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2006 Nissan Xterra Sport Utility

4dr S V6 Auto 2WD

Starting at | Starting at 16 MPG City - 21 MPG Highway

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  • $23,050 original MSRP
Printable Version

2006 Nissan Xterra Sport Utility

Printable Version

2006 Nissan Xterra Sport Utility

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2006 Nissan Xterra

Source: New Car Test Drive



Overview

The Nissan Xterra is a no-frills SUV, a purposeful-looking, purpose-built off-roader promising youthful adventure at a reasonable price. Totally redesigned last year, this latest Xterra is safer, more powerful, more sophisticated, and more off-road capable than ever before. It rides better on paved roads, too.

Xterra remains true to the original concept as the rugged outdoors type with everything you need, nothing you don't. Don't look for leather on the options list. Yet this latest-generation Xterra is a much better, much more substantial and much more sophisticated than the pre-2005 models. This starts with the basic structure: This latest Xterra is built on the same platform as Nissan's full-size Titan pickup and Armada SUV, which use a very well-engineered, fully boxed ladder frame. Sophisticated electronics helps maintain traction and stability over all kinds of uncertain terrain. Power comes via a 4.0-liter version of Nissan's acclaimed VQ V6 used on the 350Z.

While there are no significant changes for 2006, a new base model has been added that drops the price of entry by nearly a grand to $19,950.


Model Lineup

The 2006 Nissan Xterra is available in four trim levels, X, S, Off-Road, and SE, each offered with 2WD or 4WD. All are powered by the 4.0-liter V6. The standard transmission is a six-speed manual; a five-speed automatic is optional on most models but standard on the SE.

New for '06 is the entry-level Xterra X ($19,950), a basic model with wind-up windows. An optional Power Package ($1,100) includes power door locks, mirrors and windows; remote keyless entry; cruise control and a vehicle security system with an immobilizer. The Xterra X is available with an automatic ($20,750). The 4WD Xterra X comes with the manual ($21,950) or automatic ($24,950).

Xterra S 2WD ($22,150) and 4WD ($24,150) have move up from entry-level to mid-grade trim for 2006. They come standard with the Power Package, anti-lock brakes (ABS) and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), air conditioning, AM/FM/CD stereo, tilt steering, eight-way adjustable driver's seat, Nissan's Utili-Track cargo system, a tubular roof rack, rear bumper steps, and 265/70R16 B.F. Goodrich Long Trail tires on aluminum wheels. The six-speed manual transmission is standard, the five-speed automatic optional ($800). Options include a Utility Package ($550) that includes sturdy step rails, a cargo net, a flat-folding passenger seat for carrying long cargo, a first-aid kid to fit Xterra's signature tailgate bulge.

Xterra Off-Road 2WD ($23,750) and 4WD ($26,050) come standard with the Utility Package and add an electronic locking rear differential, Bilstein off-road shocks, skid plates, fog lamps, 16-inch alloy off-road wheels and taller 265/75R16 B.F. Goodrich Rugged Trail all-terrain tires. Off-Road capability is further enhanced by advanced electronics: Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC), Hill Descent Control (HDC), and Hill Start Assist, all of which reduce skidding and wheel spin and maintain stability through selective application of the anti-lock braking system. A distinctive black body side molding, unique blue seat fabric, and a cargo net further distinguish Off-Road models from garden-variety Xterras. The automatic is optional ($800).

SE 2WD ($25,650) and 4WD ($27,650) come with the Utility Package but skip the serious rock-climbing gear for a more luxurious image. Automatic transmission is standard, as is a 380-watt Rockford-Fosgate audio system that adds a six-disc in-dash changer, eight speakers with subwoofer, steering wheel controls and MP3/CD capability. The system is satellite-ready, and has speed-sensitive volume control. Wheels and tires upgrade to 265/65R17.

The Rockford-Fosgate stereo is optional ($900) on Off-Road models. XM or Sirius satellite radio are optional ($350) on Off-Road and SE. A Tow Package ($440) is available on all models. Other options and accessories include splash guards ($110), a cargo organizer ($150), retractable cargo cover ($80), in-cabin microfilter ($60), and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror with compass ($230).

Safety equipment for all Xterras includes an advanced air bag system, which consists of dual-stage front supplemental air bags with seat belt sensors and a front occupant classification sensor. Also standard are three-point seat belts for all rear seat occupants (including the center-rear position) and a child seat anchor system. A Supplemental Airbag Package ($700) optional for all models includes side-impact air bags, a rollover sensor, and side curtain air bags.

Walkaround

Redesigned for 2005, the Nissan Xterra looks bigger, tougher and more powerful than the first-generation models. This is especially pronounced at the front, where the massive front bumper (brightly plated at the bottom center to suggest a conspicuous skid plate) and bright V-strut grille conspire to add bulk and menace to an approaching Xterra.

The redesign was evolutionary, however, so this latest-generation Xterra looks a lot like the previous generation. As on the older generation, the roofline kicks upward to increase second-row headroom. Side mirrors are large and rectangular. Wheel wells are accentuated with squared-off lines, adding muscular shoulders to the Xterra's stance. The bodywork is intended to suggest an aggressive posture, and performance in the off-road sense.

The Xterra still projects a high-utility image. A largely tubular roof rack adds size and a look of no-nonsense purpose. Side steps create easy access to the roof rack, a functional addition underscoring the utility of the roof rack and its integrated cargo box. The angled C-pillar carries Nissan's signature high-mounted rear door handles, a unique design trait that visually links the new Xterra with the original, as well as with the rest of the Nissan SUV family, the Pathfinder and the Armada.



Interior Features

The Nissan Xterra is roomy inside. It's roomier than the previous-generation Xterra and, more important, it's roomier than other SUVs in this price class. It works well for whisking four large adults and their gear to the backcountry. Second-row seating is stadium-style, meaning that the rear passengers can see over the front-seat occupants.

Cargo capability is a priority. The rear seat folds down when needed, and the front passenger seat also folds flat, meaning that lengthy recreational gear or lumber can be more easily accommodated. After all, the Xterra is no poser. It's not a mommymobile masquerading as a rugged SUV for outdoors types. It is, in fact, a rugged SUV for outdoors types.

Storage compartments have been enlarged (both center console and glove compartment), and there is also additional instrument panel storage. The cargo area has easily cleaned flooring and a total of 10 cargo utility hooks. The rear is set up to handle anything the roof rack can't, such as a dirty dog or muddy gear. There is an adjustable channel system on the cargo floor making it easier to secure bike racks. The built-in first-aid kit is included with the Off-Road and SE grades.

The Rockford Fosgate stereo sounds good. Getting good sound in an SUV interior can be difficult, since there are many hard surfaces combined with soft shapes to reflect and muffle sound. In this case, 380 watts, eight speakers and a subwoofer carry the day.


Driving Impressions

The Nissan Xterra is an excellent choice for outdoor adventures. It cruises well on highway, more easily and more quietly than the pre-2005 models.

The automatic transmission, a five-speed overdrive unit, wins points around town. For commuting or driving in traffic, we prefer it. But on the open road, the six-speed manual is a sweet gearbox, with an overdrive gear so tall the engine barely murmurs at cruising speeds. In addition, the six-speed's lower four ratios are all lower than in the automatic, so we could really feel all the torque when we shifted for ourselves.

The 4.0-liter V6 offers very good throttle response. High-speed passing with the automatic transmission does create some noise and vibration as the engine revs toward redline, but only at speeds well above the normal cruising level. No such issues with the manual, which is strikingly refined, yet sporty. We're told the six-speed is a version of the same transmission used on the Nissan 350Z, and we recommend it for those who like to drive.

Regardless of the power train, the Xterra is easy to keep in its lane on the highway, probably due to the combination of rack-and-pinion steering and a speed-sensitive steering assist.

Even though the Xterra's utility quotient is its main design priority, effort has been made to reduce wind noise, and the results are tangible. Large mirrors, an angled grille, a big roof rack, open side steps: These are features that invariably create wind noise, and at speeds over 75 mph, noise does begin to become a factor. Yet below those speeds, the Xterra remains nicely calm and quiet. The roof rack, a prime source of wind whistle, has been designed with oval beams, which slice through the air more cleanly than round or square tubing. Engine noise, likewise, is kept to a minimum through techniques such as a silent timing chain, microfinished surfaces and Teflon-coated pistons.

On smaller roads, the Xterra retains a handy feeling, driving with the ease of a large family sedan. If you push it, the long-travel chassis will show some roll from side to side, and the tires will complain, but in ordinary driving, the Xterra feels consistently composed and, for a truck, highly refined. The 4.0-liter engine has some guts in the midrange and the Xterra accelerates well when coming out of a corner.

We left the highway for a graded dirt road near the Grand Canyon. It had rained in the desert the night before, and as we approached the river, water trickled across the road, accumulating in the middle and flowing down the path. Eventually the trickle became a torrent, then a series of streams, and we found ourselves driving down a canyon path of loose gravel with rivulets of water running around us on all sides. The crunch of gravel gave way to the sound of water and rock in the wheelwells. We were forced to move carefully from side to side to find the firmest ground, crossing running water gingerly, for about a quarter mile. The electronic traction control kicked in and out, but we never got stuck. Eventually, we turned a corner, crested a little hill and arrived at our destination, none the worse for the moisture.

The Off-Road model is intended for situations such as this, because out-of-the-way places are often subject to changes in weather and circumstance. All it takes is a little rain, or snow, or falling rock, to create a challenge. In this case, our Xterra Off-Road model, with its traction control, all-terrain tires and locking differential, not only got us in, it got us out again, which is the whole point with a vehicle like this.

We think this is probably Nissan's most capable off-highway vehicle, one that can handle most challenges without the effort of pushing, shoveling, or tow straps. All 4WD Xterra models feature a truck-tough part-time transfer case with low range and electronic control. With the six-speed manual, the low-range crawl ratio is 40:1, better than most Jeeps. Unlike many SUVs, the Xterra has a fully boxed frame and a solid rear axle.

Summary

There is nothing else quite like the Nissan Xterra. Xterra stays true to the theme of the original. It's in its element when used as a truck, a dirt-road prowler, or an adventure vehicle. It can handle wet or dirty cargo and clean up like a champ. At the same time, the current model is considerably improved over pre-2005 models, with more power, more room, and more carefully thought-out utility features. It's more refined in every way, making it a much more practical everyday vehicle.

NewCarTestDrive.com correspondent John Stewart is based in Southern California.

 

 

Model Line Overview

 

Model lineup: Nissan Xterra X ($19,950); S ($22,150); Off-Road ($23,750); SE AT ($25,650); X 4WD ($21,950); S 4WD ($24,150); Off-Road 4WD ($26,050); SE 4WD AT ($27,650)
Engines: 265-hp 4.0-liter DOHC 24-valve V6
Transmissions: 5-speed automatic; 6-speed manual
Safety equipment (standard): ABS, EBD, dual frontal airbags with Nissan Advanced Air Bag System; 3-point height-adjusting seatbelts w/pre-tensioners and load limiters; 3-point rear center seatbelt; LATCH system and three child seat tether anchors, child-safety rear door locks
Safety equipment (optional): side-impact airbags, side-curtain/rollover airbags; Vehicle Dynamic Control
Basic warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles
Assembled in: Smyrna, Tennessee

 

 


 

Model tested (MSRP): Nissan Xterra Off-Road 4WD ($26,050)
Standard equipment: power door locks, mirrors, window;, Vehicle Security System with Immobilizer; remote keyless entry; cruise control; 16-in. alloy off-road wheels with full-size spare, 265/7516 BFGoodrich Rugged Trail off-road tires, unique blue seat fabric; locking differential; Bilstein gas-filled shocks; skid plates; Clutch Interlock Override Switch; Utility Package with driver and passenger sunvisor with extender and mirror, cargo net, flat-fold passenger seat, drivers side front seatback pocket, first aid kit;
Options as tested (MSRP): Supplemental Airbag Package ($700) includes side-curtain air bags with rollover sensor, side-impact air bags; Rockford Fosgate Audio System ($900) w 6CD in-dash changer, 8 high performance speakers with subwoofer, steering wheel audio controls, satellite-radio ready, MP3 CD capability, speed-sensitive volume
Destination charge: 580
Gas guzzler tax:  
Price as tested (MSRP): 28230
Layout: four-wheel drive
Engine: 4.0 liter DOHC 24-valve V6
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 265 @ 5600
Torque (lb.-ft. @ rpm): 284 @ 4000
Transmission: 6-speed manual with 2-speed transfer case
EPA fuel economy, city/hwy: 16/22
Wheelbase: 106.3
Length/width/height: 178.7/72.8/74.9
Track, f/r: 61.8/61.8
Turning circle: 37.3
Seating capacity: 5
Head/hip/leg room, f: 39.9/55.9/42.4
Head/hip/leg room, m:  
Head/hip/leg room, r: 39.3/46.1/34.4
Trunk volume: 65.7
Payload: 1061
Towing capacity: 5000
Suspension, f: independent, double wishbones, coil springs over gas-charged shocks, anti-roll bar
Suspension, r: live axle (Dana 44 variant), leaf springs, long-stroke gas-charged shocks
Ground clearance: 9.5
Curb weight: 4375
Tires: P265/75R16 all-terrain
Brakes, f/r: disc/disc w ABS, EBD
Fuel capacity: 21.1

 

Unless otherwise indicated, specifications refer to test vehicle.
All prices are manufacturer's suggested retail prices (MSRP) effective as of 2005-09-22 00:00:00.0 .
Prices do not include manufacturer's destination and delivery charges. N/A: Information not available or not applicable.
Manufacturer Info Sources: 1-800-335-3592 - www.nissanusa.com

Copyright © 1994-2003 New Car Test Drive, Inc.

Printable Version

2006 Nissan Xterra Sport Utility

Safety Ratings help

What do the Safety Ratings mean?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) performs independent crash testing of new vehicles and then assigns them a score based on their performance. The overall crash test rating is based on how a vehicle performs in the following tests:

Driver Crash Grade:

Measures the chance of a serious injury to a crash test dummy that is placed in a driver's seat and driven into a fixed barrier at 35 MPH. A five-star rating means there is 10 percent or less chance of injury.

Passenger Crash Grade:

Similar to the driver crash grade, only now the focus is on the passenger.

Rollover Resistance:

Simulates an emergency lane change to measure the likelihood of a vehicle rolling over. A five-star rating means there is 10 percent or less risk of rollover.

Side Impact Crash Test - Front:

Focuses on the front side of a vehicle. It simulates crashes that can occur in intersections by striking a 3,015-pound weight against the side of a vehicle at 38.5 MPH. A five-star rating means there is 5 percent or less chance of injury.

Side Impact Crash Test - Rear:

Similar to the front side impact test only now the focus is on the rear passenger.

Driver Crash Grade
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Passenger Crash Grade
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Rollover Resistance
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Side Impact Crash Test - Front
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Side Impact Crash Test - Rear
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Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Std
Traction/Stability Control Std
Tire Pressure Monitoring System Std

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std
Side Air Bag Opt
Side Head Air Bag Opt
Child Safety Locks Std

Road Visibility

Electrochromic Rearview Mirror Opt
Intermittent Wipers Std
Variable Inter. Wipers Std

Security

Anti-theft System Std
Printable Version

2006 Nissan Xterra Sport Utility

Original Warranty  help
Original Warranty
An original warranty is the warranty associated with a vehicle when it is brand new. In addition to the original warranty, select items, like tires, are typically covered by respective manufacturers. Also, an act of Federal law sometimes provides protection for certain components, like emissions equipment.
The original warranty is often broken down into multiple sections, including:
Basic Warranty:
Typically covers everything except for parts that wear out through normal use of the vehicle. Examples of non-covered items are brake pads, wiper blades and filters.
Drivetrain Warranty:
This warranty covers items the basic warranty does not protect. Wear and tear items such as hoses will not be covered, but key items like the engine, transmission, drive axles and driveshaft often will be.
Roadside Assistance:
The level of service differs greatly with this warranty, but many manufacturers offer a toll-free number that helps provide assistance in case you run out of gas, get a flat tire or lock your keys in the car.
Corrosion Warranty:
This warranty focuses on protecting you from holes caused by rust or corrosion in your vehicle's sheet metal.
Please check the owner's manual, visit a local dealership or look at the manufacturer's website to learn more about the specifics of the warranties that apply to a vehicle.

Miles

Months

Nissan Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

7-year/100,000 mile limited warranty. Only Nissan models less than 6 years old and under 80,000 miles qualify for the Nissan Certified Pre-Owned program. The CARFAX® Vehicle History Report ensures your vehicle has a clean title history.
Age/Mileage Eligibility 6 model years or newer & less than 80,000 miles.
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection 167 point comprehensive Certified Pre-Owned Inspection and reconditioning. Inspection includes OEM service bulletins and recalls, diagnostic trouble codes, powertrain/chassis, body frame, road test, interior and body exterior.
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance Yes for the duration of the 7 year/100,000 mile limited warranty from the original in-service date of the vehicle.
Special Financing Yes
Transferrable Warranty No/Yes with the purchase of the CPO Wrap Coverage at time of sale. Fee to transfer is estimated to be $50
Warranty Deductible $50 per claim

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

2006 Nissan Xterra Sport Utility

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