If you’ve been watching the new 2016 Nissan Titan XD and its Cummins diesel V8, but really want to pump gasoline when you buy fuel, your day has finally come. The new 5.6 liter Endurance V8 is now landing on store shelves.
And in that way we just had a chance to take a few of the Titan XD Crew Cab out for a quick drive in the hills of Tennessee where their engines are built, and get a feel for what the quieter less expensive trucks are all about.
First off the new 5.6 liter V8 is more powerful than before, now with 390 horsepower and 401 pound-feet of torque. It also now comes with more gears, a seven-speed automatic transmission whether you opt for two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.
In our first drives, the engine belts out a nice highly machined note from under the hood and pulls strong as you’d expect with near class leading power. We drove trucks both unloaded and saddled down with about 850 pounds of sand, which barely registers on the acceleration.
One thing notably different from the last generation Titan is the lack of a loud exhaust note. This may come as a positive to some who felt the last truck over did it just a tad, but may be missed by some. Regardless of such, it’s a quiet ride at speed on the highway or back roads around Tennessee.
The ride is very similar to that of the Cummins Titan XD we’ve driven a number of times. The heavy duty chassis feels solid as a rock, even with a load. The steering feel is a bit lighter than in the diesel since the gas V8 is indeed lighter.
That weight difference translates to its payload and towing which differs from the diesel. The payload is up 503 pounds to 2,594, an add due to the lighter engine. Towing however is down by 1,044 pounds to 11,270, a subtract due in large part to less torque and engine braking capability of the diesel.
As far as fuel economy goes, like the diesel Titan XD its GVWR is such that they don’t have to publish EPA estimates. In our drives which covered back roads, freeway and some city driving, saw 12-13 mpg on average according to the in-dash trip computer.
Pricing for the Titan XD gas V8 is about $5,000 less than the Cummins model across the board. A based S grade Crew Cab two-wheel drive starts at $35,290. Stepping to the top of the line, a Platinum Reserve four-wheel drive Crew Cab starts at $55,520.
Single and King Cab model production won’t be starting until late this year or early next. Either way they will be considered 2017 models when they arrive. Additionally, if you are waiting on the half-ton Nissan Titan, that won’t launch until late this summer.
Nissan’s strategy has been to start at the top of the line and work their way down to the base levels over a year’s time. This does two things. First, it sets the imagery and perception of the new Titan as a premium product as people begin seeing them out on the roads. Second, it allows the factory and production a phased ramp up to assure quality control. The latter is what they tell us.
In any case, the new Nissan Titan XD gas V8 we feel is just as premium feeling a product as we have said the Cummins diesel powered model is from the get go. It’s got the Toyota Tundra’s brand of high quality sound and feel, with a good deal extra capability that you can’t get in any half-ton truck out there.