Infiniti Q50 features steer-by-wire
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15th July, 2013
Drivers of Infiniti’s all-new mid-size premium car will be the first to
benefit from electronic steer-by-wire technology, inspired by latest jet aircraft technology, when the Q50 hits local
roads later in 2013.
Direct Adaptive Steering, available on some Q50s, will for the first time allow the person behind the wheel to choose
how that wheel feels in their hands.
The steer-by-wire technology is a key ingredient in making the Q50 one of the most dynamic and exciting sports saloons
on the market.
Light and smooth for manoeuvring, firmer and more agile for sporty driving and challenging roads, Direct Adaptive
Steering makes all options available via simple touch-screen controls. Uniquely in the class, both steering weight and
response can be tailored, with all settings stored for each driver in the Q50’s sophisticated memory.
Like a jetliner, Direct Adaptive Steering benefits from several back-up systems – including a conventional mechanical
Direct Adaptive Steering works by electronically transferring the driver’s input to the front wheels where a
high-response actuator drives the steering rack. By eliminating the mechanical losses that can dull the responses in
conventional systems, steering response is faster and vibration at the steering wheel is eliminated. All this is achieved
with a level of feedback from the road that is central to every Infiniti’s performance feel.
Steering is adjusted on a touch screen as part of the Infiniti Drive Mode Selector. Depending on the model, there are
up to four pre-set modes plus a personal setting that allows the driver to mix and match effort and response to suit
individual driving style and type of road.
As a result and in defiance of conventional car steering compromises, the Infiniti Q50 with Direct Adaptive Steering
is as stable and stress-free to steer on a motorway as it is reassuring and rewarding to handle on a mountain pass – or
as light and easy to manoeuvre in a crowded car park.
A further benefit of Direct Adaptive Steering is that it comes with Infiniti’s latest driving technology, Active Lane
Control. This is unique in using the steering system to keep the car between motorway lane markings, “magnetizing” the
car to within its lane and reducing the need for continuous steering input owing to crosswinds or minor camber changes in
the road surface.
Direct Adaptive Steering comes with triple-mode back-up (three separate electronic control units), 400,000km of
real-world test distance behind it and the back-up of the mechanical steering linkage. In normal use a clutch disengages
this mechanical link so it can never corrupt the steering response.
In some markets, Direct Adaptive Steering and Active Lane Control will be standard on the Infiniti Q50 3.5 Hybrid and
optional on the Q50 2.2d. Infiniti Q50 models without Direct Adaptive Steering are equipped with electro-hydraulic
steering that offers drivers the ability to customise steering weight.
Full Australian equipment and pricing details will be announced closer to the Infiniti Q50’s local release.