Living up to the name "Titan," it's only fitting for Nissan's full-size pickup to be equipped to handle giant-size duties. The 2012 PRO-4X Crew Cab 4x4 is the choice in the Titan lineup for truckers needing a pickup to cope with the rigors of off-road use, towing and toting hefty loads, and hauling passengers.
Base priced at $37,640, the PRO-4X Crew Cab 4x4 not only is beefed up to handle the rough stuff, but is also given exterior and interior enhancements to boost macho and distinguish it from other Titan models. PRO-4X trucks feature a body-color grille and bumpers, and large "PRO-4X OFFROAD" decals on the bed sides. These graphics pop from the test truck's bright Red Alert paint -- one of five exterior color choices.
The PRO-4X is poised on 18-inch, six-spoke, aluminum-alloy, painted off-road wheels with distinctive center caps. Wrapping these wheels are large P275/70R-18 BFGoodrich Rugged Trail all-terrain tires. Wheel-well openings are trimmed in black molding and standard splashguards hang behind the tires.
Along with the aggressive-tread tires, off-road capability is increased with an Electronic Locking Rear Differential, lower 3.357 final-drive ratio, Rancho performance shocks, and skid plates shielding the oil pan and transfer case.
The PRO-4X has a 10.7-inch ground clearance at the rear axle. A dash-mounted knob activates four-wheel traction with 2WD/4HI/4LO modes via an electronic-control part-time transfer case.
A useful PRO-4X extra is a lockable bedside storage compartment, positioned on the driver side behind the lower rear wheel well. This cubby is handy for stowing items such as tools, ropes and a utility light.
Despite the PRO-4X's rugged underpinnings, the ride quality of the pickup is surprisingly good. Getting the hefty 5,467-pound crew cab moving is a 5.6-liter DOHC Endurance V-8 engine, partnered with a five-speed automatic transmission with Tow/Haul mode. The powerplant delivers 317 horsepower at 5,200 rpm and 385 lb.-ft. of torque at 3,400 rpm.
Trailer-towing capacity is 9,300 pounds and maximum payload is 1,842 pounds. Estimated fuel economy is 12 miles per gallon city and 17 mpg highway. Nissan recommends that regular-unleaded gasoline be used to fill its 28-gallon tank.
Opting for the $1,560 PRO-4X Premium Utility Package improves the truck's utility. Dual power and heated extendable tow mirrors are added, and the 5-foot-7-inch bed is fitted with a Utili-track Channel System and toughened with a coat of factory-applied spray-on bedliner. The Nissan-pioneered Utili-track system allows four tie-down cleats to be slid along bed-side channels and locked into desired positions. A bed-mounted 12-volt DC power outlet, that is useful for plugging in a utility light, and dual-lamp tailgate-area illumination also come with the package.
Along with features that help answer work demands, the PRO-4X Premium Utility Package enhances convenience within the cab. The truck is upgraded with an eight-speaker Rockford Fosgate AM/FM/six-CD audio system, XM Satellite Radio and XM NavTraffic, and HomeLink Universal Transceiver that allows the control of house lighting, garage doors and security gates. Enhancing driver comfort are power-adjustable accelerator and brake pedals, and the driver seat has eight-way power adjustability. The PRO-4X's front captain's chairs with inboard folding armrests support the body with well-bolstered seatbacks.
The test-truck seats are upholstered in the standard two-tone Charcoal cloth upholstery, and two-tone Charcoal leather with "PRO-4X OFFROAD" embroidered on the seatbacks is available with the $2,230 PRO-4X Luxury Package. The Luxury Package also adds heated front seats, four-way-adjustable passenger seat and memory system.
Leather steering wheel and shifter grips, trimmed with red stitching, team with orange-ringed, white-faced gauges give the PRO-4X interior a distinctive look.
An extra $3,000 for the PRO-4X Technology Package makes life inside the cab even more appealing. This package adds: Nissan Navigation System with 8-inch flip-down monitor; remote control; DVD player with auxiliary inputs; two wireless headsets; and power sliding moonroof.
Headroom and legroom are excellent in the front, as well as in the rear 60/40-split seat, which can comfortably accommodate three adults. Seatbacks have a relaxing 24-degree recline and cushions flip up to create extra cargo space. The front passenger seat also folds to extend cargo room.
Nissan's 2012 Titan PRO-4X Crew Cab 4x4 is a handsome pickup with strong off-road credentials and a spacious, comfortable cab. Notable are its option packages that significantly pump up luxury with a long list of comfort and convenience features.