2016 Infiniti Q70L luxury sedan review with horsepower, price and photo gallery
The best thing about this Q70 — the old M56 sedan, for those thinking it looks familiar — is the big V8 engine. That and the transmission are super smooth, but like the last one we drove a few months ago, it has a little shake/shimmy over bigger bumps.
The 5.6 has a massive amount of power off the line, and it seems to pull strongly to the redline. It comes with a nice roar, too, at full tilt. Downshifts come easy in sport mode, which will enable you to get in front of someone if you’re both slowing down for a light and then it goes green. And I’ll continue to mention this until every automaker changes it: The damn shifter is in the down-is-downshift format, which is patently wrong. Our tester had the “performance wheel and tire package” that includes sport brakes and bigger wheels, so stopping wasn’t a problem, though you can sense the weight of the car when coming to a stop. It does shoot off the line quickly in sport mode, a little less so in normal.
The steering wheel is a bit on the heavy side when turning — another place you can feel this big sedan’s weight — but there isn’t any road feel to speak of, ‘cept that shimmy. It’s weird. I’d call it steering-shaft shake, maybe, or driveline shimmy? I didn’t really try to initiate it in a hard corner; I’d like to see what it does. Again though, from the seat of your pants, the experience is semi-soft and floaty, and it’ll cruise straight at 80 mph all day long.
The Q70L interior seems buttoned up well. Unlike our last car, this one had the $7,200 deluxe technology package with all the tech bits, but also a nice layer of woodgrain around the gear selector and on the dash. That, combined with the mostly monochromatic trim, made it feel plush inside. The seats have a bunch of adjustments for comfort, and the back seat, in particular, looks to have a ton of room. You know when we all talk about that fictional couple that we pick up and go out to dinner with? They would be very comfortable back there with more than 12 inches of kneeroom.
I don’t love the styling. The front end is inoffensive, but the shape is a little too old Panamera for me. It has a little humpback in its DNA. I’m not in love with four-door coupes either, but there must be some angle for the rear window slope that looks right. The trunk lid is stubby, though trunk space looks great. It doesn’t have fold-down seats though, just a pass through for … skis? I guess? Does anyone go skiing with a four-door sedan anymore?
Infiniti’s in a tough spot. Its competitors from the class below are catching up, and I don’t think the company is up to German luxury standards yet.
— Jake Lingeman, road test editor
Jake summed it up well. Terrific powertrain, but the chassis shake/shimmy is definitely noticeable.
The 5.6’s power is terrific both off the line and in the mid-range. Probably a good thing the car is all-wheel drive … like Jake said, the shimmy is hard to describe. It’s inconsistent. Other than that, in my opinion the ride is fine, not too harsh, though not as cosseting as say, an E-Class or A6, nor as solid. Jake is also right about the steering: It feels like high effort, unnaturally so, like it’s pretending to be sporty but just feels weird.
Where Jake and I part ways is the exterior shape. I like it, especially in this navy blue. Lingeman’s whining about the “little humpback” and “stubby” trunklid falls on my deaf ears: What’s wrong with a car that’s not a cookie-cutter shape?
The interior is nice. Plenty of room (I do believe this car was done primarily for Chinese execs who like to be driven). The materials look and feel class competitive. I’m a fan of Nissan’s corporate center stack. It’s easy to decipher, and, by the way, the stereo rocks.
— Wes Raynal, editor
Options: Deluxe technology package, including backup collision intervention, predictive forward collision warning, blind-spot warning and blind-spot intervention, lane departure warning and lane departure prevention, intelligent cruise control, distance control assist, distance control assist, intelligent brake assist with forward collision warning, forward emergency braking, front pre-crash seat belts, active trace control, eco pedal, adaptive front lighting system, Japanese white ash wood trim with genuine silver powder accents, semi-aniline leather appointed seating, Bose studio surround 16-speaker premium audio system, suede-like headliner, soft double-stitched meter hood and power rear sunshade ($7,200); performance tire and wheel package, including 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with all season tires, sport brakes with 4-piston front and 2-piston rear calipers ($1,150); illuminated kick plates ($465)
On Sale: Now
Base Price: $69,955
As Tested Price: $76,770
Drivetrain: 5.6-liter DOHC V8, AWD seven-speed automatic
Output: 416 hp @ 6,000 rpm, 414 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm
Curb Weight: 4,345 lb
Fuel Economy: 16/23/18 mpg(EPA City/Hwy/Combined)
Pros: Quick on the draw with a big V8
Cons: On-road manners still need work
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