Appearances can be deceiving, as they say. One may be dressed to the nines with everything that Cristiano Ronaldo has, but could be a total disaster on the pitch. Another may have the same basketball shoes as LeBron James, but can’t dribble to save his life.

This can be applied to cars as well, as some may look like menacing track day monsters, but end up disappointing in the area of performance. It’s all a matter of perception, and in a world where looking at something results in instant judgement, can good looks alone be trusted?

This brings us neatly to the newly-launched Infiniti Q60, the rival to German offerings such as the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe, BMW 4 Series and the Audi A5 Coupe. It certainly looks the part, but does the Japanese coupe have the function to follow its form? Well, let’s find out.

Visually, the Q60 is essentially a tweaked version of the stunning concept that Infiniti first introduced during the 2015 Detroit Motor Show. The front face carries the brand’s defining double-arch grille design, where the top span represents the profile of a typical Japanese bridge, while the lower span its reflection in the water.

The former meets up with the coupe’s “human eye-influenced” LED headlights – with its signature DRLs – as well as a little raised bump that ends just before the bonnet. According to company officials, this is meant to represent a continuation of the Infiniti logo’s “never-ending road” philosophy.

Progressing towards the rear, the Q60’s subtly flared wheel arches are contained by a crease line that runs through the door handles. Other highlights include the crescent shape design on the C-pillar – which is even more pronounced than what you’d find on the Q50 – and 19-inch dual-tone alloy wheels shod with sizeable 255/40 Dunlop SP Sport Maxx 050 run-flat tyres.

Tilt your vision lower, and you’ll notice a line that flows from the front fenders, through the non-functional air breather vents, down the sides before meeting up with the rear fog lamp enclosure.

There, you’ll notice the only use of gloss black trim to draw attention to the dual exhaust setup. The two-piece taillights are shaped in the same respect to the front lighting units, with part of it being fitted on the boot.

Due to the ducktail-esque spoiler integrated to the cargo space cover, the entire boot lid is a hybrid combination of a resin skin on a steel frame. Why? This allowed Infiniti designers more freedom to create this desired shape. All this effort to get the look just right is certainly something worth admiring, at least for this writer.

It is a very pretty car, this, and when parked next to its German rivals at any swanky part of the city, it’ll blend in just fine. The more organic-looking design and curvier approach is a welcome breath of fresh air from what is presented by its rivals.

Yes, the exterior is no doubt eye-catching, but the interior speaks a different tale. Similar to how Germany’s coupes are derived from their sedan counterparts, the Q60 is closely related to the Q50.

As a result, the layout is nigh identical between both vehicles, but that shouldn’t be a bother because commonality across models within a brand’s line-up is common practice. To make the coupe feel extra special compared to the sedan, the Q60 does get a few model-specific items.

This includes a different design for the steering wheel and gear selector knob, as well as a leather covered dash with visible stitching (no fancy wood, like in most other Infiniti models). You get a choice of two leather upholstery packages (Graphite in this case), paired with brushed aluminium trim.

In the equipment package, a 13-speaker Bose Performance Series sound system is standard as well as Infiniti’s ‘spinal support’ powered seats, which offer 14-way adjustability with memory function for the driver.

Everything else, however, is almost exactly the same as what you would find on a base Q50 2.0t, including dual-zone climate control, InTuition dual touchscreen displays (eight-inch upper and seven-inch lower) and InTouch infotainment system. Look closely and you’ll also notice other items taken from the Nissan parts bin, like the start button and even the key fob.

The latter is enhanced in the Q60 with the addition of a navigation function, but the overall system isn’t the most intuitive at first use, so there’s a bit of a learning curve. Those dual touchscreens are joined by centre console controls that are placed just aft of the Drive Mode Selector (DMS).

So far, the Q60 looks great from the outside but the interior may leave some wanting, especially when its rivals can offer a flashier living space. Now it’s time to find out what the coupe is like on the road, which means firing up the Mercedes-sourced 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine.

Don’t be alarmed as Daimler and Infiniti have been in partnership for some time now, which has resulted in other cars such as the Q30 (developed in parallel with the GLA) being introduced.

Anyway, the mill (also employed by the Q50) serves up 211 hp at 5,500 rpm and 350 Nm of torque from 1,250 to 3,500 rpm (same tune as the C 250 Coupe on sale here). The direct-injected mill is mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission (Mercedes’ 7G-Tronic) and sends drive to the rear wheels.

This combination is good for a zero to 100 km/h time of 7.3 seconds (the Q60 weighs 1.7 tonnes) and will hit a limited top speed of 235 km/h. By comparison, the C 250 Coupe is a fair bit faster (0-100 km/h in 6.8 seconds) because it’s lighter (1,565 kg). The Q60’s muscle does well to get you up to the legal highway speeds although the gearbox isn’t the quickest to respond. Requesting for a burst of speed is met with a slight delay and should you floor the accelerator pedal, it takes a while before downshifts are executed.

Of course, you can take matters into your own hands by pushing the gear lever to manual mode but the lack of paddle shifters is disheartening, considering the sportier nature the Q60 projects.

The engine note isn’t very encouraging either, lacking the vocals you would hear in V6-powered Infiniti models (like the QX70S for instance). This can be remedied by fiddling with the DMS and putting the car in Sport Mode, whereby the Active Sound Enhancement system comes into play. However, the effect isn’t very dramatic, to say the least.

Nonetheless, the powertrain gets through the miles quickly enough, but this isn’t a barn-storming race car for the road you might expect it to be. The Q60 is more like a GT cruiser, which means it needs to be comfortable and pleasant to take on long journeys.

Thankfully, the Q60 excels here because it comes with Active Noise Cancellation System and acoustic windshield, which keeps engine and wind noise at bay. Within 110 km/h, it’s perfectly civilised in the cabin, and tyre roar isn’t overly intrusive despite the size of the rubbers. You’ll have to be aiming for speeds well above what an AES camera would allow to have your ears disturbed.

Complementing the impressive NVH is a ride that is firm but not uncompromising and would certainly be a step above what the C-Class Coupe can offer (though that has an AMG-tuned suspension). The car’s comfort suspension (without variable dampers) copes well with the delightful potholes around KL, and while smaller imperfections can be felt, it isn’t a jolting experience each time.

The 14-way adjustable driver’s seat also ensures you’re kept in place, with the ability to adjust how much the side bolsters hug you. There are rear seats here as well, although legroom can be pretty limited, more so if you have a tall driver seated in front of you. Those who are vertically gifted will also need to slouch to prevent their heads from contacting the car’s ceiling.

In other areas, the Q60 is a pretty easy car to see out off, with blind spots not being obscured despite the sleek 0.29 Cd shape. A sunroof would have been nice to allow more natural light into the cabin, so things would feel more airy.

Much like the base Q50, the Q60 comes with electro-hydraulic power steering and not the steer-by-wire, second-gen Direct Adaptive Steering (DAS). There’s good weight here, and the feedback is good, even though it doesn’t feel like the most accurate of steering systems.

Through what corners we could enjoy, the coupe remained composed and there was plenty of mechanical grip, likely with extra help from those wide tyres. The lack of accuracy with the steering, however, means you may not know if you’ve put in sufficient steering angle, which inevitably leads to over-correction.

Should things get a little out of hand, the Q60’s Active Trace Control systems kicks in, applying gentle, smooth braking to individual wheels to help bring the vehicle back into the correct cornering line. It works well, and you’ll definitely feel it when the stability feature is in effect.

Going back to an earlier statement that the Q60 is more a GT car to this writer than a time attack machine, the inclusion of DAS would certainly be more welcomed. The system, which is unaffected by the kickback and forced movement of conventional steering, would certainly make the car even more comfortable to drive than it already is.

The Q60 (at least in this guise) is for a different sort of individual, one that isn’t focused purely on just raw performance and instead, just wants to trod along at a leisurely pace in comfort, relishing the fact that the car has the visual presence to track eyeballs to it.

And when he or she finally stops driving and decides to get out, they can treat their occipital lobe as well. In that aspect, the Q60 is certainly a worthwhile purchase at RM308,800, which is well within range of the 420i and C 200 Coupe AMG Line. Lest we forget, there’s even a seven-year warranty, which is more than what BMW Malaysia and Mercedes-Benz Malaysia offers. Did I mention it looks really good?