The 2018 Nissan Armada is an under-the-radar choice for a large SUV, but it’s a solid contender. Equipped with a best-in-class 390-horsepower V8, a towing capacity of 8,500 pounds, available all-wheel drive, and comfortable seating for eight people, the Armada can go almost anywhere with anyone and anything
What's New for 2018
The 2018 Nissan Armada adds an updated infotainment system across all trim levels with an eight-inch touchscreen display, SiriusXM satellite radio, voice recognition, hands-free text messaging, and three USB ports. Nissan is now offering on top trim levels an “Intelligent” rear view mirror that displays a video stream from a high-resolution camera mounted on rear of the vehicle, offering a better view than traditional mirrors, regardless of who or what is in the cabin.
Additionally, Nissan is offering a new Platinum Reserve top trim level that is even more luxurious than the previous Platinum trim.
Choosing Your Nissan Armada
Unlike the pickup-based first-generation Armada, the current generation is built off the Nissan Patrol, a highly regarded off-roader that competes internationally with the Toyota Land Cruiser. While most people won’t take the Armada deep into the wilderness, the legendary ruggedness is appealing.
The Armada can be had in any trim level with all-wheel drive, and the 5.6-liter V8 is the only engine option across all trims. Please keep in mind that while Nissan calls their system “Intelligent 4X4” the Armada features full-time all-wheel drive, similar to what you’d see in a Subaru. Across all trims, the all-wheel drive option will add $2,900 to the price. Inside, the Armada is roomy and comfortable, with many options for storage and seating for up to eight people. Gas mileage is predictably poor for a vehicle as large as the Armada, with two-wheel drive variants only mustering an EPA-rated 14 mpg in the city and 19 on the highway, or a combined mileage of 16 mpg (all-wheel-drive variants suffer a penalty of one mpg in all categories).
The SV is the base trim level for the Armada, starting at $47,385 (including a $1,295 destination fee). Even though the SV is the base trim, it still gets nice features like auto-leveling rear suspension for towing heavy loads, navigation, and a Bose audio system. On the other hand, the SV trim only comes with black cloth seats. It’s hard to picture spending almost $50,000 on a vehicle with cloth seats.
For an extra $600 the SV can be equipped with the optional Driver Package, that comes with a power-folding third row seat, a trailer towing harness, fog lights, an auto dimming rearview mirror, and a power liftgate.
The SL trim starts at $52,145 and receives some standard exterior upgrades, like 20-inch alloy wheels, fog lights, and a power liftgate. Inside, the SL offers leather-appointed seats, remote start, and an interesting 360 degreecamera system that can give you a bird’s-eye view of the Armada.
The only package available for the SL is the Premium Package for $2,200. It adds a moonroof and driver assistance features like adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, blind spot warning, and back-up intervention.
The Platinum trim for the Armada includes significantly more content than the SL, but also a higher price at $60,485. The Platinum trim offers the new Intelligent Rear-View Mirror that uses a camera on the rear tailgate to give you a better view of what’s behind you. You also get the driver assistance features from the SL’s Premium Package, a moonroof, heated and cooled front seats, and an entertainment system that includes USB and video inputs and headrest-mounted monitors.
Two packages are available for the Platinum trim: Captain’s Chairs for $450. The Captain’s Chairs package removes the second row and replaces it with two captain’s chairs and a center console between them.
The second package, new for 2018, is a $3,000 option called Platinum Reserve. The Platinum Reserve package includes everything that the Platinum trim includes, but with some additional luxury features like two-tone leather-appointed seats, open-pore wood-tone interior trim, and Platinum Reserve badging on the seats. Outside, the Platinum Reserve features additional badging and dark chrome trim to set itself apart.
While the SL trim may cost almost $5,000 more than the base SV trim, the overall offering is much more palatable for a price point close to $50,000. Furthermore, with the optional $2,200 Premium Package, a buyer can get almost everything that is offered at the Platinum trim, but for $6,140 less.