2015 Infiniti QX70 Review

2015 Infiniti QX70 - The 2015 Infiniti QX70 is a versatile combination crossover and sports sedan.


Prices: $45,850-$47,300

Infiniti isn't as highly regarded by luxury car shoppers as are Mercedes, BMW or Audi, but the fast, luxurious Infiniti QX70 combination crossover/sports sedan can hold its own with more prestigious rivals.

The QX70 comes as the $45,850 QX70 rear-drive version or all-wheel-drive $47,300  "QX70 3.7 AWD," as the price sticker on my test QX70 put it. (The "3.7" stands for engine size in liters.)

Standing out from look-alike luxury crossovers, the QX70 has a long hood, stretched wheelbase, kicked-back roofline that doesn't interfere with rear headroom and short front and rear overhangs. Large dual exhaust outlets with chrome finishes cap the action-ready look.

However, wide windshield pillars partially block visibility when turning corners. Occupants sit high, but in rather low-set seats. Shorter ones in back may feel a bit submerged.

It takes extra effort to get into the QX70's plush, quiet interior because it has a rather high floor. Rear doorways have somewhat narrow openings because of the body's wheelwell design.

The cargo opening is wide, but a little high. There's decent room for cargo, but rear seatbacks must be folded forward if you want to carry lots of stuff.

Standard are a power tinted sunroof, leather-covered seats, heated power driver's seat, dual-zone automatic temperature control, rearview monitor and a power liftgate.

There's good room for four adults, although a 6-footer will find legroom a little tight if a tall driver moves his seat all the way back. The center of the backseat is firm and best left to the large fold-down armrest, which contains two cupholders. There's a sliding cover for the two front console cupholders to help give the interior a "finished" look.

The interior, which has plenty of storage areas, also contains four 12-volt power outlets, push-button ignition, Bose Premium audio system with 11 speakers, AM/FM/CD player and a USB connection port for iPod Interface and other compatible devices.

The  electroluminescent gauges can be read at a glance, and controls are easily reached.The infotainment technology is a little dated but is relatively easy to operate.

Steering is firm, but quick. The ride also is firm, but supple, even with all-wheel drive. The QX70 handles like a sports sedan, with independent front and rear suspensions, front/rear stabilizer bars and a low center of gravity. The QX70 uses rigid "Front Midship" platform architecture with balanced front-to-rear weight distribution to help deliver excellent handling.

Antilock disc brakes with electronic brake distribution are easily controlled by a friendly action pedal.

Standard safety features include an advanced air bag system.

The new QX70 has dropped last year's mighty 5.6 liter 390-horsepower V8, but that engine really isn't needed. The 2015 model's standard 3.7-liter, 325-horsepower V-6 with 267 pound-feet of torque offers plenty of punch in town and on open roads.

As might be expected with a 4,000-plus-pound vehicle with high horsepower, estimated fuel economy is 16 miles per gallon in the city and 22 on highways.

The engine is paired with a responsive seven-speed automatic transmission with a no-lag manual shift feature, which can be activated via steering wheel paddles or the console transmission lever.

While loaded with comfort, convenience and safety features, the QX70 is offered with four equipment packages: Premium, Deluxe Touring, Technology and Sport.

The new Sport package stiffens the ride a bit but doesn't make occupants feel uncomfortable, and it makes the QX70 look especially racy. It provides dark finish exterior accents, side air vents and lower side moldings and trunk finishes, interior contrast stitching, magnesium shift paddles and climate-controlled front seats.

The package also contains 21-inch dark finish aluminum-alloy wheels and sport seats that help hold front occupants securely in place when sweeping through curves.

All well and good, but no extra horsepower is offered--not that it's needed.

As for the other packages, the Premium one has, among other things, an Around-View Monitor system to provides a virtual 360-degree view of objects around the vehicle--helping a driver maneuver in tight spots. It also has an 8-inch VGA color touch screen display.

The Technology package has intelligent cruise control that can stop the "Q" completely to prevent an accident, lane departure warning and prevention and distance control assist.  

Finally, the Deluxe touring package contains 20-inch wheels and tires, maple interior accents, quilted leather-appointed seating and climate  controlled front seats.

The hood glides open on twin struts to reveal an engine set pretty far back for better weight distribution.

The QX70 has more than enough assets to draw a greater number of buyers.

Dan Jedlicka

Dan Jedlicka's Website

Dan Jedlicka joined the Chicago Sun-Times in February 1968 as a business news reporter and was named auto editor later that year. He has reviewed more than 4,000 new vehicles for the Sun-Times--far more than any newspaper auto writer in the country. Jedlicka also reviewed vehicles for Microsoft Corp.'s MSN Autos Internet site from January, 1996, to June, 2008.

Jedlicka remained auto editor at the Sun-Times until October, 2008, and continued writing for the newspaper's AutoTimes section, which he started in 1992, until February, 2009. While continuing his auto writings at the Sun-Times, he served as assistant financial editor of that newspaper from 1970 to 1973, when he began his automotive column.

He has appeared on numerous radio and television shows, including NBC's "Today," ABC's "20/20" and "The CBS Evening News." He was a host, consultant and writer for Fox-TV Channel 32's 1991 New Car Preview show and that Chicago-based station's 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995 Chicago Auto Show Previews.

Jedlicka's auto articles have been printed in national magazines, including Esquire and Harper's. His auto columns have been reprinted in U.S. government publications and economic textbooks and he is profiled in the "World's Greatest Auto Show" history book about the Chicago Auto Show. In late 1975, Jedlicka was host and technical advisor for three one-hour television specials, "Auto Test 76," which aired nationally on PBS and were the first nationally televised auto road test shows.

In 1995, Jedlicka was the recipient of the Better Business Bureau of Chicago and Northern Illinois Inc.'s Consumer Education Award, given annually to a person who has gained distinction in the field of consumer education. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award in the Media category and inducted into the Legends of Motorsports Guild at the Carquest World of wheels custom car show in Chicago in January, 2006.

Jedlicka was a member of the North American Car and Truck of the Year jury, composed of a select number of auto journalists from throughout the country, from 1995 until 2009. From 2010 to 2012, he was a member of Consumer Digest magazine's auto experts panel that gave Best Buy new vehicle recommendations.

He is a 1987 graduate of the Bob Bondurant Race Drivers School and later of the BMW "M" and Skip Barber Advanced Driving schools. He was a member of the U.S. team that participated in the 1987 1,000-mile Mille Miglia race/rally in Italy and has been a race winner at the Chicago area's Santa Fe Speedway.

Jedlicka has owned 25 classic cars, including 1950s and 1960s Ferraris and 1950s and 1960s Porsches, a 1965 Corvette, a 1967 Maserati and a 1957 Studebaker supercharged Golden Hawk. Jedlicka resides with his wife, Suzanne, in the Frank Lloyd Wright historic district of Oak Park. They have two children, James and Michele.

For more reviews from Dan, visit Facebook.