The Armada is Nissans full sized (and I mean FULL sized) SUV. By most Japanese SUV standards, this is a monster. Imparting many of the favorite aspects of big trucks, such as it’s towing capacity of 9100 lbs. and true off the road performance, it is still able to hang with the best of them on the streets. It can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 6.8 seconds and stop from 60 miles per hour in 128 feet. Either of these an amazing feat for a vehicle this large. It handles well too, posting a .76g on the skid pad. All this combined with the castle on wheels size of its interior, which can seat 8 people. The price from all this has to come somewhere and as one might well expect, the highest price is to be paid in fuel consumption. You just can’t move a leviathan like this around with authority and get even decent gas mileage doing so.

As it is, the Armada averages just 12mpg city, and 18 highway, according to the EPA ratings. But many buyers will consider that a worthwhile tradeoff for all the versatility the Armada offers.

Bodystyle: SUV
Engine: 5.6L V-8
Transmission: 5-speed automatic
Models: SL, SV, Platinum

For 2011 the Armada’s lineup has been shuffled. The new SV and SL replace the previous SE and Titanium, respectively, while the top-of-the-line Platinum continues unchanged. New exterior (Espresso Black) and interior (Almond) hues are added to the color palettes. All two-wheel-drive models now come with a 2.94 rear axle ratio, helping increase towing capacity to 8200 pounds.

Armada’s two-box design, out since 2004, has aged well, thanks in part to a bold front grille, flared fenders, and “hidden” rear door handles. Available exterior equipment includes fog lamps and a chrome roof rack.

With a long 123.2-inch wheelbase but relatively short 207.7-inch overall length, the Armada manages to deliver impressive room for eight passengers and up to 97.1 cubic feet of cargo space. A gated floor-mounted shifter provides a carlike experience.

A 5.6-liter Endurance V-8 rated at 317 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque motivates the Armada with gusto. Paired to a five-speed automatic, the 5.6 pushes the 5700-pound Armada from 0 to 60 in under seven seconds. The full-size eight-passenger Armada features a heavy-duty fully boxed ladder frame and control-arm suspension, both of which contribute to 0.76 g lateral acceleration.

The Armada comes fitted with front, front-side, and side curtain airbags, the last for outboard occupants in all three rows. The Armada also gets front-seat active head restraints, stability control, and a tire pressure monitoring system.

12 mpg city/18 mpg highway

  • Ample power
  • Sporty chassis
  • Stout towing capacity
  • Room for eight
  • Fuel thirsty
  • New model around the corner
  • Some interior cheapness
  • No six-speed

Capable and fun but not best in class


  • Chevrolet Tahoe
  • Ford Expedition
  • GMC Yukon
  • Toyota Sequoia

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