2015 Lexus LX 570 Review

2015 Lexus LX 570 Review

2015 Lexus LX 570 Review

Lexus LX 570

What’s with a legendary name that makes it too expensive to own? It could be prestige, reliability, or simply the emblem that is known to those who are into luxury. With a huge amount on the 2015 Lexus LX 570, why is it that people still buy it? Is the price tag of $83,180 affordable or is the company asking too much?

The LX 570 has impressed many test drivers with its high-end cabin and superb off-road capabilities. While there are some downsides to this vehicle that have not gone amiss meticulous consumers, how come it has sent infectious positive signals to a vast majority of users? Let’s take on what’s inside the vehicle.

Interior

The cabin is made of high quality materials that include leather and wood trims fit for those who want luxury rides. Though it has a classy design, some users compared it with other competing vehicles and claimed it fell short of their expectations; there are others out there that have a more modern approach in styling.

With 8 leather-trimmed heated and power-adjustable seats, seating is quite comfortable and roomy most especially on the first two rows but the third row is more suited for children than for adults which is natural for SUV seating configuration. Several reviewers noted that there is good visibility on the front row seats.

The Lexus LX 570 is capable of handling 83.1 cu ft cargo space but with the third-row seats folded onto the sides, cargo space is a bit compromised. It is equipped with touch-screen navigation, Bluetooth, satellite radio, a USB port, rearview camera, quad-zone climate adjustment, and features Siri Eyes Free Mode allowing iPhone users to control other features using voice commands.

Optional features:

  • 19-speaker Mark Levinson audio system
  • Rear-seat entertainment system
  • Pre-collision brake assist system
  • Wide-view front and side monitor
  • Adaptive cruise control

Compared to its rival vehicles, the Lexus LX 570’s touch-screen system is simple and convenient to use. Its Mark Levinson stereo is of excellent sound quality which may add to a more pleasant driving experience.

Performance

The combination of a V8 engine and a 6-speed automatic transmission results to an amazing 2015 Lexus LX 570. Critics reported that the LX 570 has tons of power and has the ability to accelerate rapidly although some models may be seem more powerful and faster. It has 383 hp@5600 and torque displacement of 403@3600 5.7L/346.

Regarding fuel economy, with only 12/17 mpg city/highway it lags behind other vehicles like the base range 2016 Range Rover which can get to a maximum of 17/23 mpg or the 2016 Acura MDX running on 19/27 mpg city/highway.

Some drivers got disappointed with its light steering and cumbersome quality through turns but others say the SUV is more stable around corners and is fairly easy to maneuver.  What makes the LX ride more comfortable is its standard adjustable suspension system though it compromises maneuver agility most particularly when into comfort or normal drive modes. It has a full time 4-wheel drive and off roading features which takes on rugged terrains easily.

Conclusion

If you are in need of luxury inside an SUV vehicle, the 2015 Lexus LX 570 is a name you cannot count out. Interiors are done with fine trimmings that make it all the while attractive to users. However, this vehicle is not for everyone to own as it comes with a price tag that can literally cut up throats. But if you up to own a vehicle with a legendary name, then, you might want to save up a little more to get on with the purchase. Don’t worry about the third row seating issues if you have a small family; this problem is shared by many who own SUVs with third row seats.

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2015 Honda Pilot Review

2015 Honda Pilot Review

A good balance of function and comfort is what the 2015 Honda Pilot excels in. It’s one of the industry leaders among midsize SUVs and for good reason. Everything you need in a family-friendly vehicle is here: performance, space, convenience, durability and safety. The first thing that will strike you is the Pilot’s understated refined looks. The Pilot retains its boxy cut exterior but the lines and angles design certainly reflects its steady, robust character. It may not be trendy but it will look classic and ageless over the years. Another thing to note is that although it’s not really the acme of comfort, it is certainly practical.

The features are primarily a 3.5L V-6 engine running on regular unleaded fuel and five speed automatic transmission, producing 250 horsepower at 5,700 rpm. Drivetrain options are a front wheel or all wheel drive. As for fuel economy, the Pilot consumes 19 miles per gallon in the city and 27 miles per gallon on the highway. Other basic features include automatic climate control, Bluetooth capability, USB port and keyless entry. Seating a maximum of eight passengers, the Pilot retails at approximately $31,000 for standard models and costs more than $42,000 when fully decked out with advanced features.

The Highlights:

The 2015 Honda Pilot has a lot to offer. Its interior is designed to be flexible and can be adjusted. The cabin is relatively quiet and blocks out most of the noise. With its generous interior space, there’s plenty of room for ease of movement, most notably in the third row. Up in front, the controls are designed with a minimalist perspective but strategically located for easy access. You’ll also find convenient storage compartments all around. Cargo capacity is adequate as well and expands to accommodate more when the second and third row seats are folded down.

The Pilot received top marks in safety and includes features like the vehicle stability control, rearview camera, six airbags, and anti-lock braking system. It meets the standard for fuel economy, which means it has done well compared to other similar but less fuel efficient models.

You’ll also appreciate that for all its size, the Pilot feels like a car when driving. Its engine performs well enough; however it’s not as strong as some of its rivals. When navigating the Pilot down city streets, you’re assured of a smooth, pleasant ride. The vehicle’s suspension system carries you blithely over bumps in the road. It will need to improve its performance though when driving on the highway and off-road would not be ideal.

The Downsides:

One of the concerns facing the Honda Pilot is that though the cabin is spacious, it’s attired in a lot of hard plastic detracting from its appeal. These plastic surfaces are an eyesore and seem flimsy. Another issue is that opting for more features or an upgraded model would place your Pilot on the upper end of the price spectrum when compared side by side with its competitors. The engine as we mentioned is plenty strong enough to convey a large family together with their luggage. It is not meant, however, to tow more than 4,500 pounds. Some users have also remarked on feeling a slight sluggishness when driving the Pilot. Lastly, this vehicle does not carry as much advanced technology or entertainment features as other vehicles. What infotainment features it does have like the seven speaker audio system, are simple and easy to use, but could be improved on. The 8-inch touch screen and ten-speaker audio system only come as additional features.

Conclusion:

Looking at its closest rivals, the Ford Explorer and Toyota Highlander, the Explorer’s standard model is less fuel-efficient than the Pilot but shares many similar features. If the Pilot wants to beat the Highlander, though, they will need to update their design, enhance their safety features and add more components aimed at convenience.

All things considered, the 2015 Honda Pilot is an ideal car for those needing more functionality than technology. While it doesn’t come across as stellar, it does its job without a lot of fuss which is why it’s still one of the best and most convenient transport for families.

2015 Lincoln Navigator L Review

2015 Lincoln Navigator L Review

The 2015 Lincoln Navigator has received praises from critics for having a much improved design over the outgoing model. Some of the notable changes include the new exterior design, updated interior materials, adaptive suspension, redesigned infotainment system, the twin-turbo V6 engine (that replaced the V8), and better fuel economy. Its price starts at $61,000.

Performance

The new Navigator features a new 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that produces 460lb-ft of torque and 380 horsepower. The six-speed automatic transmission comes as standard for this 2015 model. The EPA stated that the 2015 Navigator runs up to 16/22mpg city/highway with the rear-wheel drive. These numbers are fairly good for a large luxury SUV. This vehicle is capable of towing up to 9,000 pounds, which is more than what most of its rivals can accommodate.

Critics agree that the 2015 Navigator’s new V6 twin-turbo engine delivers great passing power and strong acceleration, even in the larger L model. Some reviewers, however, reported that the engine is too noisy. This is something that Lincoln should work on.

The Navigator also comes standard with rear-wheel drive, while the four-wheel drive comes as an option. Those models under the Reserve equipment group have with Lincoln Drive Cotrol, which is an adaptive suspension system with Sport, Comfort, and Normal settings. People who have test-driven the 2015 Navigator said this SUV has clumsy handling even with the LDC feature, but praised its new steering system because of its nice feedback. They added that the Comfort setting provides a softer ride, while the Sport is more firm and has a more composed handling.

Interior

Auto reviewers said that the 2015 Lincoln Navigator’s cabin used better quality materials than those in the outgoing model. They said its rich wood trim and soft leather are the most notable changes. Critics, however, said the Navigator used cheap plastic on some of its interior surfaces. Reviewers found that the first- and second-row seats provide ample support, while the third-row seat is the most roomy in its class. They also said that the cargo area is large for this segment.

The standard interior features include the leather upholstery, heated second-row seats, heated and cooled front seats, a power liftgate, a power-folding third-row seat, a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, satellite radio, navigation, two USB ports, a 14-speaker THX surround sound system, Bluetooth connectivity, the MyLincoln Touch infotainment system, and the Lincoln voice-activated SYNC system.

Optional features include a dual-screen rear-seat DVD system and a moonroof. Critics said the 2015 Lincoln Navigator’s new infotainment system is fairly easy to use. However, others found it confusing and frustrating – particularly the voice command system.

Reliability

The 2015 Lincoln Navigator received a reliability score of 4 out of 5 from the J.D. Power and Associates Vehicle Dependability Study. There were no reported safety recalls issued from the NHTSA. In addition, the 2015 Navigator comes with a 50,000-mile or four-year bumper-to-bumper warranty, as well as a 70,000-mile or six-year powertrain warranty.

Comparable Models

The new Cadillac Escalade, unlike the 2015 Navigator, has controlled handling. It also looks lavish with its well-constructed interior, according to auto reviewers. In addition, the Escalade runs quietly and offers more technology and safety features than the Navigator.

Meanwhile, the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class boasts of it top-notch cabin design and smooth ride over rough roads. The GL350 is diesel-run and offers a much higher fuel economy than the 2015 Navigator. Reviewers added that the MB GL series has strong acceleration.

Verdict

The sales for large luxury SUVs have declined over the past years, but the Navigator still reports having around 80,000 buyers each year. These buyers normally either have large families, have big toys to transport, or simply want to make the Navigator a part of their collection. With a starting price of just around $61,000, the Navigator is definitely a good investment.

Note 2016 model shown in feature image.

2016 GMC Yukon XL Review

2016 GMC Yukon XL Review

Car buyers looking for a family-friendly vehicle can consider the new GMC Yukon XL. This large SUV has retained the classic combination of V8 engine power and a body on frame construction. It offers more towing capacity than many other crossovers, while providing a higher level of solidity.

More About the Yukon XL

The 2016 GMC Yukon XL is a large SUV that is available in three trim levels: SLT, SLE, and Denali. The eight-passenger seating capacity comes as standard, but there are two optional arrangements: the second-row captain’s chairs that reduce the headcount to seven, and the 40/20/40 front bench split that raise the capacity to nine (for SLE only).

The SLE version comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, automatic wipers and headlights, front and rear parking sensors, foglights, driver-integrated blind-spot monitor, roof rails, rear privacy glass, side-assist steps, a locking rear differential, a rearview camera, remote ignition, cruise control, keyless entry, automatic climate control, power front seats, leather tilt-only steering wheel, 60/40-split third row seat, and 60/40-split folding second row.

Standard technology features include OnStar for WiFi and 4G LTE connection, audio and Bluetooth connectivity, 110V power outlet, eight-inch touchscreen, nine-speaker Bose sound system with satellite and HD radio, CD player, SD card slot, auxiliary audio jack, and five USB ports. The Enhanced Driver Alert package, which includes all of GMC’s advanced safety and security features, comes as an option.

The SLT model, meanwhile, has both the Convenience and Enhanced Driver Alert packages. It also features blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert system, power-folding mirrors, keyless entry, hands-free power liftgate, heated second row seats, perforated leather upholstery, power-folding third row seats, heated and ventilated front seats, driver memory functions, ambient interior lighting, heated tilt and telescoping steering wheel, and wireless phone charging.

All Yukon XLs are towing-ready, and have a seven-pin wiring harness and a two-inch receiver. The HD Trailering package is offered on SLT and SLE.

The Denali version has all the SLT’s standard features. Additional features include a V8 engine, a unique grille, 20-inch alloy wheels, xenon headlights, a magnetic-powered adaptive suspension, digital instrument panel, 10-speaker Bose sound system, a trailer-brake controller, active noise cancellation, second-row captain’s chairs, and navigation system. Optional features for this version include the power-retractable assist steps, 22-inch wheels, sunroof, head up display, heated second row bench, adaptive cruise control, and the single- or dual-screen rear entertainment systems.

Performance

The 2016 GMC Yukon XL is available in two different engines. The SLT and SLE versions come with a 5.3L V8 engine that produces 383lb-ft of torque and 355 horsepower. The Denali, meanwhile, has a 6.2L V8 engine that boasts of 460lb-ft of torque and 420 horsepower. Both of these engines come with a six-speed automatic transmission, as well as a choice of either the rear-wheel or four-wheel drive. There is also a two-speed transfer case that comes with low-range gearing. The locking rear differential is standard on all models.

The maximum tow rating for a four-wheel-drive XL is at 8,000 pounds, while the two-wheel-drive XL is rated at 8,300 pounds. The Denali models max out at 7,900 and 8,100 pounds, respectively. For the 5.3L V8 engine, the EPA has given an 18mpg estimated fuel economy rating, regardless of the drivetrain. The Denali, with its bigger 6.2L V8, gets 17mpg for the two-wheel drive and 16mpg for the four-wheel drive.

Conclusion

The Yukon XL has a nine-passenger seating capacity, and is currently one of the few in its kind with ample cargo space behind the third row. Unlike its competitors, the XL’s third row seat can comfortably accommodate both adults and bigger kids. The 2016 GMC Yukon XL, with its starting MSRP of $68,025, is a perfect choice for confident everyday driving for car buyers with large families.

2015 GMC Acadia Review

2015 GMC Acadia Review

The 2015 GMC Acadia, selling from $33,975 – $49,690, has 3 trims that you can choose from with several options that go with every model. While some say that it is not easy to maneuver, ride is smooth and the cabin is quite comfortable. It simply meets the requirements of SUV crossover shoppers. With a generous cargo capacity, it can seat a maximum 8 passengers up to the rearmost row. It can drive daily on uneven asphalt roads and pitted highways. You can carry some luggage as well with its spacious interiors that you can’t find in other truck-based SUVs.

The 2015 Acadia falls in between the Chevrolet Traverse and the Buick Enclave when it comes to price and luxury but comes with more convenient equipment. It can tow as much as 5200 lbs if it’s well-equipped.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

This large crossover SUV are offered in 3 basic trims: SLE, SLT and Denali. The SLE and SLT have SLE-1, SLE-2, SLT-1 and SLT-2 trim categories. There is a standard 8-passenger seating arrangement on the second-row for the SLE-1 and optional on the other models that have a basic 7-passenger configuration plus second-row captain’s chairs.

SLE-1 Features:

  • 18” wheels
  • Automatic headlights
  • Rearview camera
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Rear privacy glass
  • Keyless entry
  • Cruise control
  • Leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel
  • OnStar telematics
  • Bluetooth phone connectivity
  • 5” touchscreen display
  • 6-speaker audio system with a CD player
  • Satellite radio
  • USB port
  • Auxiliary audio jack
  • Dual USB charge-only ports (found at the rear of the center console)
  • Sunroof
  • 6-liter V6 engine
  • 281 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque

SLE-2 added features:

  • Remote vehicle start
  • Power liftgate
  • 8-way power driver seat (with two-way lumbar)
  • 2-way manual recline power passenger seat
  • Driver side auto-dimming rearview mirror
  • Intellilink electronics interface(includes Bluetooth audio connectivity, voice controls, and Smartphone app)
  • 6-liter V6 engine
  • 281 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque

SLT-1 added features:

  • 19-inch wheels
  • Fog lamps
  • Variable-effort steering
  • Heated mirrors
  • Tri-zone automatic climate control
  • Leather upholstery (first and second rows), third row uses vinyl
  • Heated front seats
  • 8-way power passenger seat
  • Rear-seat audio controls (includes headphone jacks)
  • 10-speaker Bose sound system
  • 6-liter V6 engine
  • 281 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque

SLT-2 added features:

  • Power-folding mirrors with driver-side auto-dimming mirror
  • Driver memory functions
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Ventilated front seats
  • Technology package (includes xenon headlights, a head-up display and cargo area audio controls
  • 6-liter V6 engine
  • 281 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque

Denali Features:

  • Includes all SLT-2 optional items(Ventilated front seats and Technology package)
  • Unique styling trims (interior and exterior)
  • 20” chrome-clad wheels
  • Dual exhaust tips
  • Panoramic sunroof
  • Forward collision alert system
  • Lane departure warning system
  • Increased sound insulation
  • Wood-trimmed steering wheel
  • Navigation system
  • 288 hp and 270 lb-feet of torque
  • 6-liter V6 engine

Interior

The Acadia sports an attractive interior with padded surfaces made of solid quality. Like most vehicles with three-row seats, it has limited rearward visibility so its standard rearview camera is hugely beneficial. IntelliLink controls the navigation, entertainment, and phone functions in most Acadia trims but consumers find it slow in processing touch inputs.

Front occupants enjoy ample head and legroom but it has low-mounted middle row seat cushions that reduce comfort for adult passengers. Sliding the seats backwards can alleviate this problem but may affect third-row legroom. Accessing the third row is easy, even though the second-row slide/release is somewhat hard to access.

When it comes to cargo space, the Acadia absolutely leads in terms of cargo space as it can accommodate more luggage than a majority of its rivals like the Buick and Chevrolet.

Performance and Safety

The 6-speed automatic and FWD are standard features while all-wheel drive is optional. The front-drive Acadia returns 19 mpg combined (17 city and 24 highway). All-wheel-drive Acadias get a combined 19 mpg but may drop by 1 mpg on both city and highway ratings.

The Acadia’s standard safety equipment includes traction and stability control, antilock disc brakes, front seat side-impact airbags, a rearview camera, rear parking sensors, and side curtain airbags,. Except the SLE-1 all versions have front-center airbags that inflate between driver and right front passenger for protection during side-impact collisions.

Conclusion

With an excellent balance between a comfortable ride and secure driving management, the 2015 GMC Acadia takes on every driver’s needs when it comes to outstanding performance on the road. It may seem that the specifications that go with each trim is a good package for everybody to choose from. Even though there are some glitches in the eyes and feel of some drivers, it still passes the mark of above average SUVs in the market.

2015 Chevrolet Suburban Review

2015 Chevrolet Suburban Review

One of the pioneers among SUVs and undoubtedly one of the largest is the 2015 Chevrolet Suburban. This mammoth vehicle accommodates eight passengers and it looks like it can ride roughshod over any obstacle in its path. It does not exactly appear graceful, but more stocky and solid, with all its lines and angles. It features a 5.3L V8 engine running on gas/ ethanol and six speed automatic transmission. The drivetrain is limited to rear wheel drive or four wheel drive and delivers 355 horsepower at 5600 rpm. Performance-wise, the Suburban accelerates and passes easily with hardly any trouble and the braking system is sturdy and reliable. Fuel economy is similar to its rivals at 23 miles per gallon on the highway and 16 miles per gallon in the city. The engine is also fairly quiet and the cabin keeps out most external noise.

Other regular features include rear parking sensors, a rear vision camera, Bluetooth, several USB ports and HD Radio. You’ll also love how the infotainment system connects to your iPhone via Apple CarPlay. The price for the 2015 Chevrolet Suburban starts at about $49,000 for standard models and higher end models with more features can go up to $67,000.

Why buy it:

You’d be surprised at how luxurious the interior is and you’ll be hard-pressed to find anything to complain about in the cabin. It can easily seat all your passengers with substantial leg and headroom. The standard models only have cloth seats, but the seats can be shifted for more comfort. The chairs in the back rows can even be folded if you need additional cargo space. The various storage sections for your items offer a great deal of space as well including behind the dashboard. The glove box, however, is not that large.

More thought and style has gone into the design of the dashboard with the navigation system displayed on an eight-inch LCD touch screen. It also incorporates their highly advanced MyLink infotainment system with voice recognition.

Aside from the interior space, the Suburban’s cargo capacity can’t be faulted either. There’s more than enough space for everything you need to carry here. Another highlight of the Suburban is its hauling power. It can tow up to a formidable 8,300 pounds.

Those interested in its performance will be glad to know it’s highly satisfactory. It’s got an unbeatable and powerful engine while at the same time being enjoyable to drive. Steering responds soundly and it handles very well despite its considerable size. It can go over rough landscape and in most instances, you’ll barely feel a thing.

What you might not like:

Like we mentioned, the Suburban is not really known for an elegant or refined look, although the interior more than makes up for that. If you want more a sleeker looking vehicle, this may not appeal to you.
The massive size of it, though attractive to some customers, may also be considered a hindrance. Its length and width understandably make it difficult to navigate through tight corners and parking lots in the city and down small country roads.

Regarding safety rating, it has all the standard safety features expected: front and side airbags, anti-lock braking system, Lower Anchors and Top tethers for Children LATCH child-safety system, stability control and traction control, and tire pressure monitor. When crash-tested, though, the Suburban did not score as well as its other competitors.

Other downsides to take note of are that some owners have also commented that at times, some bumps can actually be felt and fuel efficiency could also be improved.

Conclusion:

If we look at the Suburban’s rivals, such as the Ford Expedition and Toyota Sequoia, these other vehicles are more affordably priced. They don’t offer the same kind of space you get from the Suburban, though. Another competitor, the Buick Enclave, has the advantage over the Suburban when it comes to safety, but driving and handling is more enjoyable with the Suburban.

All in all, the 2015 Chevrolet Suburban undoubtedly looks and moves like a truck but handles nicely like a slightly larger car. It also provides a smooth and pleasant ride and has exceptional hauling capability. It’s one of the best SUVs for large families.

2015 Toyota Highlander Review

2015 Toyota Highlander Review

The 2015 Toyota Highlander is a crossover SUV with discreet and low-key elegance that doesn’t draw too much attention to its looks but has everything you want and more inside. It’s sleeker and longer than Toyota’s other models and comes with complete features for a smooth riding experience. Under the hood, the engine is a V-6 3.5 L powered by regular unleaded. The transmission is six-speed automatic and you can choose between an all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive. It produces 270 horsepower at 6200 RPM and performs adequately in the area of fuel economy, going at a decent 19 miles per gallon in the city and 25 miles per gallon on the highway. It’s one of the best when it comes to safety features, tested and approved by safety authorities.

Jump inside and you’ll find that the cabin is well-appointed, comfortably seating eight passengers and including numerous compartments for small items. The Highlander also offers the standard support features for drivers: a warning system when we deviate from our lane, a blind-spot alert, electronically controlled braking and adaptive cruise control, plus a rearview camera which is a great help when parking. The usual price for this SUV ranges from $30,000 for the standard model with basic features up to $52,000 for the Hybrid model and more advanced features.

What’s great about it:

The Highlander can be proud of its exceptionally powerful engine which makes changing gears and passing easy. The V6 engine gives you additional leverage and the ability to haul a maximum of 5,000 pounds. Despite the engine’s strength, it turns out barely discernible noise.

The cabin is also the ultimate in comfort with nicely-cushioned leather seats. Thanks to its acoustic design, you can relax with ease and relish the quiet protection against the loud sound from outside and the engine only produces a subdued murmur anyway. No one will feel cramped either, with sizable leg and headroom for all passengers.

Integrated in the Highlander as well is all the technology necessary for a hassle-free and enjoyable trip: Bluetooth, a USB port, cruise control, and impressive audio system. Most notable is Toyota’s signature Entune infotainment system displayed on a 6.1-inch touch screen. Another excellent feature is the Driver Easy Speak system, so you can communicate with your passengers via microphone connected to the stereo speakers. This is particularly useful if you have boisterous kids sitting at the back row or if you don’t want to raise your voice just to be heard by your passengers.

This vehicle will also keep you confident of your family’s security with its reliable safety features, such as the eight airbags including at the vehicle’s sides, emergency locking retractor for all seatbelts, the Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children system, child-protection locks, anti-lock braking system and traction control.

Areas of improvement:

There aren’t a lot of complaints about the 2015 Toyota Highlander. Its issues center mostly on off-road capability, cargo space and its price.

While it can get you safely through bumpy roads, the Highlander is not really built for off-road journeys. Driving it is not an altogether unpleasant experience but it’s not very flexible nor is it easy to maneuver. The steering does feel stable though and not very heavy.

If you’re planning to take a lot of items with you, take note that the Highlander is decidedly lacking in cargo space when compared to its competitors. The extra weight when fully loaded will also affect the vehicle’s speed and power especially if you’re going on a long trip or through hilly terrain.

Another drawback for this vehicle is that if you opt for all the advanced features or if you decide on the Hyrbid version, it can be especially pricey. Some users have also found the dashboard to be distracting but this is a minor concern.

Conclusion:

When compared to one of its greatest rivals, the Hyundai Santa Fe, the Santa Fe offers similar features at a slightly lower price. Another top rival, the Kia Sorento, has a comparably powerful engine but lesser interior space.

Dependable and sturdy, the 2015 Toyota Highlander can take you through various landscapes with hardly any trouble, except for off-road journeys which you’ll have to limit when in this vehicle. It drives and handles just like a car and it’s among the most comfortable and secure vehicles offering ample protection in case of accidents. For all these reasons, it was rated as one of the top SUVs and it’s definitely worth considering for families.

2015 Nissan Armada Review

2015 Nissan Armada Review

For those looking for a traditional large SUV, the 2015 Nissan Armada truly impresses with its handsome looks, big bulk and powerful engine. A well-built car designed for families and large groups, it can carry a lot of passengers, plus pull trailers with it. The Armada features a strong gasoline 5.6L V8 engine which runs on regular unleaded. Horsepower is estimated at 317 at 5,200 rpm and the transmission is Electronic 5-Speed Automatic. When driving in the city, you’ll be limited to the larger roads but for off-road driving, the Armada does a decent job. It goes over rough terrain with no problem thanks to its four wheel drive.

This SUV is one of the best choices for families due to its maximum capacity of eight passengers and ability to tow up to 9,100 pounds. Although it’s complete with safety features, it hasn’t been formally evaluated for safety yet. You will find the standard Anti-lock Braking System, air bags for the driver and passengers, including at the sides of the vehicles, night vision, blind spot monitor, and even lane departure warning, a must-have feature for drowsy drivers who might swerve off the road. Parents will also appreciate the child safety locks.  The standard 2WD 4-Door SV model costs about $38,000 and the 4WD 4-Door Platinum model around $53,000.

What You’ll Like:

Made with high quality materials and sturdily constructed, durability is not an issue for this vehicle. It’s splendidly muscular and robust, built to withstand the elements and bumps in the road for a smooth ride. Mounting the entrance to get inside the vehicle poses a challenge but the interior more than makes up for it. Inside, it’s well-arranged and amply furnished. There’s plenty of space and it accommodates even tall passengers with sufficient leg room and headroom. The seats are made of leather; and for added comfort, they’re also adjustable with the third row seats equipped with power folding. The control panel has simple and easy to figure out controls and buttons and the navigation system is touch screen. The Armada also has all the essential tech for a comfortable trip such as power windows, a rearview camera, Bose audio system, USB port, and climate control.

When driving the Armada, it performs as expected considering its size and weight. Changing gears is relatively quick and easy. The brakes work well but the acceleration, though powerful, is slow to respond. One of its best features is the suspension system. When fully loaded and hauling a trailer, you don’t need to worry about the suspension dropping since the suspension system adjusts by itself to counteract the weight.

What’s To Improve:

One of the greatest concerns for the Armada is its fuel economy. Driving in the city requires as much as 13 miles per gallon and on the highway around 19 miles per gallon. That’s quite a lot of fuel compared to other models. The design also remains largely unchanged since the 2004 version and it may need to be updated soon to keep up with other vehicles that have a more modern look. Though driving the Armada is easy enough, there’s no getting around the fact that it’s massive and you can distinctly feel the size difference while maneuvering it around curves and corners. Expect the steering to be rather weighty particularly when you try to make sharp turns. While there’s lots of room for passengers, there’s not enough for cargo, so if your entire family is traveling or going on a road trip, you might want to either store your luggage in a trailer or pack light.

Conclusion:

When side by side with other models such as the Toyota Sequoia, Ford Expedition and Chevrolet Tahoe, these vehicles outdo the Armada on fuel efficiency and comfort. Comparing the size, interior space and power, though, the Nissan Armada can compete with them for generous and adjustable interior and its powerful engine. Overall, the Nissan Armada is a spacious vehicle excellent for families needing more space and it provides a smooth and comfortable ride whether in the city or off-road. When driving it though, keep in mind that it feels and moves more like a truck than a car and you’ll do fine.