The Redesigned 2021 Nissan Armada Is Only a Little Bit Better

The 2021 Nissan Armada is redesigned with new tech, a fresh exterior look, a tuned V8, and a totally updated interior. But redesigns of other full-size three-row SUV options like the 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe and the 2021 GMC Yukon leap and bound past their predecessors. The all-new Armada might be better, but only a little bit.

Unlike other brands whose redesigned models are vastly different, the 2021 Nissan Armada made only small changes. The upgrades are all, indeed, welcome. In fact, there isn’t much to complain about when it comes to the all-new Armada.

Nissan chose to make what Cars.com reports call “incremental changes.” The previous generation Nissan Armada won the J.D. Power initial quality award last year. It’s actually a great under the radar alternative to the models like the Chevy Tahoe or Toyota Sequoia.

The all-new Nissan Armada

The fresh-faced 2021 Nissan Armada shows a more rugged exterior. In fact, I have to agree with other critics that say it looks a bit like an old Nissan Patrol. It’s dropped some of the pretentious chrome and sensuous curvy lines for a simpler countenance.

The 2021 Nissan Armada offers a rugged yet refined exterior that matches its capability, with a more squared and chiseled appearance from the A-pillars forward. The new front fenders, grille, and bumper are framed by a new LED headlight design with more than 50 LEDs in each headlamp, helping create a wide, bright headlight pattern.
The 2021 Nissan Armada sports the automaker’s new logo design | Nissan North America, Inc.

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The infotainment system is fully updated and everything inside this full-size three-row SUV option is just a little bit better. While we can’t really complain, it’s just not super exciting. But this redesign is still worthy of notice. The all-new Nissan Armada models have a new 12.3 touchscreen and reconfigured gauge cluster. The new center console received updates and the interior materials are elevated.

Is the 2021 Armada a good SUV?

Yes, it’s a good SUV. It’s third row is a bit small than competitors like the Tahoe or Ford Expedition. It also doesn’t offer an extended wheelbase option. Still, it’s a viable option for those seeking a new vehicle in this class.

A view of the 2021 Nissan Armada's center console and dashboard
An interior view of the 2021 Nissan Armada | Nissan Motor Corporation

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This full-size three-row SUV option also gets some new standard tech. Active safety features like blind-spot warnings, lane-keeping assistance, and adaptive cruise control are all standard even at the base level. The powertrain got some tweaks too.

The already robust V8 engine is now tuned for up to 400 horsepower. The torque went from 394 to 413, pound-feet according to Car and Driver. The 2021 Nissan Armada reveals itself as a new full-size three-row option. While the changes are minor, they are improvements. Every little tweak adds up to give us a better Armada than before. And that’s what redesigns are all about, right?

Other full-size three-row SUV options

As we mentioned before, the Chevrolet Tahoe and the GMC Yukon are both redesigned for the 2021 model year as well. They are wildly popular in the segment, as they both offer a powerful V8 engine. However, they are also easy to option out over $80 grand. According to Cars.com, it’s still possible to get a fully loaded 2021 Nissan Armada for less than its competitors. For example, a range-topping 2021 Armada starts at $67,900. The 2021 Ford Expedition, on the other hand, starts at $73,775.

The Chevy Tahoe is a full-size SUV.
2021 Chevrolet Tahoe | Chevrolet

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In addition, the Armada sees competition from some of the third-row mid-sizers as well. The Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class starts in the mid $70s. But then there are far less expensive midsize options with three rows as well. The 2021 Kia Telluride, for example, tops out in the mid $40s. If you don’t need the towing brawn of the 2021 Armada’s V8 and body on frame configuration, then a midsize option may be right for you.