Nissan is a gutsy brand, overall–willing to take chances that other automakers would have rejected as too risky within the first committee meeting. Look at the 350Z, the Spec-V sedans, or even the alternatively-styled Quest minivan. We credit this audacious attitude with starting the V6 horsepower wars in the midsize sedan class–which we’re all reaping the benefits of, now. Remember, it was the Altima’s 240-horse 3.5-liter that started it all, forcing Honda, Mazda, and even staid Toyota to follow suit by stuffing muscular sixes into their previously bland bread-and-butter cars, just to compete.
Nissan showed the same sort of cojones when they brought the Titan to market. The last bastion of “Big-3”-style Detroit domination, the full-size truck market had been looked upon by pretty much everybody as domestic-only territory. Toyota had made a half-hearted effort earlier, but wasn’t having much success. The conventional wisdom held that nobody here would buy a “real” truck built by foreigners, and that the Japanese didn’t have the experience in the field anyway.
Nissan solved that first problem by building the Titan in Canton Mississippi, with American labor. And the second problem? They licked that one by building one heck of a truck.
Faithful readers will recall our previous encounters with the Nissan Titan. We gave it the usual once-over back in 2004, and found it impressively competent. Then, several months back, we flogged several 4×4 Titans through one of the most challenging off-road courses in the country, and came away doubly impressed with its capabilities. Now, we’ve added a 2006 Nissan Titan SE 4×4 Crew Cab to our long-term fleet, to see how it handles the really rough stuff–living with us. As seriously discerning automotive experts, we’ll be putting this puppy through its paces, and reporting back to you on it all.
Follow this link to read the full review of the 2006 Nissan Titan.