Infiniti Q70
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Infiniti’s mid-range Q70 sedan gets a significant update, including a new stretched version.

Base 330-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 and optional 420-horsepower 5.6-liter V8; for the hybrid, a 3.5-liter V6 works in combination with a 50-kilowatt electric motor to produce a net 360 horsepower; seven-speed automatic transmissions are integral to all powerplants; all-wheel-drive available with non-hybrid models.

Perhaps frustrated in its quest to unseat the usual suspects from Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, Infiniti is trying yet another way to distinguish its recently renamed Q70 sedan. The new Q70L is stretched significantly over the regular version with rear legroom increased by 5.9 inches. The sensuous sheetmetal that infuses the car with the sort of character that’s worthy of its luxury-sedan calling remains reasonably unchanged, although the front now features a revised fascia, LED headlights and foglights, integrated turn signals in the side mirrors, and LED taillights. For more design goodness, check out the Q70’s curvaceous dashboard and matching control panel are in complete harmony with the rest of the interior. And helping to keep the cabin quiet is a system that sends noise-cancelling sound waves through door-mounted stereo speakers. The system is monitored using microphones located in the ceiling. The base Q70 comes with a 330-horse 3.7-liter V6, while a 420-horsepower 5.6-liter V8 is available. Optional on both is all-wheel-drive that sends up to half the engine’s torque to the front wheels when the going gets slick. All Q70L models are available in the same configurations, but the gasoline-electric Q70 Hybrid is exclusively for regular-wheelbase models. The Hybrid uses a 3.5-liter V6 that’s assisted by a 67-horsepower motor to produce 360 horsepower. When fully charged, the rear-drive-only Hybrid can operate at speeds up to 100 km-h (62 mph) and travel for up to 1.5 miles before the V6 pitches in. It also achieves 27 mpg in the city and 32 on the highway, compared with 18/26 for the Q70 3.7 and 16/24 for the Q70 5.6. Among the car’s many techno-marvels is a Vehicle Sound for Pedestrians (VSP) that issues a specific noise that alerts anyone nearby that the Hybrid is functioning in electric mode. All powerplants are connected to seven-speed automatic transmissions. A healthy dose of premium content is part of every car, such as a power moonroof, power folding and heated outside mirrors, self-leveling headlamps and rain-sensing wipers. Interior highlights include 10-way power heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, keyless push-button start and a rearview monitor. The Sport Package option includes similarly new and unique front and rear designs, along with an active steering system where the rear wheels are steered in phase with the fronts at nearly all speeds. And new optional safety features will include forward-sensing emergency braking and backup collision intervention, which will automatically brake to avoid bash-ups in parking lots.