A Good Truck That Draws Little Interest
Although 2008 was a terrible year for the auto companies, Americans still bought over a million full-size pickup trucks. However of that number, only 33,000 were Nissan Titans. When it comes to big pickups, Americans overwhelmingly favor domestic brands. But beyond that, the Titan’s problem is that it only comes with one powertrain.
The powertrain in question uses a 5.6-liter, 317-hp, V-8, with 385 lb-ft of torque. This is a burly engine that lets you know that it is out there working for you. It’s capable of hauling a half-ton of cargo, and towing a 9500 lb. trailer, but its gas mileage is woeful at 12-17 mpg. I averaged only 12.3 while driving it. A five-speed automatic transfers power to the wheels. The Titan is available with two-wheel drive, or as a four by four.
Nissan provides two body types, a King cab, with a choice of 6-foot-7-inch or 8-foot beds, or a Crew Cab with 5-foot-6-inch or 7-foot beds. My test truck was a King Cab with the shorter bed. The interior was functional, with numerous storage bins, including a receptacle in the center armrest deep enough to hold a laptop computer. The backseat was tight on legroom, and the backrest was bolt upright, but the seat cushions folded upward to provide room to store supplies, and the doors opened wide for easy access.
The cargo bed of my test vehicle benefited from the optional “Max-Utility Package,” which included useful extras, such as a spray-on bedliner, moveable tie-down cleats, a lockable storage compartment and a receiver hitch with a seven-pin wiring harness. Another useful option was the sliding bed extender. This multi-tube device rides on a track, and can be slid in place over the open tailgate to enhance the storage capacity.
The Titan features a fully boxed frame, with a double-wishbone suspension up front and a solid axle with leaf springs in the rear. The NHTSA gives it a five-star rating for driver protection on frontal impacts, and four stars for the front passenger. Anti-lock brakes are standard, but side airbags, side-curtain airbags, as well as electronic stability control are optional. The Titan does a good job out on the road. Ride and handling are on a par with the leaders in its class.
Pricing starts at $26,930 for the base XE King Cab, and range up to $40,130 for the top-end LE Crew Cab. If the powertrain and body types meet your needs, the Titan could be a good buy.
Only One Powertrain
Good Road Manners