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2009 Nissan Armada

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2009 Nissan Armada Review

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When the Nissan Armada first debuted in 2004, full-size SUVs were all the rage and it commanded a premium price. Fast-forward to the 2009 model year, and the looming specter of five-dollar-per-gallon gasoline has changed the landscape. Still, for those undaunted by $100-plus refills, the Armada has much to offer. It features a powerful V8 engine capable of running on regular gas or E85, a tow rating of up to 9,100 pounds and enough interior room to fit eight passengers and their luggage. The Armada's unconventional styling may not be to everyone's liking, but its long list of creature comforts and standard safety features are certainly attractive, as are Nissan's enticing customer incentives.

You'll Like This Car If...

If your kids are all about high-tech gadgetry and love on-board toys, the Armada has you covered. An exceptionally powerful V8 is standard – great news for those who need to tow. Standard safety features include side-curtain airbags for all three rows.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Did we mention this thing is big? The Armada can be a handful to park in tight spaces, though not any more difficult than its competitors. The fuel economy may also be a discouraging factor, and there is no diesel engine option.

What's New for 2009

Last year's LE Preferred Package, which features heated seats, power rear quarter windows, power folding mirrors and Bluetooth, is now standard on the LE. Also standard on the LE is the tow package, which includes a seven-pin wiring harness, 3.357:1 axle ratio, larger battery and auto-leveling rear suspension.

Driving the Armada
Driving Impressions

On the road you'll find the Armada behaves more like a midsize truck than the gargantuan SUV it really is. The steering feel is taut and...

... the Armada's short front overhang makes it possible to maneuver around closer corners with confidence. So long as the road remains fairly smooth the Armada maintains a very livable ride, but upon the first encounter with large dips or shaky, uneven pavement, the Armada's truck-oriented roots quickly become more evident. In any case, once you feel the power that the Armada's standard 5.6-liter V8 provides, you'll quickly forget any minor shudder or momentary vibration you've just encountered. With a whopping 317 horsepower on tap, the Armada does not lack for performance or towing power.

Rear Seat Design
The Armada's versatile rear-seat design includes fold-flat seats that create a level loading floor.

Standard Head-Curtain Airbags
The Armada's standard head-curtain airbags cover all three rows of seating.

2009 Nissan Armada Details
2009 Nissan Armada photo Interior

Nissan offers the spacious Armada with an excellent set of optional second-row captain's chairs that are separated by a removable center console. With the console out, passengers are granted easy access to the third-row seat without having to disturb those already seated in the second row. The rear-most bench seat rests on an elevated platform that allows its occupants to see over the heads of those up front. With the seats folded, there is room for quite lengthy items of cargo, even with the rear hatch closed. Safety features include side-curtain air bags covering all three rows.

Exterior

The Armada is one of the most ornate SUVs we've seen. It has a raised roof, arched door frames and huge side fender flares. The rear-door handles are placed high up, making them difficult for small children to reach. Short front and rear overhangs make the Armada a bit easier to maneuver than some of its competition. The broad expanse of glass allows for good 360-degree visibility, and the big side mirrors do a good job of revealing smaller objects near the Armada's sides. On LE models, these same mirrors are available with power folding and auto-dimming features. The LE also comes with 20-inch wheels that look great but can be pricey if needing replacement.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The Armada has a 317-horsepower V8 engine, five-speed automatic transmission with tow/haul mode, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), front and rear air conditioning, floor- and ceiling-mounted consoles, Vehicle Dynamic Control, rear privacy glass, dual power heated outside mirrors, power windows, power locks, remote keyless entry, power-adjustable pedals, AM/FM stereo with six-disc in-dash CD changer with MP3 capability, front and rear head-curtain airbags (covering all three rows), running boards, eight-way power driver's seat, cruise control, tire-pressure monitor and a rear wiper and washer.

Optional Equipment

Options vary by trim and include four-wheel drive, rear-seat DVD entertainment, front side-impact airbags, heated leather steering wheel, Intelligent Key with twist start, navigation, RearView Monitor, power glass moon roof, heated leather seats, power passenger seat, power folding 60/40 third-row seat, XM Satellite Radio, Bose audio and a tow package.

Under the Hood

Nissan equipped the Armada with its most powerful V8 engine and the results are impressive. Tow rated at 9,100-pounds (with the available Tow Package), the Armada credits itself well in maximum towing capacity among lighter-duty, full-size SUVs.

5.6-liter V8
317 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
385 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/18 (gasoline, 2WD), 12/18 (gasoline, 4WD), 9/13 (E85, 2WD), 9/13 (E85, 4WD)

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2009 Nissan Armada Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 407 Ratings for the 2005 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.8/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.1/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Most Bling for the buck!

By on Saturday, July 23, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 23,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Great leather seats, a lot of bling for your buck!"

Cons: "Limited trunk space and rear seating is short"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"We bought our 2015 Armada brand new and so far have been very pleased with it. The leather is fabulous and seats are very comfortable. Overall it is very spacious, my only complaint is that there is a lack of head and foot room in the third row. So if you have tall kids this could be a problem. As for the amenities there are many in this vehicle. With the Platinum package there ae a ton of features from heated seats to video players and rear air. The only goofy thing is that when you hit auto controls it always defaults to air conditioning. As for cargo space you are limited, there isn't much truck space perse but you can easily fold the seats down. I just miss all the space I had in the trunk of my Astro van."

Great Vehicle

By on Wednesday, March 9, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 96,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "seating, ride, storage, quiet"

Cons: "gas mileage, style (for some)"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this car used, a 2010, with 85000 miles. I went from only owning Lexus vehicles, to this one, and I have to say, I love it - it's perfect. People complain about mileage, but it's a big car, so it is expected to be poor. I average around 14 to 15 MPG overall. Summer its higher, winter it's lower. I traded in a Lexus RX because I wanted something with 3 rows of seats, with a third row that is actually usable. I looked at the Ford Expedition, Suburban, and Yukon, and none of them seemed to have a third row that anyone over the age of 5 could fit into. People note this car rides similar to a truck - and that's because it is one. That said, I think it rides very well, and is responsive for such a big vehicle. Moreover, the Armada is fast - much faster than you would expect. There is ample room for 2nd row passengers, and tons of cargo storage throughout. I have the Platinum version with bucket second row seats - so there is a console between the two seats. DVD entertainment works well. Heated steering wheel is awesome in the winter. In fact, I towed out a Ford F250 this winter that found itself stuck in the snow - and did it with great ease. As a whole, I would totally recommend this vehicle. It's great for family, or to fold down all the seats for hauling stuff. Tows 9100 lbs - more than any truck in it's class. I haven't had it long enough to rate reliability, but so far, it's been great - no problems."

19 people out of 23 found this review helpful

Our 2nd Armada

By on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 29,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great towing ability and reliability"

Cons: "Fuel economy"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"We purchased our 2nd armada in June of 2014. We traded a 2006 Armada which we purchased new that year. It had approximately 95,000 miles and short of regular oil changes and some minor maintenance we never had any problems. We tow a 23 foot boat and sometimes it's hard to tell the boat is even back there. We didn't even consider another SUV when we were ready for a new one. So far, 29,000 miles in, our 2014 has not disappointed. I hope it is as reliable as the last. If I have any complaints, it's that the design has not really changed much since our 2006. The interior is finished off a little nicer but the exterior is basically the same. We kept waiting for the redesign of the Armada to take on the infiniti QX80 look or something similar but that never happened. Maybe for our next Armada purchase."

5 people out of 10 found this review helpful

2nd time I've bought one

By on Sunday, December 6, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Beast drive with excellent turning radius"

Cons: "Rattling heat shield at low speed is annoying"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I regretted trading my '08 Armada SL for a 2014 Nissan Pathfinder. I knew better afte reading the 2013 reviews but I did it anyways wanting to downsize. I traded that in for 2014 Platinum Armada. I absolutely love it. The only drawback is since I owned the platinum pathfinder I was expecting it to the have the same features. It does have the same Issue my 2008 did the heat shield always rattles and the dealership says its normal. I expect to keep this one for at least 6-7 years from now. Everyone that rides in it says it's comfy and roomy and the kids love the DVD player as well."

8 people out of 13 found this review helpful

Best SUV ever!

By on Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 82,345

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I owned a Honda Pilot, Dodge Durango and Cadillac Escalade. The Armada SL is the best! The Armada drive is very smooth and comfortable. The city gas mileage isn't that bad, but it's excellent on the interstate, I fly by all the SUV competition with ease. The Armada hasn't changed the design since it came out, but why change perfection."

56 people out of 104 found this review helpful

Best car ever - big, comfortable, safe, and fast

By on Wednesday, April 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 86,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Comfort, acceleration, braking"

Cons: "mpg is the only penalty for all this performance"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Large comfortable interior w/enormous storage space. 0-60 in 6.8 seconds - which is awesome for a 5800 lb SUV. Braking distance shorter than a BMW 3 series (all this per motor trend). Great handling for a large vehicle. Every option I want - memory power seats and mirrors, rear camera, sonar sensors, Bose radio with AM/FM/XM and 6 disc CD changer. Bluetooth. 20" Michelin high performance all weather tires with 14" vented performance rotors (thus the awesome stopping distance). Adjustable second row seat backs. I keep the driver's seat all the way back and my 6' 1" son can sit behind me without his knees touching my seat. Only negative is gas mileage; but the 28 gallon tank makes up for that."

25 people out of 54 found this review helpful

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