Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge Concept aka Skyline Sedan
Motor Trend Named after the high-speed corner of Belgium's Spa-Francorchamps circuit, the Eau Rouge concept takes the standard Q50 sedan's lines and blends design cues from Red Bull Racing's RB9 race car. In front, the Q50's aggressive fascia is retained, but the concept adds a larger intake opening and carbon-fiber lower aero bits that continue along the rocker panels and into the race car-like rear diffuser. Also race car-like is the rear foglight packaging, which is meant to recall that of the RB9. The Eau Rouge concept is 20mm wider than a standard Q50, and Infiniti says the two cars share only the front doors and roof pillars. All other body panels are unique to the concept. The fenders have been stretched to accommodate larger 21-inch forged alloy wheels, while a larger deck lid spoiler increases downforce. Matte black chrome exterior trim replaces the Q50's standard silver chrome and complements the custom red paint. Rounding out the exterior are large vents on either side of the hood to feed a high-output engine.
Infiniti doesn't say what engine powers the Eau Rouge concept, but in a release, Infiniti president Johan de Nysschen said he expects a production version would "feature over 500 hp and 600 lb-ft of torque" if built. The executive goes on to say Infiniti has access to a range of engines through its many alliance partners, and that the automaker is evaluating a "big-personality, V-cylinder engine with forced induction" for the Eau Rouge. A twin-turbo V-8 from Mercedes-Benz seems to fit that description pretty well, as Infiniti inked a technology-sharing deal with the Silver Arrow automaker a few years ago. No matter what engine the car gets, the prospect of a 500-hp-plus Q50 has our attention.
Inside, the Eau Rouge concept's cabin was designed to "offer command and comfort," with a high-grip sports steering wheel and F1-style paddle shifters. Some of the exterior's design themes are repeated inside, including red-infused carbon-fiber details in the doors and center console, and dark chrome trim throughout the cabin.