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The QX60 Luxe’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Ascent doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
For enhanced safety, the front, middle and rear seat shoulder belts of the Infiniti QX60 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Subaru Ascent doesn’t offer height-adjustable middle seat belts.
The QX60 Luxe offers an optional Around View® Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Ascent only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.
Both the QX60 and the Ascent have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and lane departure warning systems.
The QX60 comes with a full 4-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Ascent’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 24,000 miles sooner.
Infiniti’s powertrain warranty covers the QX60 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Subaru covers the Ascent. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the Ascent ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.
The QX60’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Ascent’s (7 vs. 5 years).
To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the QX60 has a standard 550-amp battery. The Ascent’s 530-amp battery isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Infiniti vehicles are better in initial quality than Subaru vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti 19th in initial quality. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Subaru is ranked 25th.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Subaru vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti 11th in reliability, above the industry average. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, Subaru is ranked 14th.
The QX60’s 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 35 more horsepower (295 vs. 260) than the Ascent’s 2.4 turbo 4 cyl.
In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Infiniti QX60 higher (5 out of 10) than the Subaru Ascent (3). This means the QX60 produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Ascent every 15,000 miles.
The QX60 stops much shorter than the Ascent:
60 to 0 MPH
The QX60 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 Ascent doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the QX60 is 1.3 inches wider in the front and 1.5 inches wider in the rear than on the Ascent.
The QX60 has 3.1 inches more rear legroom, .1 inches more rear shoulder room and .2 inches more third row headroom than the Ascent.
A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the QX60 easier. The QX60’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 30.6 inches, while the Ascent’s liftover is 32 inches.
The QX60 has a standard third row seat which folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Ascent doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.
Pressing a switch automatically raises the QX60’s optional third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Ascent doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just kicking your foot under the back bumper can open the QX60 Luxe’s available liftgate, leaving your hands completely free. The Ascent doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
The QX60’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Ascent’s (5000 vs. 2000 pounds).
The QX60 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Ascent 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 Subaru. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti fourth in service department satisfaction. With a 49% lower rating, Subaru is ranked 19th.
The QX60 Luxe’s standard 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 Ascent doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The QX60’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Ascent’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.
If the windows are left open on the QX60 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Ascent can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The QX60’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 Ascent’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
Consumer Reports rated the QX60’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Ascent’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”
The QX60’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Subaru only offers heated mirrors on the Ascent Premium/Limited/Touring.
When the QX60 Luxe is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Ascent’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.
The QX60 Luxe 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 Ascent offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
The QX60 is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Ascent doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.
According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the QX60 is less expensive to operate than the Ascent because typical repairs cost much less on the QX60 than the Ascent, including $212 less for a water pump, $13 less for front brake pads, $82 less for a starter and $197 less for front struts.
The Infiniti QX60 outsold the Subaru Ascent by 31% during 2018.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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