It’s Truck Month at Carsforsale.com, a month-long celebration of man’s other best friend. Trucks have come in many shapes and sizes over the years. What was once a domestic institution has broadened to foreign-owned car companies. To many truck enthusiasts of yesteryear, the idea of a Japanese full-size pickup truck was absurd. But over the course of the last decade, both Nissan and Toyota have proven they’ve got what it takes. Today we are pitting the Nissan Titan against the Toyota Tundra, two trucks that have powered their way to become serious contenders in the full-size segment.
2017 Nissan Titan S Overview
- 5.6-liter, VVEL DOHC 32-valve V8 Engine
- 390 hp and 394 lb-ft of torque
- 21 mpg Highway / 15 mpg City
- $34,78 Starting
- 60 month, 100,000 mile bumper-to-bumper warranty with 36 month, 36,000 mile roadside assistance.
2017 Nissan Titan Review
2017’s Nissan Titan continues the bold statement it made in 2016, carrying over last year’s refreshed design. Compliments to the design team – the flow lines are just right on this truck. Even when parked, it looks like it’s moving. Giving it the most character is the large headlights and bulleted grille. The cab is perfectly proportioned to the rest of the body and bed.
Step inside and you forget that you’re in a truck. It has class. With room to stretch and high-quality materials, it’s a cabin you can soak into. The instrument panel is adorned with wood-tone accents. It has water-resistant seats. Storage isn’t a problem either. Whether you need to store a laptop in the center console or a 20 oz. Slurpee in the large cup holders, nothing feels cramped inside the cabin.
Standard features include:
- NissanConnect Infotainment System (Standard 5-inch Display Screen)
- Smartphone App Integration
- USB port
- Six-speaker audio system
- Text messaging assistant
- Remote keyless entry with Push Button Ignition
The 7-speed automatic transmission paired with a 5.6 L, 390 HP V8 provides plenty of power and offers a diverse range of uses for the Titan. Expect a luxury ride for a truck with smooth shifting thanks to the transmission. And while the fuel economy isn’t great at 15 mpg city / 21 mpg highway, a V6 is in the works. Throw the Titan into Tow Mode and you’ve got 9,730 lb towing capacity and 394 lb-ft of torque.
The Titan has yet to be evaluated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. However, the Titan has an impressive list of safety features available above and beyond six standard airbags and ABS, including:
- Lane Departure Warning
- 360 Around View Mirror
- Blind Spot Warning
- Rear Cross Traffic Alert
- Moving Object Detection
- Tire Pressure Monitoring System
- The Snug Kids Child Seat Fit Guide
If you are a truckie, you’ll love the bed in this beast. Available for the bed is a 110 V power outlet, cargo lights, Utili-track system, in-bed storage boxes, and a bumper step to get you in and out with ease. The in-bed storage boxes can double as coolers for tailgating or camping, complete with plugs to drain melted ice. In fact, an available option is a Bed Tent. Other available features include a 7-inch touchscreen upgrade, 4G wi-fi, voice recognition, heated and cooled front seats, heated back seats, rear-seat DVD entertainment system 12-speaker Rockford Fosgate audio system, Advanced Drive Assist, and SIRIUS XM satellite radio.
60 month, 100,000 mile bumper-to-bumper warranty with 36 month, 36,000 mile roadside assistance.
2017 Toyota Tundra SR5 Overview
- 5.7-liter, DOHC 32-valve V8 Engine
- 381 HP and 401 lb-ft of torque
- 18 mpg Highway / 13 mpg City
- $35,420 Starting
- 36 month, 36,000 mile warranty with 24 month roadside assistance
2017 Toyota Tundra Review
If you are looking for rugged, the 2017 Toyota Tundra is it. Following a redesign in 2014, little has changed outside of minute trim work. However, why mess with something that works? The grille stretches across the nose and says “no glass jaw here.” It has more aggressive angles and resembles a professional football wide receiver if one can make that comparison.
Quite simply, the interior works. Tundra’s layout is both spacious and intuitive. It’s designed for the blue collared worker but has a very nice luxury feel in high-end trims. Large buttons and knobs are easy to use, with or without gloves.
Standard features include:
- 7-inch touch-screen with split-screen display
- Entune Premium Audio with Integrated Navigation and App Suite
- USB 2.0 with iPod Connect
- Advanced Voice Recognition
- AM/FM CD player with MP3/WMA playback
- 9 speakers
- Predictive Traffic and Doppler Weather Overlay
- SiriusXM Satellite Radio
- Integrated Backup Camera Display
Two metrics loom over the hood of this truck: 18 mpg Highway / 13 mpg City. Tundra’s fuel economy simply doesn’t compete with other V8s in its class. But that’s not to say there aren’t some pros with this 6-speed automatic transmission. The Tundra is an off-road machine. Three trim levels, SR5, Limited, and 1794 Edition, offer the TRD off-road package and PRO package. The 5.7-liter, DOHC 32-valve V8 engine offers a lot of power and comes in at 381 HP and 401 lb-ft of torque.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration scored the 2017 Tundra CrewCab 4 Stars overall. Frontal crash tests received 4 stars, side crash tests merited 5 stars, and the rollover assessment earned only 3 stars.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety scores were neither impressive nor terrible. In the Small Overlap Front crash test, the 2017 Tundra was given a marginal rating. The Moderate Overlap Front and Side Collision crash tests scored good ratings, as did the head restraints and seats. Roof strength was scored acceptable, while the headlights scored poor and child seat LATCH system scored marginally.
Toyota placed eight standard airbags in the Tundra, including driver and front passenger knee airbags. It also made available:
- Standard Tire Pressure Monitoring System
- Front and Rear Parking Assist Sonar
- Blind Spot Monitor
- Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
- Trailer-Sway Control and Integrated Trailer Brake Controller
- Standard ToyotaCare no cost maintenance plan with roadside assistance
All Tundra models for the 2017 year come standard with a rearview camera, tow hitch receiver, and trailer sway control. Optional features include the previously mentioned active safety features as well as premium JBL Audio sound system with 12 JBL speakers, subwoofer, amplifier, and heated outside tow mirrors.
36 month, 36,000 mile warranty with 24 month roadside assistance
2017 Toyota Tundra vs Nissan Titan Conclusion
The little things add up in this class of truck. Titan’s drive is superior, as is the storage area and overall fit and finish of the interior. Titan’s gas mileage is easier on the pocketbook, and the 7-gear transmission gives a little more edge than Tundra’s 6. It also comes with a better warranty. But that’s not to say that the Tundra doesn’t have a load of value at the base levels. If comparing apples to oranges, the base model pricing is several thousand less than the Titan’s. Tundra also offers several levels of customization, and more standard safety features.
At the end of the day, both are holding its own in an industry dominated by Detroit-born brands and consumers are taking notice.
Which truck would you rather own? Let us know in the comments!