Nissan Texas Titan Debuts In Texas, Has Gratuitous Texas Badging

"You almost can't overmarket Texas to Texans." – Fred Diaz, VP Nissan Trucks 

Nissan

When an all-new Nissan Titan finally debuted in January, the sell was basically this: Because America. The second-generation truck was designed in San Diego, and would be assembled in Mississippi. What's that? An Indiana-built Cummins turbodiesel under the hood? You bet, brother. One designer even told me his team ditched the gated sport shifter, a trademark of the old truck, for a column-mounted unit because market research indicated U.S. buyers needed an extra cup holder for their dip spit. (Seriously.)

Nissan

Which is all to say that the new Texas Titan is sufficiently on-message. The special options package, rolled out at the annual Texas State Fair, will be available on all 2017 Nissan Titan models, both half-ton and XD crew cab, two- and four-wheel drive. In any configuration, seen at high noon from the right angle, the Texas Titan has enough bling to blind a Buc-ee’s attendant: The exhaust tips, grille, running boards, and 20-inch wheels are all chrome. There are oversized badges strewn about the body, replete with a large outline of the state because, in the words of Nissan truck boss Fred Diaz, "You almost can't overmarket Texas to Texans." But, unlike the Dallas Cowboys Edition Ford F-150 (note: real thing), Nissan will sell this one at dealerships outside the Lone Star state.

The Texas State Fair, which runs for three weeks each fall, has become a battleground of sorts for automakers. The event has its own auto show, and all the major players—GMC, Ford, Chevy, Ram, and Toyota—showed up this year. Winning over buyers there is crucial: One in four vehicles sold in Texas is a truck, accounting for roughly 15 percent of all pickups nationwide. In large truck sales, the state outpaces America’s second-largest market, California, by a rate of 2:1.

Nissan

No word on pricing yet, but the previous Texas Titan went for $1,820 over list, so expect a similar premium here. Hopefully, for Nissan and Diaz’s sake, it’ll help mend the margins: Dip spit cup be damned, the Titan is currently America’s worst-selling pickup.