manufacturer to offer an Around View® Monitor on the 2008 INFINITI EX35, a four-corner, virtual 360-degree, bird’s-eye view of the vehicle when parking. This driver aid was later enhanced by adding Moving Object Detection, which can help alert drivers to the presence of animals, pedestrians or other moving objects around the parking vehicle.

Technology – In 2008,INFINITI expanded Lane Departure Warning and enhanced its warning system with the world’s first Lane Departure Prevention system on the 2008 INFINITI M, which helps the driver bring the vehicle back into the lane of intended travel.

2009

Product – INFINITI introduced a convertible to its award-winning line of G sports sedans. The G37 Convertible featured a three-piece folding hardtop and 325 horsepower 3.7-Liter VVEL V6.

Product – The INFINITI JX Concept world debut at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance was closely followed by the world premiere of the production JX35 at Los Angeles Auto Show in November.

Brand – In March 2011, INFINITI announced a strategic partnership with Red Bull Racing in Formula One as a manor partnership agreement to build awareness for the burgeoning brand.

Brand – August 23, 2011, INFINITI joined the Guinness World Records for the world’s fastest accelerating production full hybrid at the United Kingdom’s Santa Pod Raceway. CAR Magazine journalist, Tim Pollard drove the vehicles down the quarter-mile dragstrip in 12.895 seconds. The official Guinness World Record adjudicators claimed 0-100 km/h (62 mph) time for the Infiniti M35h is 5.5 seconds.

Technology – INFINITI launched the M35h, the brand’s first vehicle to feature Direct Response Hybrid® technology. At the time, it was the only car available with more than 350 horsepower and 30 mpg.

Technology – INFINITI introduced Blind Spot Intervention® (BSI) on the 2011 INFINITI M. Engineered to alert the driver of a vehicle in the adjacent lane during lane change maneuvers, BSI can help the driver bring the vehicle back into the lane.

Technology – An advanced Hydraulic Body Motion Control system was available on both 2WD and 4WD models of the QX56.The system helps to reduce body lean in turns, resulting in improved ride comfort for passengers in all three rows. Suspension travel is automatically controlled by hydraulic chambers integrated into each shock absorber. This enables the system to vary suspension travel independently on either side of the vehicle, thereby counteracting body lean and creating a luxurious, flat ride previously unavailable to drivers in this segment.

2012

Brand – In December, 2012 INFINITI announced the rollout of a new product nomenclature beginning with the Q50, an all-new premium sports sedan unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in January 2013. The nomenclature would be implemented for all vehicles starting in the 2014 model year.

INFINITI M Q70 L
INFINITI QX QX80
INFINITI G Coupe Q60
INFINITI G Sedan Q40
INFINITI EX QX50
INFINITI JX QX60

Brand – INFINITI establishes the global headquarters for sales and marketing in Hong Kong.

2013

Technology – INFINITI Backup Collision Intervention™ system was first introduced on the 2013 INFINITI JX, detecting cross traffic and large stationary objects behind a vehicle when backing up and can both warn the driver and engage the brakes momentarily to help the driver avoid an impending collision.

Technology – In 2013, INFINITI became the first automaker to introduce a “steer-by-wire” system in a production car. The 2014 INFINITI Q50 offered INFINITI’s Direct Adaptive Steering™ which, transmits steering inputs electronically instead of mechanically, providing quicker and more precise response, as well as unsurpassed levels of customization. Direct Adaptive Steering enabled the driver to personalize steering modes, effort and response, while reducing the transmission of negative feedback from rough roads through the steering column.

2014

Technology – A world’s first system, INFINITI’s Predictive Forward Collision Warning (PFCW), which was first introduced on the 2014 Q50, can warn the driver of risks that may be obscured from the driver’s view. PFCW can not only sense the relative velocity and distance of a vehicle directly ahead, but also of a vehicle travelling in front of that, alerting the driver to slowing or stopped traffic directly ahead.

Technology – INFINITI’s Active Lane Control system, first offered on the 2014 Q50, senses unintended lane drift and can automatically make slight changes to the tire angles and steering wheel torque, helping the driver to make fewer manual steering corrections in freeway driving situations.

Brand In September, 2014 Nissan formally announced a joint venture with China’s Dongfeng Motor Company, that would eventually sell locally produced and internationally imported vehicles.

2015

Product INFINITI’s first, premium active compact, the Q30 premiered at Frankfurt IAA in September 2015

Product - The INFINITI QX30, the premium active crossover, followed the global premier of the Q30 that year, with a simultaneous debut at the 2015 Los Angeles and Guangzhou international motor shows.

2016

Brand INFINITI becomes technical partner to the Renault Sport Formula One Team

Awards Ward Autos 10 Best Engines: the 3.0L V6 Twin-turbocharged 400. Introduced on the Q60 and Q50, the INFINITI VR Engine, is a compact and lightweight 3.0-liter V6 twin-turbo engine and until the VC-Turbo, the most advanced V6 engine INFINITI had offered, striking an ideal balance between drivability, efficiency, and performance.

2017

Product A radical reinterpretation of the Q60 Coupe,Project Black S was revealed in at the Geneva International Motor Show. The prototype was a collaboration with then named, Renault Sport Formula One Team, featuring Formula One-inspired technology to explore a new high-performance line for INFINITI.

Technology The INFINITI VC-Turbo engine, the world's first production-ready variable compression ratio engine, made its production debut on the new QX50. The unique variable compression technology represented a breakthrough in combustion engine design and a bridge to INFINITI’s future electrification product line.

Technology – Introduced on the INFINITI QX50, ProPILOT was introduced as the umbrella term under which all future INFINITI autonomous drive support technologies would be based and represented the first step in their development. The technologies were designed to support the driver in identifying and responding to other road users and potential hazards. Drawing on inputs from radar and camera to help read the road ahead and monitor the position of vehicles in front, the system allows the driver to react accordingly.

Product – A sleek, open-wheeled electric retro-roadster, the Prototype 9 was unveiled at the 2018 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The Prototype 9 is a celebration of Nissan Motor and INFINITI’s ingenuity, artistry and craftsmanship. Its design represents a reimagining of a 1940s race car with time-honored production techniques employed to realize its retro design, while the vehicle’s advanced electric motor previews INFINITI’s electrified future.

2018

Awards – INFINITI ranked No.1 overall in 2018 J.D Power Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI)

Brand – INFINITI’s electrification strategy is announced. INFINITI will offer a mix of pure electric and gas-generated electric vehicles (EV) - demonstrating the full range of low-emission vehicle technology available to INFINITI as the premium brand of Nissan Motor Company.

Product – The Q Inspiration was unveiled at the North American International Auto Show, Detroit. The first of the Q Inspiration lineage, the concept car previewed a new generation of INFINITI vehicles. At the time, the Q Inspiration Concept proposed how an innovative VC-Turbo powertrain, next-level autonomous drive technologies, and a unique human-centric interior could enrich the experience of drivers in the mid-size sedan segment.

Product – Bridging past and future, the INFINITI Prototype 10 presented the spirit of early speedsters for an era of electrified performance. Revealed at the 2018 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, the concept represented a physical manifestation of INFINITI’s creative and ambitious plans for electrified performance.

2019

Product – In January 2019,INFINITI presented the first electrified INFINITI SUV concept, the QX Inspiration at Detroit Auto Show. The INFINITI QX Inspiration is a mid-sized SUV concept previewing the brand’s first fully-electric vehicle. The design study previewed the brand’s plan to launch a range of high-performance electrified vehicles, promising an engaging drive with range confidence. The INFINITI line-up of the future will consist of a range of electric and gas-generated electric vehicles.

Brand – INFINITI announced its global headquarters would return to Japan, enabling the brand to realize more synergies with Nissan Motor Company while retaining its identity as an independent brand.

Product – The Qs Inspiration, a sports sedan for an electrified future unveiled at Auto Shanghai, is a sports sedan concept developed for the electrified era. It offers a new perspective on sports sedans with an elevated driving position and high-performance electrified all-wheel drive (e-AWD) power. Representing INFINITI’s desire to continually challenge tradition, the Qs Inspiration previewed a forthcoming INFINITI production model and hints at the company’s electrified future, in which the brand will offer electric and gas-generated electric powertrains across its line-up. The concept’s flexible architecture was developed to accommodate high-performance electrified powertrains, enabling INFINITI’s designers to reinterpret traditional ‘three-box’ sedan design, with the freedom to experiment with the exterior proportions and create a spacious, lounge-like interior.