Revisiting "The Other Truck" Of all the segments in the American vehicle market, the full-size truck market has proven the most difficult to crack for foreign automakers. Blame the Chicken Tax, dyed-in-the-wool brand fanatics, decades of buying tradition or all three, but truck buyers have barely given Toyota and Nissan a fraction of the sales ladled onto Ford, Chevrolet and Ram. In fact, last year, Toyota saw just 82,908 Tundra units roll off of dealer lots. While that number seems astronomical compared to the 21,994 Titan models Nissan shifted during the same time period, both stats fall far behind even the third place Ram, which sold 257,610 units last year. The easy assumption is that trucks like the Tundra and Titan simply lack the competitive capability to hold their heads high among their American counterparts. With offerings like the 2013 Ford F-150 EcoBoost and 2013 Ram 1500, modern domestic offerings are now more efficient than ever without sacrificing their already impressive tow ratings. Given just how long it's been since the Titan landed in showrooms, is there any reason at all to look outside of the Big Three for a pickup purchase? We decided to spend a week reacquainting ourselves with one to find out. It's been eight years since the Titan first bowed. Even so, it's aged well aesthetically. It's been eight years since the Titan first bowed, and the model has received remarkably few aesthetic adjustments in that time. Even so, the truck has aged well. On the street, the Titan is a handsome machine. Its chrome grille and bumper treatments are tasteful without straying into garishness, and the relatively short front overhang gives onlookers the impression this is a truck that will go where the driver points it, even if that means over the occasional Prius. The squared-off headlamp arrays still look fetching enough even after languishing on the front fascia for so many years, though we did find the area around the front tow hooks to be a bit too claustrophobic to easily hook up chunky tow straps or hefty chains. Leave the rescue operations to someone else. Move to the truck's side, and it's easy to appreciate the functionality designers have incorporated into the Titan. The greenhouse features plenty of glass, yielding excellent visibility from the driver's seat. Expandable tow mirrors make it easy to keep an eye on trailer movement and the lockable in-bed storage compartment is a great place to store a tow strap, tie-downs and a set of gloves. With a configurable plastic shelf, the storage can be adjusted to accommodate a variety of small cargo, though we have to wonder why Nissan relegated the cabinet to just one side of the bed. Likewise, we were frustrated by the fact that the box can only be opened using the truck's key. You're simply out of luck if you need a buddy to grab something out of the cabinet while the engine is running. Thank you, Titan, we know there's a trailer uncomfortably …
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|MPG||13 City / 18 Hwy|
|Transmission||5-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||317 @ 5200 rpm|
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