2013 Nissan Titan
2013 Nissan Titan
2013 Nissan Titan. Click image to enlarge

Review and photos by Jonathan Yarkony

It’s not often that getting dirty and performing back-breaking manual labour tasks are part of an automotive event, but when the subject is a pickup truck, how could we refuse the chance to actually spending some time in a typical owner’s work boots?

Adding to our motivation was the fact that the day’s project was refurbishing and cleaning up the Scott Mission Camp, putting the Nissan Titan to good use hauling patio stones and other gear. Our mission: lay down stones to create a patio in front of the Nissan Cabin. Nissan sent dozens of volunteers and invited us to participate in the effort, and we showed up, with boots on.

The camp was only a half hour from my home in Brampton, so I was picked up en route by our associates from Nissan. The drive from Brampton north was short, on 80-limit highways, on which the Titan seemed refined and smooth for a pickup.

Upon arrival, our ‘gift’ was a pair of work gloves, which we donned as we were assigned our task. The first part of the task was by far the most demanding, for my back and the Titan’s. We loaded a whole pallet of patio stones into its bed, a payload that we believe exceeded its maximum payload of 848 kg (1,869 lb) by a fair margin. We then crawled away as smoothly as we could and traversed the camp’s muddy gravel roads to our work site. The Titan smoothly pulled itself up, sometimes having to climb grades at least as steep as 10 degrees to get to the plateau with the cabins.

With our material delivered and tools unloaded, we proceeded to stand around scratching our heads wondering what to do next. We looked entirely like a professional city work crew. Thankfully, the day’s project managers had the foresight to send a ringer with us, a subcontractor with plenty of experience executing projects such as this, and winging it if need be. We needed. Said contractor is also the owner of a Nissan Titan, and he reported overall satisfaction with the durability and capability of his truck. However, it’s not all sunshine and roses and the other 50 percent of my Nissan Titan ownership survey reported a host of problems – if you want details, probe James Bergeron (he goes by ‘wing’ in our Autos.ca forum) about his Titan experiences and its towing capability as he used it for many years to tow his racecar to the track.

2013 Nissan Titan2013 Nissan Titan2013 Nissan Titan
2013 Nissan Titan. Click image to enlarge

Much shoveling and raking ensued as we leveled an area for the flagstones and dug deep enough to lay the supporting frame timbers that someone with more sense than I measured and marked. After a quick break for lunch and a photo op for Nissan’s press team, we started laying down stones until the first load was used. We then shuttled the second pallet of stones in two trips, not wanting to stress the truck’s transmission too much.

That transmission is a five-speed auto with a tow/haul mode that keeps the gearing lower in order to access the torque when it’s needed most. Nissan Titan Crew Cab 4x4s can handle up to a maximum of 4,218 kg (9,300 lb) towing capacity properly equipped, which we did not test this day.

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