Infiniti QX70 GT


Infiniti FX Vettel Edition, front, static
Infiniti FX Vettel Edition, front
Infiniti FX Vettel Edition, action through Monaco tunnel
Infiniti FX Vettel Edition, side
Infiniti FX Vettel Edition, rear
Infiniti FX Vettel Edition, interior

INFINITI'S FX was recently rebadged as the QX70, part of a new naming convention that sees all Infinitis given a ‘Q' tag.

The manufacturer's coupes, convertibles and saloons will be ‘Qs' while crossovers and SUVs are set apart by the QX prefix.

Presumably it's designed to give a common identity across the range for a marque that is still making its mark so to speak, at least in Europe.

Essentially Nissan's upmarket brand, Infiniti certainly has its work cut out in its attempts to seize a decent chunk of market share from the likes of Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, among others.

As far as the QX goes I'm never quite sure whether it's supposed to be an SUV or a crossover - or even something else altogether. 

It's easy to eliminate any SUV attributes as this is a vehicle that is very much designed for on-road rather than off-road terrain, even though it has four-wheel drive.

However it's also got a distinct performance focus that makes it a different beast altogether.

Looks-wise the QX is characterised by sporty curves and a muscular presence that makes it hard not to notice. It's certainly an eye-catching vehicle and overall there's little about it to dislike.

Cleverly it combines some traditional sports car styling touches with the essential element of an estate car or SUV.

It also has a real element of individuality, meaning there isn't anything else that looks much like it.

All this, added to the fact it's an Infiniti and as such there aren't that many of them on UK roads, gives it a real ‘look at me' factor too.

While the QX has a big footprint it offers a traditional five-seat arrangement rather than the extra pop-up row that comes with many large SUVs and crossovers.

On the inside the cabin is big, open and plush and designed to carry five people in a considerable degree of comfort.

This is augmented by many elements that really reinforce the ‘premium' character of the car, from first-class fit and finish and exemplary build quality, to sophisticated and classy switchgear and instrumentation.

All this ensures the Infiniti is more than capable of giving its premium rivals a run for their money, at least in this regard.

Despite that big footprint its boot is smaller than its competitors, though it still has enough space to measure up in terms of practicality.

One of the things I like about the QX is the fact it gets a familiar SUV/crossover attribute (an elevated driving position) absolutely spot-on. It's noticeably higher than a regular saloon or estate car but not so high that you have to step up to it.

I'm sure this aids its handling immeasurably. As mentioned previously the QX has some serious sporting aspirations and it manages to live up to them.

One of the holy grails of SUV design is to deliver decent driving dynamics, something that can be difficult with tall chunky vehicles that sit quite high.

While the QX offers a commanding view of the road ahead it has little of any of the pitch and roll that can blight SUVs. It revels in being thrown around corners at speed and there's enough driver feedback to make for a thoroughly rewarding and engaging drive.

While the driving experience is maximised in the range-topping 5.0-litre petrol V8, for real world everyday motoring that probably makes little sense.

The 3.0-litre diesel might be pedestrian in comparison but its overall blend of performance and economy works well and it still packs enough of a punch to be eminently pleasing as a driver's car.

The engine is particularly well insulated, offering an impressive level of refinement, and overall I was getting pretty close to the official combined economy figure.

There are four trim levels - GT, GT Premium, S and S Premium - and all are generously equipped, another Infiniti strong point.


Infiniti QX70 GT 3.0D

Price: £42,355

Mechanical:235bhp, 2,993cc, 6cyl diesel engine driving four wheels via 7-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 132mph

0-62mph: 8.3 seconds

Combined MPG: 32.8

Insurance Group:49

C02 emissions: 225g/km

Bik rating: 35%

Warranty:3yrs/60,000 miles


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