2020 Infiniti QX80 vs. 2020 Mercedes G-Class

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Infiniti QX80 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Mercedes G-Class has only front height-adjustable seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the QX80 are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The G-Class doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The QX80 has standard Active Head Restraints (AHR), which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the AHR system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The G-Class doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The QX80 has standard Backup Collision Intervention that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The G-Class doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The QX80 has a standard Around View® Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The G-Class only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the QX80 and the G-Class have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front 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, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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The QX80 comes with a full 4-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The G-Class’ 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 10,000 miles sooner.

Infiniti’s powertrain warranty covers the QX80 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Mercedes covers the G-Class. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the G-Class ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

The QX80’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the G-Class’ (7 vs. 5 years).

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti 11th in reliability, above the industry average. With 6 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 13th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Infiniti 8 places higher in reliability than Mercedes.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the QX80 AWD gets better fuel mileage than the G 550 (13 city/19 hwy vs. 13 city/17 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Infiniti QX80 uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The G-Class requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Brakes and Stopping

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The QX80 stops much shorter than the G-Class:

QX80

G-Class

60 to 0 MPH

122 feet

136 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better ride, handling and brake cooling the QX80 has standard 20-inch wheels. Smaller 19-inch wheels are standard on the G 550.

The Infiniti QX80’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Mercedes G-Class only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling

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For superior ride and handling, the Infiniti QX80 has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Mercedes G-Class has a solid rear axle, with a non-independent rear suspension.

The rear suspension of the QX80 uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the G-Class, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The QX80 offers an available active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Mercedes doesn’t offer an active suspension on the G-Class.

The QX80 has a standard automatic rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The G-Class doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the QX80’s wheelbase is 7.3 inches longer than on the G-Class (121.1 inches vs. 113.8 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the QX80 is 2.7 inches wider in the front and 3.4 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the G-Class.

The QX80 AWD handles at .74 G’s, while the G 550 pulls only .61 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The QX80 AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.4 seconds quicker than the G 550 (28.3 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 30.7 seconds @ .53 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the QX80’s turning circle is 3.3 feet tighter than the G-Class’ (41.3 feet vs. 44.6 feet).

Chassis

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For excellent aerodynamics, the QX80 has standard flush composite headlights. The G-Class has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

Passenger Space

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The QX80 offers optional seating for 8 passengers; the G-Class can only carry 5.

The QX80 has 45.5 cubic feet more passenger volume than the G-Class (152.5 vs. 107).

The QX80 has .9 inches more front legroom, 6 inches more front shoulder room, 1.5 inches more rear legroom and 6.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the G-Class.

Cargo Capacity

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The QX80’s cargo area provides more volume than the G-Class.

QX80

G-Class

Third Seat Folded

49.6 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

38.1 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

95.1 cubic feet

68.6 cubic feet

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the QX80’s optional second and third row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The G-Class doesn’t offer automatic folding second row seats.

The QX80’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The G-Class’ swing out door blocks loading from the driver’s side.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the QX80 has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button. The G-Class doesn’t offer a power cargo door.

Towing

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The QX80’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the G-Class’ (8500 vs. 7000 pounds).

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Infiniti service is better than Mercedes. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti fourth in service department satisfaction. With an 8% lower rating, Mercedes is ranked fifth.

Ergonomics

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The QX80’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The G-Class does not have an oil pressure gauge.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the QX80 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the G-Class only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the QX80 has standard extendable sun visors. The G-Class doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The QX80 has a standard heated steering wheel to take the chill out of steering on extremely cold winter days before the vehicle heater warms up. A heated steering wheel costs extra on the G-Class.

Model Availability

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The QX80 is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The G-Class doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the QX80 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the QX80 will cost $3825 to $5510 less than the G-Class over a five-year period.

The QX80 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the QX80 will retain 43.69% to 48.1% of its original price after five years, while the G-Class only retains 43.42%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Infiniti QX80 will be $31577 to $54645 less than for the Mercedes G-Class.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/10/24

The Infiniti QX80 outsold the Mercedes G-Class by almost three to one during 2019.

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