New Car Reviews

2011 Infiniti QX56 – Four Seasons Update – September 2011

Months in Fleet: 11 / Miles to Date: 29,740

Long-Term 2011 Infiniti QX56 Update: Fall 2011 ( 3 of 5 ) Miles to date: 29,740

Last month we treated our 2011 Infiniti QX56 to a full detailing. Now that we’ve put nearly 30,000 hard miles on our big SUV, it’s time to give the mechanical parts as much attention as the aesthetic elements received last month.
Thirty thousand miles is the first major service interval for the QX56. Infiniti recommends a full oil change with a new filter ($38.09 in parts), a new engine air filter ($39.99), a cabin air filter ($29.99), a pair of wiper blades ($34.98), new gear oil for the front and rear differentials ($124.00), a brake fluid flush ($57.00), and new transfer case fluid ($12.60) based on our hard use. Add the labor, shop fees, and taxes and the total was $908.46.
We only had to replace the differential oil and transfer case fluid because we have been towing trailers on a fairly regular basis. Owners not doing any trailering, carrying a car-top carrier, or driving on rough or muddy roads would only need to have the fluids inspected at 30,000 miles, which could save a significant amount of money. According to our service technician, the differential fluid was very dirty and the magnets inside the differentials were full of debris. Likewise, the transfer case fluid was very dirty and came out the color of tea. Our QX has lived a tortured life so far.
All four of our wheels and tires needed to be rebalanced, too. Luckily the broken pavement that is classified as highways in Michigan didn’t bend our 22-inch wheels. A vibration felt in the steering wheel is gone now that wheels are properly balanced. Our brakes still have life left in them, although logbook commenters have not stopped complaining about the amount of pedal required to bring this hulk to a halt.
After the pricey service visit, the QX drives almost as good as new. Aside from the continued complaints about the amount of brake pedal needed to scrub off speed, there are no issues with the QX’s ride or handling. Even after eleven months we are still impressed with the strong acceleration the 400 hp V-8 provides, and that likely explains why there are so many comments on the brakes.
Check back next month to see whether our 2011 Infiniti QX56’s final days are any easier than its previous ones.



  • Base price (with dest.) $60,750
  • Price as tested $72,560
  • Body Style SUV
  • Accommodation 7-passenger
  • Construction Body-on-frame


  • Deluxe touring package
  • $5,800
  • 22-inch forged-aluminum wheels
  • Hydraulic body motion control system
  • Climate-controlled front seats
  • Heated second row seats
  • Remote tie up second row seats
  • Advanced climate control system
  • Headlight washers
  • Technology package
  • $2850
  • Intelligent cruise control
  • Blind spot warning
  • Land departure warning
  • Land departure prevention
  • Intelligent brake assist
  • Forward collision warning
  • Adaptive front lighting system with auto leveling
  • Theater package
  • $2450
  • Dual 7-inch color rear monitors
  • Two wireless headphones
  • Wireless remote control
  • Auxiliary audio/video input jacks
  • 120V power outlet
  • Illuminated kick plates $390
  • Roof rail crossbars $320


  • Engine DOHC 32-valve V-8
  • Displacement 5.6 liters
  • Power 400 hp @ 5800 rpm
  • Torque 413 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm
  • Transmission 7-speed automatic
  • Drive Four-wheel
  • Fuel Economy 14/20/16 mpg (city/hwy/combined)


  • Steering Vehicle-speed-sensitive power steering
  • Turning circle 41.6 ft
  • Suspension, Front Hydraulic Body Motion Control System
  • Suspension, Rear Hydraulic Body Motion Control System
  • Brakes F/R Power-assisted ventilated disc; ABS
  • Wheels 22 x 8.0-inch forged-aluminum
  • Tires Bridgestone Dueler H/T 684II
  • Tire Size 275/50R22 111H


  • Headroom F/2R/3R 39.9 / 40.0 / 36.8 in
  • Legroom F/2R/3R 39.6 / 41.0 / 28.8 in
  • Shoulder Room F/2R/3R 63.8 / 63.5 / 60.5 in
  • Wheelbase 121.1 in
  • Track F/R 67.5 / 67.9 in
  • L x W x H 208.3 x 79.9 x 75.8 in
  • Caro Capacity 49.6 / 95.1 cu ft (3R seats down / with 2R & 3R seats down)
  • Weight 5850 lb
  • Fuel Capacity 26.0 gal
  • Est. Range 416 miles
  • Fuel Grade 89 octane


  • standard equipment

    • 5.6-liter V-8 engine
    • 7-speed automatic transmission
    • Four-wheel drive
    • Snow and tow modes
    • Hill start assist
    • 4-wheel disc brakes with ABS
    • Vehicle dynamic control
    • Traction control system
    • Tire pressure monitoring system
    • 8-way driver/6-way passenger power/heated front seat
    • Power lumbar support
    • Leather-appointed seats
    • Second row captains chairs
    • Power 60/40 split and fold third row seats
    • Power tilt/telescoping steering column
    • Heated steering wheel with multi-function controls
    • Bose 13-speaker premium audio system
    • Single in-dash CD/DVD player with MP3 playback
    • 9.3 GB Music Box hard drive
    • XM satellite radio
    • USB/iPod adapter
    • Bluetooth connectivity
    • Infiniti hard drive navigation system
    • 8-inch color touch-screen display
    • Voice recognition for audio
    • Around view monitor with front and rear sonar system
    • Tri-zone automatic climate control
    • Intelligent key with push button ignition
    • Power sliding tinted glass sunroof