A single performance update comes to the Q70 range (formerly known as the Infiniti M) for the 2014 model year: an upgraded engine cooler for Q70 3.7 models with the Sport Package (both RWD and AWD models).
Otherwise, the powertrains, chassis, suspension, and, ultimately, performance characteristics of the Q70 carry forward unchanged from the 2013 Infiniti M. Fortunately, that's a good thing.
The entry point to the Q70 range, the Q70 3.7 RWD, accelerates briskly thanks to its 330-horsepower 3.7-liter V-6, but is a bit on the noisy side for the Q70's otherwise laid-back demeanor. The Q70 5.6 rates 420 horsepower from its 5.6-liter V-8 engine, and makes a much better companion to the Q70's character, bellowing baritone engine notes (and neck-snapping acceleration) at full throttle, but sailing on easily in less aggressive driving.
Great handling, quick, responsive steering, and ride quality that's not quite supple but definitely not harsh or too noisy make for an elusive mix, but Infiniti's nailed it with the Q70.
All-wheel drive is available on both the V-6 and V-8 versions of the Q70, and while it doesn't dull the car's generally balanced handling much, it's more of an all-weather option than a performance pick. A four-wheel-steering system, called 4WAS, is available on Sport Package V-6 and V-8 rear-drive models to further improve dynamic responsiveness. Large, powerful brakes are standard across the range, while Sport Package models get even more capable stoppers: 14-inch front and 13.8-inch rear ventilated discs with four-piston front calipers and 2-piston rears.
The Q70 Hybrid gets a 3.5-liter V-6 engine paired with an electric drive system that Infiniti calls Direct Response Hybrid. The combination yields 350 horsepower altogether. Compared to other Q70 models, the suspension is a bit softer and more relaxed.
All Q70s sport a seven-speed automatic transmission that snicks off shifts quickly and unobtrusively, whether left to its own devices or operated in the manual mode. Four settings help the Q70 cope with driver demands and road conditions, including Sport, Normal, Eco, and Snow.
A variation of the Sport Package is available on all models except the Q70 Hybrid, with varying equipment depending on the drivetrain chosen, but always adding 20-inch wheels, plus sport seats and steering wheel.