2020 Titan XD Platinum Reserve
Nissan updated the Titan XD for 2020 with a bit of a refresh. Horsepower is up just a little when using premium fuel and gone is the 5.0 Cummins V8 diesel.
Nissan only offers the Titan XD in one configuration, the Crew Cab with a 6.5-foot bed. This was the biggest seller in previous years and should help Nissan cut costs while still providing consumers with what they want the most.
Outside the Titan XD has been given a new front design that’s a bolder and more aggressive. Every trim level has a unique grill and our Platinum Reserve tester is a massive chrome affair. Standard on this trim are well integrated LED headlights and fog lights in the bumper. Chrome trims the lower bumper opening and wraps underneath the truck out of sight.
Moving down the side, extendable tow mirrors have chrome backing to match the rest of the Platinum Reserve trim. The door handles, running boards, and V8 Endurance badge are all chromed as well. The size of this truck really shows form this angle. Also standard are 20-inch wheels, which are of course chrome.
Onto the rear, we again find a large chrome applique on the rear of the truck. The bed is considered a long bed for the half-ton trucks and a short bed for the ¾ and 1-ton trucks. This is very fitting of the Titan XD as it is an inbetweener.
Standard are the bed rail system with tie down cleats, factory gooseneck mounting system, and LED bed lighting.
With the Platinum Reserve trim, a high-quality interior is included. The heated and cooled tan leather seats feel luxurious and comfortable. The steering wheel is a stylish wood and leather combination, and of course it is heated.
Also updated is the 9-inch screen, which is larger and clearer than the previous model year. Standard with that larger screen are Apple Car Play and Android Auto. The controls are straightforward and easy to use. Everything is clear and there are physical buttons for all the necessary features.
The center arm rest is
Of course, the interior is very large with plenty of space for 5 adults to sit comfortably. The rear outboard seats are heated, and there is adequate storage underneath. The rear has a fold down armrest with a couple of cup holders in it.
Driving the Titan XD
Nissan’s 5.6-liter V8 is one of our favorite engines and it’s just as good in the Titan XD as it is in the rest of the lineup. The Endurance engine now has 400 horsepower and 413 foot-pounds of torque. It is very smooth and fast revving for an engine this size.
Cabin noise is on par with most pickup trucks, with a ride that is stiffer than the half-tons, and smoother than the three-quarter-tons with the exception of the Ram 2500 with either the coil or air springs.
Part of the increased capacity of the Titan XD are stronger brakes. This translates into a brake pedal that has more travel and is maybe a little less responsive than that of the Titan.
The LED headlights are very bright with good a cutoff. The dial to the left of the steering wheel adjusts the headlight angle. This should be more common as often people will level a truck, lifting only the front, without adjusting the headlights to match the new angle. Also this is very beneficial when hauling or towing for the quick and easy adjustment. Overall, they compete with the best in class.
Towing with the Titan XD
Towing is possibly the biggest reason to upgrade to a Titan XD over a Titan. The XD has a beefier frame, stiffer suspension, higher payload and tow ratings, a gooseneck mount, and a standard trailer brake controller.
Yes, we know that the tow rating isn’t that significantly more than the half-ton trucks, and there are even half ton trucks with higher ratings like the Ford F-150 at over 13,000 pounds. However, the Titan XD effectively has an 11,000-pound towing capacity regardless of what options are added to it. All the half ton trucks must be properly optioned to meet or exceed this rating, which means that only a few configurations can actually tow that much weight.
The XD is very stable when towing and handles the load well. The stiffer suspension and heavier duty components when compared to half-ton trucks makes the Titan XD a better choice for those who regularly tow in the 8,000 to 11,000-pound range.
When hitting the rough stuff, the XD performs quite well. Nissan’s ABLS system which applies the brakes to the spinning wheels is very effect. High speed off-roading is quite rough, putting the Titan XD on par with most three-quarter-ton trucks we’ve tested.
In the low speed articulation and steep hill climb, the XD performed very well making the climb up the hard line in 4wd high and 4wd low. The biggest issues we ran into were the approach, breakover, and departure angles.
Pro-4x trim is more capable and offers a locking rear differential for even more traction.
Pricing the Titan XD
The base price for a 2020 Titan XD Platinum Reserve 4×4 is $61,690. The Titan XD Platinum Reserve we tested was equipped with the Platinum Utility Package ($1,390), Platinum Reserve mud flaps ($285), Rear Seat Entertainment ($1,990), Moonroof Package ($1,490), Protection Package 2 ($590), and Illuminated kick plate ($350). Along with the $1,595 destination charge the total MSRP of our test Titan XD was $69,380
The Titan XD is an excellent truck, but it is in a very small niche of what buyers actually need and want. If you’re looking to tow at the upper limits of a half-ton but want more safety and stability, then the XD might just be the best truck for you.
Matthew Barnes is an experienced towing expert. He works as a mechanical engineer and his day job involves testing a variety of vehicles while towing trailers of all types and sizes. Matt shares his knowledge by writing for automotive news outlets in the evenings. When he’s not working he can be found spending time in the great outdoors with his family. He enjoys camping, hiking, canyoneering, and backpacking. Whenever possible he spends time riding in or on any power sports vehicle he can find and claims he can drive anything with a motor, which probably isn’t true.
Matt lives in the Utah mountains and often posts cool off-roading videos to his Instagram and YouTube channel.