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    Review: 2014 Infiniti QX80


    • Dashing Through The Snow, In A 400 Horsepower SUV


    The holiday road trip: A time where the family fills up the vehicle with presents and luggage to head out and enjoy time with relatives and friends. But for many, the trip becomes a miserable experience with kids arguing and getting into fights over the stupidest things, while the parents begin yelling at their kids to stop it or we’re pulling to the side of the road. Such was the case of many holiday trips I took as a child.

    So this past Christmas, my parents asked if I would be willing to drive everyone up to Northern Michigan. I said yes and began to figure out which vehicle would be able to carry all our stuff, getting through the white Christmas, and keep the peace with everyone. So I decided to call in 2014 Infiniti QX80 as I thought it would be to fulfill those needs listed. Was it able to?

    Let's get something out of the way with the 2014 Infiniti QX80, it’s a vehicle you cannot miss it. With a design that looks like it came out an amine and a abundance of chrome that can give the Cadillac Escalade a formidable challenge on bling-ness. But the overall design is a bit ungainly. Infiniti’s designers tried their best to fit the current design theme of the flowing curves onto this large vehicle and the results aren’t pretty. The addition of the silver paint on my tester didn’t help the design at all. I will say the design did grow on me during the week, but I think a black or a dark blue would help out immensely.

    2014 Infiniti QX80 19

    Moving inside, the QX80 story gets a bit better. The first thing about the interior is that it is cavernous. Front seat passengers get a set of plush leather seats with power adjustments and heat/cooling. The second row was outfitted with a pair of captain chairs with heat. Passengers sitting back here were very comfortable thanks to immense amount head and legroom. They were also impressed that the vehicle had the optional DVD system with screens in the back. There is a third row, but its best reserved for small kids as legroom is verging on non-existent. The third-row also highlights a big problem with the QX80: Cargo Space. If the third row is up, you only get a paltry 16.6 Cubic Feet. The Nissan Versa Note I had a week after had 2.2 cubic feet more space. A subcompact hatchback having more space than a full-size SUV; anyone else seeing a problem here? Thankfully, space does increase when you fold the third row.

    As for interior appointments, the QX80 is top notch with real wood and aluminum trim, and padded surfaces throughout. Build quality is very impressive. Standard equipment was Infiniti’s infotainment system with navigation. The system is very easy to use thanks to understandable interface and a set of physical buttons to get you directly to different parts of the system. However the interface is starting to look a bit dated when compared to the competition. I hope Infiniti has something up their sleeve in the coming year or so.

    For powertrain, ride, and final thoughts, see the next page.


    Powering this massive beast is Infiniti’s 5.6L V8 engine with 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed automatic transmission is the only choice, but there is a choice between two-wheel and Infiniti’s All-Mode 4WD system. My tester came with the latter. This V8 engine had no problem of moving the QX80’s curb weight of 5,878 pounds. In fact, you didn’t think it weighed that much thanks to the engine’s low-end punch and the seven-speed delivering smooth and responsive shifts. I had to keep telling myself this is an SUV, not a muscle car. With all of that performance, you’ll pay dearly for gas. The EPA rates the 2014 QX80 4WD at 14 City/20 Highway/16 Combined. My average for the week was 15 MPG.

    2014 Infiniti QX80 15

    One other place where the QX80 shined was in the ride and handling department. The QX80 was a perfect choice as a long-distance cruiser (aside from the fuel economy). The fully independent suspension setup did an impressive job of making even some of the worst roads in Northern Michigan feel like nothing. This is impressive when you take into account the QX80 was fitted with the optional twenty-two inch wheels. Wind, road, and engine noise are kept to a whisper, something needed for a long-distance runner.

    More surprising was how the QX80 handled. I was expecting the QX80 to handle like a boat in choppy waters; flopping all over the place. That was not the case in the QX80 as lean and body roll were kept to minimum. This is thanks to a optional Hydraulic Body Motion Control System which varies suspension travel to keep the vehicle level. I wished the same could be said for the steering which is light and somewhat numb on feel.

    One other note I should mention on the QX80. For how big the QX80 is, it happens to be very agile. Even in some tight parking spots, the QX80 was able to get in without doing the whole pull in forward, then back up, and repeat dance.

    2014 Infiniti QX80 4

    After coming home from the holidays with the QX80, I would say it made the trip very painless. A comfortable ride, luxury goodies galore, and quietness made this a perfect vehicle to keep the peace and make everyone happy. If you've got the coin and are willing to live with that design, then Infiniti has an SUV for you.

    Cheers: Able To Keep The Peace, Luxury Appointments, V8 Performance, Dual Personality of Suspension

    Jeers: Drinks Gas Like Its Going Out Of Style, Cargo Space, Exterior Design, Dated Infotainment System

    Disclaimer: Infiniti Provided the QX80, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas

    Year: 2014

    Make: Infiniti

    Model: QX80

    Trim: N/A

    Engine: 5.6L V8

    Driveline: Seven-Speed Automatic Transmission, Four-Wheel Drive

    Horsepower @ RPM: 400 @ 5,800

    Torque @ RPM: 413 @ 4,000

    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 14/20/16

    Curb Weight: 5,878 lbs

    Location of Manufacture: Yukuhashi, Japan

    Base Price: $64,450.00

    As Tested Price: $79,095.00 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)

    Options:

    Deluxe Touring Package - $4,650.00

    Technology Package - $3,250.00

    Theater Package - $3,100.00

    Wheel & Tire Package - $2,450.00

    Cargo Mat, Net, & First Aid - $200.00

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

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    Nice review. I actually rather like the exterior styling, it's a tasteful application of Infiniti's styling themes on an otherwise big boxy SUV, and it's immensely better than the previous generation. I'm glad to hear the luxury is formidable as well.

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    Ugly styling IMHO, Interior is very nice but over 6'2" tall people are going to have room issues. The Escalade has far more room than the Infinity.

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    Nice review. I actually rather like the exterior styling, it's a tasteful application of Infiniti's styling themes on an otherwise big boxy SUV, and it's immensely better than the previous generation. I'm glad to hear the luxury is formidable as well.

    The exterior did grow on me, but I just think a black or blue would do the design so much good.

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    I've never been a fan of the looks.

    Ditto!

    Ugly styling IMHO, Interior is very nice but over 6'2" tall people are going to have room issues. The Escalade has far more room than the Infinity.

    And is far better as an actual real world haul your friends to a basketball game, tow your boat, haul camping gear SUV as well.

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      Source: Infiniti
      Press Release is on Page 2


      INFINITI QX80 Monograph: a design study exploring 'upscale luxury' with commanding presence
      QX80 Monograph is the ultimate expression of futuristic luxury SUV design New design study signals INFINITI's intention to evolve its presence in the large SUV segment "Monograph" – a detailed study into a single area of expertise NEW YORK – INFINITI has unveiled the QX80 Monograph, a new design study exploring upscale luxury and signaling INFINITI's intention to further develop its standing in the large SUV segment.
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      The QX80 Monograph is over five meters long, almost two meters tall (including roof rails), and more than two meters wide (door mirrors folded). It appears longer thanks to defined character lines, in particular the strong, straight shoulder line that runs from the grille all the way to the rear of the car.
      The headlamps extend into thin lights that wrap around the front corners of the hood and run along the wings, for a unique light signature from the front and in profile. The light bars running along the front wings end in sculptured rear-view cameras at the leading edge of the two front doors.
      The face of the QX80 Monograph appears more powerful and purposeful, with large, functional fender vents delivering more air to the engine, flanking an aluminum chin guard. Enhancing its SUV credentials, an underbody cover runs the length of the floor, protecting the car's undersides and aiding aerodynamic performance.
      A thin strip of aluminum below the grille emphasizes the car's width and incorporates razor-sharp LED fog-lamps at each end for a modern, high-tech appearance. At the rear, defined horizontal lines highlight the car's wide and powerful aura. The appearance of the sharper, thinner tail-lamps are mirrored in the wide twin exhausts, which feature a gloss-black aerofoil in between to encourage smoother air flow off the back of the car.
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      The QX80 Monograph's design details express INFINITI's approach to high quality, high precision car manufacturing. Notably, the QX80 Monograph's blacked-out A-pillar sits flush with the side windows and windscreen, while the pop-out door handles are also flush with the bodywork. These elements give a cleaner appearance and help to minimize drag and wind noise.
      Unmistakable INFINITI signature design elements are taken from the company's latest concept and production vehicles. QX80 Monograph features the latest incarnation of INFINITI's hallmark "human-eye" headlamps, raised high up in the front of the car, as well as slimmer, sharper rear combination lamps. The unique piano key design of the head- and tail-lamps enables individual LED elements to light up independently, providing an artistic application of the latest adaptive lighting technology.
      The new interpretation of INFINITI's double-arch grille is taller and wider, giving it a powerful new face, while a new grille mesh suggests a highly sculptural and technical form. The new mesh adds greater visual depth with a series of individual sculptures that appear linked together in a lattice. The crescent-cut D-pillar has been reshaped, its sharper and higher trailing edge enhancing the horizontal aspect of the QX80 Monograph's upper body.
      The QX80 Monograph features a frosted-effect paint finish, following positive feedback from recent INFINITI concepts completed with a similar effect. The desaturated color and satin-like surface each suggest an unusual treatment of the metal beneath, providing a textured contrast to the gloss chrome and brushed aluminum elements around the concept.
      Straight-spoke, two-tone wheels – 24 inches in diameter – are finished in chromium black with contrasting brushed copper elements. The outer edges of the wheels overlap the tires, presenting the appearance of a 26-inch wheel and low profile tires to complement the scale of the QX80 Monograph.
      "Earlier INFINITI show cars have started conversations with our customers, which gives us the chance to talk about the brand's future direction. We have listened to our customers to discover their expectations for a large SUV from INFINITI in 2017 and beyond. The QX80 Monograph illustrates how INFINITI's 'powerful elegance' design language could be used to develop our luxury SUVs in future."
      Alfonso Albaisa, Senior Vice President, Global Design
      Evolving INFINITI's presence in the luxury SUV segment
      INFINITI QX80 Monograph: a modern interpretation of luxury SUV design "The QX80 Monograph is an exploration of how we plan to take a step forward in the large SUV segment. This is an important initiative for INFINITI, as the QX80 is popular with buyers in a number of markets – particularly in North America and the Middle East."
      Francois Bancon, Vice President, Global Product Strategy, INFINITI
      The INFINITI QX80 Monograph is a forward-looking interpretation of the QX80's exterior design, offering the size, utility and luxury appeal expected of cars in this segment.
      As the brand's largest SUV, the QX80 makes an important statement for INFINITI, combining supreme space and utility with luxury and sophistication. INFINITI's full-size SUV serves as a private jet for the road; it meets the uncompromising needs of a target buyer who wants for nothing.
      "Monograph" – a focused and detailed study
      QX80 Monograph represents a focused examination of a singular theme – exterior design in the luxury SUV segment INFINITI defines a "monograph" as a detailed study into a single area of expertise. In this context, the INFINITI QX80 Monograph is a detailed examination of how the exterior design of the QX80 may evolve in the future.
      The QX80 Monograph is the first model from the brand to bear the "Monograph" nomenclature. Monograph studies explore ways INFINITI can develop specific elements of its cars. 

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