2020 Infiniti QX50 vs. 2020 Toyota Highlander

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Infiniti QX50 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision. The Toyota Highlander doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

Both the QX50 and the Highlander have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and around view monitors.

Warranty

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The QX50 comes with a full 4-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Highlander’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 24,000 miles sooner.

Infiniti’s powertrain warranty covers the QX50 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Toyota covers the Highlander. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Highlander ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.

The QX50’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Highlander’s (7 vs. 5 years).

Engine

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The QX50’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 17 lbs.-ft. more torque (280 vs. 263) than the Highlander’s 3.5 DOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Infiniti QX50 is faster than the Toyota Highlander:

QX50

Highlander

Zero to 30 MPH

2.3 sec

2.5 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

7.2 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

10.5 sec

12.1 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

17.1 sec

19.1 sec

Passing 45 to 65 MPH

3.3 sec

3.7 sec

Quarter Mile

14.8 sec

15.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

93.6 MPH

91.5 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

On the EPA test cycle the QX50 gets better fuel mileage than the Highlander:

MPG

QX50

2WD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

23 city/29 hwy

4WD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/28 hwy

Highlander

2WD

3.5 DOHC 6 cyl

21 city/29 hwy

3.5 DOHC 6 cyl

20 city/28 hwy

4WD

3.5 DOHC 6 cyl

20 city/27 hwy

Transmission

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

The QX50 has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Highlander doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

The QX50’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Highlander are solid, not vented.

The QX50 stops shorter than the Highlander:

QX50

Highlander

60 to 0 MPH

129 feet

132 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

130 feet

141 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the QX50 Sensory/Autograph’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Highlander (255/45R20 vs. 235/65R18).

The QX50’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Highlander L/LE/XLE’s standard 65 series tires. The QX50 Sensory/Autograph’s tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Highlander Limited/Platinum’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the QX50 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the Highlander L/LE/XLE.

The QX50 has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Highlander doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the QX50 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Highlander doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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The QX50 has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Highlander doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The QX50 Essential AWD handles at .84 G’s, while the Highlander XLE AWD pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The QX50 Essential AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Highlander XLE AWD (26.7 seconds @ .66 average G’s vs. 27.4 seconds @ .63 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the QX50’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the Highlander’s (36.4 feet vs. 37.4 feet).

For greater off-road capability the QX50 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Highlander (8.6 vs. 8 inches), allowing the QX50 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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The Infiniti QX50 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 350 pounds less than the Toyota Highlander.

The QX50 is 10.2 inches shorter than the Highlander, making the QX50 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The QX50 uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Highlander doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Cargo Capacity

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The QX50 has a much larger cargo volume than the Highlander with its rear seat up (31.4 vs. 16 cubic feet).

Servicing Ease

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The QX50 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Highlander uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Infiniti service is better than Toyota. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti fourth in service department satisfaction. With a 38% lower rating, Toyota is ranked 14th.

Ergonomics

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The QX50 offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Highlander doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The QX50 (except Pure/Luxe)’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Highlander doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The QX50’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Highlander’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/06

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Infiniti QX50 and the Toyota Highlander, based on reliability, safety and performance.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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