While sport utility vehicles come in all shapes and sizes today, none epitomize what an SUV is more than the traditional full-size SUV. The Infiniti QX80 falls into that category and adds a dollop of luxury to sweeten the deal. Built on a truck platform and powered by a V8 engine, it can go places and tow things your neighbor’s crossover just can’t.
Refreshed for 2018, the QX80 has a more appealing face and some new tech to woo buyers away from popular competitors like the Cadillac Escalade and totally redesigned Lincoln Navigator. It’s a tough sell, though, as the QX80 may look nice and new, but hiding inside are some features that passed their expiration date a while ago. Couple that with fuel economy that’s among the worst of all SUVs on sale today, and the QX80’s case for itself begins to melt.
For 2018, Infiniti has given the QX80 new front- and rear-end designs. They replace the controversial – though wholly unique – visages of years past with something more traditional that’s also more in line with the brand’s current design language. I can’t deny the QX80 is altogether a more attractive SUV than it was before, but I’ll also miss the extra character that came with the old model’s quirky face.’
That said, the QX80 did get one bit of new interior technology this year: the Smart Rear View Mirror. With a flick up, the rearview mirror goes from an analog reflection to a bright digital camera feed of the road behind you. It’s great for when the rear is packed high with cargo and the wide-angle view is really helpful. That said, Infiniti wasn’t the first here; Cadillac offers the same tech in the Escalade.
You won’t be surprised to discover the QX80 performs poorly in regards to fuel efficiency. That said, you may do a double take when you find out just how bad. We researched the least-efficient SUVs and found only one with a lower combined miles per gallon score: the 707-horsepower, ultra high-performance Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk. That SUV manages just 13 mpg combined, while the QX80 ekes out a slightly higher 15 mpg.