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2011 Nissan Xterra

Overview
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2011 Nissan Xterra Review

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While many SUVs have morphed into cushy crossover family haulers or simply disappeared altogether, the 2011 Nissan Xterra remains true to the first vehicle ever to wear the Xterra name. Like the Jeep Wrangler, the Xterra has a loyal following – mostly weekend warriors and outdoor devotees, who love the vehicle for its rugged body-on-frame design, powerful standard V6 engine and desire to take on all things considered uncivilized. While its handsome exterior and comfortable ride make it perfectly acceptable as a daily driver, features like the built-in first-aid kit, adjustable cargo-hold track system and a roof-mounted drying rack appeal to those with active lifestyles.

You'll Like This Car If...

If a removable hardtop is not a feature you covet, the next best thing to owning a Jeep Wrangler is owning the 2011 Nissan Xterra. The Xterra's interior is more civilized than the Jeep's, not to mention quieter.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If your off-road exploits are limited to unpaved trails and occasional deep snow, you might find something like the Subaru Outback or Toyota RAV4 offers a more comfortable ride and much better fuel economy.

What's New for 2011

A simplified model line marks the biggest change for 2011. There are now three Xterras from which to choose: X, S and PRO-4X.

Driving the Xterra

Driving Impressions With its large tires, significant ground clearance and tall ride height, one might expect the 2011 Nissan Xterra to be a handful on the road. But, we found the Xterra...

is quite confident in all driving situations; it tracks straight, is fairly comfortable on smooth roads and, even taking turns at higher speeds, feels as planted and predictable as a standard sedan. Using a modified version of the V6 engine found in the 370Z, the Xterra has no problem delivering power when requested, even on high-altitude mountain passes. In our off-road test, we pushed the Xterra through soggy trail ruts, over fallen logs and even forded a creek that, in retrospect, we probably should not have attempted with life vests, but survived without incident.
Favorite Features

Versatile Cargo Area
In addition to no-carpet and Easy Clean surfaces, the 2011 Nissan Xterra's cargo area features a total of 10 cargo hooks in the sides, ceiling and in the adjustable Utili-track Cargo Channel System in the floor (4X4 models only).

Side Steps
Integrated into the body of the vehicle, the Xterra's side steps make it easy to access and secure cargo at the rear of the roof.


2011 Nissan Xterra Details
Interior

The 2011 Nissan Xterra's tall roof creates an open and accommodating cabin, while theatre-style rear seating allows backseat occupants a clear view of the road ahead. Rear 60/40-split seats combine with a fold-flat front passenger's seat to create enough room for lengthy outdoor gear (or tall floor lamps). The cargo area is covered in a durable and easy-to-clean vinyl covering and includes tie-down latches for anchoring equipment and luggage. From the driver's seat, the Xterra's controls are easy to view and operate, with large knobs and switches backlit in orange light. The Xterra's clean and purposeful interior comes with dual-stacked glove compartments, multiple 12-volt outlets and a versatile cargo area.

Exterior

Looking like a modern version of the old Land Rovers so commonly seen traversing African plains, the 2011 Nissan Xterra is clearly a vehicle that prefers roughing it. Adding to its rugged good looks is a large, tubular roof rack and a stepped roof. A bin at the front of the roof rack features a latchable cover, and the rear bumper includes integrated side steps for easier access to the roof; PRO-4X models are equipped with roof-mounted off-road lamps integrated into the roof-rack air damn. Thanks in part to its short overhangs and wide prominent stance, the Xterra never feels top heavy when rounding corners or crawling over uneven surfaces.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Features on the base Xterra X include a 4.0-liter V6, five-speed automatic, four-wheel disc brakes with Electronic Brake-force Distribution, stability control, single CD sound system, power door locks/windows/mirrors, remote keyless entry, air conditioning, and cruise control. The S trim adds an Easy Clean cargo area surface with multiple heavy-duty hooks and Utili-track Cargo Channel System, 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with BFGoodrich Long Trail tires, driver's-seat lumbar support, step rails, roof rack crossbars (4x4 only), gear basket (4x4 only) and a first aid kit. Standard safety equipment includes front seat side-impact airbags, front and rear side-curtain airbags, front-seat active head restraints and a tire pressure monitoring system.

Optional Equipment

4x4 versions of the S and PRO-4X come standard with a six-speed manual transmission but can be upgraded to a five-speed automatic. The PRO-4X brings Roof-Mounted Off-Road Lights in the air dam, silver headlight inner color, black bodyside molding, fold-down front passenger's seat with backboard, leather-wrapped steering wheel, P265/75R16 BFGoodrich Rugged Trail T/A off-road tires, rugged 16-inch wheels, Hill Descent Control and Hill Start Assist (automatic transmission only), electronic locking rear differential, switch operated two-speed transfer case, high performance Bilstein gas-filled shocks and oil pan, fuel tank and transfer case skid plates. All PRO-4X models also include standard Rockford Fosgate-powered audio system with an in-dash six-disc CD changer, eight speakers and subwoofer, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, and XM Satellite Radio capability. A Leather Package can be added to the PRO-4X. Additional equipment for the 2011 Nissan Xterra varies by trim and includes a cargo cover, iPod interface, floor mats and an auto-dimming rearview mirror with compass.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Nissan Xterra's V6 pulls as strongly on the highway as it does climbing rocks and dirt mounds. Ample torque translates into ample towing ability, but all that power comes at a price, and you'll pay for it at the pump.

4.0-liter V6
261 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
281 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/22 (2WD, automatic), 16/20 (4WD, manual), 15/20 (4WD, automatic)

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2011 Nissan Xterra Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 420 Ratings for the 2005 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    9.0/10

Handles like a champ in all terrains and weather.

By on Sunday, April 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Handles well in all weather conditions."

Cons: "Needs some work done at about 60k miles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is our second Xterra, and we have been very happy with both of them. We take it over the mountain pass several times per year, and never hesitate to tackle the toughest weather conditions. It handles well off-road as well. The 4-wheel drive function works extremely well while driving. I would recommend the Xterra to anyone looking for a good SUV 4-wheel drive. It has plenty of room in back, and the seats also fold down. Only issue we have seen is that you have to have some work done at about 60k miles."

Handles like a champ in all terrains and weather.

By on Sunday, April 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Handles well in all weather conditions."

Cons: "Needs some work done at about 60k miles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is our second Xterra, and we have been very happy with both of them. We take it over the mountain pass several times per year, and never hesitate to tackle the toughest weather conditions. It handles well off-road as well. The 4-wheel drive function works extremely well while driving. I would recommend the Xterra to anyone looking for a good SUV 4-wheel drive. It has plenty of room in back, and the seats also fold down. Only issue we have seen is that you have to have some work done at about 60k miles."

Handles like a champ in all terrains and weather.

By on Sunday, April 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Handles well in all weather conditions."

Cons: "Needs some work done at about 60k miles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is our second Xterra, and we have been very happy with both of them. We take it over the mountain pass several times per year, and never hesitate to tackle the toughest weather conditions. It handles well off-road as well. The 4-wheel drive function works extremely well while driving. I would recommend the Xterra to anyone looking for a good SUV 4-wheel drive. It has plenty of room in back, and the seats also fold down. Only issue we have seen is that you have to have some work done at about 60k miles."

My favorite SUV of all I've owned

By on Wednesday, April 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 114,550

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Size, handling, feels very solid, looks"

Cons: "Only 18 mpg, key fob alarm too sensitive"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Bought new in Dec 2009 and have put a lot of miles on it. Currently has 114,500 and I have yet to put brakes on it - which is unbelievable. Get regular maintenance done every 5,000 and I'm coming to the end of my second set of tires. Plan to get 200,000 on it before I trade it in for another one. I really like it."

My favorite SUV of all I've owned

By on Wednesday, April 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 114,550

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Size, handling, feels very solid, looks"

Cons: "Only 18 mpg, key fob alarm too sensitive"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Bought new in Dec 2009 and have put a lot of miles on it. Currently has 114,500 and I have yet to put brakes on it - which is unbelievable. Get regular maintenance done every 5,000 and I'm coming to the end of my second set of tires. Plan to get 200,000 on it before I trade it in for another one. I really like it."

Good suv, great powerful engine, poor gas mileage

By on Sunday, March 23, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 68,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Power, styling, cofortable, roomy"

Cons: "poor mpg, cheaply made, bad brakes, common probems"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"Not the same Nissan since Renault bought them out. Very nice suv, but cheaply made, alot of common problems, fuel gauge sensor, blower motor resistor, terrible brakes, paint chips easily, rusts quickly. Would take a 95 pathfinder over this xterra anyday, pathfinder has way better 4wd. Rear lower door seals fall off poor design, antenna in bad location for cleaning snow off of windshield, rear bumper poor design, too close to tailgate, freezes up in winter. VDC not good for offroad."

8 people out of 13 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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