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2018 Infiniti Q70: New Car Review

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Autotrader November 2017

If you're looking for Japanese quality and attention to detail in a sport sedan every bit the equal of the BMW 5 Series and Audi A6, the 2018 Infiniti Q70 has the moves and muscle to fill the position. As the company' flagship sedan, the Q70 must excel in every area from luxury and safety to performance and styling. More curvaceous than the rigid Cadillac CT6 and more expressive than a Mercedes-Benz E-Class, the Q70 offers buyers a car with multiple personalities, including a long wheelbase version, a V6 or V8 engine option and the choice between rear-wheel or all-wheel drive. There's even a powerful yet efficient hybrid model.

Inside, the Q70 wraps its occupants in traditional Infiniti luxury amenities, including a long list of standard items that cost extra in many of the Q70's competitors. A backup camera, Intelligent Key keyless entry and start, and heated front seats can be found in even the most basic model, with several attractive option packages further helping flesh out the Q70's features. In fact, the only gripe we can find with the Q70 is the lackluster choice of exterior colors. After all, a body this seductive deserves at least one bright red option or other vivid hue.

What's New for 2018?

For 2018, the Q70 adopts Infiniti's global branding by adding the LUXE name to all its models. Some package renaming and feature shuffling round out the changes.

What We Like

Elegant styling; lovely interior design; lots of high-tech features; good fuel economy in hybrid models

What We Don't

High prices and poor fuel economy in V8 models; narrow front seats; lack of vivid color choices

How Much?

$51,295-$78,000

Fuel Economy

The base Q70 3.7 LUXE is powered by a smooth and lively 3.7-liter V6 that's good for 330 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque. In the hybrid model, an older 3.5-liter version of the same engine is mated to a 50kw electric motor. The hybrid's combined output is slightly better than the standard V6's, producing 360 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. The Q70 5.6 LUXE uses a powerful 5.6-liter V8 producing 420 hp and 417 lb-ft of torque. All but the hybrid can be equipped with Infiniti's Intelligent All-Wheel Drive. Similarly, all Q70 models use the same 7-speed automatic transmission, which features manual shift control and downshift rev-matching. The transmission also comes with Infiniti's Drive Mode Selector program, which offers four handling settings: normal, economy, sport and snow.

Fuel economy for the Q70 3.7 LUXE is rated at 18 miles per gallon in the city and 25 mpg on the highway, while the all-wheel-drive version is rated at 18 mpg city/24 mpg hwy. The Q70 Hybrid LUXE moves those figures up to a very impressive 28 mpg city/33 mpg hwy. The V8-powered Q70 5.6 LUXE goes in the opposite direction: The rear-wheel-drive model delivers 16 mpg city/24 mpg hwy, and the all-wheel-drive model gets 16 mpg city/23 mpg hwy.

Standard Features & Options

There are nine trims in the 2018 Q70 lineup: The Q70 3.7 LUXE, Q70 3.7 LUXE AWD, Q70 5.6 LUXE, Q70 5.6 LUXE AWD, Q70 LUXE Hybrid and the four stretched Q70L LUXE trims.

The Q70 3.7 LUXE ($51,295) and Q70L 3.7 LUXE ($52,795) bring 18-inch alloy wheels, HID headlights, a power glass moonroof, front fog lights, Intelligent Key with push-button start and remote window control, power-folding heated side mirrors with a tilt-down feature, rain-sensing wipers, an automatic trunk closer, 10-way power driver and passenger seats, heated front seats, an AM/FM/CD stereo with six speakers, an iPod and USB interface, Active Noise Control, Bluetooth, a power tilt-telescopic steering wheel, a rearview monitor, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control and rear console-mounted heat vents. The optional Essential package is complementary for 2018 (see optional equipment below for a list of its content).

The Q70 3.7 LUXE AWD ($53,445) and Q70L 3.7 LUXE AWD ($54,945) have the same features as the 3.7, plus Infiniti's Intelligent All-Wheel Drive.

The Q70 Hybrid LUXE ($57,395) adds a hybrid electric/gasoline engine and the same standard content as the 3.7, plus rear-wheel drive, regenerative braking and the Approaching Vehicle Sound for Pedestrians System.

The Q70 5.6 LUXE ($64,345) and Q70L 5.6 LUXE ($65,755) add climate-controlled front seats, leather seats, voice-activated navigation, a Bose 10-speaker audio system, Infiniti Connection telematics, Infiniti's Around View Monitor, a rear sonar system and a heated steering wheel.

The Q70 5.6 LUXE AWD ($66,895) and Q70L 5.6 LUXE AWD ($68,595) have the same content as the 5.6, plus Infiniti's Intelligent All-Wheel Drive.

Options packages for the 3.7 trims include the Essential package, which brings navigation, Bose Premium Audio, the Around View Monitor, climate-controlled front seats, a heated steering wheel and a rear sonar system. The Sport package adds 20-in wheels, upgraded suspension and brakes, sport seats, magnesium paddle shifters, 16-speaker Bose Studio Surround system and a power rear sunshade. Sport package is not available on the L trims.

Available on all trims is the ProACTIVE package, which brings a blind spot monitoring system, lane-departure warning and prevention, Intelligent Cruise Control, distance-control assist, forward-collision warning, Active Trace Control, backup-collision intervention and adaptive front lighting. The Premium Select Edition brings dark chrome exterior trim, a rear decklid spoiler, a suedelike headliner, 20-in aluminum alloy wheels and unique color semi-aniline leather seating.

Safety

Infiniti equips the Q70 with standard traction and stability control, 4-wheel anti-lock brakes and a tire-pressure monitoring system. The passenger compartment is protected by front, front-side impact and front and rear side-curtain airbags.

The Q70 is so well constructed that it earned a Top Safety Pick rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The Q70 can be equipped with numerous features designed to aid the driver, all of which are bundled into the ProACTIVE package. Topping the list is Intelligent Cruise Control, which is a system that uses radar to keep a safe distance between the Q70 and the traffic ahead. The lane-departure warning and prevention system alerts the driver when the car is crossing out of its lane, and it will even nudge the vehicle back over if the driver isn't paying attention. The blind spot monitoring system provides a warning if there's a car in the driver's blind spot, and adaptive front lighting turns the headlights in the direction the vehicle is steering.

Behind the Wheel

We drove all three models. The V8-powered 2018 Infiniti Q70 5.6 LUXE is the one for power junkies, but we also found the V6 and hybrid models to be more than sufficient in acceleration and passing. The Q70 is a marvelous driving machine, striking the right balance between a comfortable ride and adept handling. The Sport and ProACTIVE packages' taut suspension and active rear steering push the Q70 into BMW territory. The 20-in wheels and tires and the firmer suspension, however, turn the Q70 into a car that enthusiasts will love. Luxury-oriented buyers will likely find it too harsh, though.

The 7-speed transmission can be a real bummer at times. In automatic mode, we found the Q70 to be slow to downshift, sometimes seeming as though it were taking its time trying to figure out the best gear for the revolutions per minute. We prefer the manual mode for aggressive driving.

Other Cars to Consider

2018 Audi A6 -- The A6 may be the only car with a more elegant interior than the Q70, and although its base 2.0-liter turbo engine can't match the Infiniti's V6 in terms of horsepower or torque, the optional 3.0-liter V6 offers 10 more hp over the Infiniti V6. The 450-hp twin-turbocharged V8 in the S6 model outmuscles the 5.6's V8 by 30 hp.

2018 BMW 5 Series -- The 6-cylinder 5 Series costs a bit more than the Q70, but it's not as powerful or roomy. We also like the Q70's interior design and layout more than that of the 5 Series. The 5 Series does now offer the option of a powerful V8 and hybrid model.

2018 Genesis G80 -- The G80 is the surprise player here. Although it doesn't carry the lofty brand image portrayed by Infiniti, you get similar power and fuel economy (pound for pound), with more passenger and cargo volume (in the standard wheelbase), plus a better standard warranty. A new Sport trim features a twin-turbo V6 good for 365 hp.

Used Mercedes-Benz E-Class -- A 2012-2016 Mercedes-Benz E-Class can be bought for about the same or less money as a well-equipped Q70. It also offers a more prestigious name, as well as diesel-powered and high-performance AMG models.

Autotrader's Advice

Driving purists with big bank accounts will likely insist on the Q70 5.6 LUXE with the Sport and ProACTIVE package, and who could blame them? For the rest of us who are looking for good performance in an elegant package that spoils its owner, we'd go for the Q70 LUXE Hybrid. The hybrid has all the comforts of the stock Q70, sacrificing only some trunk space for the battery pack. And with the hybrid, you get the same performance as with the gasoline-only V6, plus better fuel economy.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2018 Infiniti Q70: New Car Review - Autotrader