2017 Nissan Titan Half-Ton: First Impressions

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By Aaron Bragman

When we first saw the 2016 Nissan Titan XD during its introduction at the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, we were a little confused. It's not quite a heavy-duty pickup truck and definitely not a light-duty truck. It was billed as an "extra-duty" rig — something for people who want to tow more than a typical light-duty truck can, but who don't want to pay for a heavy-duty truck with capabilities they'll never use, not to mention the ride quality trade-offs.

Now a year after that introduction, the second component of Nissan's full-size pickup strategy — the new 2017 Titan half-ton — has made its debut at the 2016 New York International Auto Show. It's a light-duty pickup meant to compete head-to-head with the segment's best.

You'd be forgiven for thinking that the new light-duty Titan, hereafter referred to as the Titan half-ton, looks pretty much like the Titan XD — because it does. The only visual differences — beyond the shorter wheelbase and lower ride height — are slightly shorter front fenders, a different lower bumper and smaller mirrors. Those items aside, the Titan half-ton and Titan XD are visually identical: same headlights, same grille, same hood, and exactly the same cab and interior.

This isn't necessarily a bad thing, especially when it comes to the interior. The Platinum Reserve trim level on display in New York was filled with leather and luxury goodies, and feels every bit as premium as competitors' luxury models. Eventually we'll see the new Titan half-ton with standard and extended cabs, three bed lengths and a standard V-6 engine, but all of that will arrive well after the launch this summer of the V-8 crew-cab model.

Nissan is aiming this latest Titan squarely at the Detroit Three half-ton pickups, and unlike the last model, which languished for a decade without much of an update, this new truck should be a viable alternative. We still need to see some key numbers, such as fuel economy from the big V-8 engine along with towing and payload capacities, before we can say that it's going to match up effectively, however.

Nissan also announced pricing for the 2016 Titan XD's gas-engine version in New York, and it looks quite reasonable and competitive — now we need to see how Nissan prices the half-ton. All of that information should be available later this summer in advance of the truck's arrival in showrooms nationwide.

Cars.com photos by Angela Conners

 

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Comments

Beautiful truck and my next purchase. GM can take some design ideas from this starting with those HORRIBLE square wheel wells

2005 Titan owner here. Trucks been running solid for 168k miles. Will be buying the half ton when it comes out this fall. No paint issuess on mine. Maybe I got lucky?

Been a hell of a good truck. Since I keep mine for a long time, I don't mind the 10+ year old redesign... Just in time for my next purchase. :)

Sounds like a few of these guys couldn't afford one even if they want too. I have had too new 08 and 12 Titans. Not one issue at all exept radio replacement. Quality is real high. Can shut the door with one finger and not slam the crap out of it too close. Try that on any other brand . If gas mileage is better may pickup one next year. I never buy first model year. The interior is awesome.



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