Nissan Xterra (2005)

16 Oct 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Nissan Xterra (2005)
Nissan Xterra

Nissan Xterra

The Nissan Xterra is a compact SUV based on the Nissan F-Alpha platform, and shares many similarities with the Nissan Frontier pickup. The Xterra is slotted below the Pathfinder in Nissan’s lineup. The Xterra won the North American Truck of the Year award and was Motor Trend magazine’s Sport/Utility of the Year for 2000.

It was again nominated for NACOTY and won Motor Trend’s award for the second time in 2006.

All Xterras are currently built in Smyrna, Tennessee and São José dos Pinhais, Brazil. The Xterra is Nissan’s smallest SUV in the North America other than the X-Trail sold in Canada and Mexico. It is called the Nissan Roniz in Iran, where it is also built, under licence by Pars Khodro.

The Xterra was named after the XTERRA series of off-road triathlon races. Nissan has since become the race series’ primary sponsor.

The Xterra was originally introduced in North America in the 2000 model year and was marketed as a simple, but capable SUV with the slogan Everything you need, nothing you don’t. Although accepted by a wide range of ages, incomes, lifestyles and genders, Nissan marketed the Xterra primarily to the adventurous and outdoor consumer. Many commercials feature one driving the vehicle though mud, unloading mountain bikes out of the back, or packing up surfing equipment.

Two design cues have remained constant through the vehicle’s life, its raised rear roofline and the ‘Hump’ on the back lift gate. The raised roof allows for stadium seating and the hump allowed the inclusion of a first aid kit in the liftgate. Originally, it was added for functional reasons.

First generation


2005 Nissan Xterra

During its first two years, there were three Xterra models. Base XEs came with the 4 cylinder, were manual transmission only, steel wheels, and lacked accessories such as the step rails and a roof rack.

XE Xterras were the main seller for Nissan. XEs could be configure with several option packages, to add features such as the roof rack, side step-rails, or the 3.3-litre V6. The XE proved to be the most popular of the trim levels, with more flexability on equipment options.

A fully loaded XE had almost all the features of the top-of-the-line SE model (minus the flip-up sunroof), while costing and average of $2,000 less.

Nissan Xterra

The SE was the premium trim level for the Xterra. Everything which was an option on the XE came standard on the SE. Nissan, to set apart a fully-optioned XE and the SE added a flip-up sunroof and special badging to the back of the truck (Xterra SE rather than just Xterra).

Several options were available for SE buyers; items such as mudflaps, carpeted floormats, cargo liners, and ventilation microfilters could be added for an additional charge.


Xterra was freshened for 2002. The interior received a redesigned dash and center console, while the biggest changes were to the top-of-the-line powerplant and the front end. In 2001 Nissan restyled the front end of the Frontier aggressively and added overhead clearance in the engine bay.

In 2002 Nissan brought similar changes to the Xterra, including Nissan’s new 210hp 3.3-litre Roots Type Supercharger V6.

Color was also revised in 2002. Aztec Red and Kaki were dropped, while Shock Blue, Sedona, and Molten Lava were introduced. Atomic Orange was later added, but proved short lived. In addition, the audio systems were upgraded.

The premium audio system, a 6-disk AM/FM/CD with 6 speaker setup, was replaced with a 300W Rockford Fosgate AM/FM/CD system with 8 speakers and a large subwoofer that took up a portion of the rear storage area.

Second generation

In 2005, the Xterra was redesigned on a new platform shared by the Nissan Titan and Nissan Frontier. Although appearing smaller than the first generation, the new model is larger in all dimensions. Utilizing Nissan’s 4.0L VQ40DE engine, it produces 265 hp. The new engine is an improvement upon Xterra’s previous powerplant, more refined and incorperating variable valve timing.

Available with a rear differential locker on the off-road model, the Xterra competes with other SUVs of its size.

Nissan Xterra
Nissan Xterra
Nissan Xterra
Nissan Xterra

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