I Love Cars, but…

Today as I was driving home from work, I was passed by an SUV that made my 72mph look like I was standing still. All I noticed about it was that it was ugly, and it was an Infiniti.

So when I got home I got online and did some research to find out what kind of Infiniti this monstrosity was only to discover that it was even worse than I thought!

The vehicle in question is the Infiniti QX80, and I am going to share some pics with you so that you will see just what I am talking about! (All pictures of the QX80 come from Amazon Vehicles, which can be accessed HERE. Any other pictures will be credited as appropriate.)


First, the front end:

Just look at that honker of a nose on this thing! It’s like a cartoon caricature of WC Fields! It’s all NOSE! And that huge grill is just something else entirely! The US Army could take one of those grills, put it over an open flame and grill enough burgers to feed a platoon all at once! It’s just massive!

And as you can probably tell by just looking at it, the grill is NOT attached to the hood, so if you want to check your oil or anything else under hood, you’ll have to get a step ladder in order to look over that grill!

Then there is the lower portion of the grill. It has these simple horizontal slats, which kind of look like the designer thought “Well, since the rest of the front is so curvy and bulbous, let’s just add a few straight lines.” The insert just does not fit with the design of the rest of the vehicle. With all of it’s weird curves and angles, having the straight lines on the front of this SUV looks completely out of place and as if that whole section of the grill was just an afterthought. If they had used the same diamond pattern in the lower grill, this section of the front wouldn’t stand out like a sore thumb.

But here is the worst part about this front end: the headlights. Look at those puny little headlights sitting on the front of this humongous, WC Fields-esque SUV. They are so small that you almost have to wonder if they can light up the road at night. What makes them so truly horrible is that they are actually quite large. Larger, I think, than the headlights on my Traverse! But because they are surrounded by so much… so much… HUGE, they look really puny and inadequate.

Let’s now move on to the profile:

As I looked at this photo, something about the front hood/headlight/wheel design looked really familiar to me. There was something a little animalistic about the design. Then it dawned on me what I was looking at: The Seattle Seahawks logo!

Here, look for yourself!

(logo captured from screenshot of Seahawks home page. Logo is copyright of the Seattle Seahawks and/or the NFL)

Someone at Infiniti must be a Seahawks fan, because they obviously looked at the logo and thought “Hey! That’s an SUV!”

But let’s move on to the final product of turning the Seahawks logo into a motor vehicle.

The vents on the side of this vehicle are awkward. The top of the vent sits just below an almost horizontal line, but the vent has a distinct curve, and gives the impression that there is more space between this horizontal line and the rear of the vent (closest to the door) than the front of the vent, which makes it look as if the vent were crooked.

Then the bottom of the vent follows the downward flow of the hood bulge, which fades into the remainder of the fender. But why does the hood even have a downward slope at the rear of the fender? There was absolutely no need to go downward at this point. In fact, if the designers had just followed the horizontal crease, making the vent smaller, it might have made the front portion of the SUV look thinner and a little less oddly proportioned.

Moving towards the rear of the SUV, we come to the doors. There is actually nothing wrong with the door section, except that it’s a little plain. There’s nothing here, so nothing to be offensive. I will say, I do like how Infiniti integrated the side step into the overall design of the vehicle. You can see it right below the doors, but it’s not in your face.

Beyond the doors, however, things go screwy again. That third side window design is just so weird! It’s like the designers couldn’t decide whether the window should go up from the bottom or down from the top so they they decided to do both. And the proportion is like 40% of the designers wanted downward slope and 60% wanted upward slope, so they designed it in that proportion. It’s weird, awkward, a little jarring, and doesn’t match any other design element on the SUV.

On to the Back:

It was the back of this SUV that I saw flying down the highway, and what made me think UGLY!

I think the rear of the QX80 was designed by someone else entirely from the rest of the SUV. It’s all strange curves and sharp angles. The chrome strips above and below the license plate mimic the front grill, but don’t do it well enough to actually work. The top piece of chrome is either too thick or too thin depending on how you look at it. Compared to the front grill, it’s too thick. Compared to the Taillights, it’s too thin.

The bottom piece of chrome is too narrow when compared to the front grill, and honestly does not even need to be on the vehicle at all. There is no reason to have this slight smile on the back of the truck. And when looking at it in conjunction with the top strip, I am reminded of Rosie the Robot from the Jetsons. That whole section looks like her mouth.

The taillight design is okay, if they were on some other vehicle. But in this application, it’s got some serious issues. There is a slight downward slope on the top, that then angles sharply toward the center. But that sharp change in angle doesn’t have the same degree of angle as the chrome strip it’s lining up with, which makes the gap between the two look odd and incomplete. And that portion of the angle isn’t sized to correspond with the chrome strip angle, so it looks off.

Then there is the strange angled curve on the bottom of the taillight. This curve doesn’t line up to anything else on the rear of the vehicle, and gives the impression that there is some strange sadness about these lights. Like a sad-faced emoji. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s not a smooth curve that gives me this impression. That little kink in the center of the curve is what stands out to me as something wrong with the curve in general.

The back window, though, is possibly the most pitiful thing on the rear of this SUV. From the outside edge, there is this nice gentle slope downward to the center of the vehicle, which suddenly hitches back upward to create a frown-like curve in the glass. The only reason I can see for doing this design in this way is that the huge Infiniti logo needed to go on the back of the vehicle somewhere and so the designers created a space for it. If not for that logo, this window could have continued the downward curve and created more rear visibility from inside, and made the wiper arm larger for better coverage. Do you see how small that wiper is compared to the mass of the window? I guarantee there is a problem with dirt and rain blocking most of the rearward visibility in this thing, even with the wiper going.

I didn’t bother to look at any pictures of the interior of this vehicle, as I wanted to focus on the exterior elements that shocked me so much as it flew past me. What I do want to do it work on these photos in an editor and see if I can’t come up with a few changes that would makes this vehicle look a little better to me. Especially the front and rear.

If I come up with anything, I will post it.