2018 Infiniti QX80 4WD Ride / Drive

The newly refreshed 2018 Infiniti QX80 luxury full-size SUV features improvements that make it even more desirable to those high achievers who want it ‘all’ and – can afford it.  Though the photos do not show it – that includes getting into the rugged outback for personal or family recreation.

The QX80 shows a wider, taller, more athletic luxury persona in 2018. Buyers will find new angular styling including a longer and flatter hood, stronger character lines all around and a new presence that says refined luxury with a hint of capability.  Reviewers usually speak to its luxury and comfort – giving the robust capability only a nod.

The QX80 is not purposely built or marketed to run with ‘rock crawlers’, but it will get you powerfully into the rough of the outback when you want to – doing it with optimum luxury, comfort and style.  As we see it, when combined with that robust capability, the QX80 delivers.

So lets talk about the robust capability.

2018 INFINITI QX80
Rugged Power and Drivetrain

A veteran 5.6L V8 engine anchors the powerful drivetrain for the QX80 in both 2WD and 4WD versions.  It produces 400 horsepower with 413 lb.-ft. of torque and is mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission featuring Adaptive Shift Control with Downshift Rev Matching and a manual shift mode.

For our test vehicle, the Infiniti All-Mode 4WD system uses a computer-controlled transfer case (Auto, 4H and 4L) that, in Auto, automatically distributes the torque to wheels with the most traction, when needed, and defaulting to rear-wheel drive under normal road conditions.

For conditions where full-time 4WD is needed, 4H is for trails, mud and snow while 4L tackles steep inclines and declines.  For additional situations like towing and heavy snow, a Drive Mode Selector further manages torque distribution.

2018 INFINITI QX80
Robust Suspension and Ride

The QX80 rides confidently on a fully independent subframe mounted suspension. Up front – is a MacPherson strut, coil spring, gas-filled shock absorber and anti-roll stabilizer bar set-up, while the rear uses a double wishbone version of the same configuration.

A unique Infiniti Hydraulic Body Motion Control System automatically makes adjustments to the suspension when cornering for better ride and control while the re-tuned damping force of the suspension adds stability.

Steering for the QX80 – tuned for the suspension – is a speed sensitive, variable ratio rack-mounted electric power system.

2018 INFINITI QX80
2018 INFINITI QX80

And it tows too’

The very same suspension that gives a superb ride around town and on the highway gets you and a trailer into the outback as well.

The QX80 is equipped with a Class IV tow hitch, connections and a cover from the factory.  With standard Trailer Sway Control, it not only hauls up to eight and their gear inside but can tow up to an 8,500-pound trailer easily to that favorite campground or boat launch.

For additional ease and safety, the Rear Auto-Leveling Suspension adjusts suspension pressure to maintain proper ride height to accommodate the load in back or on the trailer.  When backing up a trailer or maintaining vehicle placement on a tight trail (you really don’t want to scratch the finish on your QX80), the Around View Monitor camera allows you to see all sides plus front and rear on the 8-inch display screen.

Lastly, a new Smart Rear View Mirror can function as a monitor for the camera in the upper tailgate window to provide a high-resolution 48-degree view of what is behind.

2018-infiniti-qx80
2018-infiniti-qx80
2018 Infiniti QX80 4WD as tested

Our test QX80 came in a rich deep pearlescent Blue and the new premium Saddle Brown leather interior with black contrast stitching and piping on seats and interior panels –  accented with Charcoal Burl wood trim.

The 4WD version has a base MSRP of $67,850.  It includes standard, a very long list of premium and luxury features inside and out.

Outside are Automatic LED headlights with High Beam Assist, Integrated LED Fog Lights, Power Folding Heated Mirrors, Power Liftgate, Roof Rails, Remote Engine Start and more.  We noted the wider side sill step for 2018, giving a more solid foothold that, when using the access assist handles, makes entering really easy.

2018 INFINITI QX80
2018 INFINITI QX80

Inside, you find 10-way Power Heated Driver Seat and 8-way Power Heated Passenger seat, second row Captain’s Chairs with tip-up for third row access and 60/40 split fold-flat, reclining third row seating. The front console features increased storage for electronic devices, a redesigned cupholder layout and a 12-volt power point.  The second row also includes a well-crafted console with storage, cupholders and USB ports.

Cabin comfort is maintained through an automatic Tri-Zone Temperature Control system with microfilter.

Standard infotainment is a Bose 13-speaker Premium Audio system with all of the expected services including Sirius Travel Link and Traffic, Bluetooth hands free phone connectivity and streaming etc.  An 8-inch touch-screen display with Infiniti controller manages the Infiniti InTouch Navigation and InTouch Services.  It also features voice recognition with hands-free text messaging.

Additional features include: Intelligent Key Push Button Start, Vehicle Dynamic and Traction Control, Front and Rear Sonar and Tire Pressure Monitoring.

2018 INFINITI QX80
2018 INFINITI QX80
Optional Equipment Packages

If you are the classic luxury SUV buyer, wanting and able to pay for it all, you will likely opt for the available ‘goodies’ as well.  Making sure we did not miss that, our test QX80 was loaded up with the following:

  • Deluxe Technology – $5,700 – Smart RearView Mirror/Camera Monitor, Bose 15-speaker Cabin Surround System, semi-aniline leather appointed seating with quilting and piping, climate-controlled front seats, Adaptive Front Lighting and Hydraulic Body Motion Control System.
  • Theater Package – $2,450 – Heated rear seats and individual dual 8-inch monitors, wireless headphones, A/V capable HDMI & USB ports, 120-volt outlet and wired headphone jacks.
  • 22-inch Tire and Wheel Package – $2,800 – 18-spoke alloy wheels painted in a premium liquid metal high-gloss finish and mounted with low profile 275/50R22 all season performance tires.
  • Driver Assistance Package – $2,900 – Intelligent Cruise Control and Distance Control Assist, Predictive Forward Collision Warning, Forward Emergency Braking with pedestrian detection, Back-up Collision Intervention, Lane Departure Warning and Prevention and Blind Spot Warning and Intervention.
2018 INFINITI QX80
2018 INFINITI QX80

Other packages and options on our QX80 were a Cargo Package, Roof Rail Cross Bars, Radiant Illuminated Kick Plates, Infiniti WiFi and Welcome Lighting totaling another $1,965.

With delivery, our test 2018 Infiniti QX80 4WD priced at $84,660.

2018 INFINITI QX80

There is no reason to not travel anywhere, including the outback – in comfort and luxury.  A 2018 Infiniti QX80 4WD luxury SUV will get you there and back with no problem.

For more information about the QX80, visit   https://www.infinitiusa.com/suv/qx80