how come when you order a tow hitch with a new fx, it only costs 600 bucks. but when you have the dealer install if later on, it costs like a grand?! i dont get it. think i'll end up getting a uhaul one. less than 200 with installation....
You're paying for the labor because it's a pain in the a** to install the oem one. In the factory, it's a lot easier to install than after the fact. They have to cut into the rear bumper, remove bumper shield, and drill holes into the frame.
Actually, no drilling is involved to install the OEM hitch, and minor trimming to the black plactic piece below the bumper is required.
I bought my OEM hitch and OEM wiring harness last June for under $500. I contacted Infiniti dealers in the area to get the prices (all the dealers had different prices!) then looked at their websites for coupons (most had coupons for servive, parts, etc.)
Working alone with standard hand tools, the install of the hitch took about 4 hours. All new bolts are included, and use the factory bolt holes. Your FX already has threaded bolt holes for the factory hitch from the factory! All the parts you need are included.
The OEM wiring harness took about half an hour to install. Again, all parts, bolts, screws are included.
Also, the instructions are amazing, with top notch graphics and text. It even says how long it should take an Infiniti tech to complete the job (about 90 minutes)
The plactic cutting under the bumper is minor and took maybe 15 minutes to trim with a hacksaw, clean up with a dremal, and finish with fine sandpaper. This is truely not a big deal.
If you have minimimal skills working with tools, you should have no problems installing this yourself. It is really an unbolt some things, bolt on some new things kind of deal. Some pieces are a little heavy (the hitch assembly and muffler/tailpipe assembly) so a friend may be helpful.
You do drop the muffler/tailpipe assembly, which I was leary about, but they include a new metal gasket, and it really unbolts and bolts back up easily, with no adjustment required.
I still can't believe how much they charge to do it. And no, they don't have to remove the rear suspension like they say. You unbolt a plactic box (I think its a hydraulic pump which does have to do with the suspension) and bolt it back in the same place after you put the hitch on.
Are you sure you got a factory OEM htich? I was told parts of the exhaust system had to be removed and re-installed in order attach the hitch to the structural members of the chassis if the installation of a factory OEM hitch was done by the dealer, and that was by a few unrelated sources.
Like I said:
"You do drop the muffler/tailpipe assembly, which I was leary about, but they include a new metal gasket, and it really unbolts and bolts back up easily, with no adjustment required. "
The parts of the exhaust system you remove is one assembly. It is the muffler, which has an inlet pipe and the exhaust pipes connected to it.
It is removed as a unit, and can't be installed the wrong way due to its design. You only remove a few bolts to drop that assembly. Takes maybe 5 minutes. Lay under the back of your FX and check it out.
Yes, I bought the factory OEM hitch and wiring harness, in the correct boxes from the dealer. They wanted around $1100 for the hitch and installation. I think I paid around $460?? for the hitch and wiring.
If you'd like, I could send you the factory instructions in a .pdf file
Interesting to see so many tow-hitch fans! The 1st dealership that I orderd my FX refuses to refund my deposit because I ordered one with a tow hitch. He claims that it is such an unpopular option that he will never be able to sell that FX OR he's going to have to give the tow hitch away for free. That is BS, plenty of people tow with their FX. Not me, I'm going to tow with the wife's Murano.
woohoo.. got it installed. looks great and everything fitted fine. it took me about 7 hours with harshness. i suggest doing it in the daytime. hehe. working on this at nite with less light takes a bit longer.