Review and Test Drive: 2019 Infiniti QX80 Limited

By Jonathan Spira on 10 June 2019
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Based on the Nissan Armada pickup truck, the original Infiniti QX80 – albeit as the QX56 – went on sale in 2004 as the first Infiniti manufactured in the United States. It was known for several unique design details including the concealed rear door handles, which gave it the appearance of a two-door truck.

Fast forward to the current model, which made its debut at the New York International Auto Show in 2010. Separated from the Armada this time around, production moved to Japan and the second generation QX80 – still as a QX56, the name changed in 2014 – came with a powerful 5.6-liter V8 that could tow 8,500 pounds (3,856 kilograms).

When Infiniti renamed its entire product line in 2013 for the 2014 model year, the QX56 became the QX80 and received a significant facelift with new front and rear fascias and head- and taillights and multiple interior refinements. For the 2017 model year, the QX80 had a second facelift that included a redesigned and more powerful grille and hood, new LED headlights, and full LED taillights with rear turn signals integrated into the bumpers similar to the first generation QX50.



For 2019, Infiniti added a new top-of-the-line model, the Limited. Similar to Buick Limiteds of days of old, the QX80 Limited denotes a model with exclusive interior and exterior details and materials. The effect is decidedly upscale, from the two-tone open-pore woods, faux-suede surfaces, and a two-tone interior. Moving on up to the Limited propels the price from $68,600 for the QX80 Luxe with four-wheel drive to $90,200.

Climb inside the posh cabin and take it all in. Second row passengers get captain’s chairs (a bench seat is optional) and the third row is reasonably roomy for adults. Storage space is practically unlimited.

Like the Buick Limiteds of the 30s and 40s, the Infiniti feels refined and its massive powerplant is responsive, capable of launching the three-ton vehicle from a standstill to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 5.9 seconds. The QX80 lets out an exhaust growl that makes its presence known without sounding as if it were going through a mid-life crisis. Handling is refined and even the roughest surfaces can’t disturb passengers inside the rather serene, library quiet cabin.

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