Infiniti's bestselling model is getting a makeover that will deliver an updated powertrain and a more muscular look. But for the brand's 204 U.S. dealers, the wait for the arrival of the 2022 QX60 midsize crossover will feel like an eternity.
Production of the current-generation QX60 ended in December, but the new version won't arrive until late August or early September, said Ed Lennon Jr., Infiniti National Dealer Advisory Board chairman and president of Circle Infiniti.
That presents the brand with a sales challenge.
The QX60 accounted for about 40 percent of new-vehicle sales at Lennon's West Long Branch, N.J., store last year.
"The inventory that we have right now has to last us for the next three to six months," Lennon told Automotive News in January. "That's going to be difficult because the QX60 will be in very, very short supply by the end of March."
Infiniti is struggling to reverse the biggest annual percentage sales decline in its history. U.S. sales tumbled 32 percent last year.
Falling sales have dented retailer profitability — more than 30 percent of the brand's U.S. dealers were unprofitable in January.
The QX60, along with the QX50 compact crossover, forms the backbone of Infiniti's U.S. sales.
Infiniti delivered 22,880 QX60s last year, or 29 percent of the brand's total sales.
Tyson Jominy, vice president of the Power Information Network at J.D. Power, said that while there have been instances of skipped model years and late-arriving replacements, it is "extraordinarily rare to have the sales leader take a 'gap year' like this."