If you’re searching for a luxury small car that blends an exhilarating drive with a handsome cabin and smart technology, it’s no surprise that the INFINITI Q50 and the BMW 3 Series are both on your list. These capable luxury cars each offer some appealing features and attractive style, but which one is better suited to your specific preferences? Let’s compare their key qualities to find out.
Both luxury sedans present engaging drives, but the Q50 pulls ahead in terms of sheer power. Two powertrains are available for each car, and INFINITI’s engines deliver more muscle in either matchup. The standard issue for the Q50 is a 300-horsepower twin-turbocharged V6, while the BMW 3 Series comes with a 255-horsepower 4-cylinder. The Q50’s Red Sport variation runs on a formidable 400-horsepower V6, topping the 3 Series’ available 382-horsepower 6-cylinder engine. BMW’s sole transmission for the sedan is an eight-speed automatic, while INFINITI’s seven speed automatic can be equipped with a manual mode to let you take shifting into your own hands.
The INFINITI Q50’s interior provides all the comfort and sophistication drivers expect from the luxury class, with upscale materials and soft-touch surfaces throughout. It also provides abundant legroom for adult passengers in both rows, and up to five people can ride with ample elbowroom and overhead clearance. Seating is supportive and well-cushioned to maintain good posture and comfort even over long excursions, and smooth leatherette upholstery comes standard, as does a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Critics have found the 3 Series’ cabin considerably sparse by comparison, with some lower-end materials in plain sight.
The two sedans come with modern infotainment systems, but the user experience varies widely between each vehicle. INFINITI’s InTouch infotainment system stacks an 8-inch touchscreen over a 7-inch touchscreen to allow easy access to standard features like satellite radio, navigation, and smartphone connectivity through both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The top screen serves as the smartphone app interface, and you can control your settings through a combination of swiping, tapping, and other intuitive gestures, as well as the analog dial. While the 3 Series’ iDrive infotainment system is an improvement over previous installments, it still offers some distracting issues. The available personal assistant feature doesn’t respond consistently to inputs, requiring repeated gestures to reach the desired action.
If the INFINITI Q50 finishes first in your eyes, come take a closer look here at our dealership. When you arrive at Berglund INFINITI of Roanoke, our staff of automotive experts will handle your business with all the quality and commitment that drivers expect from a luxury dealer, and we’ll help you find exactly what you need within our new model inventory.