2014 Infiniti Q50 vs. 2014 Lexus IS: By the Sales Numbers – 2013 Detroit

The Infiniti G (now Infiniti Q50/Q60) and Lexus IS have been sparring partners in comparison tests and showrooms for two generations now. It only seems appropriate that the latest IS and Q50 debut alongside each other during the 2013 Detroit auto show.

The 2014 Q50 replaces the G37 Sedan but retains the 112.2-inch wheelbase and tried-and-true VQ-series 3.7-liter V-6 with 328 horsepower. A hybridized Q50 pairs an Atkinson-cycle 3.5-liter V-6 with an electric motor. The standard and only transmission is a seven-speed automatic. The 2014 IS rival comes in two well-recognized flavors: IS 250 and IS 350. Both make do with familiar V-6s: a 2.5-liter and a 3.5. An eight-speed auto transmits power for the IS 350.

2014 Infiniti Q50 and 2014 Lexus IS right side 300x187 imageThe very first 2001 IS 300 went on sale in the year 2000. At the time, the G was the front-drive, 145-hp G20. Then in March 2002, the first G35 Sedan (part of the 2003 model year) hit the ground running while the G35 Coupe arrived that November. As you may recall, the G35 was our 2003 Car of the Year. The IS was fully redesigned and renumbered as the IS 250 and IS 350 for the 2006 model year. Before the G37 sedan’s release, the 2008 G37 coupe hit the scene in 2007.

And now, here we are. Japan’s two biggest competitors to the BMW 3 Series, Audi A4, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and Motown’s own Cadillac ATS are on the Detroit big stage together. In remembrance of the G and IS vehicles that have come and gone, let’s take a look at the sales numbers.

Calendar Year Infiniti G G % of Brand Total Lexus IS IS % of Brand Total

2000

13,095

16.7%

15,540

7.5%

2001

11,512

16.1%

22,486

10.0%

2002

40,534

46.1%

20,306

8.7%

2003

64,741

54.6%

13,559

5.2%

2004

71,177

54.3%

9972

3.5%

2005

68,728

50.4%

15,789

5.2%

2006

60,741

50.1%

54,267

16.8%

2007

71,809

56.5%

54,933

16.7%

2008

64,181

56.8%

49,432

19.0%

2009

47,174

58.2%

38,077

17.6%

2010

58,143

56.2%

34,129

14.9%

2011

58,246

59.2%

29,669

14.9%

2012

59,844

49.9%

27,708

11.3%

The “% of Brand Total” columns mark how the respective G and IS sales volumes impact total brand sales for the year. Needless to say, the G was an exceedingly important car for Infiniti. Lexus may have greater product reach courtesy of its RX crossover and ES sedan, so the IS doesn’t contribute as much to the bottom-line quantity, but there’s no doubt both marques will be looking to grow sales in the hotly contested compact sport luxury segment. We can’t wait to watch it all unfurl.

For all the latest news, photos, videos, and much more direct from the 2013 Detroit auto show, head to our 2013 Detroit auto show coverage page here.

Sales data source: Automotive News, Infiniti, Lexus

By Benson Kong