The Infiniti QX80 - a car that Jeremy Clarkson wouldn't approve of.WRITTEN BY THE EDITOR ON APRIL 01, 2015. POSTED IN WHEELS
Last week two things happened; teenage girls the world over were on the brink of nervous breakdowns because a One Directionist quit, and men with very little to do were up in arms as Jeremy Clarkson was finally fired from Top Gear for being a prick.
Both stories have gotten huge amounts of press and are already a little stale, but I would like to touch on the latter as last week I got to drive a car that I found rather intriguing, but one that Clarkson would certainly loath.
It was the Infiniti QX80, and while behind the wheel of this obscenely large and impressive car, I couldn’t help but think of the ill-tempered former Top Gear host, and how he changed the way people looked at cars.
As I gazed upon the styling of the QX80, I thought of Clarkson and how he would find himself in hyperbole heaven, cutting into how the car looked, saying things like it resembled the love child of Moby Dick and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s face. And how he would sooner dine out on a Greek salad, out of an actual Greek man’s armpit, than be seen dead in this car.
But as I climbed (literally) into the driver’s seat of the QX80 and felt a childlike excitement to get onto the road, in my mind I began to consider Clarkson also as the scourge of the car world, and how his take on cars, though entertaining, was essentially just a load of crap.
A brilliant writer and genuine car enthusiast, he became old and jaded, and often formulated his ‘objective’ opinions purely for sensationalism and scandal. Ratings are ratings, and naturally bad mouthing cars was always going to be more entertaining, but looking back, his legacy in mainstream media is a tiresome one.
He probably would have (or has) taken one look at the QX80 and forthrightly dismissed it with; “shitty fancy Datsun made for fat Americans who just want to guzzle gas and hamburgers.”
Picturing him saying this made me chuckle, as I was driving around in a car so huge that other cars on the road seemed as silly and insignificant as his babblings.
Pretty much every new car nowadays has some sort of appeal, and in the QX80 the act of driving suddenly becomes a different experience entirely. Who would dare knock something capable of that?
“I’m bored with Ferrari…”, Clarkson once said while having a smug conversation on the Top Gear track with cult comedy figure Steve Coogan. The man lived in a world that none of us could comprehend or relate too, so what could he actually share with us with regards to car insights?
While trying not to drive over anyone in the gigantic QX80, I was pleasantly taken aback by some beautiful subtleties like how light and responsive the steering was, and how the big 5.6l V8 gave you power, but not the impression it was trying too hard to achieve that.
Clarkson would no doubt have said it was twitchy at 4000 rpm while cornering, or that it sounded like nuns farting during a sermon when you accelerated. But with each minute that passed behind the wheel, not even Clarkson in my head could make he think ill of this car. I was just having too much fun.
I stopped at a petrol station to pick up a few things, and instantly two petrol attendants approached me. I didn’t think this strange as I’m sure when you fill this thing up you may need two people, but they walked over purely to look at the car.
They were fascinated by the size and proportions of the QX80, as I still was. I showed them inside and the wide eyes got even wider. A car that can elicit such a response is always special in my book, so I took a photo of it and posted it on Twitter.
The pic was met by various armchair Clarksons, all commenting on how ugly they thought it was, or that their eyes hurt after seeing it and things to that effect… Again, all I could do was laugh, how can people say such things about a car when it offers so much? It’s the Clarkson influence of course on the masses that causes such reaction.
Each to their own though, as again, behind the wheel of this car, nothing in life was going to really phase me. The huge amounts of space and functional styling made me think of how cool it would be to go golfing in. You could round up all your mates, and purposely play some courses a little further out on the radar as getting there would be half the fun.
The very next day I did just that, I drove out to Steyn City and played their amazing championship course. I played well too, no doubt this had a lot to do with arriving in such style and comfort. Of course Clarkson wouldn’t appreciate this as he doesn’t play golf, or do anything like that. He thinks it’s silly.
To actually try and review this car would be a little pointless from this point, everything I looked for it had, everything I like in a car it had, and everywhere I went in it, I enjoyed myself.
Click here for full features of the Infiniti QX80
The important thing I learned from it was that I won’t miss Jeremy Clarkson on TV going forward. And for a car to make me realize that, proves that it’s a pretty special car that is well worth finding more about.
Click here for all you need to know about the Infiniti QX80.
Or if you are looking for something a little smaller, click here to see what else Infiniti can offer you.
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