I'm actually kind of excited to hear that I'll be driving the 2007 Nissan Armada. I love the name. I don't recall having driven a vehicle with a title so appropriate, as this truck is supremely large. I enjoy spending time in a larger SUV, it's kind of like going to stay with someone whose house is bigger than yours: it's nice to spread out, but I wouldn't want to clean it. Or pay for it. So in that sense, I really enjoyed the Armada for the week I drove it.
The Armada is so huge and it looks like a house from the 70's with a not-so-well-thought-out addition on the back. Nissan calls this design feature "a bold dip near the rear door." I call it ugly. To-may-toes, to-mot-toes. It is a long SUV with three rows and tons of cargo space.
A huge plus for the Armada is how easy it is for my kids to get in (with the exception of the ridiculously high placed exterior door handles which my children won't be able to reach until they're in college). With the aid of running boards, the kiddos can hop right in and make themselves at home, negating the tall step-in height. There is a purely utilitarian aspect of the Armada that is fab-o for the following reasons: I don't stress too much when the seats get kicked with slushy, muddy boots because it wipes right off; the all-season floor mats are fabulously skilled at hiding dirt and muck, they look clean throughout my entire test drive; and the second row is so wide I can fit three kids comfortably (one in a big convertible car seat, two in boosters that have armrests and cup holders).
Speaking of utilitarianism, the squariness of the interior lends itself more to the tank-driving types than the luxury-car driving types. I know squariness isn't a word, but it should be, and it perfectly describes the design of the inside of the Armada. All surfaces are rectangular or square. Not a curve in the joint. And the dark charcoal leather makes things feel a little cold. So it isn't the homiest ride, but it is easy to keep clean and tolerate dirty when cleanliness is not an option (which is more often the case in this mom-reviewer's life).
After weeks of snow, the Armada shrugs off the huge piles of it amassed on my street, and comfortably handles the sketchy roads. It's not jarring me around, which my cup holders full of various beverages and I appreciate.
Who can argue with utilitarianism when it's an SUV we're discussing? I mean, shouldn't we give props to Nissan for making a true SUV in the Armada? The towing capacity on the Armada is abundant, up to 9,100 pounds. Nissan is very proud of this and there are all kinds of mentions of towing in the manual. The amount of cargo space is enormous. I proudly carry 5 people in the first two rows very comfortably, which allows 56.7 cubic feet of cargo space. In case you were wondering, that's a lot. Even with the third row up, I have 20 cubic feet of cargo space, enough room to store some gear while running a gaggle of kids to the museum. Six cargo hooks are quite useful in case one of the kids won't do as I say and I need to tie him down (don't call child services on me, I'm just joking -honestly, I am). Lucky for me, the Armada has a power tailgate, a fantastic feature that can hypnotize me into buying any car that has it. Adding to the functionality of the Armada are 10 cup holders and four bottle holders. Phew, that's a lot of functionality, people!
Aside from all the talk of function however, it must be mentioned that the Armada has a safety issue. In NHTSA's rollover test, the Armada scored 3 stars out of 5. What this means to you is that the Armada has over a 20% chance of rolling over in a single-vehicle crash. The Armada was not rated in the Side Crash test, and in the Frontal Crash test scored 4 stars for the driver and 5 for the passenger. In any case, Nissan compensates with standard curtain airbags for all rows (including the third).
All in all, the Nissan Armada puts some "fun" in functional. It's a big truck with lots of accompanying trucky features. It makes a functional family vehicle in spite of the not-so-cozy feel. This reviewer loves the way the Armada handles real life mess, snow and slop with ease. It's quite possibly perfect for your little armada.
*For more information on the 2007 Nissan Armada SE and its safety features visit Cars.com.
LET'S TALK NUMBERS
LATCH Connectors: 5
Seating Capacity (includes driver): 7/8
IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS THAT COUNT
Storage Compartments (Puny, Fair, Ample, Galore): Galore
Cargo/Trunk Space (Puny, Fair, Ample, Galore): Galore
SENSE AND STYLE
Family Friendly (Not Really, Fair, Great, Excellent): Excellent
Fun-Factor (None, Some, Good Times, Groove On): Good Times
Cars.com Expert Reviews
|Cars.com Staff||Cars.com National||July 28, 2006|
|Sara Lacey||Mother Proof||January 31, 2007|
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