According to Ward’s Auto , Nissan may be about ready to shut down Xterra production. Volume of the midsize body-on-frame SUV is down drastically since 2000. That year, Nissan moved over 88,000 Xterras. Through the end of July this year, they’ve sold just 12,000. That’s up quite a bit from last year, but last year was also the worst year in recent memory.
Why the case for alarm? A quote from Larry Dominique, VP of Advanced Product / Product Planning / Strategy is alarming.
With (new U.S. corporate average fuel economy rules) Xterra’s going to be a tough vehicle to keep around.
He’s right, of course. Traditional SUV sales are in the toilet, and manufacturers are moving to the unibody / CUV style vehicle across the board. With the stricter fuel efficiency requirements coming soon, the Xterra doesn’t make much sense.
Would-be Xterra buyers don’t have to leave Nissan, of course. There are plenty of offerings that may make sense, depending on the buyer’s needs. The Pathfinder is really a slightly larger version of the Xterra. Rogue and Murano are car-based CUV’s that could be a good fit. True hardcore off-road junkies will probably head over to the nearest Jeep dealer and pick up a Wrangler – still the best around for that job.
So, probably no more Xterra in the near future. Will you miss it?