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The X1’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The QX50 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the X1 and the QX50 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.
For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the X1 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 139 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The QX50 has not been tested, yet.
The X1’s corrosion warranty is 5 years longer than the QX50’s (12 vs. 7 years).
BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X1 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Infiniti doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the QX50.
There are over 62 percent more BMW dealers than there are Infiniti dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the X1’s warranty.
To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the X1 has a standard 150-amp alternator. The QX50’s 130-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the X1 first among small premium SUVs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The QX50 isn’t in the top three in its category.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Infiniti vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Infiniti is ranked 14th.
Regenerative brakes improve the X1’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The QX50 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the X1’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The QX50 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The X1’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The QX50 doesn’t offer launch control.
The X1 stops shorter than the QX50:
60 to 0 MPH
The X1’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the QX50’s standard 55 series tires.
The X1 offers an optional space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the QX50; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.
The X1 has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The QX50’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.
The X1’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (56.5% to 43.5%) than the QX50’s (58.8% to 41.2%). This gives the X1 more stable handling and braking.
The X1 xDrive28i handles at .85 G’s, while the QX50 Essential AWD pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.
The BMW X1 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 250 pounds less than the Infiniti QX50.
The X1 is 9.4 inches shorter than the QX50, making the X1 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
The X1 has .9 inches more front headroom, .8 inches more front legroom and .3 inches more rear headroom than the QX50.
The power windows standard on both the X1 and the QX50 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the X1 is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The QX50 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
If the windows are left open on the X1 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the QX50 can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The X1’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The QX50’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.
The X1’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Infiniti only offers heated mirrors on the QX50 Essential.
The X1 offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The QX50 offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
Standard BMW Apps for the X1 allows the driver and passengers access to select programs on their smartphones, including reading text messages aloud, playing internet radio stations, tagging songs to buy them later, following twitter accounts and other connected activities without taking their eyes off the road or their hands from the wheel. The QX50 doesn’t offer factory integrated smartphone program access.
The X1’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The QX50 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
Insurance will cost less for the X1 owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the X1 with a number “3” insurance rate while the QX50 is rated higher at a number “10” rate.
According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the X1 is less expensive to operate than the QX50 because typical repairs cost less on the X1 than the QX50, including $152 less for a power steering pump.
The X1 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 2 of the last 3 years. The QX50 has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.
The BMW X1 outsold the Infiniti QX50 by 56% during the 2018 model year.
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