In May, Nissan announced its Nissan Next plan to put the company on a solid path into the future. This plan is a very aggressive way to bring out 10 new vehicle designs within 20 months — in essence, taking the brand from A to Z, as they put it.

The 2021 redesigned Nissan Rogue was the first to be debuted, and then came the all-new Aria all-electric crossover to take the “A” spot in the line.

Next, Nissan skipped right to the letter “Z” with a new design of the 2021 Nissan Z Proto, which seemed fitting from the company that has had this sports car in the line for decades.

On Tuesday, Nissan introduced two newly redesigned models in the 2021 Armada and 2021 Kicks.

The Armada will be the first model to receive the all-new Nissan logo up front, along with new body panels that are much more chiseled and square than has been the case in the past. The panels give the new Armada an all-new look — still rounded enough to stay uniquely Nissan, however, much more aggressive looking than in previous years.

This look also will include all-new LED lighting all around along with new wheels and color schemes for the line. It can even be had in a “Midnight Edition” or blacked-out look.

Under the hood, the family-hauling SUV will have Nissan’s 5.6-liter V-8 power plant with a class-leading 400 horsepower and 413 foot-pounds of torque, the same as its Titan truck. It also will now come with a trailer brake and trailer sway technology to help with its class-leading 8,500-pound towing abilities.

Inside, there is seating for up to eight people along with an all-new 12.3-inch infotainment screen — again, a huge departure for Nissan in a good way.

On the safety side, the Armada will now come standard with the full suite of Nissan’s Safety Shield 360 that starts with a 360-view of one’s driving surroundings when backing or even when going off-road and ends with radar cruise control and intelligent braking.

Nissan was quick to point out that its new Armada is an “off-road beast” meant to get a family anywhere it would need to go on any outdoor adventure. Even though it can come with a fantastically comfortable interior doesn’t mean the abilities for off-roading are not built in.

The newly redesigned Kicks compact SUV also was introduced at the same time, going from the largest SUV in its lineup to the smallest urban model. The Kicks was originally designed in the Nissan design studio in Brazil and gets its urban look from the beaches of Rio.

The smaller SUV is perfect for navigating an urban environment yet also will get out for a long weekend road trip bringing in gas mileage numbers of 30-plus per gallon.

This new design includes LED lights all around standard along with Nissan Safety Shield 360 for all drivers.

Customers can pick from 12 different color schemes, giving the new Kicks the most customizable exterior in the line.

Also available this year is a new 8-inch color infotainment screen with available Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The designers have even put speakers into the front headrest to enhance the sound experience when traveling in the Kicks.

Both models will hit dealer showrooms in January, and look for five more new releases from Nissan in the coming year.

Craig Conover writes the weekly “Sunday Drive” car column for the Daily Herald and Standard-Examiner.

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