What's in Store for the Next Nissan Titan?

Nissan-titan-4wd II
Last night we had dinner with Richard Miller, Nissan's product planning guru (it says so right on his card), and we had a great conversation about the truck market and the different strategies truck makers are using to meet customers' needs. Unfortunately, he couldn't get too specific about the next Nissan Titan. Still, we learned a few things.

"We know we have a lot of room to grow, and the next Titan, the one we're working on now, is going to be a big first step," Miller said. "We're looking at making the Titan into something better able to give our customers more of what they want, but that's not always easy."

Miller said some of the more recent focus-group discussions have been very different from the ones just five years ago. "We've heard customers quite often say they don't want to compromise on anything anymore. They want just as much power as they've always had, but they want much better fuel economy; they want better storage solutions, but they don't want to give anything up to get it; and they want all the features, but don't want to pay more."  

When asked about the different powertrain technologies floating out there, Miller mentioned he was quite happy for Ford with all the success it is having with the EcoBoost technology. "It's interesting. If Toyota or Nissan or Honda had come to market with that technology, I'm not sure it would have been as universally accepted," he said. "In a way, it's good to have somebody big like Ford out in front changing the tastes and attitudes of truck buyers out there. ... If 10 years ago you had told me the number-one-selling half-ton would be more than 50 percent V-6 engine, I would have thought you were crazy."

Continuing on the powertrain theme, Miller said, "Going forward, it's going to be really tough in this segment (full-size pickup truck) to not offer the customer a lot of choice." When asked specifically about a diesel option, Miller said, "It would be a lot easier if one of the big players would step out and let the rest of us see what kind of acceptance it could get, but I'm guessing we'll all have to be ready." 

Miller finished by offering a few vague predictions about the next-gen Titan (which we gather is set to be released for the 2015 model year). "Titan fans know we were the first to offer the wide-opening rear door, hidden storage, the spray-in bedliner and in-bed channel track, but when our new truck comes out, we'll be more in line as a major player."  

Nissan Titan Storage II

Comments

As far as I know Nissan is the only half ton available with 275/70R18 tires from the factory on the Pro4x. that alone impresses me as that tire is on average 1/2" taller than a 285/65R18. Also the 317 hp 5.6 liter engine may seem like an underdog, but it cranks out 385 lb-ft of torque - not too bad. Excellent approach angle as it's missing every other manufacturers offroad limiting airdam (I think it shows in fuel economy however). All in all, Nissan isn't producing total scrap.

What they really need to do it hire a truck guy.

"but they don't want to give anything up to get it; and they want all the features, but don't want to pay more."

Wow. This focus group sounds a bit unrealistic and greedy.

Titan does have one thing a lot of people want (including me).The crew cab with a 7'3" bed. I hope Chevy and Ram offer at least a 6'6" bed on their next truck. Ford already has that option.

@ Dave,

Maybe they have been reading PUTC as their focus group. None of us can decide anything other than we want everything with no compromises. :)

I learned nothing from that conversation other than the fact that Ram trucks isnt planning on doing a full redesign so that makes Nissan the last to do a full redesign with the most outdated truck.
This is not a shot at the Titan guys but truck buyers are brand loyal for the most part so Toyota and Nissan need to go first not last because the longer you go the more irrelevant you become.
I think with a sooner than later full redesign I don't see Toyota or Nissan taking many of the brand loyal Ford guys or GM guys (assuming they get the Chevy and GMC thing right) but they can snatch up some of the new undecided truck buyers as I was in 2010.

"they don't want to give anything up to get it; and they want all the features, but don't want to pay more."

Where was this focus group, one of the 'occupy' encampments?
I don't want to pay for crap I don't need or won't use, and I expect to pay more for the crap I do want or need. I guess I'm just not a spoiled child like their focus group.

I think Nissan is missing the mark.
They need to ask current owners about thing like better brakes, better rear axles, and other things that have gone wrong in the past. I thnk their Manifold Cats are a design joke. No one else has cats welded to the manfolds. Simplicity in design usually lowers costs. Think about that Nissan.

When the Titan came out (in 04), it matched the F150 in every way- on paper. Reality was differnt. a 5speed was a nice idea, but it was sized very small for the 5.6 liter V8. They'll have to do much better. The rear axle is nowhere near as strong as the competition. Features are all fine and dandy, but if they want to start selling even as many trucks as Toyota, they'll need to be ready to answer one question above all- "Where's the BEEF?" The current truck was developed from the same platform as the Frontier, but that truck is being replaced with a Mitsubishi joint project. That leaves Nissan NA unencumbered to develop a truck specifically for our market.
From the sounds of it, Nissian definitely wont be first to market with a light diesel, but they'll have one ready. Personally, I'd rather have the little 3 liter V6 from the Global product than a Cummins- small engines isn't what they do.
The 7ft box on the crew cab is definitely cool- it will fit motorcycles better than 6ft "shot bed" models. It's a value, for sure.

I wish you would tell this guy that small trucks are about to be where the competition is at. These companies need to get serious about these things. Nissan and Toyota own this market and they both refuse to offer engine technology from this decade. Titan is dead...look at the numbers. Who really wants to go buy a Frontier or Tacoma when you can take a 2 mpg hit and drive a full size. They could easily have these V-6 4x4 trucks getting at least 20+mpg combined. If they would do that it would destroy the Toyota. But they'd rahter sit on a full size for 3 more years that's selling sub 10K a year. Great idea Nissan.

@MrKnowitall the Renault inputed Nissan V6 Diesel would be a better choice than the Cummins that is for sure. Cummins has been thrown a lifeline in HDT trucks by being involved in the development of the DAF/PACCAR MX Engine. I suspect that Nissan is going to "tweek" the existing Titan, rather than trying to develop a North America only chassis. The Joint development and what Toyota is going to reveal as the new Hilux in roughly 18months time, is going to be of great interest to people outside NA

"Titan fans know we were the first to offer the wide-opening rear door..."

This claim of Nissan's has never really been true. Ford F-250s back in the 70s could be had with a bedside tool box.

http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=31570&stc=1&d=1294203781

Now, if he's talking just the past 20 years or so, then I guess I have to concede his point.

MrKnowitall - What is your basis for the Titan's tranny being too small?? The tranny is pretty damn bulletpoof. In fact it also comes with two transmission coolers regardless if tow package equipped or not. The rearend on it wasn't too small. It was Dana having crap quality control that caused the issues. Harening of the spider gears was suspect resulting in most of the failures. I have 120,000 on my 05 Titan. I tow a 7500lb travel trailer and a 2,000lb boat with it. No tranny or diff issues. Yet some owners who use the truck as a commuter vehicle have rear diff failures. That is incicative of a QC issue at Dana who makes the rear ends. If it were a weak design my truck would have failed long ago with many others. They slightly changed the diff in 08 IIRC. Failures dropped each year after 2005. FYI the Titan chassis was the basis for the Frontier. Not the other way around! :)

Hey Luke...that is a f150 not 250
best spot for the tow strap

2015 now? it gets a year later every month. They need to get something new to market by the 2014 model year.

@JK
Oops, you're right, that is an F-150.

If they really want to steal buyers from the big 3, then they need to be the FIRST to offer a 1/2 ton diesel. People want it but no one builds it. The big 3 dont want it competing with their HD diesel trucks. Nissan doesnt have an HD lineup so I dont get why they wont bring in a 1/2 ton diesel.

The Titan is all but insignificant in today's pickup market - so say the sales numbers. It was a leader when it was introduced, now it's barely a follower.

Sounds like they're planning to mess it up.

a 4x4 , CrewCab with LONG BED for ~$35k-MSRP.

You cannot beat that.

And what I love about Nissan is they don't change to body styling every couple of years, making you feel like you got an old truck.

I know there will never be a diesel but what I'd love to see is Nissan change is the make the engine smaller (I'm thinking 2.5 liter I5) and offer a 5 speed manual transmission.

The reason I was planning on buying a nissan was precisely because they didn't follow the pack.

When it's time for me to look at a new truck in 2-3 years I'll look at all of them, Nissan included.

For the huge admission fee full size trucks require I won't dumb myself down to brand-loyalism anymore.

If it's a Chevy/Ford/Dodge great. If it's a Nissan/Toyota, no problem. Unless a manufacturer funds me they're simply coporations on a global level hocking a product to make money. I'm all for free enterprise so best value wins.

I'm not against any of you being brand loyal and your reasons for it but brand loyalty never got me a flawless truck. It might even be good for me to drive something different in the future lol

Ram and Ford have done an excellent job now it's time to see what the GM's, Tundra and Titan will have to offer over the next couple years.

@magnum - true.
Where is Nissan going?
They need to come up with an industry defining product to pull ahead.

@ Lou

Good question. A truck that will get an honest 25MPG will be innovative providing it has enough jam to do the job so either small turbo gas (improve on what Ford has done) or more likely a turbo diesel.

GM is the next new truck so what they do (if anything) will set off a trend. If they offer a baby Dmax it will most likely set a trend. I have nothing against a baby Dmax but it might be better to have a small diesel that will make 30MPG even if it only puts out 200HP as long as it has 350+ where it counts at crusing RPM.

The market is geared for power right now but I think the first 1/2 ton to offer a true mileage with power combonation will be successful.

And having said that I remember reading an article here about Nissan testing a Titan with a small diesel. Maybe they'll do it, maybe GM will beat them to it next year. Maybe Ford or Dodge will take it. Who knows but I really think real world MPG + useable power will win a lot of buyers over no matter who does it.

I find the Titan King Cab with that big rear window to be a very attractive looking pickup truck.. But with it being a foreign truck and getting terrible gas mileage and no real price break it was never a consideration for me.

If they want to compete with the big 3 they need a serious edge in fuel economy and features.

I'm hoping the trucks of tormorrow have smarter storage features like that wheel well thingie. The Rambox is brilliant and an under bed trunk like the Ridgeline would be an awesome feature. A versatile midgate/bulkhead would also be a welcomed feature for me.

Hi Everyone,

I'm driving my second titan pro4x had an 08' king cab, and now an '11 crew. they are great trucks, i'm starting to get a bit bored with the interior, but have never had an issue with the exterior design (that is a preference not a fact). i do find the power to be great, having driven f150s, rams and silverados (with the 5.4, and 5.3 from ford and gm, i have never driven a hemi ram though)

nissan is currently using a modified version of the titan frame, with the 5.6L from the titan in the nissan patrol in global markets, and we see it in north america is the infiniti q56.

imho, that platform would be a pretty good starting point for the next titan, the front end of the patrol is a direction i could see the titan heading for a redesign, and if the interior is freshened to suit truck buyers it would be on the right track.

i'd have a difficult time thinking of ground breaking technologies for a truck, the titan needs current technologies available in pickups, all of which are available in the nissan/infiniti parts bin. id like to see a charging pad for phones and other devices to cut down on all of the wires we have plugged into the dash outlets

some engine and powertrain options would definitely be a welcomed addition, as well as improved gas mileage, but it's a power trade off. the 5.6L is rated at 400hp in the nissan patrol, and i believe has a 7spd tranny.

i believe it was cummins testing a small diesel in a light duty truck that happened to be a titan, not nissan testing a light duty diesel. nevertheless, a diesel would be a welcomed addition to help improve fuel economy.

I agree with Magnum. I've had 4 new trucks (all of them ordered) and had 1 Ford, 2 Chevys, and now a 4x4 Ram Big Horn. Looking to order a 2014 or 2015 someday. Best truck for my needs wins. And by the way, they were all pretty good trucks. Maybe I'm lucky.

@Gary M - that is the best attitude to have. Buy the best truck with the best features for the best price.

Nissan needs to make an HD model like Chevy and Ford do. Tiatans are okay but they don't seem tough enough to dohard work.

My wife and I just purchased a New 2012 Titan Crewcab Pro 4x. So far I can't find anything at all to complain about. It has massive power and that's what I wanted. Gas mileage isn't all that great but ya learn to take it easy on the pedal.

Pulling a Camper is what I will be doing with the Truck and I feel sure it will get the job done with no problems.

The Titan proved in 2004 what the Tundra proved again in 2007, which is that most truck buyers are too stubborn to look past a Japanese badge on the tailgate. No matter that they were actually designed and built in America by Americans, no matter that they were the biggest and roomiest trucks with far and away the strongest powertrains, Jap badge meant no sale.

So it really doesn't matter what new features the 2015 model has. It couldn't possibly azz whoop the competition to the extent the 04 did - and the 07 Tundra did - because the big three trucks are so much better now. The 04 didn't make a dent in the market, the Tundra barely did, this one won't either.

Gary m, I have an 09 Crew cab with the long bed and LOOOOOOVE IT. Get one and not regret it. As far as the stock tire go, who else offers a 33" tire standard on a 2wd 1/2 ton?

2010 there was a Nissan Truck meet here in TX for Frontier and Titan owners only. They put on some demos and asked us a bunch of questions (focus groups if you will) on what we wanted and what we liked. HOWEVER I have yet to hear back from them or see anything we discussed anywhere (to include diesel options).

I have read this article and it is as vague as the answers I got two years ago.

Personally I have owned 3 (05 LE, 08 LE, 08 PRO-4X) and loved them all. I would still have a Titan if they would have had the diesel option as I pull trailers and the gas milage was killing me.

I'm a Nissan Titan owner and fan, but have learned that the VK56vde motor was slapped into the Infiniti M56 car and QX56 SUV. The redesigned 5.6 gets 420 HP in the M56 and 400 in the QX56 and get better MPG on top of that! So I have to wait til 2015 for a complete redesign will you keep pimping out you Infiniti scraps to us loyal owners instead of at least giving us a new motor to hold us over til then. Knowing that you are holding out on the goods for the richies makes me want to buy a Toyota tundra (5.7) you wonder why you have to do $8000 rebates every year to sale you trucks? Think about that Nissan!

I have a 2006 Titan King cab base model XE with tow package. Still love this truck. It will eat Beemers for breakfast, tows a 7000 lb travel trailer easily and I have had no trouble with it at all. Very reliable and it still looks like a new truck after 6 years and 46,000 miles. Purchased the truck new for $23,500 which at the time was $10,000 less than any Ford, Chevy or Dodge out there. There was this Ford F250 that I really wanted but I could not handle the $37,000 price tag.

I have a 2011 KC sv with 4 wheel drive. I bought it do to a great price with a lot of features. The motor is super powerful and I have averaged 19 mpg on the highway fully loaded bed and 4 passengers. I was going to buy the ecoboost f-150 but glad I didn't after talking to an owner that says mpg is terrible with 16 on the highway average. I know the interior is dated but everything works well and I really like my truck. Nissans are extremely reliable so do consider this truck before you buy an overpriced unreliable American brand.

What day need to do is change the dam body style you can buy a 2004 nissan titan and hook it up to look like a 2013 no sence its been 9 years change the body style now!! And make the truck faster

I have had a 2000 1/2 ton Silverado 5.7 ,and a 2003 3/4 ton Silverado 8.1. Also two Titans.,One 2005 SE Crew cab and one 2008 LE King cab.Michelin load range E tires,Rancho rs9000 adjustable shock,firestone air bags in rear,gibson dual exhaust,air aid intake,amsoil synthetic oil.I tow a 36' fifth wheel that weighs about 9,000 plus pounds.It tows fine ,stops fine but it is maxxing out the truck.It's time for a heavy duty Titan.I like my titan much more than my 3/4 ton Chevy.But if Nissan doesn't come out with a HD truck I will be forced to buy one of the Big 3!

My 06 Titan crew LE is a company vehicle that I also get to use on the weekends. During the week, it hauls welders and gas cylinders. I've had as many as 11 170lb argon cylinders in the bed at once. The auto-leveling suspension, the utilitrac system and the factory spray-in bedliner where huge selling points when I picked this truck out, as was the $34k price tag for a loaded truck. Mine has heated leather, etc, whereas I would've gotten a midrange cloth-seated Ford or Chevy for that price.

My sales manager traded in his 2005 Titan LE last year with 275k miles on it. The only thing wrong with his was that the radio didn't work, but mechanically it was still sound. He was bad at keeping up with oil changes, and would go 8-10k using crap oil. He ended up getting an F150 with the EcoBoost last year just for the fuel economy. He said within the first week that he missed his Titan.

My truck has 235k on it now, so I will be getting a new truck this year. I am b/t the Titan and F150 EcoBoost because I wouldn't mind better mileage. I also want the longer bed this time, so Ford and Nissan are the only two to choose from. Toyota has an 8 ft crew, but I don't want a 4x4 limo. I read last night that the 2014 Silverado will have a crew w/ a 6' 6" bed so Chevy might be an option.

I just wish the 2014 Titan would be out soon with a small-to-medium facelift and maybe better gas mileage. I can deal with the all-around average of 16 that I get now, but closer to 20 would be better. :-)

Last thoughts- When I pull my 24' pontoon on a bunk-style trailer, I get 9.5mpg. My dad's buddy with an EcoBoost says he gets 21 all-around, but only 10 when he pulls his boat.

Hope this helps anyone with questions to the Titan's longevity and durability. I've been amazed by this truck.

I OWN A 2007 TITAN THAT I BOUGHT USED TROUBLE FREE AT 65000 MILES TRY TO MAKE ME SWITCH BRAND...

I hope that Nissan and Cummins follows through with the diesel engine for the Nissan Titan. The reason is that while not everyone needs a big hulking monster of a truck like the Dodge Ram 3500 4x4, a GMC 3500 4x4, or a Ford F350 4x4 or greater, there are people out there who need a diesel engine, with all the torque diesel engines are known for, not to mention the best fuel economy. I can think of a number of vehicles that would benefit from a smaller diesel engine, but I won't mention them now, because I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. Whether the truck has a 2.8 litre 4 or a 4 litre V6 or even a straight 6, whatever. I know there's a market out there in the USA for a diesel powered compact truck.



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