2005 Titan New Car Test Drive
The Nissan Titan features a 5.6-liter V8 and five-speed automatic transmission that deliver dazzling performance. Its handling is equally responsive, making it among the most enjoyable of the full-size half-ton pickups. Brakes, suspension, drivetrain all feel refined. This is a serious pickup that pleases all the senses.
Titan offers more emotion than some of the other trucks. Titan is the first truly full-size pickup in nearly 25 years from anyone other than the Big Three, and the first ever from a company whose world headquarters are located outside of North America. (Titan is significantly larger than the Toyota Tundra, which is not quite full-size.)
Nissan did its homework, benchmarking favored pickups and edging the bar higher. As a result, Titan boasts best in class headroom, best in class torque, best in class interior volume for the Crew Cab, best 4x4 ground clearance, best 4x4 approach angle, largest in class 4x4 tires. Titan can tow up to 9,500 pounds, putting at the top of the class alongside the latest Ford F-150.
Clever innovations improve on the traditional pickup. Among them: a factory-applied spray-in bedliner, a C-channel tie-down system for securing cargo and accessories, a stash box integrated into the driver's-side rear fender for storing a tow hitch or other small items. And the rear doors on the King Cab open nearly 180 degrees for quick access.
For 2005, Nissan has added a dampened tailgate assist, to reduce effort when opening and closing the tailgate. Active front head restraints are now standard on all models, and the Crew Cab now comes with a power retractable rear window, lending an open-air feeling to the interior. The window features privacy glass and an electric defroster. A new Trac Package for 2WD models includes a locking rear differential and front tow hooks.
You say you want an American truck? The Titan was designed in California. It's built in Mississippi and its high-tech V8 is built in Tennessee.
The 2005 Nissan Titan is available in two body styles: an extended King Cab with auxiliary rear doors and a 6-foot, 7-inch bed; and a Crew Cab with a larger cabin, four conventional doors and a 5-foot, 7-inch bed.
All Titans boast Nissan's new 5.6-liter V8 engine and five-speed automatic transmission.
Three trim levels are available: XE, SE, and LE. All models are available in 2WD and 4WD. All Titans come with a high level of standard equipment including a tire-pressure monitor, cruise control, tilt steering and a CD stereo.
The XE 2WD King Cab ($22,650) comes standard with a split front bench seat that has a fold-down armrest storage bin, and split pop-up rear seat. XE also comes with 17-inch steel wheels, but has manual door locks and wind-up windows.
SE ($24,800) adds captain's chairs with a better grade of cloth, 18-inch aluminum wheels, power everything, and host of other features. A Popular Package ($1,250) for the SE adds many of the LE's luxury features, but not its leather upholstery. The same package is available with the Rockford-Fosgate stereo ($1,750).
LE ($29,250) gets leather seats in front, Rockford-Fosgate audio, fog lights, power adjustable pedals, tubular running boards and all the trick bed features described above. A DVD-based navigation system ($2,000) is optional on LE only.
Choosing a Crew Cab model adds $2,500-$2,850 to the prices above. Four-wheel drive (4WD) adds $3,050-$3,200. All King Cab models are offered with flexible-fuel engines (FFV) for no additional cost. Front bench seats are available as a credit option on SE and LE.
Optional is a package that includes front-seat side-impact air bags and curtain air bags ($850), always good choices in tall vehicles like SUVs and trucks. Curtain airbags are designed to provide head protection in a side impact or rollover event; side-impact airbags are designed to protect the torso in a side impact. These are important body parts, necessary for happy human function, so we recommend these features. On some models, the airbag package can be bundled with VDC electronic stability control ($1,200), which helps the driver maintain control by reducing or elminating skidding in corners. Seatbelts are your first line of defense in a crash, so always wear them.
The Utility Bed Package ($950 on SE, standard on LE) includes a clever channel system in the bed for flexible tie-down configurations to fit a wide range of cargo; a lockable storage system in the outside of the bed; tailgate lighting; a power point at the rear; and that factory-applied spray-in bedliner.
An off-road package for 4WD models ($1,000-$1,450) consists of a unique lower-ratio Dana axle, switch-on-demand electronically activated locking rear differential, Rancho performance gas shock absorbers, large all-terrain tires, fog lights, and skid plates for the radiator, oil pan and transfer case. The less ambitious Trac Package ($300) adds the locking differential to a 2WD XE or SE.
All models can be equipped with XM Satellite Radio ($400). Only SE and LE Crew Cabs are available with DVD entertainment ($1450); only LE Crew Cabs can be ordered with a sunroof ($900).
Other options are available as well; still, Nissan has made no effort to match the staggering mix of options in engine, transmissions, body styles and accessories that greet a Big Three pickup buyer. So you'll have to look elsewhere if you want a big duallie or a cheap, V6-powered regular cab. Nissan says its plan is to get the basics right and then build on that with a new level of style and innovation.
Safety features include optional front-seat side-impact air bags and curtain air bags. The Titan is the first full-size pickup to offer curtain air bags, which can improve protection against head injuries in a side-impact or rollover accident. Standard safety features on the 2005 Titan include dual-stage front air bags with seat belt sensors and a front-passenger occupant classification senso.