Auto Nsider Review: 2016 Infiniti QX80 AWD

I rolled up to a family function in Infiniti’s king-of-the-hill new QX80…their crown-jewel SUV.

 

My Granddaughters now call me  “Big Daddy”.

 

And yes….you might just find yourself humming the opening music to the Sopranos as you shift Infiniti’s QX80 into Drive.

 

Just as with lesser vehicles, Infiniti, Mercedes, Lexus, Audi, Jaguar and others’ race to “The Top” has produced some stunningly competent and comfortable vehicles…..and Infiniti’s QX80 is no exception.

 

Comfort, connectivity and capability seem to be the most requested items on the automotive menu these days.

 

And while comfort and connectivity come into play almost every moment, it’s the “capability” that’s pretty much assumed today, if not always noticed or used.

 

So let’s start there.    Know that if you’ve got work ( play ) to be done, Infiniti’s QX80 is born with good bones.   We’ll start with its’ 5.6 liter, 400 HP V8 with a big 8,500 towing capacity….thanks to its 413 ft lbs of torque.

 

And if you choose to go with all-wheel-drive, you’ll have the real thing.   Infiniti’s “All-Mode-AWD”  adjusts the torque automatically between front and rear wheels….giving you the ideal combination for rain, snow, gravel, mud…whatever.    But if you’re pulling a boat out of the water, or climbing up a rocky, snow covered road to the cabin, you can do it yourself and select manual high or low 4 WD.

 

As for connectivity, this is where the real race between manufacturers seems to be, and you’ll find Infiinity to be second to no one here.

 

Space doesn’t permit a full discussion of Infiniti’s “Infiniti Connection”, but here’s a few: it’ll notify you if someone bumps your ride in a parking lot…it’ll tell you if you’re going over the speed limit…it can spot trouble two vehicles ahead….it’s able to track your vehicle’s speed and location when it’s in motion and you’re at home. ( Teenagers, anyone? )    And that’s just a start.   See your local Infinity store…and be prepared to have your head spin.

 

And comfort?  Well, that’s a bit more subjective.   Let’s just say that if you opt for Infiniti’s “Limited” package, you won’t feel deprived.  It’s quilted, breathable, contrast-stitching heated and cooled leather seating is distinctive in it’s class…and dark chrome 22’s with underbody lighting and the open-pore ash wood throughout gives the QX80 a high-end British feel. ( Think real high-end J )

 

If you need to haul seven, opt for a second-row bench….otherwise go with reclining captain’s chairs….each with it’s own 7’ screen.

 

Even the third-row seating is contoured with power recliners.

 

You can get into an Infinity QX80 starting in the mid $60’s.   Go all-in with a QX80 AWD “Limited” and you’re looking at high $80’s.

 

Either way, you’ll have a vehicle that’ll likely be hard to say good-bye to at trade-in time!

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