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The Q8’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The QX50 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
Both the Q8 and QX50 have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Q8 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The QX50’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
The Q8 has a standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The QX50 doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Q8. But it costs extra on the QX50.
A passive infrared night vision system optional on the Q8 Prestige helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The QX50 doesn’t offer a night vision system.
Both the Q8 and the QX50 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.
The Audi Q8 weighs 907 to 1198 pounds more than the Infiniti QX50. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Q8 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The QX50 has not been fully tested, yet.
The Q8’s corrosion warranty is 5 years longer than the QX50’s (12 vs. 7 years).
There are over 48 percent more Audi dealers than there are Infiniti dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Q8’s warranty.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Infiniti vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 4 more problems per 100 vehicles, Infiniti is ranked 11th.
The Q8’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid produces 67 more horsepower (335 vs. 268) and 89 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 280) than the QX50’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder.
As tested in Motor Trend the Audi Q8 is faster than the Infiniti QX50:
Zero to 60 MPH
Speed in 1/4 Mile
Regenerative brakes improve the Q8’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The QX50 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Q8’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The QX50 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Q8 has 6.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the QX50 (22.5 vs. 16 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
For better stopping power the Q8’s brake rotors are larger than those on the QX50:
For better traction, the Q8 has larger standard tires than the QX50 (275/50R20 vs. 235/55R19). The Q8’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the QX50 (285/45R21 vs. 255/45R20).
The Q8’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the QX50’s standard 55 series tires. The Q8’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the QX50 Sensory/Autograph’s 45 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Q8 has standard 20-inch wheels. Smaller 19-inch wheels are standard on the QX50. The Q8’s optional 22-inch wheels are larger than the 20-inch wheels on the QX50 Sensory/Autograph.
The Q8 has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the QX50; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.
The Q8 has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The QX50’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Q8’s wheelbase is 7.7 inches longer than on the QX50 (117.9 inches vs. 110.2 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Q8 is 1.7 inches wider in the front and 2.8 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the QX50.
The Q8 has 2 inches more front legroom, 1.6 inches more front shoulder room, 1.5 inches more rear legroom and 1.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the QX50.
The Q8’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the QX50’s (7700 vs. 0 pounds).
The engine in the Q8 is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the QX50. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because the accessory belts are in front.
Unlike the driver-only memory system optional at extra cost in the QX50 (except Pure/Luxe), the Q8 offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.
The Q8’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. An easy entry system costs extra on the QX50, and is not available on all models.
The power windows standard on both the Q8 and the QX50 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Q8 is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The QX50 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
If the windows are left open on the Q8 Premium Plus/Prestige the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the QX50 can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The Q8’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The QX50’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.
A manual rear sunshade is optional in the Q8 and power rear side window sunshades are standard in the Q8 Prestige to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The QX50 doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.
The Q8’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Infiniti only offers heated mirrors on the QX50 Essential/Sensory/Autograph.
The Q8’s standard rear view mirror and optional side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The QX50 offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
The Q8 has standard heated front seats. Heated front seats cost extra on the QX50, and aren’t available on the QX50 Pure. The Q8 also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the QX50.
The Q8 Prestige offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the QX50.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Audi Q8 offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The QX50 doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Q8 second among midsize premium suvs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The QX50 isn’t in the top three.
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