INFINITI has given its big-boy QX80 an extra dose of what it calls Powerful Elegance via an extensive redesign and interior updates to help it attract buyers in the niche luxury 4WD market.

The bonnet is 20mm higher and 90mm longer, the grille is taller and broader, and a wider front bumper has given it a more musculo-athletic look.

The side air vent, bonnet and front quarter panels have been moved so that the shoulder character line runs higher on the vehicle’s body and the side steps have been extended by 20mm for easier entry and exit.

There’s also a new tailgate to accommodate sharper, thinner rear LED lights, and the spacious cabin features a mix of leather-accented finishes, an updated instrument panel and redesigned door panels, consoles and rear entertainment screens.

2018 INFINITI QX80 3

Still priced at last year’s $110,900, the go-anywhere large SUV uses a 298kW/560Nm 5.6-litre V8 linked to Infiniti’s All-Mode 4WD system and a 7-Speed automatic transmission with Adaptive Shift Control.

The large lad runs on 22-inch forged aluminium-alloy wheels with a new 18-spoke design, and if you really need to drag a caravan, boat or horsefloat along — it has a 3500kg towing capacity.

Electronics include includes Bluetooth, an Infiniti controller for navigation, audio and climate control and a long list of standard safety including Blind Spot Monitoring, Intelligent Parking System, Forward Emergency Braking and Lane Departure Warning .

It also has an ‘intelligent’  rear view mirror that turns into a monitor via a camera to help drivers see everything behind, should the rear window be blocked by people with weird hairdos, dust or cargo.

It can be had in a choice of seven colours, with ‘espresso burl’ interior trim and semi-aniline quilted leather graphite upholstery.

Wonder if my barista is familiar with espresso burl?

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Big boy QX80 receives major makeover

Buys

Bill Buys, probably Australia’s longest-serving motoring writer, has been at his craft for more than five decades. Athough motoring has always been in his DNA, he was also night crime reporter, foreign page editor and later chief reporter of the famed Rand Daily Mail. He’s twice been shot at, attacked by a rhinoceros and had several chilling experiences in aircraft. His experience includes stints in traffic law enforcement, motor racing and rallying and writing for a variety of local and international publications. He has covered countless events, ranging from world motor shows and Formula 1 Grands Prix to Targa tarmac and round-the-houses meetings. A motoring tragic, he has owned more than 90 cars. Somewhat of a nostalgic, he has a special interest in classic cars. He is the father of Targa star Robert Buys, who often adds his expertise to Bill’s reviews.
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