We get asked frequently what we know about new Nissan trucks for 2016 – the Titan full-size and Frontier mid-size pickups. As the other brands are rolling out enhanced versions of new full-size models and introducing new trucks in the revitalized mid-size segment, the absence of Nissan is noticeable. But not for long – at least in the full-size category.
2016 Titan XD Crew Cab
Nissan is introducing a brand new generation Titan full-size pickup truck late this Fall. That launch will certainly cause the segment to take notice as the brand’s top-of-the-line big gun, Titan XD, will come to market powered by a new 5.1L Cummins V8 Turbo Diesel engine that will offer serious horsepower with major torque for full-size pickup users.
What we know so far is – as told to us by Nissan – is that they see their all-new Titan XD Crew Cab as “creating a new class” truck that is intended to be a unique bridge between the traditional full-size pickup segment and the heavy duty (HD) segment. Nissan does not play in the HD segment today and this gives them an opportunity to attract buyers from other brands wanting or needing to move up to an HD, for whatever reason, to consider a less expensive Titan XD Crew Cab full-size instead.
Titan XD Turbo Diesel Power Train
We have given you the details released so far of the new Titan XD in an earlier report (see related article below). The design and engineering of the new XD is said by Nissan to aggressively combine the capability of a heavy-duty hauler with the drivability and affordability of a full-size pickup.
Anchored by the new and Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel rated at 310 horsepower with a massive 555 lb-ft of torque and mated to a heavy-duty 6-speed Aisin automatic transmission – this new truck should pull and haul like an HD pickup all day long. Though not released yet, Nissan says to expect fuel economy to be consistent with a similar full-size crew cab truck.
We note that we will be at the Cummins factory next week getting an up-close-and-personal briefing on the new 5.1L V8 from Cummins and Nissan on design development, engineering, manufacture, and application in the new Titan XD. We expect to have more information on the new power plant to share with you following that visit.
Towing with Titan XD
With the new powertrain, Nissan says the new Titan XD will have maximum towing capacity of more than 12,000 pounds when properly equipped. For towing, it will offer 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 – including checking turn signals, brake lights and running/clearance lights. Also assisting trailer hook-ups will be a RearView Monitor with Trailer Guides.
The available Nissan Around View Monitor (AVM) will provide a unique top-down view of the surrounding area from front, rear and side cameras to help with parking and pulling in and out of tight spaces. The AVM system also includes Moving Object Detection (MOD), which helps the driver detect moving objects such as vehicles, shopping carts or other large objects when backing out via an on-screen notification and warning chime.
And, like the larger HD trucks, Titan XD will be able to tow with both a conventional hitch or an integrated gooseneck hitch engineered into the frame that is easily accessible in the bed.
Titan XD Lineup
The Titan XD Crew Cab with the Cummins 5.0L Turbo Diesel V8 will be the first to appear. The full line-up, including gasoline powered Titans is not expected to be available until early 2016. The line will include three cab configurations, two frame sizes, three powertrain offerings and five grade levels including S, SV, PRO-4X, SL and Platinum Reserve models.
Nissan says to expect pricing on the Titan XD closer to launch – with more information on the rest of the line coming later this year, which is not surprising given the level of focus required to get the new 2016 Titan XD Crew Cab Turbo Diesel launched.
2016 Frontier Mid-Size
With the huge resurgence in the mid-size segment being driven by recently launched all-new offerings from Chevrolet (Colorado) and GMC (Canyon) plus the just introduced – and arriving in September – more powerful Toyota Tacoma, we had anticipated that Nissan would have more to say, by now, about their next generation Frontier.
As of this writing, Nissan is giving us no information on the next generation Frontier. What we do have is a brief look ahead at the 2016 Frontier slated to arrive in September 2015. Looks like the same generation truck with a few enhancements for the new model year.
According to Nissan, the Frontier will be offered in both King Cab and Crew Cab body styles and in 4×2 and 4×4 driveline configurations, along with five trim grades: Frontier S (4-cylinder and V6), SV, PRO-4X (4×4 only), Desert Runner (4×2 only) and SL (Crew Cab only). There will be three new exterior colors: Sunset Orange, Gun Metallic and Magnetic Black (Metallic Blue, Night Armor and Super Black are out for 2016). Lastly, a moonroof added to Frontier Crew Cab SV model (late availability).
Though the new full-size Titan is key to Nissan to staying competitive in the truck market in America, they cannot afford to wait too long to get back into the mid-size segment given the strong sales response being seen already in 2015 from both new and existing trucks from other brands in the segment (see related story below). We hope Nissan, as they get the new Titan line launched, has a parallel and similarly intensive effort going on for a new generation Frontier for 2017.