"The Xterra isn't the fanciest, most comfortable, or most well equipped SUV, but what it does, it does well.
I've had mine in a great many different off-road situations, including once when I pushed foot-deep mud with my front bumper. The Xterra never even blinked. I was skeptical about "brake locking" (aka, traction control) for off-roading, but it works surprisingly well. When a wheel spins, that wheel is braked and the power goes to the wheels that have traction.
Doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles, but has the basics to be comfortable in everyday driving. I've pressed mine into service as a vacation hauler and it makes a decent station wagon, with enough room for my 5' 11" son in the back and lots of luggage.
Reliability has been good so far. No problems.
Great power and handling for a big vehicle. Gas mileage is only so-so (personally haven't gotten more than 20 mpg). Interior space could be better. Upholstery is cheap looking and stains easily. I added seat covers and now don't have to worry so much.
Mine developed a squeak somewhere deep in the dash that can occasionally be annoying. The cruise sometimes can't make up its mind at lower speeds, dropping several miles per hour below where I set it, then "waking up" and rushing forward so quickly that soon you're going faster than you want to. On the freeways, though, it's fine.
Lots of hauling room with the seats down. Sturdy roof rack with rooftop storage compartment, which is nice for carrying messy stuff outside your vehicle. And of course, the thing looks like it is ready for action.
If I had it to do again, I'd buy it in a heartbeat. I heard the Xterra is going out of production in the next couple years. I hope that's not true...I'd like to have another one."
Pros: "Great interior, cool styling, great 4x4 capability"
Cons: "Fuel milage"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"The xTerra is a fantastic off road SUV. It is however not to be confused with the newer car based unibody SUV's that everybody drives around the city. The Xterra does have a firmer ride due to it's off road suspension and body on frame truck design. The interior is fantastic. It's made mostly of easy to clean hard plastic that can't rip or tear. It has more compartments then you'll know what to do with as well. My only gripe is that the plastic does scratch easily so be careful if you tend to throw your keys around. As for off road capability it is one of the best at it's price. The locking rear diff and traditional 4x4 transfer case make it a dream on the trail or in the snow and mud. The 4.0 engine delivers tons of power sometimes you forget your driving a 4000lb truck. It is however a thirsty vehicle. I drive mostly highway miles everyday and it sucks about a 20mpg at the very best. I would recommend the Xterra to anyone who lives an outdoors lifestyle or likes weekend trips out in the bush but if all you want is a big vehicle to hop around the city in there are definitely some more appropriate and fuel efficient choices out there."
"Fun to drive great to park.. strong engine.. no problem geting on the highway. rides high you can see everything.
Seats aren't the most comfy... ride is bumpy.. and I have the most irritating squeak in the back."
"I bought my 2005 used with 32K on it, since then I've racked up over 100K more. I really like the horsepower but the trade-off is lower gas mileage. It does well off-road and in snow. I have a kayak and enjoy the body design and roof rack, well thought out and functional. Compared to my previous car, a Toyota 4-Runner I have had a few more mechanical problems and spend more on repairs but I also paid a few thousand less than a comparable 4-Runner so guess you get what you pay for. Good overall vehicle for every day life and offers some respectable off-road capabilities."