There are large luxury SUVs and then there’s the Infiniti QX56 which tips the scales on the gigantic side.
There’s probably bigger. Caddy’s Escalade comes in a Suburban length version but somehow this QX56 comes across more massive. You have to step up into this thing and it feels really wide.
Well, it is really wide. It’s also a very well appointed thing, too.
The body is about the size of Nissan’s Armada, which came first. Infiniti added some curvy fenders and its familiar grille and came up with this beast.
Infiniti did a lot more than that. There’s plenty to differentiate the QX from the Armada and I’ll get to most of that.
The interior is one of the most comfortable places I’ve been. Luxury touches abound. The leather seats are butter soft and really gorgeous to look upon. The dash and the majority of the interior is covered, trimmed or touched with wood, leather and metal. Seven adults will find this seating comfortable and easy to access, even the third row.
The front seats are heated, have lumbar support and adjust in several different directions.The leather wrapped steering wheel is heated. The huge moonroof can be opened with a touch. The climate control unit has three independent zones.
Once you have buckled up, push the start button and listen to the faint rumble of a 5.6-liter direct injected V8. I say faint because the cabin is so well isolated you feel the engine more than you hear. Those 400 horses and 417 pounds feet of torque are more than enough to move this big boy with authority. The seven speed transmission can be engaged manually if you like. If not, the automatic mode works just fine. It matches revs with downshifts which makes things go a lot smoother.
Smooth is what you will call the ride, which is surprising considering this is a four wheel drive vehicle. Bumps and thumps are well isolated due in part to the hydraulic body motion control. It isolates the body from bad road surfaces as well as helping the vehicle stay level during cornering. True to the Infiniti hype, the truck does feel more like a sedan.
You’ll always be reminded this is a truck. The commanding driving position, the towering step up entrance and the panoramic view of the road is not available in any sedan. This is an imposing truck that is relatively easy to drive.
This vehicle is also easy to love. My test vehicle included a theater package with video screens in the middle seat headrests and heated second row seats. The technology package featured blind spot warning, lane departure warning and prevention, forward collision warning, intelligent brake assist, distance control, intelligent cruise control and adaptive front lighting with auto leveling. The deluxe touring package included a 15-speaker digital Bose stereo system, hydraulic body motion control, climate controlled front seats, headlight washers and upgraded leather seats. The standard 20-inch wheel package was upgraded to 22-inch, 9-spoke alloy wheels with all-season tires.
With destination, my as-tested price came to $78,140. Costly, but luxury vehicles don’t come cheap these days. This vehicle is also aimed at the well-heeled crowd. They should like it a great deal.