2009 Nissan Armada LE 4x4

Sam Smith David Gluckman
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I was surprised by the number of features - and accompanying buttons - inside the Armada. Our test car had a backup camera, powered rear vent windows, Bluetooth, a touch-screen navigation system, heated seats and steering wheel, and parking sensors for both the front and rear bumpers. Nissan's corporate head unit is always a joy to use, but in this application some of its controls have migrated to the outer bounds of the wide center stack, making the buttons on the passenger side difficult to reach. The interior is comfortable, although the conversion-van-like armrests seemed a bit flimsy.

The ride and handling are very trucky. Although this SUV is by no means small, its 317-hp V-8 manages to move it along nicely, providing sufficient passing power. The Armada is rated to tow 9100 pounds, beating GM's Tahoe and Yukon twins as well as the standard Ford Expedition. (A heavy-duty trailering package pushes the Expedition's rating to 9200 pounds.) It's nice that the transfer case can be left in two-wheel drive when the weather allows, which should save some fuel compared with other SUVs with full-time AWD systems.

David Gluckman, Web Producer

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