2017 Infiniti Q70

2017 INFINITI Q70 Review

The 2017 Infiniti Q70, the elder statesman among midsize luxury sedans, is showing its age.
3 star edmunds overall rating
author
by Jason Kavanagh
Edmunds Editor

The 2017 Infiniti Q70's tidy driving dynamics and robust V8 performance can't overcome the headwinds presented by its newer rivals. If you're looking for the best technology, comfort and curb appeal from a midsize luxury sedan, we think you'll find more appealing options elsewhere.

Introduced as a 2011 model and refreshed in 2015, the Infiniti Q70 is starting to fray around the edges. Its structure isn't as drum-tight as we'd expect from a modern luxury car, and its touchscreen, voice controls and smartphone interface all betray its age. Its optional driver assistance features really ought to be standard at this price. It's an older sedan that doesn't distinguish itself in a competitive segment.

We do like the optional V8 engine's punch and the unobtrusiveness of its transmission. It's not a true performance car, but its acute steering can make this big sedan seem to shrink around you when you're unwinding a canyon road. But the other Q70 versions, including the Hybrid and the long-wheelbase Q70L, just don't do enough to warrant a recommendation.



what's new

Other than some minor package availability adjustments for 2017, the Infiniti Q70 is unchanged.

we recommend

Go for the Q70 5.6 for its big-hearted power delivery. Skip the all-wheel drive unless you live in a persistently slippery environment. Don't bother with the Q70L unless backseat legroom is of paramount importance. While we like all of the hardware and improved seats of the Sport package, be aware that its 20-inch wheels and stiffer suspension degrade the ride quality. Unfortunately, driver assistance features, which would typically be standard in this segment, are available only in the optional Technology package. They're worthwhile, though.




trim levels & features

The 2017 Infiniti Q70 is available in two trim levels, 3.7  and 5.6, which delineate the engines and equipment levels on offer. A long-wheelbase Q70L is similarly available with either engine. A hybrid version (appropriately named Q70 Hybrid) exists, but Infiniti doesn't offer a hybridized variant of the Q70L. Rear-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional on non-hybrid models. Oddly enough, the base 3.7 offers an option package for no additional cost that bestows it with a solid array of features. A variety of optional packages provide for a degree of customization.

The base Q70 in 3.7 guise includes a 3.7-liter V6 (330 horsepower, 270 pound-feet of torque) and offers as a zero-cost option a package that includes leather upholstery, a heated steering wheel, parking alerts, a heated steering wheel, a bird's-eye view camera system and a 10-speaker Bose premium audio system.

Q70s bearing the 5.6 badge pack a powerful 5.6-liter V8 (420 hp, 417 lb-ft of torque). These models include all the items of the Premium Package-equipped 3.7 as standard. The Premium Select package is not available on the Q70 5.6, which is fine since it's largely cosmetics anyway.

The Q70 Hybrid has a 3.5-liter V6 and a hybrid system (360 hp) and is not available with the Premium Select or Sport package or the Performance Tire and Wheel package, which is offered only on the Q70L.

A seven-speed automatic is the sole transmission available in all models. The 3.7 and 5.6 models each offer a Sport package and a Technology package. Sport adds more heavily bolstered seats, bigger brakes, a sport-tuned suspension, 20-inch wheels and summer tires. The Technology package adds driver assistance features such as blind-spot and lane departure warning and intervention, adaptive cruise and forward emergency braking. Packages such as Premium Select add 20-inch wheels, revised cabin materials and exterior fripperies.

Q70L variants offer an optional Deluxe Touring package that includes upgraded cabin materials, more heavily bolstered seats, Bose premium audio and a power rear sunshade. For 2017, Q70L models also offer the Premium Select package that debuted on short-wheelbase models last year.



trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our drive of the 2016 Infiniti Q70 5.6 w/Premium Select Edition package (5.6L V8; 7-speed automatic).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Q70 has received only minor revisions related to trim level offerings. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's Q70.

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall3.0 / 5.0

Driving

3.5 / 5.0

Acceleration4.0 / 5.0
Braking3.5 / 5.0
Steering4.0 / 5.0
Handling3.5 / 5.0
Drivability3.0 / 5.0

Comfort

3.0 / 5.0

Seat comfort4.5 / 5.0
Ride comfort2.0 / 5.0
Noise & vibration3.0 / 5.0
Climate control4.5 / 5.0

Interior

4.0 / 5.0

Ease of use3.0 / 5.0
Getting in/getting out4.5 / 5.0
Driving position5.0 / 5.0
Roominess4.5 / 5.0
Visibility3.5 / 5.0
Quality3.0 / 5.0

Utility

2.5 / 5.0

Small-item storage2.0 / 5.0
Cargo space2.5 / 5.0

Technology

1.0 / 5.0

Audio & navigation1.0 / 5.0
Smartphone integration1.0 / 5.0
Driver aids1.0 / 5.0
Voice control2.0 / 5.0

Driving

edmunds rating
On twisting tarmac, the 2017 Q70's sporting roots are palpable. There's an athleticism in the Q70 that reminds us that the Nissan 370Z uses a related platform. The V8 hauls the mail, and the steering and brakes are pluses, too. Much is outdated about the Q70, but performance remains a strength.

Acceleration

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The big V8 accelerates effortlessly at full throttle, although low-rpm power is soft compared to what rival turbocharged engines produce. The sprint to 60 mph took 5.2 seconds — unremarkable for 420 hp — but there's plenty of real-world punch. This is a fast car.

Braking

edmunds rating
Reassuringly firm pedal that's easy to modulate. Feels expertly calibrated and inspires confidence. In our emergency braking test, the Q70 stopped in a short 114 feet on all-season tires. Note that the Premium Select Edition includes upgraded brakes.

Steering

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It's responsive and accurate in quick transitions, giving you the sense that the Q70 can be placed precisely on the desired line. Effort is fingertip-light in parking lots yet firm and steady on freeway slogs. Very good for the segment.

Handling

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The Q70 feels narrow and agile on winding roads, turning in eagerly and generally comporting itself like a smaller car. The base car has too much bounce in the suspension for real sporty driving, but a Sport package is available and would provide improvements.

Drivability

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The transmission serves up precise rev-matched downshifts in manual mode, yet it operates unobtrusively in the daily slog. While passing or merging, however, downshifts can be slow to engage in Drive. Overall, the Q70 is a smooth driver that rarely annoys.

Comfort

edmunds rating
On the freeway, the 2017 Q70's ride is calm and isolating, though imperfect surfaces can make the car feel jittery. The V8 makes inspiring noises while accelerating yet never intrudes, unlike the coarse base V6. The seating is spacious and plush. It's a pleasant car to be in, but not much more.

Seat comfort

edmunds rating
A Q70 strong suit. The seats are soft yet drive-all-day supportive, lacking only lateral support for brisk drives (note that this test car lacked the Sport package, which includes sport seats). The rear seats have excellent under-thigh support.

Ride comfort

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The Q70 lacks the composed suppleness on rough roads that shoppers in this segment rightly expect. The structure too readily quivers and shakes. This is partly down to the big 20-inch wheels and tires, but rivals with similar equipment exhibit more refinement.

Noise & vibration

edmunds rating
It's adequately quiet on most surfaces. Tire noise can intrude at times, but that's par for the course with 20-inch rubber. We noted some gentle shaking from the big V8 at idle; some might call it "character," but others will wish for more isolation.

Climate control

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The straightforward controls include simple up/down rocker switches for temperature on each side. The entire bank of climate controls is angled up toward the front occupants, enhancing visibility and accessibility. Quiet fan and cold air-conditioning in triple-digit heat.

Interior

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The Q70's cabin has very good ergonomics overall, including a curved central control stack that falls readily to hand. The dashboard and console wrap snugly around the driver. Even this standard-wheelbase model has generous rear legroom. The outdated tech interface is the main drawback.

Ease of use

edmunds rating
The control layout is mostly user-friendly, from the sensible climate buttons to the proper knobs for volume and tuning. But the touchscreen is too small and too far from the driver, and the redundant control knob is less intuitive than those in rivals.

Getting in/getting out

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The seats are conveniently high relative to the floor, so you slide onto them more than plop down into them. Despite the stylized exterior, the roof inside is high enough to stay out of your way, even in back. The door openings are more than adequate.

Driving position

edmunds rating
The wraparound dashboard and elevated center console make the Q70 feel more like a sports car from the driver seat, and that seat has plenty of adjustments for taller or shorter drivers. The power steering column has plenty of tilt-and-telescoping range.

Roominess

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The Q70's interior dimensions will likely feel just right for many shoppers. Four 6-footers can travel in comfort, and those in back will enjoy the elevated bottom cushion, which gives great thigh support. The rear middle seat is only for emergencies.

Visibility

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Front visibility is excellent, and it's framed entertainingly by the curvaceous front fenders — kind of like in a Corvette. The rising beltline and rakish rear roofline conspire to inhibit rear visibility a bit, but it's still manageable.

Quality

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The cabin is nicely trimmed with lots of leather and interesting industrial-metal accents. Material quality overall is high, and assembly tolerances seem tight. The control knob and adjoining seat-heater knobs feel downmarket, however.

Utility

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The Q70 generally underwhelms on the utility front, but good child safety seat features redeem it somewhat. If you don't care about child safety seats, the lack of small item storage and a power trunklid might give you pause.

Small-item storage

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Poor. Only two cupholders and an ashtray on the center console. Nothing in the way of thoughtful smartphone nooks or crannies. At least the center-console storage box under the armrest is reasonably spacious and handy.

Cargo space

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The trunk capacity is about average at 14.9 cubic feet. There's a wide opening, but it narrows at the wheelwells. No power closing, just power release, and the release takes an extra half-second for some reason. The rear seatback is fixed, so you can't fold it down to gain extra cargo capacity.

Child safety seat accommodation

edmunds rating
Two sets of LATCH anchors with three tethers on the rear shelf. Access is user-friendly, and ALR (automatic locking retractor) belts come standard. A rear-facing seat could be a squeeze behind a long-legged driver (but the Q70L should work just fine).

Technology

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If you're wondering why the Q70 rates relatively poorly overall, this section is the answer. Infiniti has largely left the Q70's touchscreen interface untouched during this decade, and its advanced age is readily apparent. The car's rivals, meanwhile, have decisively pulled ahead.

Audio & navigation

edmunds rating
The most dated infotainment interface you'll find in this class. The touchscreen is small and square — a throwback to a different era. The graphics are low-resolution and lack flair. The Bose stereo sounds pretty good, but otherwise the Q70 system is a mess.

Smartphone integration

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The infotainment system debuted well before Bluetooth audio became ubiquitous, and that's painfully obvious. Our Q70 had a hard time remembering paired phones from drive to drive. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay simply aren't offered. Dinosaur grade.

Driver aids

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Our test car lacked the Technology package, which contains just about every high-tech safety feature the Q70 offers. It's almost unheard of in this class for items such as blind-spot monitoring and forward collision warning to be optional.

Voice control

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Not surprisingly, the Q70's voice command system is also getting on in years. We couldn't figure out how to control Bluetooth audio without consulting the manual. Spoken commands must be perfectly precise; there's no "intelligence" that we could detect.

edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.