The 2016 Nissan Titan XD, which made its world debut at the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, is set to shake up the highly competitive full-size pickup segment when it goes on sale in the United States and Canada beginning in late 2015 - with a bold all-new design that stakes out a unique position in the segment between traditional heavy-duty and light-duty entries.
Called the "XD," it offers the effortless towing and hauling of the larger, more expensive heavy-duty trucks - including an available maximum towing capacity of more than 12,000 pounds and maximum payload capacity of 2,000 pounds (when properly equipped) - yet has the fuel-efficiency and affordability of a half-ton pickup.
The new Titan XD Crew Cab, which was shown in Detroit with its powerful Cummins® 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel, is the first of three cab configurations, two frame sizes, three powertrain offerings and five grade levels to be available in the full Titan lineup.
"The full-size truck market is the toughest market to crack in the entire industry, with so many outstanding products available," said Fred Diaz, senior vice president, Nissan Sales & Marketing and Operations U.S., Nissan North America, Inc. "This new Nissan Titan XD is designed to offer buyers something the others don't - combining outstanding towing and hauling capabilities and exceptional towing and hauling fuel economy. It also offers excellent ride comfort and handling, and the features and amenities that real working truck owners want."
The all-new Titan XD, like the first-generation Titan, was developed with core Nissan planning, design, engineering and manufacturing teams contributing from Tennessee, California, Michigan, Arizona and Mississippi. The Titan XD's engine will be sourced from Cummins Inc. in Indiana. And, the lead designer and nearly four-dozen engineers also worked on the original 2004 Titan development.
Built from the Work Job Up with Commercial Strength
While the original Nissan Titan is known for its consumer-focused innovations such as the Wide-Open rear doors, bedside storage compartment, factory spray-on bedliner and Utili-track™ Bed Channel System, the next-generation starts with a focus on commercial strength components - from the radiator to the rear axle and everything in between.
"Titan XD is a truck that uniquely utilizes both technology and strength to add confidence to the completion of everyday work tasks," said Diaz. "Half of all full-size truck owners tow more than 10 times a year, with a quarter of owners using them to haul tools, so we engineered Titan XD's toughness from the ground up."
Nissan Titan XD models utilize a unique frame and chassis to handle its Cummins diesel and its expanded towing and payload potential. Starting with a durable, proven chassis design from Nissan Commercial Vehicles, the new fully boxed, full-length ladder frame is extensively reinforced and strengthened for use with the Titan XD with added stiffness, vertical and lateral bending, and torsional rigidity. It also features an extended 151.6-inch wheelbase - about 20 inches longer than non-XD Titan models.
To maximize stability, handling and ride comfort, Titan XD uses a new heavy-duty, highly stable suspension design. The double-wishbone with stabilizer bar front suspension is reinforced and tuned for hard use and the rigid rear axle suspension utilizes hefty leaf springs and leaf bushings, along with twin-tube shock absorbers. The axle is a large purpose-built American Axle Manufacturing design. The rear differential measures 13.0 inches with 3.5-inch axle tubes, while the front differential (4x4 models) measures 9.25 inches. Also available is an Electronic Locking Rear Differential.
Hydraulic cab-mounts help isolate the occupants from the advanced Titan XD chassis. The new Titan XD rides on 17-inch, 18-inch or 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with LT245/75R17, LT275/65R18 or LT265/60R20 tires for strong all-weather/all surface traction.
Braking is provided by a 4-wheel disc system with 14.2 x 1.5-inch front/14.4 x 1.2-inch rear ventilated discs front and rear with hydraulic power assist. The high brake fluid pressure generated by an electric pump assists brake pedal force for a confident feel. The system is designed to provide improved noise and judder control (versus the previous generation Titan).
Responsive steering is provided by a recirculating ball-type high-capacity steering system with parallel rod steering linkage to optimize steering effort characteristics, even under heavy axle weight and towing conditions.
Even the radiator's heat radiation cooling capacity has been increased more than 25 percent (versus the previous Titan) to help enhance performance and meet SAE J2807 compliance. Titan XD engine capacity meets 12,000-pound tow requirements through use of the large radiator, air transmission cooler and large 23.6-inch engine cooling fan diameter.
Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel - Power, Durability and MPG
"A new class of truck also demands a new class of engine. Like the Titan XD itself, the new Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel fills the space between more expensive big bore diesels and less capable smaller displacement diesels," said Diaz. "And more than just power and torque, this engine is refined, starts fast and is responsive and quiet. It's also lightweight and offers clean emissions."
The Titan XD Cummins diesel is the first commercial application of the new Cummins M2 two-stage turbo system, which helps reduce traditional turbo-lag through precision balancing between high-pressure and low-pressure turbos. The patented Rotary Turbine Control provides solid performance across the powerband and manages exhaust gas temperatures.
The new engine also features a Bosch® HPCR fuel system to deliver precise fuel control and multiple injections per combustion stroke, which helps increase efficiency and reduce traditional "diesel clatter." And, the advanced, maintenance-free Bosch® ceramic glow plugs provide quick engine starts, even in extreme low temperatures.
Another key advantage of the new Cummins diesel design is that it provides maximum durability and power in a lightweight package. Weight was reduced by building the cylinder block out of compacted graphite iron (CGI), which is stronger and lighter than traditional iron.
Other lightweight engine components were added, including high-strength aluminum-alloy heads and composite valve covers. The CGI block, along with the dual overhead camshafts, also contributes to the engine's excellent noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) characteristics. The new Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel exhaust system has a particulate filter and selective catalytic reduction that enable the engine to run cleaner. That technology also serves a second purpose - reducing typical diesel noise.
As a result of all these advanced systems, the new Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel is more capable than small displacement diesel engine offerings and less expensive than big bore heavy-duty diesels.
It is also designed to be fun to drive, with about 45 percent more torque at cruising speed than similar-sized gasoline V8 engines. And, its low revving powerband requires less downshifting and provides more confidence while towing, as well as saving fuel whether towing or carrying heavy loads.
"Since the majority of full-size pickup owners drive more than 10,000 miles a year, fuel economy is also critical. Titan XD's Cummins diesel is expected to provide a projected 20 percent better fuel economy than a gasoline-powered V8 while towing full loads," said Diaz. Actual mileage figures are not yet available.
Helping handle the power and torque of the engine is a heavy-duty 6-speed Aisin automatic transmission developed and tuned exclusively for the Titan XD.
Titan will also be offered with V8 and V6 gasoline engines. Details on those engines will be announced at a later date.
Durable off-road performance has also been emphasized, with features such as Hill Descent Control, Hill Start Assist and Brake Limited-Slip Differential (BLSD). A new off-road gauge uses accelerometer data to calculate the vehicle's pitch and roll angles.
Towing and Hauling - Informed and In Control
Titan XD has a maximum payload of more than 2,000 pounds (when properly equipped) and a maximum towing rating of more than 12,000 pounds (when properly equipped). It is also snow plow-capable.
Among the list of new available towing aids are an Integrated Trailer Brake Controller, Trailer Sway Control (TSC), Tow/Haul Mode with Downhill Speed Control and a Trailer Light Check system that allows one-person hook-up operation - checking turn signals, brake lights and running/clearance lights from inside the Titan cab.
Also assisting trailer hook-ups is the Titan XD's available RearView Monitor with Trailer Guides, while the available Around View® Monitor (AVM) provides a unique "bird's eye" view of the surrounding area from front, rear and side cameras to help with parking and pulling in and out of tight spaces. The system also includes Moving Object Detection (MOD), which helps the driver to detect moving objects such as vehicles, shopping carts or other large objects when backing out via an on-screen notification and warning chime.
Helping Titan XD owners take advantage of its ample towing power are a range of available hitches - including an integrated gooseneck hitch engineered into the frame and easily accessible in the bed. Gooseneck hitches put the load in front of the rear axle, enhancing the ability to control the vehicle.
"In early trials held in sweltering Arizona - the testing ground for the new SAE J2807 towing standard- we put more than five tons in a gooseneck trailer and the Titan XD performed with total confidence," explained Diaz. The all-new 2016 Nissan Titan XD meets the new J2807 certification's standards.
The new Titan XD also includes a range of available advanced driving aids in addition to RearView Monitor and Around View® Monitor with Moving Object Detection, including Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Front and Rear Sonar System and Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).
Smart Design, Smart Utility
The all-new Nissan Titan XD exterior and interior designs were created at Nissan Design America. Where the original Titan broke new ground in terms of smart cabin and bed utility, the goal this time around was to keep things simple but smarter - making owners' lives easier.
Inspired by a theme of "powerful precision tool," the Titan XD exterior provides a bold, commanding presence with a fresh, modern technical feel. "The designers sought to give Titan a feeling of athletic strength - a look that honors the power of the Cummins diesel engine," explained Diaz.
The profile of the Titan XD, with its extended front overhang, was actually influenced by the engine, to incorporate the high performance grille, charged air cooler and two-battery installation. Aerodynamics also played a role in the exterior design, which is improved from the previous Titan and incorporates a front spoiler, roof and tailgate spoilers, front tow hook hole cover, underbody covers, rear tire wind deflectors and a seal between the cab and bed.
Available exterior features include LED headlights and taillights, signature Daytime Running Lights, puddle lamps, and step rails for cabin and bed entry/exit. Door closing effort has also been reduced (compared to the previous generation Titan).
"We see the Titan XD as a truck with bold presence - tough enough to roll on to a job site with confidence, but refined enough for everything else," said Diaz. "And the bed, like on the original Titan, check all the boxes with user-friendly features and attention-to-detail."
Titan's industry-first Utili-track™ Bed Channel System continues, once again featuring four heavy-duty aluminum alloy cleats that move and lock anywhere along the walls, bed floor and header tracks that give the user endless tie-down possibilities.
While the previous Titan offered a bedside storage compartment in the lower outside fender panels, the new Titan XD features an available dual lockable in-bed storage boxes that sit sight-unseen at street level and can hold a wide range of essential work and recreational equipment. Unlike other pickup bed storage boxes, the Titan XD units are accessible from inside the bed without having to remove a camper top or tonneau cover. The boxes are watertight (and drainable) and can be used as a cooler for picnics or tailgating. They are also removable for times when extra bed capacity is required.
Other Titan XD bed features include the popular spray-on bedliner, flush-mounted LED bedrail lighting, cargo and tailgate lamps, 120-volt in-bed access and a damped tailgate that is light to lift and smoothly damped when lowering.
The all-new Nissan Titan XD Crew Cab is the first in a lineup of Titan trucks that will be offered in Crew Cab, King Cab and Single Cab configurations, along with three available bed lengths.
A Big Cabin with a Bold and Commanding Presence
Trucks today are multi-functional, used as work and everyday vehicles - so the interior has to be multi-functional as well. The designers focused on enhanced utility and on making the interior easy to use through improved layout of switched, driver control and storage spaces.
Front storage has been increased 33 percent and rear storage 28 percent, for example, over the previous generation Titan. New 2nd row underseat storage includes a locking lid for added security and the integrated fold-out flat floor. The center console can hold a computer tablet with case or a 15-inch laptop.
All switches are now grouped by function type and location is based on frequency of use. Other convenient interior design features include seven assist grips, console-side map pockets, 12-volt and 120-volt power outlets (in addition to the bed), remote start with climate control function, and Rockford Fosgate premium 12-speaker audio system. The special attention to detail even includes moving the glove compartment handle to the left hand side for easier access by the driver.
The Titan XD also features a tilt and telescoping steering column with a standard column-mounted transmission shifter lever - a move that helps increase the visibility and usability of the center stack area. This also opened up the center console for additional storage and can fit a laptop in the center console without giving up rear cupholders and 2nd row climate control vents.
The premium grade instrument panel includes a combination of analog and digital gauges, along with a 5.0-inch color display, unique diesel monitoring and maintenance displays, and 7.0-inch NissanConnectSM with Navigation, Mobile Apps and Services color monitor.
As in other Nissan vehicles, the new Titan XD offers seating that is out of this world - or at least inspired by NASA. The standard front and rear Zero Gravity seats help maximize posture positioning for enhanced comfort during long-distance driving. Heating and cooling front seats are also available, along with a choice of water-repellant fabric or durable leather-appointments. Heated front and rear seats are available in both cloth and leather trim levels.
"While worksite-tough, the interior styling also projects a premium quality and style inspired by outdoor gear such as quilted hunting jackets," said Diaz. "In the new Titan XD, power and comfort easily co-exist."
Special attention was also paid to reducing the intrusion of noise and vibration into the cabin. Titan XD utilizes laminated front and rear side glass, the first full-size pickup to do so. Engine noise isolation and body sealing was also improved versus the previous generation Titan design.
Durability, Quality and Reliability
The Titan design and engineering teams also set one other bar extremely high, what they designated as "120 percent DQR." That meant infusing the vehicle with exceptional fit and finish, top quality components inside and out, and unrelenting attention to detail - in areas that can be seen and areas that are not.
The 2016 Titan has undergone some of the most rigorous and extensive testing of any vehicle in company history, building on the foundation established for Nissan Commercial Vehicles extended durability evaluations.
"Titan is about one thing - getting the job done," concluded Diaz. "While dimensionally the Titan XD will fit in most garages just like a light duty truck, it has the heart and soul of a heavy duty machine. Owners will never have to worry about having towing or hauling power in reserve - without having to pay the price in terms of drivability, fuel efficiency or affordability."
The 2016 Nissan Titan XD will be assembled in Canton, Mississippi, with engines assembled in Indiana and Tennessee (5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel and gasoline V8 and V6 respectively).