• Sign in to follow this  
    Followers 0

    Quick Drive: 2014 Nissan Armada Platinum 4X4


    • An Armada Waits For Us

    In the full-size SUV class, the GM family of the Chevrolet Tahoe/Suburban and GMC Yukon/Yukon XL dominate the class. Every other model in this group just seems to try for second or third place. But why is that? Well I spent a week with a 2014 Nissan Armada to try and answer this question.

    The Armada happens to be the oldest model in the class, being introduced back in 2004. You wouldn’t know that by looking at the exterior as it still looks fresh with such design details as a large grille and headlights, flared out fenders, a unique roofline, and twenty-inch wheels. The interior got some much needed updates back in `08 with improved materials and a revised dashboard layout. These changes again make the Armada feel younger than it actually is. However the infotainment system does reveal how old this vehicle is with a somewhat dated interface and chunky graphics. Space is very generous for the first and second row, while the third row is best reserved for kids or being folded into the floor to increase cargo space from 20 to 57.7 cubic feet of space.

    Under the hood is a 5.6L V8 engine with 317 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque, paired up with a five-speed automatic and optional four-wheel drive. The V8 does a fine job of moving the Armada’s curb weight of 5,841 pounds and the five-speed automatic delivers crisp shifts. But the downside comes in fuel economy as the EPA rates the Armada at 12 City/18 Highway/14 Combined. My week average landed at 12.4 MPG. As for the ride, the Armada is a comfortable highway cruiser, but does let in a slight amount of wind and road noise. On rougher surfaces, the Armada is very truck-like as it communicates every imperfection on the road.

    There is one saving grace to the Armada and that is the price. A base Armada with 2WD will set you back $36,890. My as-tested Armada Platinum with 4WD was $53,595.00 and that included navigation, leather, heated seats for the first and second row, dual-zone climate control, a DVD player, and much more.

    But even with that price tag, the Armada is just outclassed. While the value and nice interior are there, the poor fuel economy and ride quality just put it way behind the competition. Unless you get a smoking deal on an Armada, it's best that you pass on it.

    Disclaimer: Nissan Provided the Armada, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas

    Year: 2014

    Make: Nissan

    Model: Armada

    Trim: Platinum 4X4

    Engine: 5.6L V8

    Driveline: Five-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive

    Horsepower @ RPM: 317 @ 5,200

    Torque @ RPM: 385 @ 3,400

    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 12/18/14

    Curb Weight: 5,841 lbs

    Location of Manufacture: Canton, TN

    Base Price: $52,360.00

    As Tested Price: $53,595.00 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)

    Options:

    Floor & Cargo Mats - $240.00

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    0


    Sign in to follow this  
    Followers 0


    User Feedback


    Very dated ride and it shows. Nice write up, I agree as you hit all the important issues. Nissan needs to have a new updated version now if they really want to take on GM, Ford in this space.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I am surprised they even still make this thing. It is way out dated, even when it was new it was a beast, now it is really a dinosaur. What is sad is a 5.6 liter V8 making 317 hp, when there are V6s making more than that and turbo 4's pushing near 300 hp, granted without the torque. Basically what we have in the Armada is the Ford Crown Vic of large SUVs and the Infiniti QX80 is the Town Car. Too big, too weak a V8 that is 10 years past its prime, too heavy, too thirsty and should have been cancelled 5 years ago.

    0

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites


    Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

    Guest
    You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
    Add a comment...

    ×   You have pasted content with formatting.   Remove formatting

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor




  • Popular Stories

  • Today's Birthdays

    1. Cory Wolfe
      Cory Wolfe
      (28 years old)
  • Similar Content

    • By William Maley
      Nissan Group reports November 2016 U.S. sales
      NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Nissan Group today announced total U.S. sales for November 2016 of 115,136 units, an increase of 7.5 percent from the prior year and a November record.
      Nissan highlights:
      Nissan Division sold 103,024 vehicles, up 8 percent and also a November record. Overall sales of Nissan crossovers, trucks and SUVs set a November record, rising 24 percent. Rogue crossover sales set a November record at 26,629, an increase of 18 percent. Murano crossover sales also set a November record, increasing 36 percent to 7,589. Pathfinder SUV sales increased 34 percent to 6,801. Armada full-size SUV sales gained 114 percent to 1,738.
        NISSAN DIVISION
      NOV
       
      NOV
       
      Monthly
       
      CYTD
       
      CYTD
       
      CYTD
       
      2016
       
      2015
       
      % chg
       
      2016
       
      2015
       
      % chg
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
      Nissan Division Total
      103,024
       
      95,389
       
      8.0
       
      1,291,585
       
      1,227,213
       
      5.2
      Versa
      7,930
       
      9,783
       
      -18.9
       
      123,296
       
      133,470
       
      -7.6
      Sentra
      14,028
       
      14,505
       
      -3.3
       
      197,672
       
      183,749
       
      7.6
      Cube
      0
       
      4
       
      -100.0
       
      15
       
      930
       
      -98.4
      Altima
      20,039
       
      20,564
       
      -2.6
       
      282,617
       
      303,936
       
      -7.0
      Maxima
      4,093
       
      3,884
       
      5.4
       
      57,377
       
      35,588
       
      61.2
      LEAF
      1,457
       
      1,054
       
      38.2
       
      12,107
       
      15,922
       
      -24.0
      Juke
      1,215
       
      1,897
       
      -36.0
       
      18,287
       
      25,163
       
      -27.3
      370Z
      340
       
      381
       
      -10.8
       
      5,545
       
      6,910
       
      -19.8
      GT-R
      58
       
      34
       
      70.6
       
      652
       
      1,021
       
      -36.1
      Total Car
      49,160
       
      52,106
       
      -5.7
       
      697,568
       
      706,689
       
      -1.3
      Frontier
      5,105
       
      5,099
       
      0.1
       
      80,857
       
      57,124
       
      41.5
      Titan
      3,329
       
      719
       
      363.0
       
      17,484
       
      11,122
       
      57.2
      Xterra
      0
       
      169
       
      -100.0
       
      38
       
      10,602
       
      -99.6
      Pathfinder
      6,801
       
      5,094
       
      33.5
       
      72,333
       
      73,675
       
      -1.8
      Armada
      1,738
       
      812
       
      114.0
       
      11,561
       
      11,581
       
      -0.2
      Rogue
      26,629
       
      22,565
       
      18.0
       
      289,427
       
      260,711
       
      11.0
      Murano
      7,589
       
      5,574
       
      36.1
       
      79,072
       
      55,824
       
      41.6
      Quest
      117
       
      953
       
      -87.7
       
      10,324
       
      9,315
       
      10.8
      NV
      1,193
       
      1,105
       
      8.0
       
      15,936
       
      15,034
       
      6.0
      NV200
      1,363
       
      1,193
       
      14.2
       
      16,985
       
      15,536
       
      9.3
      Total Truck
      53,864
       
      43,283
       
      24.4
       
      594,017
       
      520,524
       
      14.1
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
      INFINITI
      NOV
       
      NOV
       
      Monthly
       
      CYTD
       
      CYTD
       
      CYTD
       
      2016
       
      2015
       
      % chg
       
      2016
       
      2015
       
      % chg
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
      Infiniti Total
      12,112
       
      11,694
       
      3.6
       
      120,095
       
      118,405
       
      1.4
      Infiniti Q40
      0
       
      38
       
      N/A
       
      59
       
      8,574
       
      -99.3
      Infiniti Q50
      3,361
       
      3,782
       
      -11.1
       
      38,213
       
      39,196
       
      -2.5
      Infiniti Q60
      814
       
      206
       
      295.1
       
      2,952
       
      3,659
       
      -19.3
      Infiniti Q70
      346
       
      677
       
      -48.9
       
      5,292
       
      7,663
       
      -30.9
      Infiniti QX30
      473
       
      N/A
       
      N/A
       
      1,519
       
      N/A
       
      N/A
      Infiniti QX50
      1,442
       
      908
       
      58.8
       
      14,947
       
      4,015
       
      272.3
      Infiniti QX60
      3,196
       
      3,736
       
      -14.5
       
      37,192
       
      36,783
       
      1.1
      Infiniti QX70
      742
       
      610
       
      21.6
       
      5,175
       
      5,040
       
      2.7
      Infiniti QX80
      1,738
       
      1,737
       
      0.1
       
      14,746
       
      13,475
       
      9.4
      Total Car
      4,521
       
      4,703
       
      -3.9
       
      120,095
       
      59,092
       
      103.2
      Total Truck
      7,591
       
      6,991
       
      8.6
       
      73,579
       
      59,313
       
      24.1
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
      NISSAN GROUP
      NOV
       
      NOV
       
      Monthly
       
      CYTD
       
      CYTD
       
      CYTD
       
      2016
       
      2015
       
      % chg
       
      2016
       
      2015
       
      % chg
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
      TOTAL VEHICLE
      115,136
       
      107,083
       
      7.5
       
      1,411,680
       
      1,345,618
       
      4.9
      Total Car
      53,681
       
      56,809
       
      -5.5
       
      817,663
       
      765,781
       
      6.8
      Total Truck
      61,455
       
      50,274
       
      22.2
       
      667,596
       
      579,837
       
      15.1
      Selling days
      25
       
      23
       
       
       
      280
       
      280
       
       
    • By William Maley
      When I go back and look at the various Kia Optimas I have driven for Cheers & Gears, there has been one variant that I haven’t driven, the 2.0L turbo-four. But this changed back over the summer when a 2016 Kia Optima SXL came into the Cheers & Gears’ Detroit bureau for a week-long evaluation. The SXL serves as the Optima’s flagship trim with more premium materials and the turbo-four.
      As I mentioned in my Optima EX review from earlier this year, the redesigned Optima looks familiar to the previous model. But that isn’t a bad thing per say. It is still as sharp looking as the previous model and the changes done such as a new trunk lid, LED taillights, a smaller grille, and reshaped headlights. The SXL takes it a step further with a set of 18-inch alloy wheels, Turbo badging on the fender vents, and a little bit more chrome. Finished in a dark blue, the Optima SXL is damn good looking midsize sedan. You won’t find many differences in the SXL’s interior compared to other Optima’s. The key one is the seats being wrapped Nappa leather with a quilted pattern. If I am being honest, I can’t really tell difference between the Nappa leather and the standard leather used on other Kia models.  But what I can tell the difference with is the materials used in the SXL’s interior. Kia swaps the soft-touch plastic used on the dash and door panels for stitched leatherette. This is to give the impression that you’re in something more expensive and it works very well. The Optima SXL’s backseat is slightly tighter than the one found in the Optima EX. Why? The SXL comes with a panoramic sunroof as standard, which eats into headroom. Let’s talk about the engine. The SXL features a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder with 245 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic. Leaving a stop, it takes a moment for the engine to fully wake up and you can’t help but wonder where is the power. At first, I thought this new 2.0L developed a bad case of turbo-lag. But I soon realized that it was a lazy throttle that was causing this issue. This is something we have been noticing in recent Hyundai and Kia models equipped with the turbo engine. Once you get over the lazy throttle, the engine moves the Optima with some authority. Merging onto a freeway or making a pass is no problem as the turbo quickly spools up and gives the necessary thrust. It doesn’t hurt the engine is very refined. EPA fuel economy figures stand at 22 City/32 Highway/25 Combined. I achieved a not too shabby 26.1 mpg average for the week. One of my biggest complaints about the last Optima I drove was the uncomfortable ride. The tuning on the EX model let in more bumps and road imperfections inside than what I was expecting. To my surprise, the SXL featured a more comfortable ride. Despite featuring larger wheels, the SXL was able to iron out most bumps and imperfections. I can’t explain why there is a vast difference in terms of ride quality between the two trims at this time. The SXL does retain the sharp handling that we liked in the Optima EX. Body motions are kept in check and the steering provides a nice heft when turning. Some will lament that the steering doesn’t have the same feel as something like the Mazda6, but this has to be Kia’s best effort yet.  The Optima SXL begins at $35,790 and that includes every option available on the Optima as standard equipment - 18-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, a Harman/Kardon audio system, navigation, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, surround view camera system, and much more. Some might balk at the price. But considering what the SXL brings to the table, along with its improved ride quality, it is very much worth the price. Plus, you might be able to work out a deal to where you’ll be able to cut the price. We’ve seen dealers cutting about $2,000 to $4,000 off Optima SXLs in an effort improve sales of the midsize sedan. Who knows, you might be able to get one of best equipped and decent driving midsize sedans at a surprising price. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Optima SXL, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2016
      Make: Kia
      Model: Optima
      Trim: SXL
      Engine: Turbocharged 2.0L DOHC Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 245 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 1,350-4,000 
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/32/25
      Curb Weight: 3,594 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: West Point, Georgia
      Base Price: $35,790
      As Tested Price: $36,615 (Includes $825.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      N/A

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      When I go back and look at the various Kia Optimas I have driven for Cheers & Gears, there has been one variant that I haven’t driven, the 2.0L turbo-four. But this changed back over the summer when a 2016 Kia Optima SXL came into the Cheers & Gears’ Detroit bureau for a week-long evaluation. The SXL serves as the Optima’s flagship trim with more premium materials and the turbo-four.
      As I mentioned in my Optima EX review from earlier this year, the redesigned Optima looks familiar to the previous model. But that isn’t a bad thing per say. It is still as sharp looking as the previous model and the changes done such as a new trunk lid, LED taillights, a smaller grille, and reshaped headlights. The SXL takes it a step further with a set of 18-inch alloy wheels, Turbo badging on the fender vents, and a little bit more chrome. Finished in a dark blue, the Optima SXL is damn good looking midsize sedan. You won’t find many differences in the SXL’s interior compared to other Optima’s. The key one is the seats being wrapped Nappa leather with a quilted pattern. If I am being honest, I can’t really tell difference between the Nappa leather and the standard leather used on other Kia models.  But what I can tell the difference with is the materials used in the SXL’s interior. Kia swaps the soft-touch plastic used on the dash and door panels for stitched leatherette. This is to give the impression that you’re in something more expensive and it works very well. The Optima SXL’s backseat is slightly tighter than the one found in the Optima EX. Why? The SXL comes with a panoramic sunroof as standard, which eats into headroom. Let’s talk about the engine. The SXL features a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder with 245 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a six-speed automatic. Leaving a stop, it takes a moment for the engine to fully wake up and you can’t help but wonder where is the power. At first, I thought this new 2.0L developed a bad case of turbo-lag. But I soon realized that it was a lazy throttle that was causing this issue. This is something we have been noticing in recent Hyundai and Kia models equipped with the turbo engine. Once you get over the lazy throttle, the engine moves the Optima with some authority. Merging onto a freeway or making a pass is no problem as the turbo quickly spools up and gives the necessary thrust. It doesn’t hurt the engine is very refined. EPA fuel economy figures stand at 22 City/32 Highway/25 Combined. I achieved a not too shabby 26.1 mpg average for the week. One of my biggest complaints about the last Optima I drove was the uncomfortable ride. The tuning on the EX model let in more bumps and road imperfections inside than what I was expecting. To my surprise, the SXL featured a more comfortable ride. Despite featuring larger wheels, the SXL was able to iron out most bumps and imperfections. I can’t explain why there is a vast difference in terms of ride quality between the two trims at this time. The SXL does retain the sharp handling that we liked in the Optima EX. Body motions are kept in check and the steering provides a nice heft when turning. Some will lament that the steering doesn’t have the same feel as something like the Mazda6, but this has to be Kia’s best effort yet.  The Optima SXL begins at $35,790 and that includes every option available on the Optima as standard equipment - 18-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, a Harman/Kardon audio system, navigation, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, surround view camera system, and much more. Some might balk at the price. But considering what the SXL brings to the table, along with its improved ride quality, it is very much worth the price. Plus, you might be able to work out a deal to where you’ll be able to cut the price. We’ve seen dealers cutting about $2,000 to $4,000 off Optima SXLs in an effort improve sales of the midsize sedan. Who knows, you might be able to get one of best equipped and decent driving midsize sedans at a surprising price. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Optima SXL, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2016
      Make: Kia
      Model: Optima
      Trim: SXL
      Engine: Turbocharged 2.0L DOHC Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 245 @ 6,000
      Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 1,350-4,000 
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/32/25
      Curb Weight: 3,594 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: West Point, Georgia
      Base Price: $35,790
      As Tested Price: $36,615 (Includes $825.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      N/A
  • Recent Status Updates

  • Who's Online (See full list)