Excellent sight lines, comfortable seats. The 2020 INFINITI QX80 stands tall among SUVs, with excellent sight lines for all passengers thanks to tall seats. All seven or eight seating positions offer a commanding view of the surroundings for arguably the best forward-viewing in its class.
The best thrones are, of course, upfront. The seats are big, wide, and thickly padded. Heated front seats are standard; ventilation is available. We’d swap out the middle row bench seat for the two captain’s chairs (a $250 upgrade), which deliver nearly the same level of comfort as the front seats. The third row fits two with ease and three for short trips. Legroom is tight in the last row, which is something to keep in mind.
As for cargo space, there are just 16.6 cubic feet behind the third row. Fold it down, and cargo space expands to 49.6 cubic feet. The QX80 also provides up to 8,500 pounds in towing capacity when properly equipped.
Powerful engine, subpar handling. A 5.6-liter V8 engine motivates the QX80 and works with a seven-speed automatic transmission to power this near three-ton luxury beast.
On the straightaways, the QX80 moves with authority. On twisty roads and when pulling out of corners, the law of physics prevails – there's a lot of cabin sway on tap and that translates into white-knuckled driving if you don’t cut your speed.
The available four-wheel-drive system comes at a steep $3,100 price, but it comes in handy on slick roads. It supplies off-road capabilities, although we doubt many INFINITI buyers will take advantage of it.
The standard features you expect. It took until this year for it to happen, but Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone capability are now standard. The QX80 comes with an 8.0-inch touchscreen, navigation, and a Bose audio system. And that’s just on the standard Luxe model.
Choose the Limited trim and INFINITI pulls out all the stops, including heated and cooled front seats, heated outboard second-row seats, exquisite open-wood trim, and dual second-row entertainment screens. Other upgrades include an adaptive suspension system and plush Nappa leather.
Big on safety features. The QX80 carries a four-star overall safety rating from the NHTSA. Its size alone is a protecting factor in certain types of crashes. Once again, the law of physics comes into play, but this time by offering more space to absorb impacts.
This year, INFINITI upgraded its standard suite of safety features, adding rear door alert, a surround-view camera system, and automatic high beams to its already-in-place forward automatic emergency braking and forward-collision warning.
Adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and lane-keeping assist are also available but require a costly package.
Final thoughts. The 2020 INFINITI QX80 is better than ever before with standard Apple CarPlay and Android and more safety features. Its comfortable interior, powerful engine, and great features and materials help it hold its own.
Still, the large luxury SUV class is one dominated by some of the most posh rigs on the market. The QX80 can't hold a candle to the Lincoln Navigator,Land Rover Range Rover, or Mercedes-Benz G-Glass, to name a few. Granted, those models cost a lot more than the $68,145 QX80.
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