- Bluetooth connectivity now standard
- 4.0-liter, V-6 engine
- Updated NissanConnect infotainment system
Nissan’s rugged Xterra adds a few standard features and updated technology to make its rugged SUV a little more livable for 2014.
Our review of the Xterra last year called it “chunky” and the shoe still fits – the Xterra looks true to function, with vertical sides, flared wheel arches, and a rugged vibe that permeates every visual feature. This is no crossover; it’s a real SUV with body-on-frame construction and a PRO-4X off-road ready trim level. Standard wheels are 16-inch steel wheels, but lighter 16-inch machine-faced alloy wheels are optional. In addition, projector-beam headlights, a radiator-protecting underbody plate, a tubular roof rack, rear-bumper steps, and UV reducing glass all come as standard. The exterior options list is tailored to the Xterra’s off-road heritage: full underbody skid plates, automatic on/off headlights, roof-mounted off-road lights, fog lights, and power-adjustable side mirrors are all available.
Most of Nissan’s upgrade work for the 2014 Xterra takes place inside the cabin, where new technology joins newly standard technology to make the Xterra friendlier to use. Bluetooth connectivity is now standard across all three time levels, with convenient steering-wheel controls for both the Bluetooth and audio systems. Other standard features include cloth seats, air conditioning, power windows, cruise control, six-speaker audio system, and 60/40 split rear seats. Premium leather seats, an easy-clean cargo area, Bluetooth/iPod connectivity, satellite navigation, and a premium audio system are all available for some extra investment. Also optional is an update version of the NissanConnect infotainment system which features improved smartphone integration, navigation, and voice command recognition.
The 2014 Xterra’s engine carries over from last year, a 261-hp, 4.0-liter V-6 making 281 pounds-feet of torque. Paired with a five-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive, the Xterra will return 16/22 mpg city/highway. With four-wheel drive, the Xterra can be had with either a six-speed manual transmission or five-speed automatic transmission. With four-wheel drive and a manual transmission, the Xterra will return 16/20 mpg city/highway, or just slightly less with the five-speed automatic. The top range Pro-4X model adds helpful off-road features such as Bilstein off-road shocks, electronic locking rear differential, and a two-speed transfer gear box.
Standard safety features include six airbags, traction/stability control, front-seat active headrests, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, front and rear crumple zones, and side-impact door beams.
The “X-earth” remains one of the few true SUVs around and its newly added features make it modern as well as rugged.