At first a comparison between the new Jeep Grand Wagoneer and jeez 2022 Infiniti QX80 (DOB 2004) seems unfair. My test Grand Wagoneer started at $94,845 – $109,025 with all options – compared to my QX80’s starting MSRP of $84,850, $87,985 loaded. As Sidney Greenstreet said in “The Maltese Falcon,” “It’s hardly fair, sir.”
Still, the smaller, cheaper QX80 held its own against the more glamorous and well-equipped Grand Wagoneer, based on a week’s testing of each. Here are my results after careful evaluation, notes and review of the images I took.
Appearance: Grand Wagoneer
It was no contest. The Grand Wagoneer is fit for a king, a head of state or movie star. It blows “Class!” “Style!” and “Swank!” from each pore. In fact, it has more in common with Cadillac’s Escalade than it does with the beautiful but less grandiose QX80.
Overall size – QX80, but not for the reasons you think.
Since opulent largesse is actually the point of the Grand Wagoneer, you can’t fault it for that aspect. Still, the QX80 is the narrower of the two, and in the real world it’s easier to maneuver, handle, park, and climb in and out of, though the Grand Wagoneer’s down/up automatic stepgate was a welcome assist. The QX80 is also slightly shorter.
It must also be pointed out that these tests took place in two cities – Yonkers and New York – and in those conditions, skinny is better. If you live out in the country this might not matter to you, but even country people do WalMart and Walgreens and Applebee’s parking lots.
As mentioned above, there’s a $9,995 difference between the two rides, with the QX80 being the cheaper choice. I can think of a few things I could do with the $9,995 I would save by choosing the QX80.
Mileage: A tie
Both the QX80 and Jeep Grand Wagoneer report mileage at an abysmal 15 MPG combined city/highway.
Ride comfort: QX80
One is completely surrounded by the Grand Wagoneer’s large, plush interior, but my two passengers complained about the rough ride over the grimy streets of Yonker and the potholes of 9th Avenue in midtown Manhattan. For over $100,000, the ride should feel glassy smooth. That said, the tall and tall among us will find themselves quite welcome in the Wagoneer, with its wider seats and more headroom.
Handling – Grand Wagoneer
Here was a surprising find. The QX80 has a (slightly) larger turning radius, so its ability to U-turn or squeeze into tight spots isn’t as good as the Wagoneer’s despite being the less gigantic of the two. Other than that, each vehicle performs quite well – just as they should. You can’t push vehicles of this type across streets and highways without instant response from the steering wheel. It was nice to feel in control of both vehicles while moving.
Engine: Grand Wagoneer
The QX80 has a surprisingly light 300-hp, 413 lb-ft of torque, 5.6-liter V8 engine, while the Grand Wagoneer has a 471-hp 6.4-liter V-8 mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission with standard all-wheel drive. (However, there are a limited number of models available with a 510-hp twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline-six.) Engine size is important because people use both vehicles to tow things.
Infotainment and technology: Grand Wagoneer
Both systems work well quickly without having to consult the owner’s manual, thankfully. But the Grand Wagoneer goes further with its rich, vibrant colors and a center stack that provides a 12.0-inch touchscreen in the middle sitting atop a 10.3-inch touchscreen, with controls for your HVAC system. On the Series II option, the passenger gets their own 10.3 touch screen. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and USB ports are offered in all three rows, and second-row passengers get an additional 10.3-inch touchscreen between the captain’s chairs; Opting for the rear-seat entertainment system adds a pair of 10.1-inch touchscreens.
Safety and driver assistance features – tie
Both vehicles have the necessary safety equipment to keep you safe on the road, including but not limited to adaptive cruise control, a self-parking feature, and night vision with pedestrian and animal detection. The Grand Wagoneer has a digital rearview mirror that some have loved, but I didn’t, so I switched it back to old fashioned analog.
Conclusion: The Grand Wagoneer will suit those who want to impress neighbors and business colleagues, but the QX80 is also powerful, powerful and cheaper.
And just in: Jeep just announced that the Grand Wagoneer, among other vehicles in their fleet, will be available in electric versions in 2025.