YOU may be forgiven for not recognising the Infiniti name immediately but across the world Infiniti sells more cars than Porsche or Jaguar.

The brand launched in the UK in 2009 and within two years it offered a full range of coupes, saloons and SUVs.

But Infiniti's arrival in the UK is what the advertising industry calls a "soft launch" - a limited release to a select few.

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Initially there were just a handful of dealerships and when your car needed a service a man was despatched to your house to pick it up. You don't get that if you buy a BMW.

There's a full national network now - and you have to drive yourself when the oily bits need a service - but Infiniti remains a niche player.

Don't count it out, however, because new models are arriving all the time and, if Infiniti’s parent, Nissan, has its way, within a couple of years the badge will be as familiar to prestige car buyers as Audi or Mercedes.

The Infiniti promise is a tempting one: BMW driving dynamics allied to Lexus-style refinement and Mercedes levels of luxury.

Within the current range that recipe is most clearly demonstrated by the new Q60 coupe: a tasty 3.0-litre V6 or 2.0-litre turbo engine, rear wheel drive dynamics, beautiful sleek bodywork and a luxury cabin positively dripping with kit.

Of course, coupes trade on their looks and the Q60 gets off to a flying start. The bold exterior presses all the right buttons: from the long bonnet, through the sleek flanks, the shallow glass area and the handsome curvature of the roofline the Q60 is a real head-turner.

The complexity of creating such a daring design meant Infiniti's engineers had significant technological hurdles to overcome. In fact, they had to invent an entirely new deep-body stamping process to create the complex lines and sharp angles of the Q60's bodywork.

Signature design cues ensure Q60 remains instantly recognisable as an Infiniti, such as the double-arch grille and the crescent-shaped C-pillars which arc forward and emphasize the car’s ‘in-motion’ appearance. LED headlights, employing Light Guide Technology to spread light evenly on the road ahead, are designed to emulate the shape of the human eyelid, and the deeper grille is inset from the body.

The Q60’s drag coefficient of 0.28 was made possible, in part, by the car’s new design, intended to keep the vehicle stable at high speeds and in cross-winds. Vents in the front bumper direct air into the engine bay, while the Q60’s low bonnet is also shaped to reduce drag.

Some models also feature an active grille shutter to balance the engine’s cooling requirements with the desire to enhance aerodynamics. Under normal use, the shutter remains closed, opening to let more cooling air into the engine bay when greater performance is required.

The bodywork smoothing even extends to the door mirrors which are relatively narrow and designed to improve the flow of air down the flanks of the vehicle, while maintaining a wide angle of rear visibility for the driver.

No wonder a jury of 58 independent design experts awarded it the IF Design Automobile Design Award earlier this year.

In the UK the Q60 range kicks off with a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine which produces 208bhp - plenty for sporting performance allied to surprising economy.

If you move on up to the 3.0-litre V6 things get even more interesting.

In some markets Infiniti offers the six-cylinder Q60 in two flavours: standard (300bhp) and high powered. However, in the UK we get the 400bhp high power version as standard.

The standard four wheel drive gets the V6 car off the line quickly and it can hit 62mph just five seconds later. The 2.0-litre turbo is no slouch though, as its 0-62mph time of 7.3 seconds shows. On the German autobahn both models are capable of touching 150mph so there's always plenty in reserve at the British motorway speed limit. This high performance doesn't come at the expense of fuel consumption, either. The 2.0-litre engine achieves 41.5mpg on the official combined cycle and the beefy V6 manages 31mpg.

The Q60 has been fitted with a range of new driving technologies including Direct Adaptive Steering (standard on Sport models) which is an entirely drive by wire set-up - meaning there is no mechanical connection between driver and the steering wheels.

Direct Adaptive Steering transmits the driver’s input to the wheels faster than a mechanical system while requiring fewer steering corrections and is able to make 1,000 steering adjustments per second.

In the Q60 it has undergone significant re-tuning to enhance steering feel and feedback, while making it possible for the driver to further customise the steering performance according to personal preferences through the Drive Mode Selector. Located via menus displayed in the centre console, Drive Mode Selector allows the steering response to be selected from six available options: ‘Customise’, ‘Standard’, ‘Snow’, ‘Eco’, ‘Sport’, and – new for certain models – ‘Sport+’.

The four-cylinder turbo-charged Q60 models are equipped with a speed-sensitive hydraulic electronic rack-and-pinion power steering system as standard. This increases assistance at low speeds and reduces assistance for enhanced feel and response at higher speeds.

Infiniti also offers two choices of suspension system. The standard set-up, shared with the Q50 sports saloon, ensures a low level of road noise and minimal intrusion of unwanted vibrations, while allowing for more direct and linear handling responses. Suspension link layouts and bushings have been modified specifically for their application in the Q60, while shock absorbers are relocated for optimised sports coupe ride and handling.

An all-new electronic suspension system, Dynamic Digital Suspension, comes as standard on the Q60 3.0-litre V6 engine versions. Drivers can change the focus of the suspension from a comfort-biased ride to one which offers more dynamic responses, by placing the electronically adjustable shock absorbers in either Sport or Sport+ modes (adjusted via the Drive Mode Selector), providing firmer damping control for more agile handling.

One feature all infinitis are noted for is their outstanding refinement and the Q60 is no different. Infiniti engineers have ensured Q60’s noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) levels are among the best in the segment. In particular, NVH has been improved with the adoption of greater suspension insulation and stiffer cross-members, as well as wheel spokes designed to dampen vibrations. The cabin even uses Bose's acclaimed Active Noise Cancellation technology to prevent negative engine noise frequencies from intruding on the calm of the cabin. This works by using microphones to monitor external noise and generating an inverse sound wave - piped via the audio system's 13 individual speakers - to cancel out the din.

The Q60 is equipped as standard with Infiniti’s InTuition central control system, the latest generation of the company’s advanced infotainment set-up. Upgraded with a faster processor than earlier editions of the technology, InTuition allows occupants to personalise the interior environment of the Q60 according to their preferences, with fully adjustable temperature, seating positions, audio-visual settings, navigation and more.

As well as being good-looking and great to drive, the Q60 is a very safe car, too.

The active and passive safety technologies include: Around View Monitor, Intelligent Cruise Control with Distance Control Assist, Forward Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Braking system, Lane Departure Prevention, Blind Spot Intervention and Backup Collision Intervention.

And the price of all this technology? Well the Q60 range starts at a very reasonable £34,400 for the 2.0-litre turbo in Premium specification which compares favourably with its European coupe rivals.

Last year Infiniti had one of the biggest sales increases of any mainstream manufacturer thanks to the new Q30 premium hatchback and QX30 crossover (both of which are assembled in the UK). The Q60 won't sell in big numbers but Infiniti is counting on to do a different job: to sprinkle some sporting stardust on the rest of the range.

With those slinky good looks, the performance to back them up and a host of innovative technology the Q60 is well placed to do just that.

Infiniti is clearly going places in 2017.