2016 Nissan Titan XD Ad Pays Homage to Pickup Giants

Nissan Titan XD Ad

As the first part of a long-term rollout strategy for the all-new 2016 Titan XD, Nissan is releasing a new 90-second commercial introducing the new pickup to the world during the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship game on Jan. 11. The commercial pays homage to those pickup trucks that have come before, specifically Ford, Chevrolet and Dodge.

From the first moments, the television spot pulls at your emotions with soft music, slow-motion images and a youthful voiceover as it develops the idea of how we all follow in the footsteps of those who have come before us. In many instances our predecessors have provided a safe path for us to follow. Maybe it was a parent, a firefighter or a coach who pushed us beyond our limits to explore our own, best capabilities. The spot does it pretty well and is in some ways similar to the now-famous Ram commercial from the Super Bowl a few years ago narrated by stalwart radio broadcaster Paul Harvey.

This new Nissan spot even goes so far as to thank its competition.

"We didn't want to use the same old playbook," said Jeremy Tucker, Nissan vice president of marketing communications and media. "We wanted to do something different … to challenge ourselves to be authentic for this evolving and knowledgeable pickup customer."

Fred Diaz, Nissan division vice president and general manager of truck and light commercial vehicles, also said that with this commercial, Nissan wanted to present the idea that it understands that you must give respect if you ever want to receive it, especially in the truck world.

Nissan Titan XD ad 2

"That's where the idea for the spot came from," Diaz said. "And we felt we were in the position of doing something none of the other truckmakers would do."

Making that emotional connection between a pickup, where you came from and what you can achieve is what Nissan hopes viewers will feel when watching "Shoulders of Giants." Only time will tell if highlighting the biggest players in the segment and thanking them for how they changed the industry will be a successful strategy. But compared to other self-absorbed and aggressive TV spots, this is clearly a different course that could generate attention.

What's most interesting is that the commercial pays homage to several iconic pickup trucks sold in the U.S.: the 1970 C10 Chevrolet (first marketed as capable daily driver), the 1985 Dodge W250 (the first with a Cummins engine) and the 1995 Ford F-150 (the first with an Eddie Bauer trim package). No doubt some non-truck viewers will cry foul for Nissan showing these classic pickups with the brand-new Titan XD, but that's where we should step in and correct their misunderstanding of what those pickups have meant to the auto industry.

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Great job Nissan!


As much as I love that, profit still goes to Japan:)


@Fred Don't you mean France? :p

Thanks but it still doesn't fix the problems with it being as heavy as a HD truck but with worse fuel economy and tow and haul ratings than a half-ton..............

BUT it's got a nice ride (allegedly)


TFL trucks just did a towing test on this truck... I see overwhelming disappointment. Heavy truck and thirsty Cummins isnt really going to turn the market.

I can now understand why Ram bailed on using this latest Cummins offering.

When you factor in price and what 1/2 and 3/4 tons can do as competition....to me Nissan really painted themselves into a corner here. I can't see the gas engine saving it...The diesel really does not shine here. I think this really answers the questions about the Tundra using this diesel...not likely not ever!

I rather have 2000 bucks go to Japan and 48,000 stay in USA than have factories outside of USA where 48,000 stays outside and 2000 comes home to company head offices.

Your Ford Fusion helps mexico more than it does the USA.

Fred your argument is flawed.

I'm looking down my nose!?


Your notion of international business and consumption is stuck in 1910. We live in a global economy, like it or not.

You can't buy a damn stick of butter, or a clock radio, without being part of a bigger economic picture.

Whether you buy a Ford or a Fiat, you're buying a whole bushel full of electronics and software from designers around the world. The money that was used to develop those ideas could have come Arkansas or Africa.


It will be interesting to see what they sell the first few months and how long they stay on the lots. In its top trim level it's only 600 lbs lighter than a Ram 3500 4X4, They better throw a full floater under the rear and just go all the way to 9900 GVWR.

That is good.

Bravo to those who made the commercial

I was anxiously waiting for the reveal, but then when it came I found out why they were being so close-mouthed about the details. The all new frame with the oem fifth wheel hitch built in was great. They were using a cummins, a name i am quite familiar with. But sales are not going to be anywhere near expectations.
Reason # 1: HEAVY: Yet not heavy enough to compete with 3/4 tons (hauling-towing)

Reason # 2: THIRSTY: This has a lot to do with reason number one, but AWFUL mpg makes the Titan uncompetitive in the 1/2 ton market. Cummins rep will take a beating for this. But who is at fault? Cummins for a short-sighted design? Or Nissan for weighting it down? Either way sales are going to be limited to those people who are able somehow to pass the cost of buy/operating this goblin on to somebody else.
This Pickup is Long on promise, but comes up short.

Reason # 3: $.

Nissan yank this beast and try again. While nissan is right about giving respect in order to receive it, They missed the fact that you must DESERVE it.

This pickup doesn't.

Nice commercial. Truck is too heavy.

Commuters will buy it and have problems with the emissions, just like the Ram ecodiesel.

@fred, dont say things like that while you are sitting there in your clothes made in Taiwan

Ford sucks.

It would have been more accurate if they had shown the Ford and Ram in the service bay getting repaired.

The TFL testing was done at temperatures below freezing and with speed set at 70mph. Their previous tests of the Big 3 diesels were done at 65mph and much warmer temperatures. They even remark how cold the truck is running. Well, duh. It's 30 freaking degrees out.

Their loop also is stated to contain "varied terrain". is it 50-50 hills and flat land? what are the grades? In reality we all drive in different regions with different elevations and topography. 100 miles on a closed loop will only show what the truck does on that loop. They should just go out and drive around like you or I would and run a whole tank through it.

They also test a truck with well under 10k miles on it. Most diesels get better mileage after 10k or more miles get put on the engine and tend to keep improving, sometimes up to 40k miles. So comparing the mpg at this point is not all that accurate too. Many forums mention mpg bumps of 2-4 mpg once broken in. When you factor that in, it puts the XD at anywhere from 19-21 or so mpg.

My 12 Ram CTD has been getting the same mpg for 3.5 years and 32,000 miles. I've not read anything about guys getting a 2-4 mpg bump in mpg. That would put my mpg at 19-21 on the interstate. No one gets that unless they have deleted.
Total old school BS.

@Dale, I get 21mpg consistantly on the highway unloaded in my stock 2011 250 Powerstroke, so the only BS is your statement that nobody gets that....MPG conversations are always funny, every truck and person will get different MPG's thats a fact

They should have chosen an old powerwagon, a 57 ford, and a 73 chevy. Nobody is going to buy this truck based on mpg's so you gals can stop whining about how dismal it is.

Nice truck, sounds good when they fire it up at the end of the video. It did not sound synthesized like the "eco-thirsts". (thanks Big Al for that one)
Seems the only negative banter is coming mainly from the threatened followers of the recently fallen to #2 position truck manufacturer, Ford.
This Nissan will sell just fine. There are a lot of disappointed eco-thirst owners who will proudly dump their current truck and take a chance on this import brand. Good job Nissan, but I'll keep my 6.2, 8 speed Silverado.

Mark, the first Dodge Cummins was the 1989 model year, not 1985.

Commercial itself is well-done... Diaz obviously taking pages from some of the Chrysler ads made since the bankruptcy. But a 5/8-ton truck has to be so superior to both the 1/2s and 3/4s to be seen as viable - and the Titan XD is not. It may have caught up to the Americans, but definitely did not pass them.

The Ram 1500 diesel will get 30+ mpg on the highway if you keep your right foot in check, while delivering more torque than the Hemi. And all of the American 3/4s will out-haul the Titan XD while offering a complete set of cabs and choice of 6.5-foot short or 8-foot long beds... for the same price.

GMSRGREAT, dont thank Nissan for anything, thank us tax payers for you being able to have that Gm product thats not even military grade

Nicely done. Good luck.

Canadianthoughts - agreed.
TFL got really poor mpg even towing.
The truck was maxed out with GVW even though they deliberately loaded the pin as light as possible.
It could only carry the driver and passenger without any other gear to be able to tow its ratings.

That is the point BiGal from Ooze ignores. The Titan XD does not have the cargo capacity to be a good tow rig.

@nitro: I'm not thanking Nissan for anything. Instead, I'm congratulating them. Nissan obviously studied, paid homage to the Big 3 and chose to build something strong and from steel, like the sales leader, GM trucks.
When it comes to the bail out, give thanks, hundreds of thousands , maybe millions remain employed because of that move.

"The TFL testing was done at temperatures below freezing and with speed set at 70mph. Their previous tests of the Big 3 diesels were done at 65mph and much warmer temperatures. They even remark how cold the truck is running. Well, duh. It's 30 freaking degrees out."

30 F is not cold.
Towing at its max rating the truck would warm up rather quickly.
The 30F weather would be an advantage at elevation. The air is more dense and intake temperatures will be cooler. Both should yield more power. Fuel is also more dense at cool temperatures.

Great commercial.

A very well thought out commercial. I do like the way Nissan has made a connection with the Big Three pickups to show that it is not much different, but yet, shows Nissan has improved on an existing idea.

Good work Nissan.

Boy this comment section has surely turned into one big joke. You got gmsnotsogreat combining gm sales again when gm itself doesn't even do that. Might as well combine Cadillac and Bruick while your at it. Just get them all and really show some more ignorance. Gm boys need to be thankful to obummer for saving there butts. Didn't even have to pay us the taxpayer back all they sucked out. All they kept went to China to pay for more dealerships over there. Thanks. Then all those covered up recalls and injuries and all those DEATHS from trusting gm. How pitiful. Sounds like gmaintsogreat after all.

I do like the way you continually rant and rave about load and tow.

Is this all Ford has??

Load and tow is not the primary reason a person buys a pickup. Most any pickup manufactured has more than enough capability to satisfy the 75% who want a pickup for it's utility.

The utility I speak of is the ability to use the bed and tow the average 5 000lb trailer.

But ................. a person looking at the XD Titan as a pickup will be buying it to tow, but what do you think the average trailer a Titan owner will tow??

After reading your comments for years now I would of thought you had the capacity to be objective in how you assess reality vs fantasy.

It seems you have very little idea on what the pickup is really used for. You seem to think everyone who buys a pickup that can tow X amount of weight will always tow X amount of weight. But this view you have is far from the truth and reality.

I don't care if a pickup is a diesel midsize in Australia or a US fullsize, the figures given by the manufacturers are what is termed pie in the sky figures.

I would not buy a pickup that is rated at X to do that work, especially those US tow figures.

Have you ever towed in your life?? I do know most will tow a small fraction of what the manufacturer has rated a vehicle for.

Most of these load and tow figures are for the "Best" in class brigade, people like yourself who appear to value manufacturer data as kosher.

Load and tow is not a primary concern for most who buy a pickup as most pickups exceed what their requirements and needs.

@ButtAl - The Titan XD selling feature is that it can tow like a HD but is a 1/2 ton.
Most buy diesels to tow around 10k. Even with 10K behind the titan if one uses a 5th wheel or gooseneck you still run up against the cargo rating. A drop to 10k yields and extra 200 lbs roughly for truck weight. That would mean that you could haul 2 skinny kids but leave all of the tablets, cell phones and snacks locked in the trailer.

If you say 5k is all one will EVER tow then there is NO reason to buy a Titan XD. The extra cost is NOT worth it since ALL of the 1/2 tons and ALL of the small trucks can tow 5k.

A Colorado diesel would make WAY MORE SENSE if 5k towing is what you want.

"After reading your comments for years now I would of thought you had the capacity to be objective in how you assess reality vs fantasy."

Right back at you............

Clue in dude.

The Titan XD is TOO heavy with NOT ENOUGH capacity to LIVE UP TO its hype.

Lou, Lou, Lou, Lou.
Boy aren't we a little bit overstating again. How can anyone take your troulling seriously?? I do suggest you talk to papajim and Alex;)

I have yet to read where Nissan has stated the Titan XD will tow like an HD.

The manner in which it manages towing is HD like is what I've read. How can you misinterpret this??? It seems quite easy to comprehend.

Don't confuse on road dynamics and handling with payload numbers. Are you really that simple??

I suggest you spend more time reading what is written rather than spending that time to re-interpret what has been written.

You are the spin man for Frod.

Go take a hike. I have nutted you out and we know the truth don't we Lou??

Have a nice day, the man from "BC", what a joke.

Yeah 30 ain't cold. It's frackin freezing.


"The utility I speak of is the ability to use the bed and tow the average 5 000lb trailer."

A Colorado diesel has a 1,500 lb cargo rating which is the same as the FULL BLING Titan XD.

A Colorado diesel can tow 5k all day long.

A Colorado diesel is considerably less expensive to buy.

The Colorado has a cargo rating that matches its tow rating.

The Titan XD has poor cargo ratings for its stated tow rating.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

A Cummins 5.0 perfect for 5k tow.........................

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

I forgot about the Ram Ecodiesel............. That can tow 5k all day long and is cheaper than the XD.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

The Titan XD is too heavy and has too poor a cargo rating for its GVW and its tow ratings.

5k tow.....................

Ford F150 any Ford F150 can tow 5k

5k tow.....................

Chevy any Chevy 1500 can tow 5k. INCLUDING the Colorado.


Any more pearls of wisdom from OZ?


Your proclamations must mean you are the Wizard from Oz.

Lot of expert commentary from readers who have not yet driven a Nissan XD.

Interesting that their 'giants' were all approximately 80s-vintage models. I'm tempted to go see one in person just to compare sizes.

The Titan XD is way over the heads of most people.
It is a a purpose built 1/2 ton with towing and heavy work as it's main purpose.
It excels masterfully in that purpose.
The regular Titan coming this spring is where the meat of the Titan line up will be.
Those who do not understand the XD will find another reason not to like the regular Titan no doubt.
but what they will understand is the stoutness of its engine.
both XD and Regular no stouter engines in 1/2 ton territory
diesel cummins stoutest in the industry
Gas v8 with vvl is the start of a new dimension in performance.
where valve lift is continuously customized precisely to exacting measurements . no oily fouled plugs like the Ford 3.5

I like the XD and it is a purpose built truck. Everyone likes to compare it to the Ecoboost Ford. Sure the Ford will beat it up the IKE, but speed is not everything when towing. A heavier more stable platform is more desirable then being the fastest up a hill. You don't want to be a hazard or under powered and they XD is not.

I like the XD and it is a purpose built truck. Everyone likes to compare it to the Ecoboost Ford. Sure the Ford will beat it up the IKE, but speed is not everything when towing. A heavier more stable platform is more desirable then being the fastest up a hill. You don't want to be a hazard or under powered and they XD is not.

Cool of them to pay homage. Almost felt like a commercial to an epic movie

Excellent work Nissan.

Excellent work Nissan.

Excellent work Nissan.

Nice Commercial Nissan!
We all know Lou hates anything non Ford and their magic fairy dust payload and tow ratings. Nissan as well as Ram tend to understate the true payload and ratings. That being said would anyone here want to tow long distance with Ford's eccoboost?? I have met many Ford guys that love the eccoboost except where it came to fuel economy. They all preferred their old 5.4!
I am still waiting to see what the non HD half tonne Nissans are like, I am due for a new truck in 2017. So far i will look at GM, Ram and Nissan for my next truck.

A platinum 4x4 weighs in at a hair under 7500lbs according to Nissan's website. What niche does this truck fill when it's carrying capacity is about the same as a half tons that are 1500-2000lbs lighter?

They bet the farm on designing a HD truck with half ton capability. What were they thinking when they did this? This truck will be viewed as a blunder years from now. Like somebody above said put a full floater under it and give it a GVW that makes sense at least. It's nice that has a built in gooseneck but with a whopping 1500#'s or so of available rating on the mainstream models what can you actually put behind it?

One thing I will give it is its price point is fairly comparable in the half ton category. I do like the truck, especially the interior, but I wouldn't pay for one. It'll sell to curiosity seekers at first and once that market is satisfied it'll be a slow seller. The half ton Titan will be of more interest to a much larger audience.

Anyone towing a backhoe with a 90's half ton will appreciate the capability of the xd

supercliffy - The Titan XD does not have adequate cargo capacity to live up to its claims of towing superiority over 1/2 pickups.

TFL truck tested one and they had to DELIBERATELY load the trailer as light as possible on the gooseneck pin to keep from exceeded truck GVW. They were also restricted to only one passenger...... again so as to NOT overload the truck.

Big Al is trying to ague that most will tow 5k. if that is the case there is NO benefit to the XD. Every other pickup on the market including the Colorado diesel and Ram ecodiesel can tow 5k.

My issues with Ram are similar. Not enough capacity for a crewcab pickup along with worst in truck class durability ratings.

If Ford comes up with similar durability ratings as Ram or has similar poor capacities I'd be critical of them as well.

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