The 2020 Nissan Titan Pro-4X takes the newly refreshed Titan full-sized pickup, adds some kit to give it some off-road grit, as well as a cosmetic treatment to give it a sporty look inside and out. It's not for everybody. Sales lag far behind the Detroit manufacturers, to put it mildly, and even well behind the Toyota Tundra. It lacks the flash of chrome we see on a lot of pickups, and Nissan took an interesting tack with design cues that surely not everyone will love. Finally, there's only one powertrain option: a big, naturally aspirated V8. Its extra equipment is compelling, though; the Bilstein shocks, electronic locking rear differential, big General Grabber tires, skid plates and tow hooks mean you can easily picture yourself far off the beaten path with ease.
The Titan's 5.6-liter V8 provides 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque. That's more power than most other V8s in the class, short of GM's burly 6.2-liter EcoTec3. But, it's the Titan's only engine offering. Want something more economical like Ford's turbo V6 engines or Ram's mild hybrids? No dice. That said, it's a sweetheart of a V8, providing wheel-spinning torque at stoplights, continued pull at the end of highway on-ramps, and a breathy growl of a soundtrack that pairs well with the motive experience. Its nine-speed automatic gearbox is an exceptional match, optimizing gears for a feel of linearity across the board, feeling quicker than the seven-speed auto in the Nissan Armada, and hesitating and hunting less than the 10-speed boxes of the competition.