Look out Ford, Chevrolet, GMC and Ram, there’s a newcomer that just may shock you, and it’s the Nissan Titan XD. Sure, the Titan name has been floundering on Nissan lots since 2004, but the Titan XD is a whole new animal that is primed to actually make a dent in the big three’s domination in the truck market. Will it ever overtake one of the three? Doubtful, but it will most certainly give brand-neutral buyers some food for thought.
First of all, the 2016 Titan XD – and the entire 2016 Titan lineup, for that matter – looks absolutely incredible. No longer does it look like an overinflated Nissan Frontier; it actually looks like a friggin’ truck. From the full-size chrome mesh grille to the larger headlight to the sprayed-on bed liner, it finally looks like it is ready to pull stumps, get muddy, and do all sorts of trucky things that the old Titan looked wary of doing.
The Titan XD’s cabin is also ready for business, but it is one that you may want to knock the mud from your boots before hopping in, as you can see it is rather plush. The initial details show the Titan XD with Zero Gravity seats, a wide center stack to house the infotainment system and climate control, and black-and-tan quilted leather that Nissan claims was inspired by a hunting jacket. There may be lower levels of appointment for those of you who are looking to do some serious work with the XD, but those details are still not available.
Onto the big news about the Titan XD: that 5.0-liter, Cummins, turbo-diesel V-8. Oh yeah, we all drooled over Ram’s 1500 EcoDiesel as the first light-duty diesel pickup, but the XD trumps it by becoming the first light-duty truck with a V-8 diesel. This barn razing pickup delivers a mighty 310 horsepower and 555 pound-feet of twist, which is 70 horsepower and 135 pound-feet more than the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel. This engine features Cummins’ Two-Stage Turbocharge system, which two differently sized turbos to deliver low-end torque without lag and continue the power into the higher revs. Nissan also expects the V-8 diesel to deliver 20-percent better real-world fuel economy that its V-8 gasoline engines.
Towing is also pretty incredible with the Titan XD, as it can tow up to 12,000 pounds with the optional gooseneck hitch – yes, a light-duty pickup with a gooseneck, who’d have thought – installed. The towing also casts a huge shadow on the Ram EcoDiesel’s 9,200 pounds. There’s no mention of the Titan XD’s payload capacity, I would assume it is somewhere just shy of the 2,000-pound range.
The Titan XD will hit dealers later in 2015, but pricing is still unknown.