The 2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X is a big, beastly pickup truck that is still focused on the roots of what makes a truck. It contains none of the high-end comforts of most of the competition, outside of a goodly array of electronics. The aging Titan is, in many ways, little like the burly old man who still hangs with the young bucks despite being out of place.

2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X - Gowdy 5 - AOA1200px

Specs:

  • Manufacturer: Nissan
  • Year, Model: 2015 Titan Pro-4X Luxury King
  • Class: Full-sized pickup truck
  • Powertrain: 5.6L V8, 5spd auto
  • Base Price: $37,490
  • MSRP as tested: $43,355
  • Availability: Now

Overview

Now in its seventh year, the 2014 Nissan Titan is definitely long in the tooth. For the 2014 model year, little has changed since 2013, which hadn’t changed much from before that. Everything about the Titan is workhorse spartan, with durability and plain strength being the key impression taken away once you’ve driven this big pickup.

As the youngest of the pickup trucks in the full-size American market, the Titan is also the lowest-selling. Inside Nissan, though, we’ve heard that the company hadn’t planned on the truck taking off in a big way quickly, but that all eyes should be on the next-generation, due to unveil in Detroit come January. Like Toyota before them, Nissan is taking it slow and steady with this truck to gain inroads into the full-sized pickup truck market.

Under the Hood of the 2014 Titan

2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X - engine - AOA1200pxWith pickup trucks, the focus is usually on two things: capability and more capability. That begins with the powerplant. The 5.6-liter V8 under the Titan’s hood is the only offering the truck has, but it’s a good one. It’s powerful, time-tested, and durable. It is also thirsty and under-performing compared to others now being offered elsewhere.

Despite those drawbacks, the big V8 in the Titan is definitely a workhorse. The tow rating for the truck is 9,500 pounds, but that relatively low number (others offer more) is due to the truck itself rather than the engine. This five-six can pull a lot more than that, given its outputs (317 horses, 385 lb-ft), but limitations of the chassis hold it back.

We’d mentioned that the 2014 Titan is thirsty as well, getting 12 mpg in the city and 17 on the highway in this Pro-4X package. Two-wheel drive versions gain 1 mpg on each of those numbers. These numbers from a V8-powered pickup would be great if this were 2008, but it’s 2014 and a 14 mpg combined EPA rating is below the curve.

Inside the 2014 Nissan Titan

The interior of the Titan Pro-4X Luxury as we drove it is well-made and solid. Some bemoan it as lacking personality, but it gives an impression of work-readiness and to-the-point simplicity. It’s comfortable, well laid-out, and there’s nothing cheap about it.

The interior of the 2014 Nissan Titan lacks the panache of the newer competition and is very dated by comparison, but this is a truck that’s on its last year before a major upgrade. By the same token, the 2013 Toyota Tundra Limited was just as dated when we reviewed that. In context, this last year of the current-generation Titan still projects a robust musk that speaks of hard work.

For Nissan’s reference, however, as they put the final touches on the next-generation of this truck, we did find some annoyances here. First, the window controls are up on the door sill where they get rained, snowed, and otherwise dumped upon. It’s an annoyance we’ve noted on other trucks and SUVs in the past. Next, the trailer brake assist lever housing (installed by dealerships, we should note) was placed right where your shin should be when driving our test truck. Otherwise, we found little to fault the 2014 Titan for.

On the Road with the Nissan Titan

Around town, the Titan handles like most full-sized pickups do. It’s not particularly nimble or fast, but it does have a steady feel that evokes calm. It’s maneuverable enough to park in most places not over-focused on compacts and the 2014 Nissan Titan has a well-placed backup camera option to help in that respect.

On the highway, the Nissan Titan is as comfortable as a truck can be without adding a lot of gimmicks. For long drives, few will find the Titan to be a bad choice.

2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X - rodeo 1 - AOA1200px

Off the Road with the Titan Pro-4X

With the Pro-4X package, offroad just seems mandatory. Although we are big fans of the Titans little brother, the Frontier, in its Pro-4X package, we didn’t find the same joy with the big truck. It’s competent and capable, of course, but its larger size and longer bed mean it has less fun-factor off the road. On the up side, this means more stability for those who offroad for work rather than play.

On bumpy roads and dirt, the 2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X does well. You’ll feel the washboards more than you will in a smaller truck, of course, since the added weight and longer wheelbase mean it cannot float the divots, but it’s superior hauling capacity and better tow rating also mean it can bring all of your stuff along for the ride.

We took the 2014 Titan to Curt Gowdy State Park in Wyoming and drove it around the lake, through some mud, and back home through a hail storm and felt little reason to worry. In more controlled, closer-to-home offroading, we found it to be capable of getting through the muddy field to service cattle and able to traverse a muddy dirt road to get us back home when required. All in all, a solid 4×4.

Competition

2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X - important cargo - AOA1200pxThere are four major truck makers in the half-ton market in the U.S. All are competition for the 2014 Titan. The aforementioned Toyota Tundra is newly-updated, but disappointingly so, while the Ram 1500 (updated last year) is one of the top contenders in today’s market. Ford has the best-selling F-150, of course, which will see an all-new version hitting showrooms anytime now while Chevrolet/GMC have new trucks already on the market as well. Of these, the Titan is, honestly, probably the bottom of the pack because it’s the only one still riding on seven year old designs.

Strong Points

Tough and capable.

Exudes strength and robust ability.

Weaknesses

Very dated, with furniture and layout that is behind the times.

Limited options, with only two cab offerings and not much in the way of trim levels.

Conclusions

The 2014 Nissan Titan Pro-4X is a great all-around pickup truck in many ways, but is dated and behind the times when compared to the newly-minted competition. It is, however, solid and capable and gives a definite aura of workaday strength to those who drive it.

Test Period Length and Limitations
Vehicle was a press loan from the manufacturer, driven for about a week. A total of 284 miles were put on the Titan in a mixture of town, city and highway driving as well as in offroad conditions of varying complexity.

 

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An automotive enthusiast for most of his adult life, Aaron has worked in and around the industry in many ways. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press (RMAP) and freelances as a writer and journalist around the Web and in print. You can find his portfolio at AaronOnAutos.com.

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