2015 Infiniti Q70, stretching luxury to new lengths-Autogo

Mardi 05 mai 2015

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2015 Infiniti Q70: stretching luxury to new lengths

2015 Infiniti Q70: stretching luxury to new lengths

Sebastian Vettel, Formula One World Driving Champion and advisor to Infiniti, seems to have inspired the company to new levels of performance. The Q70 sedan, for example adds a new long-wheelbase version due to hit the streets over the next few months.

Charles Renny
AutoGO

Published on 2014/10/22

NEW YORK CITY, New York – On the regular Q70, changes for 2015 include making the 3.7L V6, which develops 330 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque, the only engine available. A new seven-speed automatic is the transmission of choice, while the 5.6L V8 is no longer available.

For the eco-minded consumer, Infiniti will also provide a Hybrid model that derives its power from a 3.5L V6 and a 50-kW electric motor, for a total output of 360 horsepower. The drawback is that at present, this powertrain will be available in the regular-wheelbase model only.

Regardless of variant, revisions to the front fascia and changes to the front grille are designed to create an overall similarity to the new Infiniti Q50. The company made its signature LED headlamps standard, while the fog lamps also use LED technology. The rear fascia redesign includes LED taillights and high-mounted brake light. To connect the changes, the sides were resculpted slightly to provide the image of a powerfully competent luxury car. There are slight curves, bulges around the wheels and smooth creases in the bodywork that help convey this image.

The long-wheelbase version is 150 mm longer than the regular Q70. As a market segment first here, the new model is designated as the Q70L, and gets the 5.6L V8 as standard in Canada. With 416 horsepower and 414 lb-ft of torque to help you move out briskly, this engine seems to have enough power to reach warp speed. Add the seven-speed automatic, and the combination seems to be incredibly quick. In addition, all Canadian models except the Q70 Hybrid will be equipped with all-wheel-drive.

Both regular and long-wheelbase versions of the 2015 Infiniti Q70 will follow the same path in trim levels. Base models will be known as Premium, while the next step will be the Deluxe Touring and Technology model. As well-equipped as the Premium is, the Deluxe trim adds items like intelligent cruise control, lane departure warning as well as blind spot warning and intervention systems.

The Q70 Sport adds items such as sport seats, sport steering and upgraded spring and suspension components as well as four-piston front callipers and two-piston rear callipers on the brakes. Inside, the paddle shifters are crafted from magnesium and the sport seats are fully adjustable.

The V6-powered 2015 Infiniti Q70 has more than enough power to not only keep up with traffic, but to go for and fit in spaces that open in other lanes. At first, the throttle tip-in seemed a bit long, almost Mercedes-like, but I quickly realized that this was a good thing given how strictly speed limits were enforced in New York. On one part of my drive, I saw four patrol cars in 20 minutes.

Fuel economy under the new five-cycle emissions testing in the V6-powered Q70 is 13.2 L/100km in the city and 9.6 L/100km on the highway. In the V8 Q70L, ratings stand at 15.0 L/100km in the city and 10.2 L/100km on the highway. As for the hybrid model, its ratings are 8.0/6.9 L/100km city/highway.

All Q70 models have a shift mode selector, which provides four choices: Standard, Eco, Sport and Snow. Due to driving circumstances, I never gave Eco much of a chance and at 27 above, Snow mode seemed a bit redundant.

However, Standard mode was soft in everything from steering to suspension control. The Q70L felt ponderous, though, and seemed to resist changing direction. On a four-lane highway, this setting is fine. Even around town, there was nothing wrong with this setting. Standard mode is probably the best setting for when your parents are riding in the back seat!

Change the selector to the Sport mode, and the Q70L comes alive, as its steering becomes more precise. Two-lane rural highways now put a grin on the driver’s face, and the transmission's shifts are more aggressive and crisper. In short, the Q70L becomes fun to drive.

All of the driving fun can be applied to the Hybrid as well. The big difference was that going from electric to gas power was not smooth. There was always a lurch or a shudder in the car that let you know what was going on and at this price level, transitions should be imperceptible.

The Sport trim adds larger brakes and wheels, which provide the missing link in enjoyable driving. The 2015 Infiniti Q70 now has the full package of acceleration, decent handling and great stopping power. Diving deeper into corners may be the part I enjoy, but on a practical side, the brakes respond to both major and minor adjustments of speed with linear and light applications of pedal pressure.

Seat placement allows for a clear view of the instruments while keeping the glass area open for good all-around visibility, and their adjustability means that over 90% of the population will be able to find a comfortable driving position. Controls such as those for the climate and entertainment systems are clearly marked and within easy reach of both driver and passenger.

The Bose 10-speaker premium sound system may make listening to your tunes easy, but the optional 360-degree camera system lets you get in and out of tight parking spots without raising a sweat. And in the back of the Q70L, think executive-class legroom instead of coach, while the outboard seats are heated.

Infiniti has not released prices on the 2015 Q70L, but have indicated that they will carry a small premium over last year’s V8-powered, regular-wheelbase model equivalent.

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2015 Infiniti Q70: stretching luxury to new lengths – Autogo