2010 Nissan Armada Platinum Road Test Review

Arv Voss - CAP staff
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Nissan's full-sized Armada SUV has managed to stand out in a crowded field of competitors since its introduction in 2004.  Many Nissan fans tend to think of it as an enlarged version of the Pathfinder, but with premium content, it is much more than that. 

For the 2010 model year, the Nissan Armada features only one model compared to the US where three are sold.  Canadians don't get the Armada SE or the Armada Titanium, but rather only get the fully equipped Armada Platinum. 

The Armada Platinum draws its motive force from a 5.6-liter "Endurance" V8 engine that delivers 317 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque, coupled to an advanced five-speed automatic transmission.  The driveline is mounted to a heavy-duty, fully boxed ladder frame with smooth, comfortable double-wishbone suspension.  The mighty SUV is capable of towing up to 4,128 kilos (9,100 pounds) without heavy breathing. 

The $53,398 Armada Platinum comes with a full array of standard comfort and convenience features and equipment, including Nissan's Intelligent Key, leather-appointed seating with contrasting stitching, RearView Monitor, Bluetooth hands free phone system, Bose audio system with 11 speakers, power folding third row seat, auto-leveling rear air suspension, and 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels.  Only one option bundle is offered, the $3,200 Technology Package, featuring a touch-screen hard-disk navigation system, upgraded audio system with a single CD player added, 9.3-gig hard-drive and compact flash drive, voice recognition and lane departure control.  Seven colours are offered, five of which will cost you an extra $135 for metallic paint, and one, Galaxy, $300 more. 

The Armada benefits from new exterior and interior visual enhancements including new two-piece body-colour side moldings with a chrome strip treatment, and revised wood grain appearance.

The 2010 Nissan Armada is only available four-wheel drive north of the 49th, which suits the high, wide and handsome SUV – its wide stance is positioned on a long 3,129-mm (123.2-inch) wheelbase that features short front and rear overhangs and a manageable overall length of about 5.2 meters (17 feet).  According to Nissan, the Armada offers class-leading second-row spaciousness along with best-in-class overhead storage.  The styling blends modern design cues and traditional SUV ruggedness.  The Platinum sports a chrome grille, as well as chrome front door handles, body-colour rear door handles, one-piece type roof rails, side step rails, halogen headlights and privacy glass on second and third row windows and the rear liftgate. 

Seating for eight is standard.  The second row offers a fold flat 40/20/40 split bench seat while the elevated third row 60/40-split folding bench seat (folds flat into floor) includes a standard power-folding feature.  Front bucket seats feature eight-way power adjustment and manual lumbar support, with a four-way power-adjustable passenger seat.  A gated floor-mounted shifter adds a sporty appearance and enhanced shift control.  The Armada's front centre console is highly functional, including specialized storage areas, with two cupholders and a 12-volt power outlet at its rear.  An overhead console provides multiple storage bins, six overhead dome lights and rear heating and cooling controls. 
The 2010 Nissan Armada Platinum is a 4x4 capable, full size SUV that is very comfortable.  Power is plentiful from the healthy 5.6-litre V8, with responsive acceleration.  Handling is surprisingly nimble, despite the Armada's mass.  It corners well, with minimal body roll, and the ride quality is quite comfortable. 

The functionality and versatility of the Armada is impressive, as is the standard inventory of equipment and features.

©(Copyright Canadian Auto Press)

Topics: SUV, Nissan, 2010, Armada, $50,000 - $74,999,

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