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Refreshed 2018 Infiniti QX80 full-size SUV delivers superb value

 


QX80 has legendary SUV history most don't realize 

Climb behind the wheel of the 2018 Infiniti QX80 and it won't be long before you start comparing it to full-size SUV competitors from Land Rover, Lexus, and even Mercedes-Benz, and a little research into its origins will immediately explain why. 

The QX80, like the Nissan Armada that shares its platform architecture, is based on the legendary Nissan Patrol, a rugged, go-anywhere SUV nameplate that's as old and well respected in global off-road circles as Land Rover's Defender, Range Rover and others, Toyota's Land Cruiser that forms the basis for the Lexus LX, and Mercedes' G-Class, or Gelandewagen. In fact the Patrol dates back to 1951, long before some of these rivals came on the scene. 

All have decades-long ties to militaries worldwide, not to mention relief organizations, policing, businesses requiring wilderness travel, etcetera, and that on- and off-road prowess can immediately be felt by driver and passengers. The QX80 is a solid, well-built vehicle first and foremost, and an impressively finished luxury SUV after that, which is all the more reason to be amazed at its highly competitive pricing.



Incredible value for an extremely well made full-size luxury SUV 

The handsomely refreshed 2018 Infiniti QX80 is now available for just $77,350 plus freight and fees, which means you can get into a well-equipped, impressively finished base model for $32,250 less than the 2018 Lexus LX 570, $35,650 less than the Land Rover Range Rover, and $51,550 less than the base Mercedes-Benz G 550. What's more, the QX80 is $9,190 more affordable than the 2018 Cadillac Escalade while representing a $10,300 savings over the new 2018 Lincoln Navigator, which will have you questioning whether Infiniti priced its full-size SUV too low after comparing them all directly. 

To the ultimately wealthy such pricing trivialities won't make one bit of difference, but value matters to smart luxury SUV shoppers trying to maximize the most from their hard-earned income. To that end the QX80 won't disappoint, starting with a comprehensive refresh for the 2018 model year that includes a redesigned grille, front fascia, hood, fenders, fender vents, and rear bumper, while its LED headlamps, LED taillights, LED fog lamps and side indicators have been dramatically revised as well. Infiniti has rounded out the new exterior design with new 20- and 22-inch alloy wheels, while new exterior colours include Moonstone White, Mineral Black and Champagne Quartz. 


 

Handsome styling updates from the outside in 

Moving inside, the 2018 QX80 receives a newly refined cabin with a contrast-stitched wrapped upper instrument panel and a new shift knob across the line, plus a new stitched and leather-wrapped steering wheel hub/horn pad and diamond-patterned quilting for the upgraded door trim and seat inserts when opting for the Technology Package. 

That Technology Package, at $8,150, also includes a new Infiniti-first Smart Rear View Mirror that doubles as a wide-angle rearview camera, while the infotainment system is now Infiniti's InTouch Single Display design. 

Additional Technology Package equipment includes the 22-inch wheels noted earlier, which are 18-spoke forged aluminum alloys shod with 275/50R22 H-rated all-season performance tires, plus Hydraulic Body Motion Control to enhance handling further, Active Trace Control brake vectoring that improves at-the-limit stability, safety and performance, Infiniti's Eco Pedal that presses back on the driver's right foot to promote less aggressive driving (which can be turned off), chrome mirror caps, an Advanced Climate Control System (ACCS) with auto recirculation, a Plasmacluster air purifier and a Grape Polyphenol Filter, Adaptive Front lighting System (AFS) with auto-leveling headlights, and front seat pre-crash seatbelts. 


 

Luxury, convenience and safety features galore 

The Technology Package also includes a host of advanced driving assistance systems such as Intelligent Cruise Control (Full-Speed Range), Predictive Forward Collision Warning (PFCW), Forward Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Distance Control Assist, Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Blind Spot Intervention (BSI), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Lane Departure Prevention (LDP), and Backup Collision Intervention (BCI). 

Even with the Technology Package included, the topmost 2018 Infiniti QX80 price of $85,500 rings in lower than all of the aforementioned competitors, while a new no-cost optional colour treatment includes Saddle Brown with Charcoal Burl Trim, plus Wheat motif has been updated from low contrast to high contrast. Likewise the Graphite grey interior gets updates too. 



Surprisingly the rear entertainment system, with its dual 8.0-inch displays, two pairs of wireless headphones, remote control, aux inputs and more, comes standard, as does the Bose Cabin Surround audio system with digital 5.1 decoding, Bose Centerpoint 2 signal processing, 15 speakers and more, while the list of standard in-car electronics not already mentioned also includes satellite radio, streaming Bluetooth audio, multiple USB charging ports, an 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen, an Around View Monitor (AVM) with Moving Object Detection (MOD), Infiniti InTouch Navigation, Infiniti InTouch Services, Infiniti Connection telematics, voice recognition, NavTraffic with real-time traffic info, and more. 


 

Generous supply of standard features adds to the QX80 value equation 

Additional standard features include skid plates, body-colour running boards, roof rails, remote engine start, proximity access with pushbutton ignition, aluminum kick plates, power-folding, auto-dimming, heatable side mirrors with integrated turn signals, courtesy lamps and reverse tilt down, a heated leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel, a powered steering column, auto on/off LED headlights with high beam assist, rain-sensing wipers, an auto-dimming centre mirror, an analog clock, a HomeLink garage door opener, tri-zone automatic climate control, front and rear parking sensors, a powered moonroof, two-way memory for the driver's seat, side mirrors and steering column, a 10-way powered driver's seat with powered lumbar support, an eight-way powered front passenger's seat with powered lumbar support, semi-aniline leather upholstery, heated and climate-controlled front seats, heated second-row captain's chairs with tip-up easy entry for third row (seven-passenger only), 60/40-split power-folding and reclining third row seats, a powered rear liftgate, a stainless steel rear bumper protector, an integrated Class IV tow hitch and seven-pin wiring harness with cover, tire pressure monitoring, Hill Start Assist, Trailer Sway Control, all the usual active and passive safety systems, plus more. Lastly, an eight-passenger QX80 can be had for the same price. 


 

Standard 400 horsepower V8 provides strong performance 

The QX80 also features a standard direct-injection 5.6-litre V8 making 400 horsepower and 413 lb-ft of torque, thanks in part to VVEL (Variable Valve Event and Lift) technology. It comes mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission with Snow and Tow modes powering all four wheels via Infiniti All-Mode 4WD, the latter featuring a computer-controlled transfer case with three settings including Auto, 4H and 4L, while a four-wheel independent suspension combines impressive road-holding with excellent off-road capability. 

"The 2018 QX80 commands a heightened flagship presence within the Infiniti portfolio," said Adam Paterson, managing director, Infiniti Canada. "The updated model provides upscale luxury for all passengers, as well as a suite of advanced technologies that elevate confidence and control on any road."

 

 

New QX80 growing in popularity 

It's no wonder QX80 sales have experienced a major upswing lately, with this updated 2018 model having its strongest sales ever in March, 2018, with 147 units sold and a year-over-year gain of 113.0 percent. The QX80 has shown strength through all three months of this year's first quarter too, with sales growth up a solid 66.4 percent. 

Clearly, Canadians have responded well to the 2018 Infiniti QX80. Its sharp new styling, plentiful interior refinements, and incredible value proposition have been hard for full-size luxury SUV buyers to pass up. 

To learn more about the updated 2018 Infiniti QX80, contact Infiniti North Vancouver at (888) 204-5481 or drop by the showroom at 819 Automall Drive, North Vancouver.




Story credits: Trevor Hofmann, Canadian Auto Press 
Photo credits: Infiniti 
Copyright: Canadian Auto Press Inc.

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