NEW FOR 2008:

– New front and rear fascias, fog lamps, and one-piece roof rack
– 20-inch chromed alloy wheels replaced 18-inch wheels
– Power-folding third-row seat
– Standard heated steering wheel
– Bose audio system with 9.5-GB hard-drive Music Box and compact flash slot
– Intelligent Key system
– Larger rear-seat DVD screen
– Regular fuel recommendation replaces premium fuel recommendation
– New interior Stone colour
– Exterior colours: Lakeshore Slate and Serengeti Sand added

For 2008, the Infiniti QX56 receives its first update since its introduction in 2004, with freshened styling and new standard interior features.

Named for its 5.6-litre V8 engine, mated to a five-speed automatic transmission, the QX56 is a luxury version of the Nissan Armada, itself based on the Titan pickup truck. While U.S. buyers have a choice of rear- or four-wheel drive, Canadian buyers get only the 4WD, which uses a part-time transfer case, with settings for rear-wheel, 4-High and 4-Low.

The QX56 comes in a single, fully-loaded trim line, with only three-coat pearl paint available as an option. Its three rows of seats can be ordered in seven- or eight-passenger configuration, for the same price.

Features include 20-inch chromed alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated leather seats with ten-way driver and eight-way power passenger adjustment, 60/40 split power-folding rear seat, fold-flat passenger seat, power third-row vent windows, Intelligent Key system, CD/MP3 stereo with 9.5 GB hard drive and compact flash slot, XM satellite radio, hard-drive-based navigation system with XM NavTraffic real-time traffic information, back-up camera, rear-seat DVD entertainment system, adaptive cruise control, power-adjustable pedals, heated wheel with power tilt, auto-dimming rearview mirror, garage door opener, Bluetooth hands-free system, automatic Xenon headlights, fog lights, power sunroof, power-folding and auto-dimming heated mirrors with integrated turn signals and puddle lamps, speed-sending wipers, intermittent rear wiper, running boards, chrome roof rack, rear privacy glass, front and rear parking assist, power liftgate with flip-up glass, skid plates, Class IV receiver hitch, and tire pressure monitoring system.

Although it’s stuffed with luxury features, the QX56 is more truck than SUV, and its firm ride and truck handling are at odds with its upscale badge. Its size means that all three rows are viable, including the third one, which offers enough legroom for most adults on short trips. But it’s thirsty and doesn’t fit into many downtown parking spots; outlying suburban buyers will be much happier with it than those who navigate heavy traffic on a regular basis.

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