It's about 90 minutes into our time with the 2017 Nissan Titan and here comes Vince in his murdered-out Hemi-powered Ram. He's right on schedule. I know what's coming. Vince is the contractor that lives down the street. His black-on-black pickup even wears the new-issue, old-school black California plates that have become the rage. And it rumbles through an aftermarket exhaust. Not even a hello. He wants to check out the new Titan. "Can you open the hood?" he asks. "Is it fast?" Suddenly it's a scene from the original Fast and Furious, except it's a couple of balding suburbanites comparing specs on their $50,000 4x4s in the middle of the day. Yup, it's more than a little ridiculous. It feels like this knucklehead wants to race, so I channel my best Dom Torreto and give Vince the numbers along with a little smack talk. "This is the 2017 Titan," I say, "it's the lighter-duty, half-ton brother to the Titan XD Nissan introduced last year. It's powered by a 390-horsepower all-aluminum 5.6-liter V8 with double overhead cams, 32 valves, and direct injection. It's backed by a seven-speed automatic. And it should smoke your Hemi." I'm not really sure that's true, but Vince seems to buy it. He backs off and turns his attention to the Titan's styling and its interior, which don't seem to impress him much. He makes a lap around the truck, jumps in the Titan's driver's seat, pushes a few buttons, and feels around a bit. He shrugs. "I like my Ram better," he says before firing up his Hemi and rumbling off into the distance. A week later, after driving the new Titan several hundred miles in and around Southern California, and a 200-mile rain soaked road trip up and down the coast, I come to the same conclusion as Vince. Our test vehicle is a fully loaded 4x4 example in the Platinum Reserve trim. It's the top of the Titan food chain without moving up to the more capable XD line, which uses a more robust frame to underpin higher payload and towing numbers. Sticker price is $56,595. And it looks imposing and properly rich in all its chrome, dark chrome, and Forged Copper glory. Rolling on 20-inch dark chrome wheels and P275/60R20 rubber, its stance is not exactly monster-truck tough, but it's undeniably worthy of the valet at the Texas Cattle Baron's Ball. Running boards and LED headlights add additional functionality and eye candy. At first blush, the Titan's interior also justifies the truck's lofty sticker price. Nissan's been rockin' interiors lately. The Murano, the Maxima, and the new Armada are all packing incredible interiors that look and feel special for their segments. And our Titan's guts look fantastic in its black and brown two-tone and cube-tufted leather seats. Contrasting stitching is everywhere – on the seats, the dash, even the shifter. Nice touch. The wood and leather steering wheel is also properly upscale, as is the list of amenities including heated and cooled …
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|MPG||15 City / 21 Hwy|
|Transmission||7-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||390 @ 5800 rpm|
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