Don’t expect Nissan to build a new Ram rival – report

Don’t expect Nissan to build a new Ram rival – report
Don’t expect Nissan to build a new Ram rival – report

Ram 1500 and Chevrolet Silverado sales are growing in Australia, and the Ford F-150 and Toyota Tundra are arriving soon – but don’t expect Nissan to follow suit.

Automotive News reports Nissan still has no plans to replace its Ram 1500-rivalling Titan pickup truck, and production of the model will end late in 2024.

That kills any chances of the Titan coming Down Under, even as sales of large pickup trucks surge.

Automotive News reported back in June 2022 word from a source that the Titan was dying, and it was just a matter of when.

Titan XD

“There’s no plan engineering’s working on for replacing it, updating it,” the source said, adding, “It’s dead.”

Its anticipated demise will allow Nissan to free up more capacity at its Canton, Mississippi factory to produce electric vehicles.

Nissan already killed the Titan in Canada for 2021, despite that market’s similarly strong appetite for pickup trucks. It’s now a US-market exclusive.

The current, second-generation Titan entered production late in 2015, powered by a naturally aspirated 5.6-litre petrol V8 and available in regular and heavy-duty XD guises.

Nissan also offered a Titan XD with a 5.0-litre Cummins turbo-diesel V8, as well as a two-door single-cab body style, before dropping these options for 2020.

The pickup received a fairly substantial refresh for 2020 with more power and torque, a new transmission, and a raft of new features including a suite of active safety equipment, LED headlights, and a panoramic sunroof.

However, the Titan still lacks a more efficient six-cylinder engine option like all its rivals, as well as any form of electrification in a segment where mild-hybrid, hybrid, and even full-electric trucks are available.

The company targeted 100,000 annual sales in the US market and five per cent market share. In its best year, 2017, it reached 52,924 sales and 2.2 per cent share, but it’s been an almost entirely downhill trajectory ever since.

That high watermark was also well below that of the first-generation Titan, which exceeded 80,000 deliveries in two separate years.

Last year, Nissan sold just 15,063 Titans, and market share has sat around just one per cent. That saw it be outsold by the electric Rivian R1T.

In contrast, Toyota consistently sold around 110,000 Tundras in the US market each year between 2014 and 2020. Last year, it cracked six digits again with 104,246 sales in the US.

First-gen Titan King CabSecond-gen Titan Single Cab

But even mighty Toyota has struggled to topple the American Big 3. Just looking at 2022, the Tundra was outsold more than two-to-one in the US by the GMC Sierra, more than four-to-one by Ram’s pickup truck range, more than five-to-one by the Chevrolet Silverado, and more than six-to-one by the Ford F-Series.

It’s worth noting those sales tallies do include each models’ respective heavy-duty models, and the Tundra doesn’t have a heavy-duty line. Nevertheless, it shows how loyal the U.S. – the world’s largest market for this class of truck – is to its domestic brands.

Interestingly, the second-gen Nissan Titan had originally been intended to be a twin to the Ram 1500 as part of a partnership between Nissan and what was then Chrysler LLC, but these plans were scuttled by the 2008 global financial crisis.

The tie-up would have also seen Nissan build a small car for the Dodge brand called the Hornet.

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