Skip to main content

The three-row SUV category has some worthy competitors, but two of the top rivals are the 2023 Toyota Sequoia and Nissan Armada. These large SUVs boast significant power, capability, and passenger capacity, but they differ in a few ways. I recently had the chance to test out both of these SUVs in the real world. Here’s a small comparison between the two.

A front angle view of the 2023 Nissan Armada
2023 Nissan Armada | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The 2023 Toyota Sequoia’s powertrain is more efficient than the Nissan Armada’s

The 2023 Toyota Sequoia is powered by an i-FORCE MAX hybrid twin-turbo V6 powertrain that produces 437 hp and 583 lb-ft of torque. Those numbers sound great on paper, but in the real world, the Sequoia’s power is impressive. I recently drove the TRD Pro model, which featured a louder exhaust and a sporty suspension, both of which made the large SUV more lively. On the road, the Sequoia’s power was more than enough to easily pull it onto the freeway, and its hybrid operation made it quiet and smooth at low speeds.

The Nissan Armada, on the other hand, is powered by a 5.6-liter V8 engine that produces 400 hp and 413 lb-ft of torque. On the road, that V8 is smooth and provides great passing power, but it’s not as high-tech as the Sequoia’s powertrain. In an apples-to-apples comparison, I preferred the Toyota’s hybrid setup over the Nissan’s older V8 configuration.

Additionally, Sequoia’s fuel efficiency is rated at an EPA-estimated 19 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway. That bests the Armada’s 14 and 19 mpg estimates, but interestingly, I averaged around 17 mpg in both SUVs during my time with them.

The Nissan Armada wins in the handling and ride comfort department

Regarding comfort, the 2023 Nissan Armada wins out over the Toyota Sequoia. I found that its seats in all three rows were more comfortable, and I liked the quilted leather over the Sequoia TRD’s sporty skins. It was easy to get in and out of both SUVs, but the Sequoia’s third row is a little more accommodating for tall passengers. The Nissan Armada also felt more supple and composed on the road, but I’m sure the Sequoia’s sporty TRD suspension didn’t help. Regardless, if you’re looking for ride comfort, the Armada is the better choice.

The Toyota Sequoia’s tech is more intuitive than the Armada’s

2023 Toyota Sequoia infotainment screen
2023 Toyota Sequoia infotainment screen | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The Toyota Sequoia has the Nissan Armada beat in terms of technology. It offers a large 14-inch touchscreen with wireless Apple Carplay/Android Auto connectivity. It’s interface is easy to use and the backup camera views are insanely high definition, which is refreshing. The surround-view monitor also helps a lot considering the large tow mirrors get in the way when you want to see out the sides of the car.

The Nissan Armada has a smaller 12.3-inch touchscreen and it also comes with Apple Carplay and Android Auto. There’s also an available Bose sound system, which I thought sounded great, but I liked the JBL premium sound system in the Sequoia a little more. Additionally, the Armada tester I drove had a rear entertainment system that placed two screens behind the front seat headrests. It’s a nice touch, but I don’t think it’s necessary, considering most kids use iPads and phones for entertainment nowadays.

The Armada’s towing capacity is not as good as the Sequoia’s

A rear view of the 2023 Nissan Armada
2023 Nissan Armada | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

During my time with both of these SUVs, I wasn’t able to test out the towing capacity. However, the 2023 Sequoia is rated to tow up to 9,520 pounds, and the Armada is rated at 8,500. Both figures are impressive, but if you need to tow, you know which one to pick.

2023 Toyota Sequoia vs. 2023 Nissan Armada: Which three-row SUV would you pick?

2023 Toyota Sequoia TRD front angle view
2023 Toyota Sequoia TRD Pro | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Ultimately, if I had to choose between these two SUVs, I would go with the 2023 Toyota Sequoia. The Sequoia’s towing power, hybrid engine, and tech features won me over. But, of course, the Nissan Armada is a great choice for its comfortable interior and good-mannered road-handling capabilities. Either way, you can’t lose.