Towing Guide - INFINITI Owners Portal

The 2017 INFINITI Towing Guide provides information for currently
available 2017 INFINITI vehicles. This publication will be amended
as new vehicles are introduced.
Towing Equipment
What Is Right for You
Preparing Your Vehicle
Towing Safety
Towing Tips
Towing Glossary
The Total Ownership Experience
For important safety warnings, please read and follow your vehicle owner’s manual.
Obviously, your first concern should be safety. Your vehicle was designed to be used primarily to
carry passengers and cargo. Always remember that towing a trailer places additional loads on your
vehicle’s engine, drivetrain, suspension, steering, braking, and other systems. Therefore, be certain
that your vehicle can meet the demands of the towing application you have in mind.
Rent or purchase only the highest-quality towing and safety equipment you can find. Reinforced tow
hitches designed especially for certain INFINITI vehicles are available from your INFINITI retailer.
Hitches for other INFINITI models — if INFINITI recommends towing with that vehicle — should be
bought from and installed by a professional supplier of towing equipment. Carefully review all
information and literature provided with any hitch you purchase for safety and proper use
information. Finally, it is important to follow the towing capacity limit set for your specific vehicle
and to ensure that your vehicle is in top mechanical condition, especially the tires, brakes,
suspension, and engine cooling system. See your vehicle owner’s manual for details.
Towing capacities vary from vehicle to vehicle. See the towing information in your vehicle owner’s
manual to confirm whether your 2017 INFINITI vehicle can be used for towing and if so it’s towing
capacity .
The frequency and type of towing dictate the manner in which you equip your vehicle. If you plan to
tow often, either for recreation or work, select the engine size, transmission type, suspension, and
towing capacity that are best suited to your requirements. This guide can help you select the proper
This guide was designed to provide an overview of safe towing practices. Here, you will find
information on towing equipment, safety, proper loading and driving techniques, towing tips, and
much more.
It is also a good idea to discuss your towing requirements with either your INFINITI retailer or a
professional supplier of towing equipment before you equip your INFINITI vehicle for towing.
Finally, there are state and local laws on towing that you should review to ensure compliance with
all regulations.
CAUTION: INFINITI recommends you do not use your new vehicle to tow a trailer or haul a heavy
load for the first 500 miles (800 km) of use. Your engine, axle or other parts could be damaged.
For the first 500 miles that you tow a trailer, do not drive over 50 mph and do not make starts at
full throttle. This helps your engine and other parts of your vehicle wear in at heavier loads.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
The first thing to keep in mind when renting any type of tow equipment, trailer, tow dolly, is to rent
only from professional companies that specialize in towing and towing equipment. Specialized
companies should hire professional staff that can assist you in selecting and installing the proper
towing equipment for your INFINITI vehicle.
When renting, make sure you have your vehicle owner’s manual on hand so that you can reference
the towing capacities for your specific vehicle. Make certain that the tow equipment and
components you rent not exceed your maximum towing capacity. Make sure that any related towing
equipment you rent has the proper weight class rating for your maximum intended towed load
weight, and the maximum Gross Combined Weight Rating.
While you are at the rental company, ask questions. How much does the empty trailer weigh? How
much weight will the trailer hold? What is the trailer’s tongue load? With what type of brakes is it
equipped (if any)? All of these factors have an effect on whether your INFINITI vehicle is capable of
safely pulling that type of trailer, dolly, or piece of tow equipment.
Make certain that the trailer stoplights, taillights, turn signals, and brakes (if equipped) are
connected and are operating correctly, and that all safety equipment is properly installed. Check
the safety chains/cables, tie-downs, etc.
For safer operation, carefully inspect the condition of the trailer and towing equipment. Specifically,
check to make sure the tires are not worn excessively and are properly inflated. Make sure there are
not any broken welds, missing bolts, and that the hitch components are not damaged. Towing
safety should be a high priority when choosing and renting towing equipment, including hitches.
WARNING: NEVER RENT A CLAMP-ON-TYPE HITCH. The hitch should not be attached to or affect
the operation of the impact-absorbing bumper. Use only a permanent-type hitch properly attached
to the vehicle to help avoid personal injury or property damage.
If you are buying a trailer, be sure that your INFINITI vehicle has the towing capacity to pull it. Refer
to your vehicle owner’s manual for detailed information regarding the towing capacity of your
specific vehicle. Your vehicle owner’s manual should ALWAYS be referenced before making any
towing decisions.
Naturally, you will want to select the towing and safety equipment that adheres to federal safety
regulations, as well as any regulations in any state in which you may travel.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
And if you plan to tow often, consider convenience. Quick-disconnect trailer light connectors and
ratchet-type tie-downs, for example, make the job go faster and easier and are usually worth the
extra small investment. Purchase towing items such as hitches and hitch balls only from your
INFINITI retailer or a professional supplier of towing equipment.
If you are intending to use your vehicle to tow a trailer you already own, you must ensure that your
loaded trailer remains well within your vehicle's towing capacity as specified in the vehicle owner's
manual. In addition, you should purchase the right type, style, and class* of hitch and towing
equipment to properly adapt the trailer to your vehicle.
Towing requires a variety of equipment, and, depending upon the application, there can be several
types or styles of each piece of equipment. Working with your INFINITI retailer or a professional
supplier of towing equipment, it should be relatively simple to determine the proper type of
equipment for your specific vehicle given the intended application. This section explains the most
common pieces of towing equipment available.
Whichever type of hitch you use, it should be firmly bolted to your vehicle, and should be of the
appropriate weight class for the trailer, tow dollies or towing equipment you intend to tow. In
addition, keep the following in mind:
WARNING- Never modify the vehicle’s braking or exhaust systems or its body structure/frame
when installing the hitch. Altering the brakes or structure on a vehicle could increase the likelihood
of a crash.
Installing an aftermarket hitch may affect the rear crash performance of your vehicle. Changing
the crash performance of a vehicle could lead to more severe vehicle damage, personal injury or
death in a crash. Be sure that the hitch does not interfere in any way with the vehicle’s impactabsorbing bumper.
Never attach a hitch or towing device to the vehicle bumper. This may affect the operation of the
impact-absorbing bumper. Use only a permanent-type hitch properly attached to the vehicle to
help avoid personal injury or property damage.
Regularly check to see that all hitch-mounting bolts are securely fastened to ensure
the hitch will not come loose, and remains properly attached to the vehicle to help
avoid property damage, personal injury or death.
CAUTION- For receiver-type hitches using a ball mount, the ball mount should be removed when
not towing, or by protecting it with a special cover, this will help protect it from damage, and
prevent rust from forming on it.
 If you install a hitch yourself, remember that it must be securely attached to the frame or
underbody, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Never attach a hitch or towing device
to the vehicle axle housing. This may damage the housing, wheel bearings, wheels, or tires.
* Refer to your owner’s manual for the equipment class information specific to your vehicle.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
Hitch Types
Receiver Hitch – A receiver hitch is bolted directly
to the vehicle structure for added strength and
durability. INFINITI bolt-on receiver hitches are
designed specifically for INFINITI vehicles and
include the necessary reinforcements, with ample
clearance around bumpers, frame members, etc.
These hitches allow for the removal of the ball mount
when not towing. Choose a proper class ball mount
based on the trailer weight.
Clamp-On Bumper Hitch – This is a temporary hitch
that clamps onto the bumper assembly.
WARNING: DO NOT USE this type of clamp-on
bumper hitch on any INFINITI vehicle because using
it may result in the trailer separating from the towing
vehicle. If the trailer separates from the vehicle, it
could cause a crash, resulting in property damage
and personal injury, or death. Use of this type of
hitch can also damage the towing vehicle.
Weight-Distributing Hitch System – This type of system
uses a “load-leveling” or “equalizing” hitch. The weightdistributing feature helps shift the trailer tongue weight
to all the axles of the tow vehicle and the trailer axles.
Weight –distributing hitches should be used in many
towing conditions. In general, a weight-distributing hitch
system is recommended and should be used if you plan
to tow trailers with a maximum weight over 5,000 lbs.
Refer to trailer and hitch manufacturer for detailed information on load limits. Weight distributing
hitches are available in many styles and with sway control accessory options to accommodate
trailers with maximum loaded weight and for different driving conditions.
NOTE – A weight-distributing hitch system may affect the operation of trailer surge brakes. If you are
considering use of a weight-distributing hitch system with a surge brake-equipped trailer, check
with the surge brake, hitch, or trailer manufacturer to determine if and how this can be done. Follow
the instructions provided by the manufacturer for installing and using the weight-distributing hitch
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
A ball mount (also known as a drawbar) is a bar that holds a hitch ball and is inserted into a
receiver-type hitch. Ball mounts come in a number of weight capacities (3,500 lbs., 5,000 lbs., etc.)
and sizes (1 1/4”, 2”, etc.), and can be weight-distributing or non-weight-distributing. Choose a
proper class ball mount based on the trailer weight.
A hitch ball is bolted through a ball mount or a hitch hole
in the tow vehicle’s rear bumper. The coupler on the
trailer tongue attaches over the hitch ball.
Like ball mounts, hitch balls are available in a number of
weight capacities and sizes. Always make sure the hitch
ball selected has the proper shank diameter and weight
rating for the ball mount as well as the coupler on your
trailer. Using a 1 7/8” hitch ball in a 2” coupler, for
example, could result in the trailer separating from the tow vehicle. The required hitch ball size is
stamped on most trailer couplers.
The diameter of the hitch ball shank must be matched to the ball mount hole diameter. The shank
should be no more than 1/16” smaller than the hole in the ball mount. To keep the hitch ball in top
condition, a simple maintenance routine is recommended. Coating it with light grease will
minimize wear of both the coupler and hitch ball. Also, by removing the hitch ball when not towing,
or by protecting it with a special cover, you will help prevent rust from forming on it.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
The tongue is the part of the trailer that extends forward to meet the tow vehicle, and it also carries
the coupler assembly. Knowledge of the trailer minimum and maximum tongue load is critical as it
can have a significant effect on the handling and capacity of the tow vehicle. Refer to your vehicle
owner’s manual to view the maximum conventional trailer tongue load listed for your vehicle. Trailer
tongue weight is the amount of downward pressure exerted onto the hitch ball. Keep the tongue
load between 10-15% of the total trailer weight. DO NOT exceed the maximum tongue load
specification. If the tongue weight is below the recommended amount, you must move some of the
load forward or add weight to the front frame of the trailer.
Always use suitable safety chains/cables between the tow vehicle and the trailer. If the hitch
should break or become disengaged for some reason, these chains/cables will provide an
emergency connection between the vehicle and the trailer. The ultimate combined breaking
strength of the two chains must be equal to the gross weight of the towed vehicle(s).
The chains/cables should be crossed under the trailer tongue and attached to the hitch or vehicle
frame. Crossing the chains/cables under the tongue will help prevent the tongue from hitting the
ground should the trailer become disconnected.
Be sure to leave enough slack in the chains/cables to turn corners without binding; however, note
that excessive slack will allow the chains/cables to drag on the ground.
WARNING- Do not use S-hooks for attaching the safety chains as they may become un-hooked
while towing. If the S-hook unhooks, the emergency chains/cables will become detached, so if the
tow hitch breaks or becomes disengaged, it will allow the trailer to completely break away causing
property damage and possibly personal injury or death. The use of S-hooks is illegal in many states.
CAUTION- To avoid damage to the bumper and chains/cables when making a sharp turn, do not
attach the chains/cables too close to the coupler. Consult your trailer manufacturer for the proper
location of the chain/cable attachment to the trailer.
WARNING- In many cases, a trailer can block your rear vision when you are using only the
standard INFINITI rear view and outside mirrors. Be careful when changing lanes or turning. Using
only these mirrors could cause an accident as they were not designed for towing.
“Extended” mirrors specifically designed for trailer towing should be used when your rearward
vision is obstructed. Before using these mirrors, make certain that they comply with state and local
regulations. Telescoping Tow Mirrors are available as an accessory for certain INFINITI vehicles.
Contact your INFINITI retailer for details.
Sudden maneuvers, wind gusts, and buffeting caused by other vehicles can affect trailer handling.
Sway control devices may help control the pivoting motion between tow vehicle and trailer and
make trailer towing easier on the driver. If you choose to use one, contact a reputable trailer hitch
supplier to make sure the sway control device will work with the vehicle, hitch, trailer and the
trailer’s brake system.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
A sway control device is recommended for all towing above 2,000 lb (907 kg). Too low a
percentage of tongue weight can also cause sway. Follow the instructions provided by the
manufacturer for installing and using the sway control device.
On a trailer with electric brakes, a breakaway switch can automatically activate the trailer brake
system if the trailer becomes separated from the tow vehicle. Should the trailer become detached,
a breakaway switch may help prevent the trailer from wandering into another lane.
WARNING-A breakaway switch relies on the power of a trailer battery, so make sure it is not
discharged. Never use the breakaway switch to “park” the trailer on a grade. The battery would
eventually discharge and release the brake, allowing the trailer to roll. Be sure to leave enough
slack in the tether on the breakaway switch to turn corners without binding. If you do not, the
electric trailer brakes will lock-up and not release. See your trailer manufacturer for proper
installation of a breakaway switch that is compatible with your trailer braking system.
Trailer lights should comply with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations, and should be
in proper working order at all times. If your vehicle is equipped with a towing package, a 7-pin
trailer harness connector is located at the trailer hitch, under a cover on the rear bumper on some
models for connecting trailer lights. For trailers that use a different style plug, contact your INFINITI
retailer or a professional supplier of towing equipment for adaptors to the 7-pin trailer harness.
A trailer’s taillights, stoplights, and turn signal lights must be wired into the towing vehicle’s
electrical system.* Most trailers operate on a four-wire system in which the stoplights and turn
signal lights utilize the same wire. Most all INFINITI vehicles have separate wires for the stoplights
and turn signal lights, therefore a device called a “converter” is needed.** Specifically, a “powered
converter” must be used, as a converter of this type creates only minimal additional electrical
demand (draw) on the vehicle lighting circuits, which helps to ensure protection for the vehicle’s
sensitive electronics.* Always check for correct operation of the taillights, stoplights, and turn
signal lights every time you connect a trailer for towing. Never replace vehicle fuses with fuses of a
higher amperage rating than the original.
*Vehicles equipped with LED taillights require that wiring be connected at a specific location. For assistance in
hooking up trailer lights, contact your INFINITI retailer or a professional supplier of towing equipment.
**QX80 and QX60 vehicles are pre-wired for trailer lighting and do not require a converter.
CAUTION – Improperly installed or poor quality trailer harness wiring may adversely affect your
vehicle’s electrical system. Use only an INFINITI approved wiring harness, or consult your retailer
or a professional supplier of towing equipment for compatible equipment.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
As with hitches, several types of braking systems are available. Most states require a separate
braking system on trailers with a loaded weight above a specific amount, therefore you should
check to ensure you comply with all regulations and laws. Have a professional supplier of towing
equipment demonstrate proper brake function testing.
Never connect a trailer brake system directly to the vehicle brake system. Trailer brakes
must be connected so that in the case of a breakaway from the towing vehicle, the trailer brakes
system shall automatically apply to stop the trailer to help ensure against the possibility of a
serious accident and personal injury or death.
Surge Brakes – The surge brake actuator is mounted on the trailer tongue with a hydraulic line
running to each trailer wheel. Surge brakes are activated by the trailer pushing against the hitch
ball when the tow vehicle is braking. Hydraulic surge brakes are common on rental trailers and
some boat trailers. In this type of system, there is no hydraulic or electric connection for brake
operation between the tow vehicle and the trailer.
Electric Trailer Brakes – Electric braking systems are activated by an electronic signal sent from a
trailer brake controller (special brake-sensing module). If electric trailer brakes are used, INFINITI
recommends the installation of a trailer brake controller. If you use an all-electronic actuation
system it will not be necessary to tap into the tow vehicle’s hydraulic system. For adjustment
specifications refer to the brake controller manual for the controller being used.
For your convenience, QX80 and QX60 vehicles are pre-wired to accommodate most popular
electric trailer brake controllers. A wiring harness* is either included with your vehicle or available
from your INFINITI retailer. This harness provides electric trailer brake controller input and output
connections to the vehicle wiring. Contact an INFINITI retailer or a professional supplier of towing
equipment for information on trailers equipped with electric brakes and for Genuine INFINITI jumper
harness availability for your specific vehicle.
CAUTION- Improper or poor quality trailer harness wiring may affect your vehicle’s electrical
system. Use only an INFINITI approved wiring harness, or consult your retailer or professional
supplier of towing equipment for compatible equipment and to have it installed.
Whether you will be towing occasionally or on a regular basis, INFINITI offers a full range of Genuine
INFINITI Parts and Accessories to help you tow with confidence. Every accessory is thoroughly
tested and inspected for fit and workmanship. Therefore, you can be certain that every item is
designed to be compatible with the standard features of your vehicle and designed to assist you
with your towing needs.
*Contact your INFINITI retailer for more information on accessories or towing-related parts for your
INFINITI vehicle.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
CAUTION- INFINITI recommends that you allow a sufficient “break-in” (500 miles) of both the
engine and drivetrain before towing with your new INFINITI vehicle. DO NOT tow a trailer or haul a
heavy load for the first 500 miles. For the first 500 miles that that you tow a trailer, do not drive
over 50 mph and do not make starts at full throttle. Following these recommendations helps your
engine and other parts of your vehicle wear in at heavier loads.
Keep in mind, too, that towing places higher demands and added loads on vehicle components, so
more frequent maintenance is called for. Your INFINITI Service & Maintenance Guide provides the
accelerated maintenance schedule for towing purposes. Engine oil, filter, transmission oil, and
possibly other fluids should be changed more frequently when towing.
When towing a trailer, increase the tow vehicle tire pressures to the recommended cold
specifications. You will find these figures in the vehicle owner’s manual and on the tire pressure
chart located within the vehicle. Trailer tire condition, size, load rating, and inflation pressure must
be in accordance with the trailer and tire manufacturer’s specifications.
The key to safer, efficient towing has to do with weight. Your vehicle — SUV, crossover, or
passenger car — is capable of carrying and towing only a certain amount of weight. You must
compare your vehicle’s tow weight ratings with the combined weight of the vehicle, trailer, and their
contents. This will help ensure that the total weight does not exceed any of your vehicle’s tow
weight ratings. There are four weights to consider when towing:
 Gross Vehicle Weight
 Gross Axle Weight (Front and Rear)
 Gross Combined Weight
 Trailer Tongue Load
These ratings are based upon normal highway driving and may be reduced if operating in reducedtraction situations (for example, slippery boat ramps).
WARNING- Attempting to tow loads greater than the GVWR, GAWR, GCWR, and the trailer tongue
load specified could adversely affect vehicle handling, braking, and performance. If you do, parts
of your vehicle can break, and tire damage could occur as a result of overloading which may not be
covered by your vehicle warranty. Overloading can also result in loss of control of your vehicle and
which could cause a serious accident, personal injury or death.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
The Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) is the actual weight of the fully loaded vehicle or trailer, including
passengers, cargo, and fuel, hitch, trailer tongue weight, and any optional equipment.
The best way to determine the GVW is by having the
Certification Label
vehicle — loaded and ready to tow — weighed
at a public scale. That figure must include the combined
weight of all passengers and cargo that are normally in
the vehicle when towing a trailer.
The GVW you come up with must not exceed the Gross
Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) for your vehicle. On all
INFINITI vehicles, the GVWR is shown on the Federal
Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (F.M.V.S.S.) certification
label located in the driver’s-side door area. Weigh your
vehicle on the scale with all of the passengers and cargo
that are normally in the vehicle when pulling a trailer.
Subtract the actual vehicle weight from the GVWR. The
remaining amount is the available maximum tongue/king
pin load.
To avoid overloading the vehicle, be sure to include the
trailer tongue weight as a part of the cargo when
determining how much weight can be safely carried
inside the vehicle. The weight of any roof rack cargo
should also be included.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
The Gross Axle Weight (GAW) is the maximum weight placed on a single axle (front and rear) that it
is designed to safely carry.
To determine the GAW, load the vehicle as you would for towing and attach the loaded trailer. At a
public scale, with the loaded trailer attached, place only the tow vehicle front wheels on the scale
to determine the actual front axle GAW. To obtain the rear axle GAW, place all four tow vehicle
wheels on the scale. From that figure, subtract the front GAW and you will have the rear GAW
amount. The cargo in the trailer and the vehicle may have to be moved, or removed to meet the
specified rating.
The GAW you come up with must not exceed the Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR) for your vehicle.
On INFINITI vehicles, the GAWR for both axles is listed on the F.M.V.S.S. certification label.
The Gross Combined Weight (GCW) is the total weight of the tow vehicle with all passengers, cargo,
and fuel, plus the total weight of the trailer and all its cargo.
To determine the GCW, simply weigh your vehicle when fully loaded and ready to tow, and add in
the weight of the loaded trailer.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
The GCW you come up with must not exceed the Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR) for your
vehicle. Refer to your vehicle owner’s manual to view the maximum GCWR specification listed for
your vehicle.
Trailer tongue load is the amount of
trailer’s weight pressing down on the
tow vehicle hitch ball.
To measure trailer tongue load, place
the tongue of the trailer on a scale
when the trailer is not attached to the
vehicle. A separate vehicle jack — not
the trailer jack — should be used, as
the location of the trailer jack is rearward of the trailer tongue and will not give you an accurate
measurement of the true tongue load. Make sure the vehicle jack is placed directly under the trailer
tongue coupler, and the tongue is set at the height/level of the tow vehicle hitch.
For proper handling, you must keep the trailer tongue load between 10-15% of the actual trailer
weight, within the limits of the maximum trailer tongue load allowable. For example, to determine
the proper trailer tongue load for a 1,500-lb. trailer, multiply the weight of 1,500 lbs. by 10% to arrive
at a figure of 150 lbs. Some trailer types may require different trailer tongue loads for safe towing.
Always follow the trailer manufacturer’s recommendations for proper trailer set-up and trailer
tongue load. Keep the trailer tongue load within the maximum trailer tongue load allowable.
Additionally, make sure the vehicle has the payload capacity available for the trailer tongue load.
If the tongue load becomes excessive, rearrange cargo to allow for proper tongue load. Refer to
your vehicle owner’s manual to view the maximum trailer tongue load listed for your vehicle.
It is important that your trailer floor and
tongue ride as level as possible. This
will help prevent over-angling, bottoming-out,
and improper tongue load and load transfer.
Therefore, the hitch or trailer tongue must be
adjusted during the initial vehicle/trailer fitup to ensure a level ride. Ball mounts and
weight distribution hitches are available in
different configurations to adjust the tongue load and load transfer and hitch ball height. On some
tandem axle trailers an incorrect hitch height can result in uneven trailer axle loading.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
WARNING - Towing can significantly alter the handling and performance characteristics of your
vehicle. Moreover, it puts increased strain on the engine and drivetrain. Therefore, it is always a
good idea to approach towing from the standpoint of safety — whether you are purchasing
equipment or actually pulling the trailer.
WARNING- Always make sure your vehicle’s towing capacity is adequate for the trailer you
intend to tow. Be certain that you have all of the proper equipment needed for safe towing, such
as safety chains/cables, electric trailer brakes, electric trailer brake controller, breakaway switch,
and extended rear view mirrors. Make certain your equipment conforms to all federal, state or local
regulations to help ensure against the possibility of a serious accident and personal injury or death.
You should follow a more frequent maintenance schedule and check fluid levels, pressures, tire
condition, etc., more often when on the road. See your vehicle owner’s manual for details.
WARNING- Taking the time to load and balance your trailer properly will improve overall
handling and minimize the strain on your tow vehicle. Incorrectly, loaded trailers tend to sway or
swing from side to side, upsetting vehicle handling which could result in a serious accident,
personal injury or death. Careful loading and balancing, and a weight distribution hitch and swaycontrol device can help eliminate these problems.
As mentioned earlier, conventional trailer tongue load must fall between 10-15% of the total trailer
weight, or within the limits of the maximum trailer tongue load specified by the trailer
WARNING- Excessive trailer tongue load can actually push down the tow vehicle in back, lifting
the front wheels to a point where traction, steering response, and braking may be severely reduced.
which could result in an accident, personal injury or death. Too little trailer tongue load or negative
load can lift the trailer tongue upwards on the trailer ball causing instability, which may lead to
swaying, “tail wagging,” or jackknifing which could result in an accident, personal injury or death.
With this in mind, proper loading is extremely
important. When loading a trailer, 60% of the total
cargo weight should be positioned in the front
portion of the trailer and 40% in the back. Then
the load should be adjusted until the proper
tongue load ratio is achieved.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
WARNING-The trailer load should be balanced
equally from side-to-side. Unequal side-to-side
loading can negatively affect handling and
braking. Once in place, all cargo should be firmly
secured to prevent shifting. If the load should shift
abruptly during braking or cornering, it could
adversely affect the handling of your vehicle and
cause a very unsafe situation and may lead to an
accident or personal injury.
● DO NOT carry flammable materials, such as
gasoline, in your trailer. In the event of an accident,
an explosion or fire could occur.
WARNING- Improper loading, excessive or insufficient trailer tongue load, overloading,
excessive trailer weight, poorly designed trailer suspensions, crosswinds, and poor
maintenance are all things that can affect the stability of your vehicle and trailer
combination. Vehicle instability may result in loss of vehicle control and cause an
accident, personal injury or death.
If swaying occurs, gradually reduce speed, and apply only the trailer brakes to help reduce sway.
Steady the steering wheel and gradually pull over and stop to check the cargo load for proper
balance and distribution to ensure proper trailer tongue load. In addition, check the condition of
the suspension and shocks, as well as the tires, tire pressures, and wheel bearings on both the tow
vehicle and trailer.
If the swaying continues and your trailer is suitably balanced and within the towing capacity limits
of your vehicle, discontinue towing and consult your INFINITI retailer or trailer manufacturer to
determine the problem.
Please note that some states have specific regulations and speed limits for vehicles that are towing
trailers. Remember to reduce your speed in unsafe or less-than-ideal road conditions or weather.
When towing a trailer, braking distances increase while handling agility decreases. Always leave
yourself an extra margin of distance to respond to emergencies.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
WARNING- Never allow passengers to ride inside a trailer while it is being towed. Not only is this
unlawful in most areas, passengers could be seriously injured during sudden trailer movement or in
an accident. In addition, trailers may allow fumes from the tow vehicle to leak inside. This could
result in carbon monoxide poisoning from the engine exhaust.
WARNING - DO NOT modify your vehicle beyond those required for proper hitch installation,
wiring hook-up, or adding extended mirrors on any INFINITI vehicle being used for towing purposes.
Changes to the drivetrain, suspension, exhaust systems, electrical, frame structure/unibody, or
other vehicle components are not necessary for towing within the limits described in this guide.
These changes may diminish the reliability and longevity of your vehicle, void warranty coverage or
possible result in loss of vehicle control and cause an accident, personal injury or death.
When towing, bring tools including flares, a flashlight, emergency reflectors, jumper cables, extra
fuses, extra radiator coolant, oil, and easily replaced spare parts such as taillight bulbs. You should
also carry spare tires for your tow vehicle and trailer, as well as a jack suitable for use on the trailer.
Choose a jack that can raise and lower the trailer so that you can connect the coupler to and
disconnect it from the ball of your hitch. Choose one with a weight capacity that matches or
surpasses your trailer tongue weight.
WARNING- Be aware that your automotive jack is designed for lifting only your vehicle during a
tire change. Using an automobile jack to lift a trailer-bearing load may be unstable possibly causing
it to fall off the jack stand which may result in property damage or serious injury or death.
Before starting out on a trip, make one last inspection of the tow vehicle and the trailer. Are the tire
pressures correct? Are the safety chains/cables securely in place? Is the cargo tied down securely?
Do all the lights work? Is the coupler properly attached over the hitch ball and secured using a
locking pin? Is the breakaway switch hooked up and functioning properly? Are vehicle and electric
trailer brakes working properly?
Make a checklist of key items to inspect. When towing, vehicle engine oil, transmission oil, and
coolant should always be checked before starting out. Finding a potential problem while in your
driveway is better than discovering it miles from home.
If you have never towed a trailer before, be aware that it does take getting used to. To begin with,
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
towing noticeably affects your vehicle’s performance:
 It will not accelerate as quickly — an important point to keep in mind when merging onto a
 It will not stop as quickly. Leave more room than usual between you and the traffic ahead, and
brake sooner when coming to a stop.
 Abrupt maneuvering can unbalance the load and reduce the handling and stability of your tow
vehicle. Plan ahead and make lane changes and turns smoothly.
If possible, before you actually hit the open road, practice towing in a large uncrowded area such as
a safe, open place with minimal traffic. Become especially familiar with backing up a trailer — the
maneuver many people find most difficult.
The combination of your tow vehicle and trailer obviously requires a greater distance to stop. A
good rule of thumb to remember is that for each 10 mph of speed, allow yourself one tow vehicle
and trailer length of distance between the front of your vehicle and the vehicle ahead.
When braking, use firm but gradual pressure on the pedal rather than panic braking.
WARNING-Applying the brakes abruptly or with too much force can cause the trailer to skid or
jackknife at its point of attachment with the vehicle. This, in turn, can throw the tow vehicle out of
control. If equipped with an electric trailer brake controller, follow the recommended operational
Know your vehicle and trailer capabilities.
WARNING- Entering a sharp corner too quickly or abruptly can “crack the whip,” whereby the
trailer can actually pull the tow vehicle off the road resulting in property damage, a serious
accident, personal injury, or death.
Therefore, when approaching a relatively sharp corner, begin braking sooner than you would when
not towing. Do your braking in a straight line prior to the corner, and turn smoothly into it. In
addition, remember to make a wider turn than normal to ensure that the trailer safely clears the
inside of the turn.
Backing up with a trailer is a difficult maneuver. Steer with one hand at the bottom of the steering
wheel. To turn the trailer to the left, first move the steering wheel to the left. To turn the trailer to the
right, move the wheel to the right. All movements of the wheel should be done in small increments.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
Of course, backing up should be done only at very slow speeds. For large trailers that obstruct your
rearward vision, have someone outside the vehicle act as a “spotter” to guide you along.
WARNING- Do not use or rely upon the Back-up Collision Intervention system (BCI) when towing
a trailer. The BCI system cannot function properly when objects are obstructing the radar sensor
A tow vehicle and trailer can be an unwieldy combination in a small area, so always try to park
where you will have a relatively easy time maneuvering. Once parked, always block the wheels on
both the tow vehicle and the trailer.
Parking on a slope is not recommended. If, however, you must park on a slope and your vehicle is
equipped with an automatic transmission, there are some precautions you should take:
 Turn the wheels of the tow vehicle towards the side of the road away from the center of the road,
and apply the parking brake and only then move the gear lever into PARK.
 Next, block/chock the wheels once the tow vehicle and trailer are in position and are being held
by the vehicle’s brake.
CAUTION-If you move the lever into PARK before blocking the wheels and applying the parking
brake, it may be difficult to later shift out of PARK. Transmission damage may also occur.
As mentioned in the introduction to this section, because of the added weight of the trailer,
acceleration capability is reduced and you will require a longer distance to pass another vehicle. Be
certain you have sufficient time and space to pass safely.
WARNING- Never attempt to pass on hills or when going around curves. Doing so could cause a
loss of vehicle control and result in accident, property damage or personal injury. Because the
trailer does not follow the exact path as the tow vehicle on turns, safely passing and cornering
while towing takes considerably more distance and turning space than normal. Be certain you
have sufficient time and space to pass safely, remember, the length of the trailer must also pass
the other vehicle before you can safely change lanes.
If your vehicle is equipped with an automatic transmission, it is designed to select automatically
the correct gear for the best towing comfort and performance as the incline increases. To maintain
speed or avoid up and down shifts, manually shift to a lower gear as needed.
The added weight of a trailer places an increased load on the engine and cooling system, so
monitor your coolant temperature gauge and automatic transmission fluid temperature gauge (if
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
equipped) carefully. At the first sign of overheating, pull to the side of the road. See IF YOUR ENGINE
OVERHEATS later in this section for more information.
WARNING- While going downhill, the weight of the trailer pushing on the tow vehicle may
decrease overall stability, and may deteriorate overall handling characteristics. The vehicle may
handle unpredictably which could cause a loss of vehicle control resulting in an accident, property
damage, serious injury or death. Therefore, to maintain adequate control, reduce your speed and
shift to a lower gear and apply the braking in short bursts. If your vehicle is equipped with Tow
Mode, see your vehicle owner’s manual for information about the use of this function.
WARNING- Avoid long or repeated use of the brakes when descending a hill, as this reduces
their effectiveness and could cause overheating which could result in damage to your brake
components or unable to slow to a safe speed. Shifting to a lower gear instead provides “engine
braking” and reduces the need to brake as frequently.
An engine will lose about 4% of its performance for every 1,000 feet above sea level that you travel.
If you will be towing in high altitudes, it is a good idea to allow more time than usual due to the
engine’s reduced performance.
WARNING- In order to maintain a safe distance to the vehicle ahead to avoid the possibility of
accidents, property damage, serious injury or death. INFINITI recommends not to use the Intelligent
Cruise control (ICC) system while towing a trailer or other vehicle. In certain road conditions when
your vehicle is towing, the ICC sensor may not detect a vehicle ahead. If the ICC sensor cannot
detect the reflector on the vehicle ahead, the ICC system may not maintain the selected distance
which could cause an accident, property damage, or death.
WARNING- Do not use or rely upon the Blind Spot Intervention system (BSI) when towing a
trailer. The BSI system cannot function properly when objects are obstructing the radar sensors
which could cause an accident, property damage, or death.
Tow Mode is recommended when towing a heavy trailer or hauling a heavy load, in stop-and-go
traffic, rolling terrain, or a busy parking lot. Driving the vehicle in Tow Mode may affect fuel
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
economy and transmission/engine driving characteristics. See your vehicle owner’s manual for
additional information about Tow Mode.
A moderate increase in engine operating temperature is normal when towing a trailer. If, however,
the coolant temperature gauge reading is abnormally high, or if you are experiencing a significant
loss of power, or if you hear unusual engine noises,* the engine may be overheating and you
should immediately take the following steps:
Pull your vehicle safely over to the side of the road, out of traffic. Apply the parking brake
and move the gearshift lever to NEUTRAL (manual) or PARK (automatic). DO NOT STOP THE
Turn off the air conditioning and, after opening all the windows, turn the heater on to
maximum hot and the fan to its highest speed, and exit the vehicle. The heater core in your
vehicle is just like a miniature engine radiator and will provide an extra cooling surface to
help reduce engine temperature.
*See your vehicle owner’s manual for additional indications that your vehicle may be overheating.
If the temperature does not drop or continues to increase, stop the engine immediately.
Being cautious of traffic, step out of the vehicle and, from a safe distance, look for steam
underneath the engine. If you see steam or leaking coolant, stand clear to avoid being
burned and shut off your engine immediately and allow it to cool. If there is no steam, open
the hood.
WARNING -Never remove the radiator cap when the radiator is hot. If the cap is removed under
these conditions, pressurized hot water/coolant may spurt out, possibly causing serious injury.
As soon as the engine has cooled to its normal operating temperature, visually inspect the
drive belts for damage or looseness. A loose belt reduces water pump efficiency.
WARNING- Be careful to keep your hands, hair, jewelry, and clothing clear of the running drive
belt and other moving parts when inspecting the engine and radiator. Also check to see if the
cooling fan is running, and inspect the water pump, radiator, and radiator hoses for leaks. Keep in
mind, too, that if your vehicle is equipped with an electric fan motor, it may start without warning
any time the coolant temperature is high. If you find leaking coolant, a loose or missing drive belt,
or an inoperable fan, turn off the engine immediately.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
If no leaks are apparent and all other components appear to be operating properly with the
engine cooled to its normal operating temperature; check the coolant level in the reservoir
tank with the engine running. Add coolant to the reservoir tank if needed. At this point, if
repairs are required, go to the nearest INFINITI retailer. See the IN CASE OF EMERGENCY
section of your vehicle owner’s manual for additional information on overheating.
NOTE – All INFINITI vehicles have an engine protection mode which helps reduce the chance of
engine damage if the engine coolant reaches a specified temperature.
Maximum Trailer Weight values are calculated assuming a base vehicle with
driver and any options required, to achieve the rating. Additional
passengers, cargo and/or optional equipment will add weight to the vehicle
and reduce your vehicle’s maximum towing capacity and trailer tongue
In general, a weight-distributing hitch system (Class IV) should be used
when towing over 5,000 lbs.
Most states require a separate braking system on trailers with a loaded
weight above a specific amount. Check local ordinances. 7-pin connector
trailer wire harnesses are required for use with trailer brakes (available
Passenger Vehicles – INFINITI does not recommend trailer towing with Q50, Q60, Q70, or Q70 (HEV)
Cross-Over Vehicles – INFINITI does not recommend trailer towing with QX30, QX50, or the QX70 2WD
Other Recommendations and Information – Towing performance and speed are affected by vehicle
payload, tow weight, road grades, and weather conditions, including high temperatures. See your
vehicle owner’s manual for details.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
A bar that holds the hitch ball and is inserted into the hitch receiver. Also
commonly called a drawbar.
A safety device using a trailer battery that automatically applies the trailer’s
brakes if it should accidentally become separated from the tow vehicle. A
breakaway switch may be used with both electric or surge trailer brake systems.
A reinforced bumper designed to accommodate a hitch ball.
When the brakes on a tow vehicle are applied, an electric current is sent to an
actuator which applies the trailer’s brakes.
A device that controls the electric trailer brakes.
The maximum amount of weight each vehicle axle (front and rear) is designed to
safely carry.
The maximum allowable combined weight of the vehicle and trailer, including
passengers and all cargo.
The maximum allowable weight of the vehicle, including passengers, cargo, fuel,
hitch, trailer tongue load, and any optional equipment.
A ball that connects the trailer to the tow vehicle hitch that provides the means
by which the trailer pivots during cornering. Available in a number of sizes and
weight capacities, it must correspond to the trailer coupler size, and have a
sufficient capacity rating for the trailer being pulled.
A frame- or structure-mounted hitch with a receiver that allows removal of the ball
Provides an emergency connection between the tow vehicle and the trailer,
should the trailer become disengaged for any reason.
Hydraulic-type braking system activated by inertia. As the tow vehicle begins to
brake, the trailer pushes against the hitch ball, consequently activating the trailer
The part of the trailer that extends forward to meet the tow vehicle, and carries
the coupler assembly.
The amount of trailer weight pressing down on the hitch.
Type of hitch system that helps shift the trailer tongue weight to all trailer tires
and the tow vehicle front tires. Strongly recommended when towing trailers with a
Maximum Trailer Weight greater than 5,000 lbs.
Provides an electrical connection linking the tow vehicle’s electrical system to the
trailer’s system.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
At INFINITI, we back everything we build. So we are proud that every INFINITI is protected by some of
the best New Vehicle Limited Warranties, including 4-year/60,000-mile (whichever comes first)
Basic coverage. All 2017 models also feature 72 month/70,000-mile (whichever comes first)
Powertrain coverage.*
For additional peace of mind, the Elite INFINITI Extended Protection Plan provides you with quality
long-term mechanical protection for 8 years/120,000 miles (measured from in service date and zero
miles, whichever comes first)”— long past your vehicle’s Basic and Powertrain Limited Warranty.
With the extra coverage, if a covered component fails during the term of the plan, INFINITI pays…
not you.** Plus, the Elite INFINITI Extended Protection Plan includes extensive Roadside Assistance
benefits and car rental coverage.
All of this makes the Elite INFINITI Extended Protection Plan a truly comprehensive package, offering
INFINITI owners exceptional value and peace of mind. Coverage is available throughout the United
States. Repair work will be done at authorized INFINITI retailers by INFINITI-trained technicians
utilizing Genuine INFINITI Parts.
For more information about the Elite INFINITI Extended Protection Plan, contact your participating
INFINITI retailer or call 1-800-662-6200.
The quality of Genuine INFINITI Parts and Accessories is backed by the integrity of a Genuine
INFINITI Replacement Parts and Accessories Limited Warranty. If purchased within the Basic
coverage period of 4 years/60,000 miles (whichever comes first), Genuine INFINITI Parts and
Accessories are covered by the remaining period of the warranty. If the remaining period is less
than 12 months/12,000 miles (or if the vehicle warranty has expired), then Genuine INFINITI Parts
and Accessories except for replacement audio components are covered by their own 12month/12,000-mile from the date of installation or purchase (whichever comes first). See your
INFINITI Warranty Information Booklet or ask your INFINITI retailer for specific details.
INFINITI urges you to always use your seat belt whenever you drive. And please make sure all
passengers are buckled up. Keep in mind that air bags are a supplemental restraint system and
must always be used in conjunction with a seat belt.
In addition, a rear-facing child restraint must never be used in the front passenger seat if the
vehicle is equipped with a front passenger air bag. Children 12 and under should ride in the rear
seat properly secured in child restraints, booster seats, or seat belts, according to their size. Please
see your vehicle owner's manual for more details.
*For complete warranty details, refer to the INFINITI Warranty Information Booklet or see your nearest INFINITI
**A nominal deductible may apply. For details please refer to the Elite INFINITI Extended Protection Plan
Agreement or contact your INFINITI retailer.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
By far the most important benefit of INFINITI luxury is the Total Ownership Experience.
before we ever built our first luxury car, we built this belief: Luxury is much more than a collection
of features on an automobile. It is a way of doing business based upon building a lasting
relationship. From the very moment you arrive at an INFINITI retailer, we strive to exceed your
expectations at every turn with our line of products and our people. You will notice our commitment
to your satisfaction in everything we do, from the way we build our vehicles to the way we support
them for years to come. As an INFINITI driver you will enjoy a host of useful services like 24-hour
Roadside Assistance,* a Complimentary INFINITI Service Loan Car** and Trip Interruption Benefits.*
Your ownership experience will be a complete one, extending from our showroom to our Web site
and beyond.
4-year/unlimited-mileage* includes: Trip Interruption Benefits, 24-hour toll-free customer
assistance number, battery boost, lock-outs, flat tires, out-of-gas, accident towing.
When you make an appointment and drop off your INFINITI vehicle for warranty repair maintenance
at participating retailers, a complimentary INFINITI Service Loan Car** will be waiting. And before
your INFINITI is returned to you, it will be hand-washed and running smoothly.
To a superior product representing excellent value, presented in a unique environment. To honor
our guests and treat them with respect during the buying process. To give our customers
outstanding service throughout their ownership, so that they may enjoy an ongoing relationship
with knowledgeable people. To be completely committed to ensuring total satisfaction for our
Our goal is to provide owners with a premium quality vehicle and an outstanding ownership
experience that does not end when you drive away from the showroom. To that end, we have
created the “Ownership” section of the Web site, which further reflects our
commitment to serving INFINITI owners’ needs. There you can find easily accessible maintenance
schedules, warranty information, and articles exclusively available to INFINITI owners.
*Roadside Assistance/Trip Interruption available during the first four years after initial new vehicle delivery.
**Subject to availability. Available only during the 4-year/60,000-mile Basic coverage. The customer must be
21 years of age or older with a valid U.S. driver’s license. The customer must provide proof of primary
insurance. Restrictions may apply.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide
All illustrations, and specifications in this document are based on the latest product information
available at the time of publication. Some vehicles are shown with optional equipment. See the
actual vehicle for complete accuracy. Availability and delivery times for particular models and
equipment may vary. INFINITI Division of Nissan North America, Inc. reserves the right to make
changes at any time, without prior notice, in prices, colors, materials, equipment, specifications,
and models, and to discontinue models or equipment. Specifications, options, and accessories
may differ in Hawaii, U.S. territories, and other countries. For information on availability, options or
accessories, contact your INFINITI retailer.
INFINITI, the INFINITI Brand Symbol, the “EMPOWER THE DRIVE” slogan and INFINITI Model Name(s)
are Nissan trademarks.
Publication: August 2017
©2017 INFINITI Division of Nissan North America, Inc.
2017 INFINITI Towing Guide