The new Infiniti QX80 Limited obviously is looking for conquest sales from the Cadillac Escalade and Mercedes-Benz GL-Class owners or prospects who've decided to consider something a bit different. Certainly the restyled 2015 model that Infiniti introduced at the 2014 New York International Auto Show, has definitely put the emphasis on luxury—in materials, finishing touches, and operating features. Based on a restyled QX80, the body-on-frame three-seat-row, seven-passenger SUV was compared by company spokesmen to an executive boardroom, but "not over the top."
The QX80 Limited, which goes on sale late this year, rides on 22-in wheels. It is powered by a 5.6-L V8 with variable lift and valve timing and an output of 400 hp (298 kW) and 413 lb·ft (560 N·m). Output to the wheels is through a seven-speed automatic into the all-wheel-drive system, which has Auto, 4H, and 4L modes and can transfer up to 50% of the torque to the front wheels. Tow capacity is up to 8500 lb (3855 kg). The vehicle has automatic rear leveling and a hydraulic body motion control, basically automatic sway control to keep the vehicle level in sharp turns.
However, the trim level is visually most noteworthy. The exterior chrome has dark finishing throughout including the grille and fog light surrounds in front, at the side vents, roof rails, A-pillar, even for the door handles, side-mirror caps, and license plate—and the aluminum wheels also have a dark finish.
Inside, the upholstery is not merely plush leather. It's a premium leather called Truffle Brown, with highly-styled stitching patterns. The wood trim is natural tone Ash, which has open pores and a matte finish for "the real thing" look. The headliner is made with a suede-look leather called Ultrasuede, which extends down the A-, B-, and C-pillars. The door sills are stainless steel and are lighted when the doors are opened.
Front seats are heated and cooled, with ten-way power adjustment (including two-way lumbar) and the second row captain's chairs are heated.
The Climate Control system has a Plasmacluster ionizing air purifier and a grape polyphenol filter (made with grapeseed extract), which Nissan has been using for control of allergens. There's a Bose Cabin Surround system with 15 speakers and an 8-in color touch screen with a hard drive-based navigation system.Continue reading »