2010 Nissan Titan Reviewed: Mike Delfino's Trade-in

March 23, 2010

Nissan Titan:  Another season; Why did Mike Delfino trade in?

On "Desperate Housewive's" Wisteria Lane, the neighborhood plumber's workhorse was a Nissan Titan.  He has since traded for another model, but Nissan says the full-size Titan truck has a future.  Previously, Nissan said its upcoming Titan would share the Dodge Ram's platform, however Chrysler's breakup trashed that plan.  Instead, Nissan freshened this domestically built rig.  I drove the Crew Cab Pro 4X.  With options, this rough-and-tumble hauler lists for nearly $42,000.  Now you know why handymen make big bucks.

The Pro 4X has two front thrones, a middle bench seat and a back bed equipped with an alloy extender, sturdy tie-down tracks and lighthouse-grade night lights.  This stiff riding truck clobbers you with more kicks and jolts in its wiggly cabin than the Saints' Garrett Hartley.  Its part-time, four-wheel drive system binds on slippery pavement.  Reserve it for off-road or deep snow.  Regardless of where you drive, the Titan's carbon footprint is a crater; parking maneuvers require a dime-store parking lot.  Expect 10-12 mpg.  EPA estimates: 12 city and 17 highway.

While the front leather-trimmed, overstuffed, seats are supportive, the interior needs improvement.  For example, the headliner and plastic bits are low rent. But spiffy red stitching and black-magic gauges including a transmission fluid temperature indicator are welcome.  If you think four doors turn this truck into carpool fodder, think again.  The Mercury Breezeway-like retractable rear window is trick but you cannot see a Toyota Corolla behind this super-sized, Alpinist special.  Likewise, the "A" pillars are so wide they blot out crossing guards and school kids.  The aptly named Titan is better suited to fetch coworkers on your way to the job site.

When toting freight, the 317-hp, flex-fuel V8 engine is adequate.  The five-speed automatic has a tow-haul mode.  Nonetheless, engine drone is an unpleasant highway companion--like motoring in a GE MobileMaid dishwasher.   In contrast, steering feel is impressive.  It's quick, communicative and nicely weighted; like a Nissan Z car.

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