When is an older truck a better truck?
Among all the half-ton trucks currently in the segment, the Nissan Titan has always flown a bit under the radar. That’s a shame, because it’s been a really solid truck at its core — at least in our experience. Outside your die-hard fans, you won’t see these on the road nearly as often as your Ford F-150s, Chevy Silverados or Ram 1500s.
Nevertheless, Nissan continues to build a competitor to all those trucks as well as the Toyota Tundra, and you can still get a second-generation truck band new for 2022. But how much has the Titan really changed from the first generation model? Can you argue that it really eclipses the first-generation with the changes Nissan did make over the years? TFL viewer and friend Angel brought in his lifted and tuned 2008 model, while Nathan and Andre examine the differences and similarities between his Pro-4X and the current (2021) model, which we have on a long-term loan from Nissan.
At the heart of both trucks, you have Nissan’s 5.6-liter VK series “Endurance” V8 engine. The first-generation VK56DE version in the original Titan put out around 317 horsepower, at least in stock tune. In Angel’s case, the UpRev tune, new exhaust and a few other tweaks ostensibly raise that figure to around 395 horsepower (so the previous owner says) — on par with the second-generation truck.
By 2015, Nissan updated the current engine (VK56VD) with its more advanced Variable Valve Event & Lift system as well as direct injection. These days, the Endurance V8 in the modern Nissan Titan manages 400 horsepower in stock tune, as well as 413 lb-ft of torque on premium fuel. While 2016 to 2020 models packed a 7-speed automatic transmission, Nissan fitted a newer 9-speed unit into 2021 and forward trucks.
Check out more on each truck below, as well as some surprising 0-60 runs!