Click the image above for a full, hi-res gallery.

We left the automotive whirlwind that is the Detroit Auto Show and totally forgot that Infiniti was going to unveil a refreshed version of their imposing SUV. Actually, we didn't know that Infiniti had any plans to show off their 2008 QX56, so snapping shots of the 'ute didn't make it onto our "to do" list.

In hindsight, we're not too disappointed we didn't see it in the metal, since the refresh mainly was comprised of redesigned front and rear fascias, a new roof rack, fog lamps and standard chrome dubs. While power output on the 320 HP, 5.6-liter V8 remains unchanged.

On the inside, the tarted-up Armada gets a power-operated, 60/40 split, 3rd row seat, some new, visually pleasing interior elements, along with a Burr-Brown audio system complete with a 9.5-gig Music Box hard drive, XM traffic monitoring and an eight-inch LCD display.

If you're looking for all the details on the QX56, follow the jump for Infiniti's press release.

UPDATE:
Looks like the Infiniti crew are Autoblog readers, as we were contacted not soon after publishing this post by them. They appreciated the write up on the redesigned ute, but wanted to direct our attention to the interior, which has received a much more substantial redesign than the exterior for 2008. Indeed, we like the new dash, which is covered less in vents, features more wood and soft-touch materials, and also pushes the nav screen farther out of its hole. There's also a new door design that flows into the dash better than the current model. Click on either pic to see larger versions.

2008 Infiniti QX56 interior


2007 Infiniti QX56 interior


PRESS RELEASE

2008 Infiniti QX56 Debuts at NAIAS

DETROIT (Jan. 7, 2007) – Following a record setting sales trend and the successful launch of the all-new G sedan, Infiniti is keeping the momentum going with today's unveiling of the 2008 Infiniti QX full-size luxury sport utility vehicle at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

With a new interior and refined exterior, Infiniti is enhancing and improving what customers already love about the QX – styling, technology, comfort – without compromising its towing capacity and interior roominess.

"Like the all-new G Sedan, the 2008 QX demonstrates Infiniti's philosophy of constantly evolving in the competitive luxury segment," said Mark Igo, vice president and general manager of Infiniti. "Despite being voted by consumers as top in its class in the J.D. Power and Associates 2006 Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study, we've given the new QX significant upgrades in the areas of interior design, performance, luxury features, and technology."

The new QX, which goes on sale at Infiniti retailers nationwide in April 2007, is the first major revision since it joined the luxury SUV scene in 2004 with a number of class-leading standard features. The exterior enhancements to the new QX include new front and rear fascias, new front fog lamps, new roof rack, standard 20-inch chromed aluminum-alloy wheels, and two new exterior colors – Lakeshore Slate and Serengeti Sand.

The QX's new interior is highlighted by a new instrument panel cluster design with Fine Vision electroluminescent instrumentation and a new genuine wood grain interior trim. Comfort and convenience is enhanced with a new 3rd-row power folding seat, standard heated steering wheel on the 4WD model, and a new stone interior.

Technological advancements include a new standard Premium Audio System with Bose® Speakers, Burr-Brown Digital Audio Converter and 9.5-gigabyte Music Box hard drive and compact flash slot for playing MP3 files, Infiniti Navigation system and Intelligent Key.

Also available is an Infiniti Mobile Entertainment System with a larger screen (8.0 inches versus the previous 7.0), and a standard XM® NavTraffic™ system with real-time traffic information (requires active XM® satellite radio subscription) – which allows drivers to chose the most efficient route to get to their destination.

The QX maintains its class-leading 2nd row roominess, go-anywhere ruggedness and the abundant power and up to 9,000-pound towing capability (when properly equipped) of the standard 320-horsepower DOHC 5.6-liter V8 engine.

Infiniti is keeping to its promise of delivering three new cars in thirteen months by introducing the next-generation Infiniti G Coupe and a new crossover sport utility concept at the 2007 New York International Auto Show in April.