Does the 2020 Nissan Titan Finally Compete Against the Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado? (Video)

We test MPG, towing, and its off-road capability.

2020 Nissan Titan (photo: TFLtruck)

It’s time to take the new 2020 Nissan Titan for a drive and see how it stacks up against the competition after this thorough update. It’s not an all-new truck, but Nissan freshened up the exterior style, gave the truck a new 9-speed automatic transmission, added new technology, and more. Here are all the details.

2020 Nissan Titan

Under the hood is a mostly unchanged 5.6-liter gas V8. The engine tuning has been updates so the engine can react to different octane levels. The engine’s new rating with premium fuel is 400 hp and 413 lb-ft of torque. If you use regular fuel, then the output is the same as before (390 hp and 394 lb-ft of torque). There is only one engine/transmission combination. It’s the V8 and the 9-speed automatic transmission. The previous 7-speed is no longer available.

I drove an ad-hoc city and highway loop near Park City, Utah and the Titan’s trip meter read 17.1 MPG after 27.4 miles. I was not able to verify this fuel economy reading a fuel pump during this event, but we hope to test the truck in Colorado on the Ike Gauntlet™ and our highway MPG loop.

Next up was a short towing loop on the I-80 interstate. Nissan prepared several trailers for towing with 2020 Titan King Cabs. I chose the heaviest, which was an Airstream camping trailer with a weight approaching 6,000 lbs. With the tow/haul mode enabled, the transmission shifted quickly and the truck and trailer accelerated with authority (even at high altitude of about 6,500 ft above sea level). I noticed the transmission was hunting for gear a bit when I tried to accelerate to 70 MPH going into the wind. The transmission settled down once we reached the cruising speed.

The maximum towing rating for the new 2020 Titan is 9,370 lbs, and the maximum payload is 1,680 lbs. This does not come close to the ratings from the major competitors. The Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado 1500 can be configured to tow over 13,000 lbs. The competitor payload ratings can reach well over 2,000 lbs.

The off-road portion of the test was reserved for the PRO-4X crew cab. The truck has mostly the same chassis and suspension. It has several skid plates to protect the vital components. The Bilstein shocks are still there as well as the selectable locking rear differential. The truck we drove is still using General Grabber all-terrain tires. The new PRO-4X did very well on the moderately difficult trail that Nissan prepared.

Nissan has not yet announced pricing for the new Titan truck. EPA fuel economy ratings are also not available. The 2020 Titan goes on sale in early 2020, so we will know the rest of the specs soon.