After a long and uneventful 15 year run, the Nissan Xterra SUV will be discontinued after the 2015 model year.
Nissan has not announced any replacement for this aging body-on-frame SUV and the possibility of a new Xterra arriving anytime soon is really bleak. Currently, the truck and SUV sales are thriving on the success of the car-like crossovers and the only body-on-frame vehicles that are in demand are full-size pick up trucks and SUVs that have large towing capabilities.
Over its 15 year production run, the Nissan Xterra has received only one complete redesign in 2005 and has mostly remained unchanged since. Compared to the latest crop of crossovers and even the Nissan Murano, the interior of the Xterra looks and feels really dated and underwhelming. Other factors contributing to the Xterra’s demise are its underwhelming fuel economy rating, its uneven and wobbly suspension, poor driving dynamics, and a fairly under powered 4.0 L naturally aspirated V6 engine.
Sales of the current generation Nissan Xterra has slid from 72,447 units in 2005 to just 16,505 units in 2014. After the 2008 economic recession and the rise in fuel prices, there was no room for recovery for this doomed model.
Besides terminating the production of the Nissan Xterra, the company will also phase out the current generation Frontier pick-up truck on which the Xterra is based. The discontinuation of the Xterra will allow Nissan to use this new space in its Canton, Mississippi plant to build the new 2016 Murano crossover.
Compared to the modern crossover, the body-on-frame Nissan Xterra was almost as ancient as dinosaurs. The only body-on-frame SUV that remains in production is the legendary Jeep Wrangler. Though it is sad to see the tough and rugged Nissan Xterra go into the history books, there was no doubt that its days in production were really numbered.
Information and Image Source: Nissan USA