The QX70 is the latest victim subject of Infiniti's somewhat confusing naming scheme. The former FX37 becomes the QX70, joining the QX50, QX60, and QX80 and making proofreading articles about Infiniti crossovers and SUVs a veritable nightmare.
As was the case with previous generations, the QX70's most interesting bits reside in the "safety" category. Infiniti has always been good with cutting-edge driver aid options and, though this rechristened model is starting to show its age, the 2014 QX70's tech is still pretty good.
Peer into the front bumper and you'll find the forward-firing radar sensor that powers the optional adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, distance control assist, and intelligent brake assist.
Activated by pressing the button on the steering wheel that looks like a force field, Distance Control Assist puts a virtual barrier between the QX70's front bumper and the car ahead, automatically applying the brakes if the preset distance begins to close, and pushing the driver's foot subtly off of the throttle with force feedback.
A rear camera is standard, but the optional Around View monitor adds three more cameras to the mix, including this one hidden beneath the Infiniti badge in the grill and two more beneath the wing mirrors.
Automatically when reversing (or at the touch of a button when moving forward at low speeds), the Around View monitor can stitch together a bird's eye view of the area around the vehicle using the feeds of the four cameras.
A camera located at the top of the windshield, behind the rearview mirror, scans the lane markers on the road and powers the Lane Departure Warning and Prevention systems. When the vehicle begins to drift from its lane, an alert sounds and light bias braking is used to pull the nose back in line.
Interestingly, the QX70 is missing the automaker's Blind Spot Warning and Intervention systems. It also lacks a cross-traffic alert system that notifies drivers of vehicles approaching from the sides when reversing out of a parking space.
Torque flows through a single-option, 7-speed automatic transmission that features normal, sport, and manual shift modes. Even at its sportiest, this gearbox has a tendency to short-shift every gear in the pursuit of extra mpgs.
The QX70 is based on a rear-wheel drive platform, but the automaker's Intelligent All-wheel Drive system is available. This on-demand system can shift up to 50 percent of available torque to the front axle when slip is detected in one of the rear wheels.
At an EPA-estimated 18 mpg combined, the 3.7-liter model is reasonably efficient for this class. Drivers looking for performance and power should consider the QX70 5.0 AWD with the sport package. We tested a previous generation of this model (the FX50S) and found it to be surprisingly nimble.
360-degree visibility isn't bad, but the QX70's rear window is really too small and too high-silled to be practical. Thankfully, the standard rear and optional Around View cameras go a long way toward making this crossover easier to park and maneuver into tight spots.
While there's a decent amount of storage and rear headroom, the plummeting roof-line kept passengers discussing the amount of space. "I thought it would be bigger," was the most repeated opinion, and the general consensus was that a vehicle this big should make better use of its interior volume.
The suspension is fixed and non-adjustable, so there is no specific Sport handling program. Ride quality is controlled and comfortable, soaking up bumps well, while keeping the big SUV relatively flat when cornering, accelerating, and braking.
The instrument cluster is simple, featuring a pair of gauges for road and engine speed. Between them is a monochrome display that indicates trip computer, fuel economy info, and basic vehicle settings.
Infiniti's infotainment system gets no major upgrades this model year but that's fine. The system offers a good basic level of digital media connectivity and can be upgraded to an HDD-based navigation system with voice command.