The Infiniti QX80 is the luxury version of the Nissan Armada. It’s a huge and comfortable family hauler with lots of room for passengers and cargo, and boasts the best towing capability in the class. However, the QX80 is getting long in the tooth and gets poor gas mileage.
Base Price: $87,450
As Tested: $91,580
Mileage: 13 mpg city/19 mpg highway/15 mpg combined
The QX80 is in its second generation and hasn’t had a redesign since 2011 which is forever in the vehicle world. Some minor changes have been made in the last few years: some trims were renamed, some advanced driver assistance systems and Android auto and Apple CarPlay became standard, and the infotainment system was updated with a larger touchscreen. For 2023, Amazon Alexa becomes standard.
The QX80 comes in three trims: Luxe, Premium Select and Sensory. Starting prices range from $72,700 to $84,350, which are a little below average for a large luxury SUV. Rear-wheel drive is standard and four-wheel drive is available on all trims for $3,100. There’s room for seven or eight passengers, depending on whether you get the standard captain’s chairs or the optional bench seat in the second row.
There’s one engine: a 5.6-liter V8 that makes 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque, paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission. There’s plenty of power to whisk this hefty SUV down the road. Merging and passing at freeway speeds are a breeze, and the brakes respond quickly. The transmission shifts quickly and smoothly, almost always finding the right gear. However, the QX80s sheer size can make it unwieldly to handle in busy city traffic and tight parking lots, and there’s noticeable body roll when cornering. The ride is mostly smooth, but you’ll notice larger bumps. Visibility is pretty good all the way around.
Fuel economy is poor and to make matters worse, the QX80 requires premium gas. EPA ratings for my four-wheel-drive tester are 13 mpg city and 19 mpg highway with a combined rating of 15. I got 15 mpg during my week with a mix of city and highway driving.
With 9.2 inches of ground clearance, the QX80 can handle light off-roading – think camping trips and non-paved roads. You can boost capability with the optional four-wheel drive and two-speed transfer case.
When properly equipped, the QX80 can tow up to 8,500 pounds which is best in the class.
The cabin is pleasant and attractive with upscale materials, although most rivals have been updated with more modern touches. Passengers in the first and second rows will enjoy plenty of leg- and headroom. The third row is best suited for kids but isn’t as cramped as what you’ll find in some rivals.
Standard features include keyless entry, push-button start, remote start, surround-view camera system, rearview mirror with an integrated camera display, tri-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated front seats, heated steering wheel, infotainment system with 12.3-inch touchscreen, navigation, 13-speaker Bose audio system, HD Radio, satellite radio, Bluetooth, four USB ports, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, wireless device charging, Wi-Fi hot spot, automatic high-beam headlights, and a moonroof.
Available features include quilted leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, heated second-row seats, 17-speaker Bose audio system, rear-seat entertainment system with two 8-inch displays, and adaptive pivoting headlights.
Standard driver assistance technologies include forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, pedestrian detection, and front and rear parking sensors.
The updated standard infotainment system with 12.3-inch touchscreen looks great. Graphics are sharp and menus are logically arranged. The system responds quickly to touch and voice commands, and physical buttons and knobs make it easy to adjust common functions.
Cargo space is generous with 16.6 cubic feet with all three rows of seating in place, 49.6 cubes with the third row folded, and 95.1 cubes with the second and third rows folded. A power liftgate is standard on all trims.
Lower price tag than most rivals
Roomy cabin with upscale materials
Updated, user-friendly infotainment system
Standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
Generous cargo area
Best towing capability in the class
Suitable for light off-roading
It could use a redesign or major refresh
Poor gas mileage
Premium fuel required
My tester starts at $87,450. Infiniti radiant illuminated kick plates are $485. The illuminated cargo scuff plate is $390. Roof rail cross bars are $410. Infiniti radiant exterior welcome lighting is $455. Premium paint is $695. Premium paint is $695. Destination charge is $1,695 bringing the grand total to $91,580.
The QX80 has a potent powertrain, plenty of room for passengers and cargo, and a lower sticker price than most rivals. But it gets poor fuel economy and needs to be updated to be more competitive in the class.