Introducing PickupTruck.com's 2008 Nissan Titan PRO-4X Community Project Truck
By: Mike Levine Posted: 11-05-07 23:41 PT
© 2007 PickupTruck.com

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Watch Championship Off Road Racing (CORR) champ Carl Renezeder expertly pilot his PRO-4 Nissan Titan-bodied racer around the track and you’ll witness what any four wheel drive owner with half a pulse would love to do with their truck in their dirtiest fantasies. Literally speaking, of course.

Mr. Renezeder just won the 2007 CORR trophy in his Lucas Oil sponsored Titan. The PRO-4 division truck he drives is a full size, purpose-built 4WD racer with a chrome moly space frame and fiberglass skin. An 800-horsepower motor propels the truck around closed course dirt tracks - when its wheels are in contact with the dirt instead of the lower troposphere.

Our vicarious thrills and off road dreams, though, have to yield to mundane realities, like carrying up to six people, occasional light duty towing, and commuting in LA's stop and go traffic.

But that doesn't mean we still can't have fun off-road, too.

Our brand new long-term 2008 Nissan Titan PRO-4X project truck is the civilian version of Mr. Renezeder’s ride. It's one of the most capable from-the-factory 4x4s you can buy, even if it’s much more modest than Mr. Renezeder's CORR PRO-4 Titan.

The PRO-4X is a new model in the Titan lineup. It's slotted between the mid-tier SE and highline LE trims. The PRO-4X builds on last year’s optional off road package, which included GKN’s Electronic Differential Lock (EDL), Rancho shocks, large wheels and tires (18x8” alloys and P275/70R18 BFGoodrich Rugged Trails) and two extra skid plates. PRO-4X adds body colored front and rear bumpers, white-faced gauges and PRO-4X themed seats inside the truck.

We decided to buy a Crew Cab, short wheelbase PRO-4X Titan with 5.5-foot cargo box. We skipped the King Cab version in favor of the Crew Cab’s extra interior volume. We also passed on the new long wheelbase version, with 7'3" bed, because we aren't planning on towing a gooseneck and wanted the shorter wheelbase for better maneuverability and a steeper breakover angle off roading.

The Titan only comes with one engine choice – the 5.6-liter Endurance V8. It's rated at 317-hp and 385 lb-ft of torque and is paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission. Base price: $33,950.

Once we settled on the base configuration, we needed to figure out which options we wanted before we went shopping for the truck. This was important because we didn't special order the vehicle. We looked online just like other shoppers would. We also wanted just a few key options, to help hold our purchase costs down. We've got big plans to install aftermarket performance and exterior and interior treatments on the truck and the more money we saved up front the bigger the budget would be later for mods and labor.

The first option selected was the $1,200 'Popular Package' with cloth bench seats. Going with the bench gets us room for a third body in the front row plus the center bench back folds forward to provide an arm rest and plenty of storage when there’s nobody in the middle. The cloth seats will be replaced later with custom leather skins.

The Popular Package also comes with power adjustable pedals, digital rear view mirror compass, a bigger overhead console with more storage, dual media player and wireless headphone support - so mom and dad and kids can listen to their own music - and rear sonar system for parking assistance backing up the truck. The last one is a big help maneuvering this truck in tight spots.

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