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2021 Nissan Titan pickup offers power and tech/safety prowess Featured

Posted On Saturday, 30 October 2021 02:59 Written by
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The 2021 Nissan Titan comes with a powerful standard V8 engine. The 2021 Nissan Titan comes with a powerful standard V8 engine. Photo courtesy of Nissan

Much of the talk in the realm of light-duty pickups revolves around the BIg 3 domestic offerings, but beneath all of that there are some hidden gems to be found.

The Nissan Titan can claim this distinction, as it remains as one of the two main options for fans of non-domestic trucks, along with the Toyota Tundra.

The Titan is way lower in the annual sales rankings than the top sellers (for perspective, about 30,000 Titans are sold annually, vs. almost 800,000 Ford F-Series trucks), but not everyone is enamored by the Ford/Chevy/GMC/RAM models, and they need options too, creating the niche market that the Titan can serve. Also of note: Titan trucks are assembled in the U.S. and have North American content, so like most of today’s vehicles it’s not even fully foreign.

I recently tested the 2021 Nissan Titan PRO-4X Crew Cab, and I’m back with a full report.


The 2021 Titan is largely a holdover from the 2020 model. The last full redesign was in 2016, with some refreshes done for 2020, so it’s not as new or luxurious in design as some rivals.

The exterior design still stands out in the segment, with a bold grille and unique bed design on the model I tested. Buyers can choose between a Crew Cab or King Cab setup. The King Cab offers a 79-inch cargo bed, and the Crew Cab offers a 67-inch cargo bed.

Inside this was one of the roomier trucks you will find, with tons of leg room and head room in front and rear seats. There are also nice features such as a power sliding rear window, and lighting in the bed of the truck.

THe quality leather seating offers comfort and good positioning for the driver. Mostly high-end materials are used, but it still has less of a fancy ambience than rivals. Everything in the vehicle, including all buttons and controls, are well laid-out for easy use. One downside is a lack of storage space inside the vehicle for small items compared to rival trucks.

The PRO-4X model featured step boards to allow for easy ingress and egress from the Titan.

Other interior features include a leather steering wheel, dedicated cell phone holder, and auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink universal transceiver, plus rain-sensing wipers.

Exterior features include 18-inch alloy wheels, Full LED headlamps, dual power heated outside mirrors, removable locking tailgate, Class IV integrated receiver hitch, 4-pin/7-pin wiring harness connector,  spray-on bedliner, front tow hooks, and skid plates on the oil plan, fuel tank, transfer case and lower radiator.

A dual-panel panoramic moonroof is also offered, as are mud flaps.


The 2021 Titan comes standard with a 5.6-liter V8 engine offering segment-leading 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque, which is quite powerful and gets you moving with gusto. This is the only engine offered, and it is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission.

The Titan is available in either 2WD or 4WD. If you choose the off-road PRO-4X trim level, 4WD is standard. It features a Shift-on-the-Fly 4WD system, 2-speed transfer case with 4Hi and 4Lo, Bilstein Off-Road Monotube Shocks, 4-wheel power disc brakes, Hill Start Assist and Hill Descent Control, and an Electronic Locking Rear Differential.

Towing capacity is a bit less than rivals, but still impressive. The Titan can tow up to 9.400 pounds (and has a payload of 1,680 pounds), while the heavy-duty Titan XD can tow up to 11,040 pounds (and has a payload of 2,240 pounds)

Overall ride quality was a bit of a mixed experience. On one hand, the powerful engine gets you moving quickly, which is better for highway maneuvering and overtaking than most trucks. And it’s an overall smooth ride in the Titan, with the vehicle being responsive to driver input. But the Titan also had moments where the ride was a bit bumpier than I would have liked, compared to other truck alternatives.


Starting with the 2021 Titan’s infotainment system, which features: Two USB ports, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capability, Bluetooth connectivity, SiriusXM satellite radio, and a 8-inch touchscreen.

I found it to be very responsive to voice commands, understanding well what it is told by the driver. Physical menus on the system are well-designed, user-friendly and self-explanatory, and the steering wheel controls also prove helpful. Connecting a phone is also an easy process, Navigation services are also available, and in a nutshell you can call this a simple and effective infotainment system

The Titan also stands out in the safety arena, starting with its strong government safety ratings vs. other trucks.

There is also a standard Nissan Safety Shield 360 package, which features key safety features such as: Forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and pedestrian detection, Blind spot monitoring, Rear cross traffic alert, Lane departure warning, Rear parking sensors and rearview camera, and even a driver drowsiness monitor, which will warn you if you may be too tired to continue driving.

The Titan also features Intelligent Cruise Control, push button start, and a rear seat belt reminder, plus Traffic Sign Recognition, 4-wheel Anti-Lock Brakes, and a LATCH system for car seats.


The fuel mileage numbers on hte Titan are officially 15 city/20 highway/17 combined. But I only averaged 12.4 mpg in real-world testing, which was disappointing and among the worst in class.


The 2021 Titan that I tested was priced just over $60,000; and the base price starts about $39K. 
The heavy-duty version of the Titan, known as the Titan XD is a bit pricier, starting around $45K..

Trim levels for the Titan are S, SV, PRO-4X, SL, and Platinum Reserve.

It also comes with the best warranty you’ll find on a truck, a 5-year/100,000 mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, which is a big selling point for those hoping to protect their pocketbooks down the road.


With a standard powerful V8 engine, impressive tech and safety prowess, and strong warranty coverage, the 2021 Nissan Titan has a place in today’s truck market, especially for those seeking a non-domestic alternative.

===== can be found on Twitter @AutoTechReview, or stay updated at the AutoTechReviews Facebook page.  

Matt Myftiu can be found on Twitter @MattMyftiu

Additional Info

  • Vehicle: 2021 Nissan Titan 
  • Price as tested: $60,460 (starts around $39K)   
  • Best feature: Powerful truck, roomy interior, lots of standard safety and tech   
  • Rating: 3.5 out of five stars    
  • Who will want this vehicle?: Full-size pickup truck buyers seeking a powerful and roomy, non-domestic option that will get the job done
Matt M. Myftiu

Matt Myftiu has been a journalist for two decades with a focus on technology, NASCAR and autos.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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