Why Did Nissan Stop Making the Xterra – The Nissan Xterra was a rugged and capable SUV that was designed to handle rough terrain and adventurous lifestyles.
It was first introduced in 1999 and quickly gained a loyal following among outdoor enthusiasts, off-roaders, and active families.
However, despite its popularity and strong reputation, Nissan made the decision to discontinue the Xterra in 2015.
In this article, we will explore the reasons why Nissan stopped making the Xterra and what impact this decision had on the automotive industry.
Background the Nissan Xterra
The Nissan Xterra was based on the Nissan Frontier pickup truck and shared many of its mechanical components.
It was designed to be a versatile and capable SUV that could handle both on-road and off-road driving.
The Xterra had a distinctive look that was characterized by its boxy shape, flared fenders, and rugged styling.
It was offered in both two-wheel and four-wheel drive configurations and was available with a variety of engines and transmissions over the years.
One of the key selling points of the Xterra was its off-road capability. It was designed with features like a high ground clearance, skid plates, and a sturdy frame that made it well-suited for rough terrain.
It also had a locking rear differential and an available off-road package that included features like Bilstein shocks and all-terrain tires.
These features made the Xterra a favorite among off-road enthusiasts and adventurers.
Reasons for Discontinuing the Xterra
Despite its popularity, Nissan made the decision to discontinue the Xterra after the 2015 model year. There were several factors that contributed to this decision, including:
One of the main reasons why Nissan stopped making the Xterra was declining sales. The Xterra was never a big seller for Nissan, but its sales began to drop significantly in the years leading up to its discontinuation.
In 2014, for example, Nissan sold just over 16,000 Xterras in the United States, down from over 88,000 in 2001.
This decline in sales made it difficult for Nissan to justify continuing production of the Xterra.
Shifting Consumer Preferences
Another factor that contributed to Xterra’s discontinuation was shifting consumer preferences. In recent years, there has been a trend towards smaller, more fuel-efficient crossovers and SUVs.
This trend has been driven in part by rising gas prices and increasing environmental concerns.
The Xterra, with its boxy shape and relatively poor fuel economy, was seen as being out of step with these trends.
Nissan recognized that consumers were increasingly looking for smaller and more efficient vehicles and decided to focus on developing models that better aligned with these preferences.
Another factor that played a role in Xterra’s discontinuation was safety regulations.
In 2012, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) introduced new safety standards that required all vehicles to have electronic stability control (ESC) as a standard feature.
The Xterra, which did not have ESC as a standard feature, would have required significant upgrades in order to comply with these regulations.
These upgrades would have added to the cost of producing the Xterra, making it less competitive in the marketplace.
High Production Costs
Finally, another factor that contributed to Xterra’s discontinuation was high production costs. The Xterra was based on an aging platform and required significant updates in order to remain competitive.
However, Nissan determined that the cost of updating Xterra’s platform and bringing it up to current safety and emissions standards would be too high.
Instead, the company decided to focus its resources on developing new models that would better meet the needs and preferences of consumers.
Impact on the Automotive Industry
The discontinuation of the Nissan Xterra had a significant impact on the automotive industry. The Xterra was one of the few SUVs on the market that was specifically designed for off-road use.
It had a loyal following among outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers who valued its ruggedness and versatility.
The Xterra was also popular among families who needed a vehicle that could accommodate their active lifestyles.
The discontinuation of the Xterra left a gap in the market for a capable and affordable off-road SUV.
Some consumers have turned to other models, such as the Jeep Wrangler, Toyota 4Runner, or the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, but these vehicles are typically more expensive and less fuel-efficient than the Xterra.
Other consumers have switched to smaller crossovers or SUVs that offer better fuel economy, but these models may not be as capable off-road as the Xterra.
The discontinuation of Xterra also had an impact on the aftermarket industry. The Xterra was a popular vehicle for customization, with a wide range of aftermarket parts and accessories available.
The discontinuation of the Xterra has led to a decrease in demand for these parts, which has affected the businesses that manufacture and sell them.
Summary: Why Did Nissan Stop Making the Xterra
In conclusion, the Nissan Xterra was a capable and versatile SUV that was designed for off-road use.
It had a loyal following among outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers, but declining sales, shifting consumer preferences, safety regulations, and high production costs led Nissan to discontinue the model in 2015.
The discontinuation of the Xterra left a gap in the market for a capable and affordable off-road SUV and had an impact on the aftermarket industry.
While the Xterra is no longer in production, it remains a popular vehicle among enthusiasts and adventurers and is likely to have a lasting legacy in the automotive industry.