What Is It?
The 2016 Nissan Titan XD is the first we’re seeing of Nissan’s all-new full-size-truck lineup, replacing the incredibly long-running original Titan that debuted back in 2003. To ensure that the second-generation Titan won’t be perceived as a soft relative to America’s Big Three trucks (Ford, GM and RAM), Nissan has stuffed a segment-first turbodiesel V8 under the XD model’s hood. A wide range of offerings will follow when the Titan starts production, including various cab, bed and powertrain configurations. For now, the story is the diesel XD, which boasts beefed-up components and a unique reinforced frame that adds 20 inches to the standard Titan’s wheelbase. Rated to tow more than 12,000 pounds and haul up to 2,000 pounds in the bed, the Titan XD blurs the line between regular and heavy-duty trucks like never before.
The lowdown on the new engine is that it’s built by Cummins, an engine-maker best known to consumers as RAM’s supplier for its optional turbodiesel inline-6. Interestingly, whereas the Titan XD’s 5.0-liter Cummins V8 is rated at 310 horsepower and 550 lb-ft of torque, the RAM’s 6-cylinder Cummins cranks out up to 370 hp and 800 lb-ft. With its two extra cylinders, the Titan’s engine would appear to be in a conservative state of tune, though to be fair, it trails the inline-6’s displacement by a healthy 1.7 liters. In any event, RAM’s Cummins motor is only available in the heavy-duty 2500 and 3500 models, and the only other diesel engine currently offered in a regular full-size truck is the RAM 1500’s 3.0-liter V6, which makes a comparatively measly 240 hp and 420 lb-ft. The bottom line is that the Titan XD’s diesel V8 stakes out new territory in the normal-duty truck wars, and that’s something Nissan’s never really been able to say before.
Aside from the diesel revolution, the new 2016 Nissan Titan XD looks to go toe-to-toe with the Big Three across the board. Nissan promises three cab configurations, two frame sizes and two additional engines that have yet to be announced. There will also be five trim levels and presumably a variety of options packages to give truck buyers the personalization leeway they prefer. Notable features include dual lockable in-bed storage boxes (a la RAM’s RamBox system), 12-speaker Rockford Fosgate audio, NASA-inspired zero-gravity seats, a telescoping steering column and an available 7-inch touchscreen with navigation.
No official pricing has been announced as of this writing.
When Can You Get It?
Add It to Your Shopping List Because…
You might like the idea of heavy-duty functionality in a regular-truck wrapper, and let’s face it, a turbodiesel V8 with 555 lb-ft of torque and big-time tuner potential is just cool.
Other Cars to Consider
RAM 1500 EcoDiesel — The 1500 EcoDiesel is considerably less powerful, but with 420 lb-ft and up to 28 miles per gallon on the highway, it has a lot to offer.
Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD Duramax — If you don’t mind stepping up to a true heavy-duty truck, the Silverado 2500 has the best diesel V8 in the business, a 6.0-liter beast with 397 hp and 765 lb-ft.
Used RAM 2500 Cummins — One cool thing about the heavy-duty RAM’s optional Cummins inline-6 is that it can be paired with a unique manual transmission. Although it’s down on output relative to the automatic version out of the box, tuners have been known to coax unbelievable hp and torque ratings out of this powertrain.