2014 Infiniti QX70 Review

New name, same old tricks

2014 Infiniti QX70 Review

It’s easy to like the Infiniti portfolio thanks to its focus on performance and premium features. With the Infiniti QX70, the brand brings those elements to a bigger vehicle, but doesn’t make its mid-sized luxury crossover any less approachable.

FAST FACTS

1. The QX70 is the new name given to the old Infiniti FX class of cars. 2. The QX70 is available with a 3.7L V6 which makes 325 hp and 267 lb-ft of torque and a 5.0L V8 which makes 390-hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. Both engines are mated to a seven speed automatic transmission. 3. All-wheel drive is optional on 3.7L V6 models, while V8 models comes standard with AWD. 4. Pricing starts at $44,950 for a base, rear wheel drive QX70. Our tester came in at $57,945.

For 2014, Infiniti renamed its entire lineup. This QX70 is last years FX37, a midsized crossover that uses the same 3.7-liter V6 and all-wheel drive system as the brands sport-sedan. Buyers can opt for a more powerful engine under the hood of the QX70, as a 5.0-liter V8 is still available. Instead of a beefy V8, Infiniti lent us a V6 model loaded to the headliner with tech features. As luxury buyers want both a distinctly noticeable vehicle and the latest and greatest technology, our QX70 could prove to be quite the car.

MORE CAR THAN CROSSOVER

The crossover hides both its Q50 underpinnings and crossover size thanks to its well sculpted sheet metal. The nearly sports car like appearance is striking no matter what and is more inviting than other distinctly styled crossovers like the Acura ZDX and BMW X6.

There’s hardly any detail to dislike in regards to the QX70’s exterior. It’s a beacon of unique automotive design that decries the notion that a luxury crossover has to be conservative looking and emotionless. There’s no doubt that the QX70 still catches attention despite the fact that its general design has been around for 10 years.

Its design hints at its capability. In no way is the QX70 meant to make off-road trips. Even rough pavement and potholes were uncomfortable for the 20-inch wheels wrapped in low-profile tires. Yes, the QX70 likes the road to be as smooth as its design.

NOT A HINT OF ROUGH AND TUMBLE

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Get the QX70 in motion and it’s clear that this car is aiming for something that the usual luxury crossover isn’t. While the competition shoots for a car-like drive with more capability and ends up at a compromise, the QX70 delivers an enjoyable drive and says nay-nay to any notions of going off-road.

The 3.7L V6 engine has an easily appreciated raspy roar and gets amusingly gruff at higher revs. The seven-speed transmission sends 325 hp to the rear-wheels, while the front wheels can get up to 50 percent of power if needed. This feeling of being thrust about really helps maintain the car-like feel of the QX70. Speed sensitive steering helps to give it impressive handling traits without feeling too artificial or vague.

If shoppers are looking for a cool car, Infiniti has designed one of the sexiest crossovers available. But tech is also sexy and Infiniti packs the QX70 with so much tech, it practically drives itself.

2014 Infiniti QX70 Review 6After a week of testing, it seems that the tech is a little too eager to show its worth. The lane-keep alert is incredibly sensitive, as if it wasn’t calibrated for the width of the big car. Additionally the city-brake assist is far too cautious, braking too soon and leaving a giant gap between you and the car in front of you, not to mention surprising anyone behind you.

Short of the ability to drive itself, the Infiniti QX70 has every example of high-tech-toy. Our tester feartures adaptive cruise control, lane-keep-sensors and assistance, automatic braking in the city and in traffic and a camera which provides a top-down view of the crossover so you can easily navigate into tight spots.

INSIDES OF A SPORT-SEDAN

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Drivers frustrated by the nagging safety systems will find comfort in the well-designed and appointed interior at the least. Seats are soft and supportive, hinting at the cars sport-sedan underpinnings. It doesn’t hurt that they can be both heated and cooled, either.

Rear seat accommodation is a bit disappointing. It’s a tight and the middle passenger will be playing footsies with their neighbors because of the driveshaft tunnel. If you regularly play chauffeur to two passengers, the QX70 will suffice, otherwise it just won’t work.

Trunk-space is disappointing. At just 24.8 cubic feet, it’s not much better than the carrying capability of the compact Mercedes-Benz GLK. The QX70’s cargo opening is fairly high and the trunk isn’t very deep. Folding the rear seats helps quite a bit, expanding the space to 62 cubic feet, which is on par with competing vehicles in the segment.

2014 Infiniti QX70 Review 11It’s easy to determine if the QX70 is the luxury crossover for you. It exudes style and design and if it doesn’t resonate with you, then its a simple decision. If the looks don’t work in your favor then you’ll like the fact that a base Porsche Cayenne has a similar curb weight and power, but without most of the high-tech pizzaz that the Infiniti offers at a similar price point.

While a base, rear-wheel drive QX70 comes in at just $45,945 our AWD equipped model had every option box ticked, with the premium and deluxe touring packages providing extra interior luxuries and exterior styling and the technology package added all the fun toys and gimmicks. In total, our tester rang up at $57,945 after destination and handling, a lot of money even in the luxury crossover segment. Alternatives at that price point are a more generously equipped Porsche Cayenne and a base BMW X6 xDrive35i. These cars all skew more to the performance scale of the spectrum, while the Infiniti is easily the more luxurious choice with its available technology.

One more thing to consider: fuel economy. The QX70 managed to get about 16 mpg in combined driving situations and isn’t rated much better by the EPA, at 18 mpg combined.

THE VERDICT

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Discuss this story at our Infiniti Forum

Interesting and unique, the Infiniti QX70 is a step up without stepping over the line. It’s full of party tricks but few really make the drive any more comfortable or easier. For those looking for a stylish crossover, which truly handles like a sport-sedan, the QX70 is the luxury crossover for you. It’s a shame that the high-tech features and assists are finicky, so buyers looking for the latest in technology-focused vehicles should look elsewhere.

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