2017 Nissan Armada Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Brakes, electrical, engine and powertrain issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Nissan claims owners can “drive with precision” when behind the wheel of the Armada SUV, but is this large SUV really worthy of becoming a family vehicle? It appears that the 2017 Nissan Armada is riddled with defects from the engine to the electrical system, flowing through the powertrain and service brakes as well.

 

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Engine

Nissan has become known for producing vehicles with powerful engines, but the 2017 Armada seems to fall short in this area.

Just look at this NHTSA complaint. “Car gave a BCI Malfunction warning on dash. When I turned the car off and went to restart, it would not restart. This used to happenonce every couple of weeks. It has now happened more than 10 times in the last two days. Sometimes the car will start other times I have to try 15 times or more before it starts.”

It wouldn’t be concerning if only one engine malfunction was reported, as every vehicle can’t be perfect. However, Nissan is suffering from a rash of complaints, just like this one. The automaker isn’t hiding issues that are being experienced with the Armada engine. In fact, Service Bulletin #NTB19-057 discusses the problem with an engine knock or ticking noise. To help technicians figure out the potential problem, a flow chart has been supplied. That’s right! There are so many potential causes that the dealership must work through a flow chart to find the culprit. If Nissan was aiming for “precision,” the company clearly missed the mark.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2017 Nissan Armada Engine Problems:

TL* THE CONTACT OWNS A 2017 NISSAN ARMADA. WHILE DRIVING 5 MPH, A RAMBLING NOISE WAS PRESENT AT THE REAR OF THE VEHICLE. ALSO, ALL THE WARNING INDICATORS ILLUMINATED BEFORE THE VEHICLE DECELERATED. THE VEHICLE WAS TAKEN TO THE LOCAL DEALER WHERE IT WAS DIAGNOSED THAT THE THROTTLE WAS FAULTY. THE THROTTLE WAS REPAIRED, BUT THE VEHICLE CONTINUED TO EXPERIENCE THE FAILURE. THE VEHICLE WAS TOWED BACK TO THE DEALER WHERE IT WAS DIAGNOSED THAT THE AIR SUSPENSION WAS FAULTY. THE VEHICLE WAS REPAIRED, BUT THE FAILURE LATER RECURRED. THE VEHICLE WAS TAKEN BACK TO THE DEALER, BUT THE CAUSE OF THE FAILURES COULD NOT BE DETERMINED. THE MANUFACTURER WAS NOTIFIED OF THE FAILURES. THE VIN WAS NOT AVAILABLE. THE FAILURE MILEAGE WAS 19,000.

Electrical

In today’s modern vehicles, the electrical system runs just about everything. It seems that everything electronic is also suffering from problems with the 2017 Nissan Armada.

Just look at what this Edmunds user thinks. “Let me say I really wanted to like this car.  I had high hopes for it.  I traded a Chevy Tahoe for my 2017 Amada Platinum 4WD and I initially loved it untill it rained and snowed.  The problem is that the car has a ton of electronic safety features but they are too sensitive so when it rains heavily or when it snows and you get a small snow flake on your bumper, the front bumper sonar report a “front radar obstruction” issue which the car interprets as you being close to crashing with something so you get uncontrollable beeping that can only be stopped by turning off the sonar from the central console.  One additional quirk is that every time this happens, all your radio presents for FM 2 or XM 2 & 3 (there are three sets of presets) will be lost for 24 hours.  After roughly 24 hours, the presents often (not always) come back.  I’ve taken the car into service twice for this and brought them video (I’ve filmed the driver’s console during a rain storm showing it showing the “front radar obstruction” error during a rain storm) and the dealer has returned it both times stating it is working as expected.  Thus, this is a $50K car that apparently was manufactured to work only in clear sunny days.”

Apparently, snowflakes can be dangerous, especially when landing on the bumper. The Nissan’s systems are hyper-sensitive and could lead to disaster. Yet, the automaker isn’t taking complaints seriously. Even with Service Bulletin #PC522,the company discusses trouble with the Electronic Control Module that could cause several problems. In this correspondence, technicians are casually asked to look through inventory and update the software to “ensure customer satisfaction.” If Nissan was concerned with customer satisfaction, the company wouldn’t have shipped out massive batches of defective SUVs in the first place.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2017 Nissan Armada Electrical Problems:

I DRIVE A 2017 NISSAN ARMADA THAT CAUGHT FIRE!!! WE PURCHASED THIS VEHICLE MARCH OF THIS YEAR. MY HEATED SEAT MALFUNCTIONED AND CAUGHT MY PANTS AND MY SEAT ON FIRE WHILE I WAS DRIVING WITH TWO-2- SMALL CHILDREN!!! TUESDAY MORNING NOVEMBER 12TH, 2019 I WAS DRIVING MY 7 YEAR OLD TO SCHOOL WITH MY 3 YEAR OLD WITH US WHEN I STARTED TO FEEL A PAIN IN MY LEFT LEG. I LIFTED MY LEG WHICH THEN I SAW SMOKE AND COULD SMELL SOMETHING WAS BURNING. ALL THIS HAPPENED WHILE I WAS DRIVING WITH 2 SMALL CHILDREN STRAPPED INTO THEIR CARSEATS. WHEN I NOTICED THE HOLE AND BLACK MARKS IN MY SWEATPANTS AND A HOLE IN MY DRIVER SEAT I IMMEDIATELY TURNED OFF THE HEATED SEAT BUTTON. WE COULD OF WRECKED INTO ANOTHER VEHICLE THAT MOST LIKELY WOULD OF HAD ANOTHER KID IN THE CAR. NOT ONLY WAS MY CHILDREN’S LIVES AND MY LIFE AT RISK BUT ALL THOSE PEOPLE’S LIVES AROUND ME TAKING THEIR KIDS TO SCHOOL, TOO. IT WAS ONE OF THE MOST SCARIEST DAYS OF MY LIFE. I AM TERRIFIED TO DRIVE THIS VEHICLE NOW. WE COULD HAD DIED!!! I BOUGHT THIS VEHICLE BECAUSE I WANTED HEATED SEATS, NOW I WILL NEVER USE HEATED SEATS AGAIN. I AM TRULY TRAUMATIZED FROM THIS EXPERIENCE. MY EXPERIENCE WITH NISSAN CORPORATION HAS NOT MADE THE SITUATION BETTER BUT WORSE

VERY OFTEN DOESN’T START AND ISN’T BATTERY PROBLEMS OR ANYTHING ELSE EVERYTHING ELSE WORKS PERFECT BUT JUST THE START DOESN’T GO ON

Service Brakes

With all these defects, it would be more important than ever to have functioning service brakes. Not surprisingly, this is yet another system that seems to malfunction regularly.

One NHTSA statement from an owner says, “Braking system seems to go in/out intermittently while driving or when stopped. You can begin rolling even when the brakes are applied while stopped. It also will not allow you to start the vehicle unless you stomp on the brake pedal. And in a few situations it has not allowed me to take the vehicle out of Park unless stepping on the brake pedal if the car is running. My mechanic and various website blog reports determine this might be a booster sensor issue which is not being issued for recall.”

The Nissan Armada might not have any current recalls, but it should according to owners. The manufacturer is fully aware of several braking issues, one of which is illustrated with Service Bulletin #NTB17-082a. It appears that DTC P0456 is set because of a leak at the vent control valve o-ring, causing trouble with the brakes. Instead of issuing a recall, customers are driving around town with this defective system. How can someone “drive with precision” when it’s not even possible to brake correctly?

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2017 Nissan Armada Brake Problems:

I AM IN THE MEDICAL FIELD AND TODAY (8/2/18) WAS TRYING TO LEAVE WORK TODAY AND MY CAR WOULD NOT CRANK. IN THE PROCESS, I NOTICED THAT THE BRAKE WOULDN’T CATCH AND WHEN I FINALLY WAS ABLE TO CRANK IT, THE SHIFTER WOULDN’T GO OUT OF PARK. IT WAS STUCK. THIS HAPPENED 2 MORE TIMES BEFORE DRIVING DOWN THE ROAD ON A TRIP AND THIS WARNING LIGHT BCI MALFUNCTION AS WE ARE DRIVING DOWN THE ROAD. MY BRAKES BECAME REALLY TOUCHY AND I HAD TO PULL OFF THE ROAD TO KEEP FROM HAVING AN ACCIDENT. THEN, I HAD TO CUT IT OFF AND KEEP TRYING TO GET IT GOING BC I COULDN’T GET THE MALFUNCTION TO GO AWAY OR EVEN COME ON TO PUT IT BACK IN GEAR. THIS IS A HUGE SAFETY HAZARD AND TRAVELING WITH TWO CHILDREN COULD HAVE BEEN EXTREMELY HAZARDOUS TODAY. I AM REQUESTING NISSAN AND THE DEALERSHIP TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THIS PROBLEM AFTER PAYING A HUGE PRICE FOR A PREMIUM VEHICLE…THE LAST THING I NEED TO DO IS BE BROKE DOWN ON THE SIDE OF THE ROAD

Powertrain

While the powertrain might be last on this list, it certainly shouldn’t be overlooked. In fact, the powertrain contains the transmission, which is essential for the shifting and operation of the Armada.

Again, Edmunds users have many complaints about the powertrain, including this one. “The interior lighting had a broken ground wire, the radio keeps rebooting itself, the transmission kept losing power under acceleration.  The last two required a software update from the dealer so remains to be seen whether I will encounter the issue again.  The dealer has been good, but a car that is nearly $60K should not have issues like this.”

Notice the review also touches on more electrical system concerns as well. Nissan once again is happy to acknowledge that there are many concerns with the powertrain. Service Bulletin #NTB17-016b discusses the inability to shift correctly, a lack of power and fluctuating RPMs. Again, the instructions issue several reasons for these problems, leading everyone to believe that the powertrain is suffering from numerous problems. To drive with precision, owners are dumping the Nissan Armada and switching to a more reliable option.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2017 Nissan Armada Transmission Problems:

THE TRANSMISSION ON MY 2017 ARMADA SEEMS TO SHIFT IMPROPERLY AND EVEN SEEMS TO SHIFT PREMATURELY CAUSING A STALL OR LOSS OF POWER TO THE VEHICLE. I’VE NOTICE THIS AS I’M STARTING TO ACCELERATE FROM A STOPPED POSITION AND IT APPEARS TO HAPPEN SOMETIME BETWEEN SHIFTING FROM 2ND TO 3RD GEAR. THIS HAPPENS ALL THE TIME WHILE DRIVING IN TOWN, ON THE HIGHWAY, I’VE YET TO NOTICE ANY ISSUES.

FROM SLOW STARTS, THE TACHOMETER WILL FLUTTER AND THAT HESITATION IS TRANSMITTED THROUGH THE DRIVETRAIN TO THE WHEELS.

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