The 2021 Nissan Armada Is More About Tech Updates Than Appearance
Modern-day vehicles see new generations and models come in every 5-6 years on an average. Nissan, however, milked the first-gen Armada for over a decade before bringing in the second-generation in 2016 as a 2017 model. So, expecting a lot out of a mid-cycle refresh would be a cardinal sin.
Nissan has updated the full-size Armada for the 2021 model year and it comes with a refreshed face and derriere, and some major tech improvements inside the cabin. These are the things you expect from a refresh, but given Armada’s history, we are pleasantly surprised to see these many changes.
2021 Nissan Navara
Nissan has launched the 2021 Navara pickup truck in Europe and South America. It is called the Frontier in the latter, but we’ll stick to calling it Navara to reduce the confusion.
It looks fresh on the outside with noticeable changes, some tweaks inside the cabin, and a few under the skin as well. The highlight of this update is the introduction of the PRO-4X package. Unlike the U.S.-spec Frontier’s PRO-4X, which is an off-road package, the one on the European Navara is just a styling kit. Will Mercedes come back and try to build another truck based on this refreshed model?
Is Nissan Coming Up With A Frontier NISMO?
Nissan recently updated the age-old Frontier. The company tweaked the 2020 model inside out and even plonked a new mill under the hood. However, it still feels dated and all eyes are set on the next-gen model that’s due next year. There’s not a lot of information out there about it except for the fact that it is going to get mighty expensive. However, according to a YouTube channel called Pickup Truck Plus SUV Talk, the Japanese automaker might be working on a Frontier NISMO. If this scoop is true, then Nissan might fill the void created by Ford for not offering the Ranger Raptor here in the States.
The 2021 Nissan Frontier Could Get A Lot More Expensive
The Nissan Frontier is known for its rock-like build and reliability. The truck is over a decade old, but Nissan hasn’t really given it any new clothes or makeup over the years. However, the 2021 model is expected to bring about a lot of changes. Generally, such changes rarely command a significant price increase, and that seems to be the case with the Frontier.
According to a report from CarsDirect, the Nissan Frontier’s starting price will be increased by over $7,500! The 2019 Nissan Frontier starts at $18,636, but the 2021 model is expected to come with a starting price tag of $26,280. That’s an increase of almost 45-percent! But, why? Is it going to come with gold screws and bolts?
2020 Nissan Titan - Driven
The Titan is in Nissan’s lineup since 2004. The pickup truck’s current-gen was launched four years back and now the company has already rolled out the facelift. The 2020 model brings in a few significant changes to the truck. On the outside, the changes are subtle, but they are noteworthy under the hood.
Nissan dropped the Cummins mill and the Titan can now be had only with the 5.6-liter V-8 mill. What’s more, it comes with a new transmission and a power boost. However, is the Titan a worthy alternative to the established trucks like the F-150 and the Silverado?
2020 Nissan Armada - Driven
Nissan launched the second-generation Armada – the brand’s full-size, flagship SUV – in 2017 and, while it was a huge step forward in terms of luxury (relatively used, of course) and rigidity, it was also knocked for its lack of technology. Comfortable seating and cabin space rank high on the list of notable features, but things like the infotainment system and instrument cluster feel dated. With this kind of impression, we thought it would be a good idea to spend some time with the 2020 Nissan Armada to see just what it has to offer and if it can really compete with models like the Chevy Tahoe and Ford Expedition. It was a long week, and this is what our experience taught us about the Nissan Armada.
2020 Nissan Titan XD
Nissan recently rolled out the 2020 Titan, and the company did a decent job of making the product look fresh. Until the last decade, automakers used to drag on the same models, especially these big beasts, for as long as possible. Check out Nissan’s own Armada. But, given the changing dynamics, even SUVs and pickup trucks are being updated regularly. Now that the facelifted Titan was here, it was only a matter of time before the heavy-duty Titan XD was launched, too. Well, that time is now. Nissan officially revealed the 2020 Titan XD and the company has made some big moves for it, like dropping a few body configurations, retiring an engine, and introducing new exterior shades. Do these things matter in the heavy-duty version of the Titan?
2020 Nissan Titan
Pickups and SUVs used to carry the same design for decades together because no one bought them for their looks, really. But thanks to the changing times, automakers tend to refresh their big, butch vehicles as frequently as hatches and sedans. Nissan Titan is the latest example. The pickup truck’s current-gen was launched three years back, and the company has already rolled out the facelift. That’s what competition can do to you. The Titan comes with a few changes to the aesthetics and the drivetrain. Can you believe this is the same company that is running the same generation of the Patrol/Armada since 2010?
There’s More Than Meets The Eye in This Teaser for the 2020 Nissan Titan
The Nissan Titan was introduced to the market in late 2003 after four years of development and being previewed by the 2001 Alpha T concept. That generation ran a remarkable 12 years before Nissan introduced the second-generation model for the 2016 model year. The pickup segment is much hotter than it once was, and Nissan isn’t taking any chances. That’s why we’re looking at the teaser you see here. Not only does it preview a sizeable facelift for the 2020 Nissan Titan, but it also hints at the design of the update Nissan Patrol, and a hotter off-road model that could take on the Toyota Tundra TRD Pro and the Ford F-150 Raptor. Nissan hasn’t said much about the facelifted model, but some leaks of the new Patrol and the teaser does give us a little bit to talk about.
2020 Nissan Patrol Leaks Online - Will It Change Enough to Make the 10-Year-Old SUV Matter?
Pictures of the facelifted 2020 Nissan Patrol have surfaced online sans any clothes. The SUV has been tweaked majorly to make it look more modern. The SUV has been pretty long in the tooth and a makeover was imperative. This updated Patrol was spotted outside a dealership in Dubai and the images were leaked on Almuraba.net and have gone viral since then. The SUV showcases plenty of changes, but shouldn’t the company come out with a new generation already?
Nissan Teases the Refreshed 2019 Nissan Maxima; Will Debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show
The 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show is just a little over a month away now, and the early debuts are already starting to trickle in. One of the first out the gates comes from Nissan, which just debuted its latest Maxima four-door. Details on the updated flagship sedan are still forthcoming, but that doesn’t mean we can’t speculate a little bit…
Nissan Officially Teases Terra SUV Ahead of Beijing Debut
Nissan is expanding its lineup of body-on-frame vehicles as part of its “M.O.V.E to 2022” initiative to increase its frame-based sales by 40 percent by 2022. A major cog in the overall plan is this, the Nissan Terra. It’s a seven-passenger SUV based on the Navara pickup truck. In fact, the Terra is expected to share almost all its components from the Navara, including its frame and drivetrain. It is already clear the cabin and overall design theme is mirrored between the truck and SUV.
The 2018 Terra will make its official debut at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show in April, along with most of its details. Expect price and fuel economy to come later. Sales will begin in China this spring, with other Asian markets following soon after, including Australia.
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Nissan Debuts Suspension Lift Kit for Titan & Titan XD
Jeep isn’t the only automaker now offering factory-backed lift kits. That’s right Nissan is launching a suspension lift for the Titan and Titan XD pickups. The hardware comes from ICON Vehicle Dynamics, a well-respected company that designs and builds suspension lifts and other off-road gear for trucks and SUVs. The lift kit will give Titans up to three inches of additional height while not voiding the truck’s factory warranty.
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2018 Nissan Armada Snow Patrol
There must be something about the Chicago Auto Show that brings out Nissan’s creativity. Two years ago, the Japanese automaker unveiled the Winter Warrior Concepts, a collection of outrageously engineered Pathfinder, Murano, and Rogue SUVs that featured snow tracks instead of actual wheels. This year, Nissan is returning to the Windy City with a pair of concepts that might as well be spiritual successors of the Winter Warriors. One of these concepts is a fresh take on the Nissan Armada, called the Snow Patrol. It’s not as outlandish as the Winter Warriors or its present counterpart, the Nissan 370Zki, but the Armada Snow Patrol is unique in its own right for a variety of reasons.
There’s no going around Nissan’s objective with the Armada Snow Patrol. Billy Hayes, the vice president of Nissan North America’s Commercial Vehicles and Trucks, called it a “return to roots” concept for the Armada model. “(The Armada) has a long off-road heritage as the Nissan Patrol, a global expedition vehicle,” he said. "As part of our celebration of winter at the Chicago Auto Show, we wanted to remind our growing family of Armada owners and enthusiasts that this full-size SUV stands ready to take you to the mountains, or at least safely through Chicago streets covered in lake effect snow."
One look at the Nissan Armada Snow Patrol and you’ll see exactly what Hayes is talking about.
Where is the Nissan Titan’s V-6 Option?
When the second-generation Nissan Titan half-ton pickup began rolling off its Canton, Mississippi assembly line in late 2016 for the 2017 model year, it was powered by a heavily revised 5.6-liter V-8, but Nissan promised an all-new V-6 on some unknown future date. Most industry experts figured the Nissan would wait until its fleet-minded single cab models started production, but that time has come and gone. Recently Nissan released its detailed information on the 2018 Titan, and while pricing has increased by $200 across the trim lines, no V-6 was announced.
That’s got us asking questions. After all, a V-6 Titan with a lower base price and higher fuel economy would be very attractive for fleet operators needing to spend as little money as possible. As it stands, the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, and Ram 1500 all come standard with V-6 engines. Only the Toyota Tundra comes standard with a V-8. Toyota, however, completely dropped the ultra-slow selling single cab Tundra for 2017, showing just how little Toyota cares about reaching fleet customers.
In a recent interview with Wards Auto, Nissan’s senior VP of product planning for Nissan North America, Michael Bunce, said, a V-6 Titan is still “in the plan.” Bunce did not comment on Nissan’s timeline, however. One theory is Nissan is waiting on the next-generation Frontier pickup to debut in 2018, and with it, an all-new V-6. Since the Frontier and Titan are built in the same plant, the engine could easily be shared between the trucks. When Wards Auto asked Bunce about it, he said, “I can’t give you any specific details on that, but we will be moving in that direction.”
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Is Nissan Reviving the Xterra SUV?
Nissan is looking “very, very closely” at bringing the Xterra SUV back to life for a third generation. That news comes from Nissan’s own Michael Bunce, who serves as senior vice president-product planning for Nissan North America. In an interview with Wards Auto, Bunce said Nissan is watching the renaissance of the off-road utility segment with new vehicles like the all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler and Ford’s upcoming Bronco due for 2020.
“[Xterra] is a great asset in terms of a name and a badge, “Bunce said. “It’s on the shelf right now, but it’s something we could utilize in the future.” He backed up Nissan’s reasoning with research the automaker has done on Millennial males. “Through devices they’re becoming more isolated and they want to reconnect with friends, family, outdoors. And a vehicle is an expression, a way to do that. We’re doing a lot of work in the space to understand that customer very well.”
Of course, Bunce made no official statements or promises about the Xterra’s revival were made. Interestingly, rumors of a body-on-frame SUV coming from the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi alliance have surfaced and suggest something could debut at the 2018 Beijing Auto Show in April. Motor Trend, which published the rumors from its unnamed source, says it is possibly the third-generation Xterra. At this time, we’ve seen no spy shots of test vehicles or any other leaked information suggesting the Xterra will return.
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Nissan Announces Pricing For 2018 Titan, Titan XD
Nissan has announced pricing for its 2018 Titan and Titan XD models, along with the price for the pickups’ new Midnight Edition. Both trucks carry over unchanged from 2017, including cab, bed, trim, and engine configurations. As such, Nissan is only upping the price by $200 across the board. The monochromatic Midnight Edition, which brings several visual updates to the trucks, adds an extra $1,250 to the MSRP.
The Titan and Titan XD are slowing gaining steam in the highly competitive pickup market, selling 7,679 examples in November inside the U.S. That’s up from only 4,114 in October and 3,773 in September. While these numbers are far less than Ford, GM, and Ram’s monthly truck sales, Nissan is playing out a strategy. Titan sales have been targeted to certain truck-centric markets like Dallas, Houston, Phoenix, and Salt Lake City. This allows the automaker to focus its marketing dollars while allowing its Canton, Mississippi assembly plant to ramp up production.
Nissan’s overall truck strategy has the half-ton Titan competing against stalwarts like the Silverado, F-150, Ram 1500, and Tundra, while the Titan XD carves out its own niche market in between the half-ton and three-quarter ton weight classes. Nissan is also betting big with its association to Cummins, which provides the optional 5.0-liter V-8 turbodiesel offered in the XD.
For our opinions and driving impressions, check out our review of the 2017 Titan and 2016 Titan XD.
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Nissan’s New 2018 Titan Commercial Is Hilariously Catchy
Nissan is fighting tooth and nail to gain ground in the highly competitive half-ton pickup market. Sales have been slower than expected, but that might change with this commercial. It’s about the funniest truck commercial we’ve seen in a while – mostly because truck ads usually take a more serious approach. It’s called No Lazy Horses and it’s Super Bowl-quality funny thanks to a catchy song, a memorably pudgy main character, and some antagonizing lazy “horses” that are impossible to unsee.
Besides being funny, the one-minute, 30-second commercial takes a hard swing at the Ford F-150. Of course, the truck’s badges are removed, but anybody with any sense knows the white, Crew Cab truck is a Ford. Truck fans will easily place it as the previous-generation, steel-bodied F-150.
As the story goes, the F-150 gets stuck in the mud and its driver, Clark, must coax the truck’s “horses” to perform by doing an embarrassing song and dance routine. Pretty pretty ponies, pretty pretty please, I’m a dancing ponyboy, begging pretty please Well, unfortunately for Clark’s pride, the hero pulls up to witness the scene in his shiny new, 2018 Nissan Titan Crew Cab 4x4. The hero, Clark’s payload of pipes, and what’s left of Clark’s dignity ride off into the sunset, abandoning the F-150 to rot away.
Despite horsepower not having anything to do with a 2WD truck being buried axle-deep in mud, the commercial is incredibly memorable and should even resonate with people who know nothing about truck, payload, or lazy horses. That stupid song is a verifiable earworm, and those trashy, basement-dwelling horses are the stuff of Internet legends.
Nicely done, Nissan. Thanks for the laugh.
2017 Nissan Titan & Frontier Midnight Editions
Nissan is playing off the massive hype surrounding the total solar eclipse by introducing three new Midnight Edition trucks for 2018: the Titan, Titan XD, and Frontier. Not surprisingly, the trucks are blacked out from hood to hitch with black interiors and several popular add-on features included. Not only does this tie in perfectly with today’s celestial event, it complements Nissan’s huge success with the Midnight Edition treatment on its other vehicles, which are said to sell twice as quick as standard models.
Billy Hayes, Nissan’s division vice president for North America sales, said, “Following the tremendous response to the original Maxima SR Midnight Edition, we’ve created a complete portfolio of the popular blacked-out Midnight Edition look among our core Nissan sedan, crossover and SUV models. We expect the strong customer appeal to continue with the expansion of the Midnight Edition package to our Titan, Titan XD and Frontier pickups.” Nissan isn’t the only automaker doing well with special edition models boosting sales. Chevrolet is killing it with special editions like the Redline, Rally, High Desert, Custom Sport HD, RealTree, Special Ops, Alaskan, and Black Out editions. Oh, and Chevy also has its own Midnight Edition with a blacked-out appearance, too. Ram also plays the game, offering its Ram pickups with the Limited Tungsten, Subline Green, Copper, Night, Rebel Black, and Rebel Mojave Sand editions. Hayes followed up by saying, “A great custom look straight from the factory is what buyers really appreciate. We’re finding that buyers in the millennial age group especially are attracted to the Midnight Editions. Last year, Nissan was ranked as the number one brand for millennial purchases.”
Speaking of purchases, the Titan, Titan XD, and Frontier Midnight Editions will go on sale starting in the late fall of 2017. Pricing has yet to be announced. For the full details on the trucks, keep reading below.
Mercedes-Benz X-Class VS Nissan Navara
Well, Mercedes-Benz has officially debuted its first metric-ton (mid-size) pickup truck, the X-Class. But the truck isn’t a ground-up creation from Mercedes – rather the X-Class is based on the current Nissan Navara NP300. Mercedes has been forthright with its partnership with Nissan, saying it’s leveraging Nissan’s experience in the segment. But Thankfully, the X-Class isn’t a Navara with a Mercedes star slapped on – or so Mercedes says. In fact, the two trucks are rather closely related, though there are major differences between them. Let’s dive in and see what’s up.
Nissan has been building trucks since 1933, but it was the 1980s that brought iconic Hardbody the U.S. In 1997, Nissan changed the name to Frontier, while everywhere else in the world, the Navara name was used. The latest version debuted for the 2015 model year, marking the Navara’s third generation. As a traditional truck, it rides on a fully boxed ladder frame while power is sent to the solid rear axle or all four wheels via a part-time 4WD system. However, Nissan chose a five-link, coil-spring setup for the rear suspension, giving the pickup a smoother ride with a slight trade-off in payload and towing capacity versus its competition. American truck enthusiasts will spot same thinking within the Ram 1500 and 2500 pickups’ rear ends. Not surprisingly, this setup translates well to a pickup billed as “premium,” so naturally, the X-Class borrows the design. But you won’t find a Nissan engine under the X-Class’ hood – and that’s just the beginning of the changes. Keep reading for more.
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