There are 26 letters in the alphabet. Nissan’s luxury vehicle division, INFINITI, implies a company without limits. Ironically, it starts the names of each of its models with only one letter: Q.
It wasn’t always that way. Since INFINITI started selling cars in 1989, there have been vehicles such as the straight-edged M30 of the 1990s, the sleek I35 sedan of the 2000s, and the FX line of curvy crossovers.
That’s the way it is now, though. At INFINITI, Q isn’t the 17th letter, it’s the first. Its crossovers come in four shapes and sizes, including the sub-$30,000 QX30 and the 3-row QX60. The Q60 is the brand’s sculpted 2-door rival to the BMW 4 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe. Sorry GT-R Fans, but INFINITI doesn’t make its own version of the scary-fast all-wheel-drive supercar…yet.
INFINITI sedans range from the entry-level Q50 to the long-wheelbase Q70L. Right in the middle of those two 4-doors is the Q70, which is available in five trim levels and with three different powertrains. On one end, there’s the Q70 3.7 with a 330-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 connected to either rear- or all-wheel drive. At the other end, there’s the Q70 Hybrid with a 360-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 paired with a 50-kW electric motor. In between those two models is the Q70 5.6. Like its 3.7 sibling, its (V8) output is transferred to the road via RWD or AWD.
We recently got the keys to a rear-wheel-drive 2017 Q70 5.6. INFINITI favors one letter the most, but we couldn’t make up our minds about which adjective best describes it, so we just used all of the ones that came to mind in the following review.
2017 INFINITI Q70 5.6 Exterior
The Q70’s muscular body was covered in deep and rich Hermosa Blue paint. Standard LED headlights and daytime running lights flanked the chrome-ringed hourglass grille. Our tester’s $4,900 Sport Package added a variety of upgrades, inside and out. Some of them, such as the sport front fascia and 20-inch wheels in front of the sport brakes’ 4-piston front and 2-piston rear calipers, were more visible than others, such as the sport-tuned suspension. At the rear, a thick chrome strip joined the curvaceous LED tail light cases. Two round exhaust outlets bookended the rear valance.
One look at the Q70 was never enough for us. Whenever we walked away from it, we took the long way – around the back instead of the front – just so we could see more of it before we went into our destinations.
2017 INFINITI Q70 5.6 Interior
The inside of the Q70 was a landscape of Graphite leather, Japanese Ash wood trim, and metallic accents. On its surface and in its nooks and crannies, engineers fit 10-way power climate controlled front seats, a heated steering wheel, rain-sensing wipers, a power tinted glass moonroof, and keyless entry and start, as well as SiriusXM satellite radio, an 8-inch touchscreen, and navigation. Thanks to the Sport Package, we also had front sport seats, steering wheel, and shift knob; paddle shifters made out of lightweight magnesium; cool aluminum pedals; and a 16-speaker Bose Studio Surround audio system. Optional illuminated kick plates added a finishing touch of soothing and helpful light.
2017 INFINITI Q70 5.6 Performance
INFINITI doesn’t call the Q70 5.6 a muscle sedan, but it had four doors and plenty of muscle. Its direct-injected V8 developed a stout 420 horsepower and 417 lbft of torque. Those numbers made us think of the Q70 5.6 as a sort of Japanese Chevrolet SS. When we got aggressive with the throttle, the Q70 rewarded us with a gentle shove back into the seat. A smooth 7-speed automatic adapted to our driving style and transformed that raw output into forward motion with the help of rear-wheel drive. The Q70 became even more of a muscle sedan when we turned the dial for the INFINITI Drive Mode Selector from Standard to Sport (Snow and Eco modes were also available). Throttle response got sharper as the shift points moved into place for performance driving.
As much as we enjoyed Sport mode, we usually left the Q70 in its Standard mode to see how well it performed as what it was designed to be: a luxury sedan. The answer is very. Ride quality was pleasant. Wind noise was minimal. The adaptive cruise control removed the hassle of accelerating and braking in response to our fellow motorists on the highway. Every control fell to hand quickly. Headroom and legroom in the back seat was adequate (yours truly is 5’10” and had no problem getting comfortable in the second row). We felt pampered by the comfortable seats, Bluetooth streaming audio, and user-friendly navigation when we were behind the wheel. We felt special when people saw us emerge from the dark beauty of the Q70.
2017 INFINITI Q70 5.6 Safety
The Q70’s list of standard safety and security features was substantial. It included regular, side-impact, and curtain airbags in the front row, Brake Assist for increased control during stops, Electronic Brake force Distribution to reduce front end brake dive, and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System to keep the rubber hitting the road at the right PSI. Front and rear sonar sensors kept us from tapping the bumpers into people and things. The Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection made parking quick, easy, and worry-free. The RearView Monitor did the same.
The optional $3,300 Technology Package gave us even more peace of mind in the form of Lane Departure Warning and Prevention, Blind Spot Warning and Intervention, Predictive Forward Collision Warning, and Backup Collision Intervention. The Adaptive Front lighting System shined its brilliant LEDs into curves before we entered them.
2017 INFINITI Q70 5.6 Overall
Prices for the 2017 INFINITI Q70 start at $50,100.* Our handsome, comfortable, and well-equipped 5.6 media special had an as-tested price of $72,720. To get one just like it, all you have to do is go to an AutoNation-affiliated INFINITI dealership. You already know INFINITI loves the letter Q. Once you get a Q70 of your own, you’ll come up with some reasons of your own to love it.
*MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.