The QX80 officially debuted in 2014, but wasn’t really a new model. Instead, it was a part of INFINITI's new model-naming restructure, with vehicular roots that stretched back to the 2004 debut of the QX56 full-size SUV. INFINITI had renamed that QX56 the QX in 2012, then switched to QX80 in 2014. Two years later, the QX80 still looks similar to the 2014 model, but some notable changes have been made to this large SUV, to keep it competitive.
What's New for 2016
Last year, the QX80 received a fairly hefty refresh. A new Signature Edition has been added for 2016. Only 1,000 Signature Editions will be offered.
Choosing Your INFINITI QX80
Each QX80 features the same engine: a 5.6-liter V8 that produces 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque. This powerful V8 mates with a seven-speed automatic transmission. Only one decision has to be made in the drivetrain department, and that’s whether you want rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
With that kind of power in a heavy vehicle, fuel economy isn’t a strong point, EPA-estimated at 14 mpg in city driving and 20 mpg on the highway. All-wheel drive makes it even less thrifty, estimated at 13/19 mpg (city/highway). When properly equipped, towing capacity is 8,500 pounds.
Two trim levels are offered: base and Limited, plus the new Signature Edition.
Buyers of the base QX80 can choose from five option packages:
Driver Assistance Package: Adds $2,500 to the base price, providing plenty of active safety features. They include Backup Collision Intervention, Predictive Forward Collision Warning and Emergency Braking, Intelligent Cruise Control, Blind Spot Warning, Distance Control Assist, and a steering wheel-mounted switch for Safety Shield Technologies.
Theater Package: For $2,400, you can keep rear passengers entertained. Package includes two seven-inch monitors in front headrests, a wireless remote, two sets of wireless headphones, A/V input jacks and 120-volt outlet, and heated tip-up second-row seats.
Tire and Wheel Package: Lay out an extra $2,800 and INFINITI will toss in a set of 22-by-8-inch, 14-spoke forged alloy wheels wrapped in all-season performance tires.
Split Bench Seat Package: At no extra cost, INFINITI will replace the second-row captain's chairs with a 60/40 split bench, which increases seating capacity from seven to eight.
Deluxe Technology Package: For $5,500, this package adds Hydraulic Body Motion Control, climate-controlled front seats, 15-speaker Bose surround-sound, semi-aniline leather seating, Stratford burl trim, chrome mirror caps, second-row footwell lighting, Advance Climate Control, Blind Spot Intervention system, headlight washers, lane-departure warning and prevention, pre-crash front seatbelts, and adaptive headlights.
Considering how much is included with the base QX80, that seems to be the sensible choice. Moving up to a Limited brings a long list of additional features, true, but at a whopping $22,500 premium—enough to buy a whole additional vehicle. Of course, adding a few of those option groups individually also pushes the total outlay sharply upward.