Best xterra year

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Nissan Xterra

The Nissan Xterra debuted as a 2000 model. Based on Nissan's Frontier pickup, it was made to be a rugged, basic, truck-ish SUV to serve as a less-expensive alternative to the Pathfinder.

Highs include good off-roading and towing capacity. The cockpit has a clean, no-frills look. Storage includes bins, cubbies and deep pockets in the front doors. Gauges are clearly legible and the controls generally work well. With the rear seat folded, Xterra holds an enormous amount of cargo for a vehicle in this price range. Payload capacity is 885 pounds, 125 of which can be loaded onto the roof. However, ride, handling, braking, and fuel economy are subpar. If on-road performance is more important to you, you'll find better dynamics in other vehicles.


All good things, vehicle model lineups included, must come to an end sometime. The Nissan Xterra is a midsize SUV, no longer in production. Fans had to bid farewell to the prospect of new designs and generations, and the rugged Xterra was destined to fade into the shadows of the current SUV family that includes the Armada, Pathfinder, Murano, Rogue, and Kicks. According to some auto experts, the Nissan Xterra offers incredible value for a used vehicle. And finding the right used model for sale can keep it super affordable.

The final year of a great SUV run

Initially launched in 2000, with intentions of attracting younger, active car buyers, the Nissan Xterra was born. By the time it bid the dealership showrooms farewell, it was 2015. So, it had plenty of years on the road to work out any manufacturing kinks. It had been a serious contender for off-road capability and did come with an available manual transmission for true enthusiasts.

The interior was versatile and innovative for 2015. But of course, compared to the enhancements of today, the 2015 Xterra might show its age in outdated styling and unimpressive fuel efficiency. According to Edmunds, you can expect to pay $12,000 to $14,000 for one of these final-year models today.

X Marks the Spot campaigns

RELATED: Why Did Nissan Get Rid of the Xterra?

In 2005, Nissan announced it would be launching a host of television, print, and billboard ads promoting the Xterra. The marketing manager for Nissan SUVs at the time said the company would be using ads that featured kayakers, athletes, surfers, and snowboarders living their best life behind the wheel of their Xterra.

This SUV was designed to appeal to outdoor enthusiasts who wanted off-road capability and rugged everyday adventures. They called it an X Marks the Spot campaign, and it spoke volumes to those younger car buyers.

What made the 2005 to 2015 model years great

The Nissan Xterra offered the body-on-frame design and would liken to the stature of the Frontier today. If you find one of these models for sale today, you can expect the 4.0-liter V6 engine under the hood, harnessing 265 hp for some serious off-pavement potential. The classifieds might have the five-speed automatic variations or the six-speed manuals. Most will have four-wheel drive as well.

In 2009, the Nissan Xterra changed shape with new styling and extras. The hearty SUV came with roof-mounted lights as part of the off-road trims. It also added side curtain airbags and rollover sensors as standard, which for that decade was considered cutting-edge safety technology. The SE trims were outfitted with leather seats, and the side moldings shifted to body colors. Also available were the X and S variations.

AutoTrader says the Nissan Xterra one of the best used Nissans of all

AutoTrader highlighted a few Nissan model vehicles that seem to rate well in terms of longevity, reliability, and used car value overall. On that list is the Nissan Xterra, and more specifically, those model years between 2005 and 2015. The experts suggest that buyers can get great deals within the $10,000 or less range. At the time of this report, AutoTrader said there were nearly 400 Xterra models listed on their classifieds website. The AutoTrader gurus go on to say that some of the best “value-packed reliable used” vehicles are Nissans. The Xterra is certainly no exception.

Buying any used vehicle does present some risks. Buying a 2015 or older model Nissan Xterra means you should probably be prepared for a big odometer number. And it’s always a solid idea to review the vehicle’s history of maintenance, service, and accidents before finalizing the deal too. But in narrowing down which model SUVs are best at holding their value and running for the long haul, the Nissan Xterra definitely tops the list of worthy considerations.

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  • Dealers are asking Nissan to bring back the Xterra, according to Automotive News, as buyers are scooping up all the off-road-oriented vehicles coming to market.
  • The Xterra was discontinued in 2015 after sales steadily fell following a redesign in 2005.
  • The Xterra, and particularly the Pro-4X model, was a rugged SUV that offered a rear locking differential, all-terrain tires, and skid plates.

Ever since the Nissan Xterra went out of production in 2015, fans of the rugged off-roader have been calling for its return. Back in 2017, Nissan’s North American vice president gave those fans some hope in suggesting the Xterra might come back. That hasn't happened yet, and now Nissan dealers, according to Automotive News, are asking the company to bring back the small body-on-frame SUV as buyers clamor for capable, adventure-oriented models.

These calls come as other automakers have revived prior SUV nameplates for new rugged models. Ford recently brought back the Bronco and Land Rover has brought back the Defender, and even many crossovers have jumped onto the off-road trend. The Toyota RAV4, for instance, now boasts a TRD Off-Road spec, and the Kia Sorento offers an X-Line appearance package.

U.S. sales of the Xterra steadily declined after the introduction of its second generation in 2005. In its last model year, 2015, the Xterra posted 10,672 total sales, compared to 202,702 units sold for one of the most popular vehicles in this segment, the Jeep Wrangler. In the case of the new Ford Bronco, which hasn’t yet gone on sale, Ford reported that it received 190,000 reservations for the SUV as of October of 2020. SUVs and trucks were estimated to hit 79 percent of the total new-vehicle sales in 2020, according to J.D. Power.


Nissan does currently offer a global model called the X-Terra, but it doesn’t share much with the discontinued Xterra beyond a name. It is based on the Navara, the global version of the Frontier pickup. If Nissan were to bring the Xterra back to the U.S., we think it would be based on the U.S. version of the Frontier, just as it was previously. The U.S. Frontier is set to receive a redesign for 2022 after getting a new powertrain for the 2020 model year.

This hypothetical new Xterra would likely continue to offer a Pro-4X model, an off-road trim which remains on the Frontier and the Titan pickups. Previously, this model came standard with four-wheel drive and a locking rear differential, all-terrain tires, Bilstein shocks, and skid plates. All Xterras came standard with a burly-looking roof rack and a roof storage compartment, along with a plastic-lined cargo area for easy cleaning.

Nonetheless, it’s expensive to introduce new vehicles and Nissan may not be in the position to do so. Global sales for the brand fell 10.6 percent in 2019 and U.S. sales dropped 33.2 percent in 2020 (global sales for 2020 are not yet available). For fiscal year 2019, losses were more than $6 billion and Nissan projected a similar result for fiscal year 2020.

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Nissan Xterra Review - 2005-2015 - 2nd Gen

Photo by Jairph on Unsplash

Are you shopping for a used SUV that is rugged enough to go off-road and do some towing but comfortable enough to drive your family and friends around town? The 2015 model is the best year for the Nissan Xterra. It’s not that any of the other second-generation Xterras aren’t worth looking at, but this one has the most technology and the least amount of problems. The 2015 model was actually the final year for production, and most all of the issues the Xterra had have been updated or fixed.

Trim Packages, drivetrain, and gas mileage

The 2015 Nissan Xterra comes in three different trim models: the Xterra X, Xterra S, Xterra PRO-4X. All models come with a 261 horsepower, 4.0-liter V6 connected to either a six-speed manual or a five-speed automatic. All models also come rear-wheel-drive with an option of four-wheel-drive.

All rear-wheel-drive models get an EPA-Estimated 16 city / 22 highway mpg, and four-wheel-drive-models get an EPA-Estimated 16 city / 20 highway.


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Who is the 2015 Nissan Xterra for?

If you’re tired of the crossover craze and you need something with a little bit of grit, these Nissan Xterras are great for you. They come with features like skid-plates, black plastic and aluminum finished front and rear bumpers, flared fenders, ample ground clearance, standard 16-inch wheels.

A set of 6040 fold-down rear seats, luggage side nets, multiple 12-volt outlets, and easy-to-clean cargo space make this the perfect vehicle for an outdoorsy person. You also get something a lot other crossover and SUVs don’t offer, and that’s a fold-down front seat for more cargo options. 

What kind of technology do I get with the Nissan Xterra?

The Xterra X trim model doesn’t come with a ton of technology to talk about, but some people prefer that: less to bother with. The Xterra S trim comes with a NissanConnect multimedia system, a 5.0-inch color audio display, a USB connection, Bluetooth hands-free phone system, streaming audio, and hands-free text messaging.

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What does the Nissan Xterra Pro-4X trim level get you?

The best year for the Nissan Xterra for off-roading is the 2015 Nissan Xterra Pro-4X. This Xterra edition comes with more skid-plate protection, a Dana rear-axle, a two-speed transfer case, electronic locking rear differential, and Bilstein performance shocks. They also came with a more advanced cloth interior with the option to upgrade to leather.

2015 Nissan Xterra safety features

The Nissan comes with an ABS with Electronic Brake Force Distribution; you also get Nissan’s Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC).

Coming standard on all Xterras are driver and passenger front-side impact airbags, dual-stage supplemental front airbags with seat-mounted sensors, front-seat active head restraints, and front and rear roof-mounted side curtain airbags. Also coming standard is the (LATCH) or Lower Anchor and Tethers for Children. This is a much safer and easier way to place your children’s seats in the second-row.

How does the Nissan Xterra line up against its competitors?

The only clear run-away winner in this class is the Land Rover LR4, but there is a steep price if you want one. The Land Rover could cost up to $15,000 to $20,000 more than its competition. Like the Toyota 4Runner, Jeep Wanger, Ford Escape, the rest of the competition all come in with about the same technology and engine performance. But when it comes to simplicity, the Xterra is the clear winner here.

Not only does the Nissan have the common 6040 rear fold-down seats, but they also have a front fold-down passenger seat for more cargo options. Altogether your cargo volume amounts to 65.7 cubic-feet of cargo room, with a hidden away spare space under the rear cargo floor and a convenient cargo roof rack, you have enough space to carry tons of things.


When it comes to hauling a lot of people and cargo, the SUV is hard to beat. We’ve factored in safety, vehicle longevity, and other factors to curate this list of the 10 most reliable SUVs on the market today.

The Nissan Xterra’s reliability

If you want reliability, the best year for the Nissan Xterra is the 2015 model. Looking at the recall list from the National Highway Trafic Safety Accostaion (NHTSA), the Xterra has had no recalls. That should tell you something about their reliability. Also, vehicles that come with just one engine power option usually have fewer problems down the line because the brand believes in that option. These SUVs are known to put on an easy 100,000 miles with regular maintenance.

Why should you buy an Xterra?

If you had enough of the recent flood of crossovers that lack the ability of just about everything except for doing school and grocery runs, then this vehicle will suit you. The Xterra is a body-on-frame platform built more like a truck with skid-plates. These SUVs are designed to take on terrain that is more than just asphalt.

Unlike Nissan’s modern SUV/crossover lineup, these offer you plenty of room on the inside for both cargo and passengers and the ability to load up and go off-roading, camping, exploring, and have some outdoor fun.

What can you expect to pay for a 2015 Nissan Xterra?

Prices for these 2015 Nissan Xterra’s come in anywhere from $9,986-$26,505. The price will vary depending on what kind of shape it’s in, how many miles it has, and what trim level you are looking to purchase.

Straight forward engineering too

Repair and maintenance are always a worry for someone when buying a used vehicle. Although factory warranties may be up for the Xterra, and if you don’t buy from a dealership, you might be forced to take care of some maintenance out-of-pocket or even do some maintenance yourself, you shouldn’t have any big worries.

The Nissan Xterra comes with a straightforward engine where everything is supposed to be, and replacement parts and even aftermarket parts are straightforward to find. We all know that sometimes engineers come up with some crazy setups near impossible to have fixed without special tools. Our pick for the best year for the Nissan Xterra will throw you no curveballs. The oil filter, spark plugs, air filter, and things like that are all where they’re supposed to be.

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Xterra year best

Nissan Xterra

"Xterra" redirects here. For the competition, see XTERRA Triathlon.

Not to be confused with Nissan Terra.

"Nissan X-Terra" redirects here. For the SUV sold in the Middle East with the same name since 2020, see Nissan Terra.

Motor vehicle

The Nissan Xterra is a front-engine, 2-wheel or 4-wheel drive, five-door, five passenger, truck-based compact SUV manufactured and marketed by Nissan Motors from 1999–2015 across two generations; the first (1999–2004) sharing a platform as well as front bumper, hood, A-pillar, windshield and front doors with the Nissan Frontier pickup[2] – and the second (2005–2015) also sharing its platform with the Frontier.

While the two Xterra generations differed significantly, both prioritized ruggedness and affordability over luxury[3] and used body-on-frame construction along with underbody skid plates.[4] Both generations also used a two-box design with c-pillar-mounted rear door handles, asymmetrical rear window, tailgate bump-out for a first aid kit accessible from inside – and a prominent two-tiered roof enabling stadium seating in the second row. The stepped roof accommodated a lower, front roof rack with a removable gear basket and a more conventional roof rack at the rear, upper roof.

Nissan licensed the Xterra name from the XTERRAoff-road triathlon race series and manufactured the SUV at Nissan's Smyrna Assembly, as well as in Canton, Mississippi. Variants were also manufactured in Brazil and China.

Styled by NDI Director of Design Tom Semple[1] and developed at Nissan Design America in La Jolla, California,[6] the Xterra was the first Nissan vehicle completely conceived, developed and manufactured in the United States.[7] According to Jerry Hirshberg, president of Nissan Design International (NDI), "the impetus for Xterra designers was to create an affordable, rugged, quality piece of equipment".[2] He later described it as "a garage tool that says, 'treat me rough' -- it's designed to look better dirty than clean."[8]

Road & Track described the Xterra as "an honest SUV that doesn't try to be a luxury car alternative, nor tries to hide its truck underpinnings".[9]Jalopnik called it a "knockoff of the Land Rover Discovery".[10]The Washington Post described it as "rugged without bravado".[4]

First generation (WD22; 1999)[edit]

Motor vehicle


The Xterra was introduced in North America in the 2000 model year, using Everything you need, nothing you don't as its marketing tagline.

During the Xterra's first two years, two trim levels were offered, marketed as XE and SE.

The XE featured a 143 hp (107 kW) KA24DEI4, 5-speed manual transmission, and steel wheels as well as several option packages combining the 170 horsepower 3.3 L VG33EV6 engine with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission, as well as roof rack (rated for a load up to 125lbs),[1] side step-rails, sunroof, and carpeted floor mats. The SE featured standard equipment that was optional on an XE. All models featured removable, tab-secured rear seat cushions to accommodate a fold-flat rear seat back.

Canadian models from 1999 to 2004 were limited to the VG33E V6 engine with part-time 4WD.


With the 1999 Xterra having been developed at Nissan Design America in California,[6] all updates for the 2002 Xterra were executed at Nissan Technical Center-North America in Farmington Hills, Michigan.[6] The facelifted model debuted at the 2001 Chicago Auto Show prominently revised front-end styling with rounded headlights, revised instrument panel, center console, larger glove compartment, pullout rear cup holders and four interior power points, foot-operated pedal parking brake (vs. previous a dash-mounted pull-and-twist parking brake) — and an increase of 10 horsepower for the V6 engine.

The rear differential for all Xterras and Frontiers are H233B with a number of gear ratios offered in both limited slip and open configurations. The most common being 4.636:1 and 4.9:1. Early differentials has a flange style input to the pinion while late 2004 through the end of production had a Spicer yoke style input to the pinion.

The 3.3L VG33E V6 was upgraded to 180 hp (134 kW) at 4,800 rpm and 202 lb⋅ft (274 N⋅m) at 2,800 rpm, with the 210 hp (157 kW) Eaton M62 superchargedVG33ER option carried over from the 2001 Nissan Frontier, producing 246 lb⋅ft (334 N⋅m) of torque for the automatic, and 231 lb⋅ft (313 N⋅m) of torque with 5-speed manual.

For 2003 the front seats received additional adjustability with added lumbar support and in SE models the available 6-disc, 4-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system was replaced by a 6-speaker 300W Rockford Fosgate AM/FM/CD audio system with an 8-inch subwoofer that took up a small portion of the rear storage area. The last of the model year 2004 Xterras were manufactured in January 2005.

Second generation (N50; 2005)[edit]

Motor vehicle


The second generation Xterra debuted at the New York International Auto Show in 2004 using Nissan's F-Alpha platform. Larger in all dimensions than its predecessor, it entered showrooms in early 2005 for the 2005 model year. The standard engine was upgraded to Nissan's 4.0 L VQ40DEvariable valve timing V6, producing 261 hp (195 kW).[13][14][15] A rear differential locker was offered for off-roading.

2009 update[edit]

The Xterra received a facelift for 2009 (July 2008 production) with more options and colors, leather seats on SE models, and roof mounted lights on off-road models. The last year of the Nissan Xterra in Mexico was 2008. In 2012, production was moved from Smyrna, Tennessee, to Nissan's facility in Canton, Mississippi.

2011 update[edit]

Early US models include X, S and PRO-4X, with a choice of 6-speed manual or 5-speed automatic transmissions, a choice of part-time 4-wheel drive or 2-wheel drive.[16][17]

Changes include:

  • Standard Bluetooth Hands-free Phone System, steering wheel audio controls and sunglass holder (overhead console) on all grade levels;
  • An updated NissanConnect with smartphone integration for iPhone and Android, allowing the user to connect with Pandora, iHeartRadio, Facebook and more. Capabilities include SiriusXM (subscription required, sold separately), streaming audio via Bluetooth, Hands-free Text Messaging Assistant and audio voice recognition.
  • New 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheel designs for the S and PRO-4X.
  • New HVAC controls and upgraded audio system added to X grade.
  • Heated front seats available on PRO-4X.
  • Silver paint on the grille and underguard.


The Xterra was discontinued in the U.S. after the 2015 model year. Poor fuel economy, declining sales, and mandated upgrades to safety and emissions were cited as reasons.[18][19]

Awards and recognition[edit]

2012 Nissan Xterra Pro-4X dashboard


All Nissan-produced Xterras manufactured outside the U.S. were built in São José dos Pinhais, Brazil until 2007. (Nissan ceased Brazilian production entirely in 2007.) It is built under license by Pars Khodro in Iran as the Nissan Roniz, and in China by Zhengzhou Nissan Automobile as the (Japanese: Nissan Paladin) from 2003 to 2013. The Paladin uses the same chassis and running gear as the first generation Nissan Xterra, and the 2.4L KA24DE engine mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The front end is from the local Pickup. (The second generation Xterra model is only available in North America.) Other difference between the American Xterra and its Chinese counterparts is the parking brake actuator, a pedal with a pull-handle release in America, and a lever in China.

Dongfeng Oting[edit]

Dongfeng Motors produces a Chinese version of the Xterra called the Oting from 2007 to 2015. It is based on the first generation of the Xterra. It was available with the 2.4 litre 4G64 and 4G69 or a 2.5 litre turbo diesel engine paired to a 5 speed manual gearbox.

In comparison to pricing, the Chinese market Nissan Paladin was priced at 159,800 to 244,800 RMB (25,264 to US$38,702) while the Oting was priced at 119,800 to 154,800 RMB (18,940 to US$24,473). Trim levels for the Paladin were called the 2WD S, 2WD C, 2WD L, 2WD E, 4WD S, 4WD C, 4WD L and 4WD E.[22] Trim levels for the Oting were called the China III MT L, China III MT E, China III AT L, China IV MT L, China IV MT E, Diesel 2WD and the Diesel 4WD.[23]

  • Dongfeng Oting with Nissan badge


Following the Xterra's discontinuation from the U.S. market in 2015, Nissan began testing the D23 Navara-based SUV.[24][25] The SUV, later named Terra, made its debut in Asia in early 2018, and the facelifted version was released in the Middle East in late 2020 under the "X-Terra" name.


Calendar year[26]United States[26]Canada[26]
2002 79,779 N/A
2003 67,799 N/A
2004 66,690 1,407
2005 72,447 2,799
2006 62,325 2,183
2007 51,355 1,469
2008 33,579 800
2009 16,455 613
2010 20,523 1,040
2011 18,221 1,258
2012 18,679 931
2013 17,766 1,070
2014 16,505 991
2015 10,672 1,707
2016 38 227
2017 1 -


  1. ^ abc"2000 Nissan Xterra Press Kit: Overview".
  2. ^ abMark Glover (February 11, 2000). "Nissan sport-ute designed for what people do with the vehicle". The Sacramento Bee.
  3. ^"Nissan Xterra Used SUV Buyer's Guide". Autobytel.
  4. ^ abWarren Brown (May 9, 1999). "Nissan Xterra". The Washington Post.
  5. ^ abc"2002 Nissan Xterra Press Kit: Overview". November 10, 2006.
  6. ^Paul Lienert (May 5, 2000). "Nissan Xterra". The Detroit News.
  7. ^Phil Pattron (June 30, 2000). "AUTOS ON FRIDAY: Design; A Last Chord From Nissan's Rocker-Designer-Spokesman". New York Times.
  8. ^"Media Talk About Nissan Xterra, Named 2000 North American Truck of the Year". January 12, 2000.
  9. ^Andrew P. Collins (March 16, 2017). "A Nissan Xterra Is The Most Underrated Cheap 4x4 Right Now". Jalopnik.
  10. ^
  11. ^"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-12. Retrieved 2014-06-12.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  12. ^"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-06-07. Retrieved 2014-06-03.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^2014 Nissan Xterra Press Kit
  16. ^"2014 Nissan Frontier, Xterra Priced". Archived from the original on 2013-12-06. Retrieved 2013-12-03.
  17. ^"Nissan Xterra Discontinued in U.S." 23 Feb 2015. Retrieved 18 July 2016.
  18. ^"Xtra! Xtra! Nissan Xterra Confirmed to Die After 2015 Model Year". 18 Aug 2015. Retrieved 18 July 2016.
  19. ^Timothy Cain (March 11, 2015). "The Numbers Behind The Nissan Xterra's Demise". The Truth About Cars.
  20. ^Rock-Hopper 2006 Competition Car and, April, 2006. Accessed on June 11, 2007.
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^ abc"Nissan Xterra Sales Figures". Good Car Bad Car. 3 January 2011. Retrieved 5 November 2018.

External links[edit]

Nissan XTerra Through The Years

The Nissan Xterra is a truck-based compact SUV. It is a 2 or 4-wheel drive that was manufactured from 1999 to 2015 with two generations to its name.

After the 2015 model year, Nissan discontinued the Xterra line. It was said that sales decline, mandated upgrades, and poor fuel economy were the reasons for the discontinuation.

Even after discontinuation, the Xterra is still one of the most affordable and cheapest to maintain SUVs.

We will answer the question of its reliability and longevity in this article.

Here is the short answer to how long the Nissan Xterra lasts:

You can expect a Nissan Xterra to last 200,000 miles. If you cover an average of 15,000 miles yearly, you can get about 13 to 15 years of problem-free performance from the vehicle with diligent maintenance and careful use.

How Many Miles Can You Expect From a Nissan Xterra?

The mile that any vehicle can deliver is subjective. It depends on regular servicing and following the proper maintenance schedule.

With the Nissan Xterra, you can expect up to 200,000 miles in mileage.

Based on our research, an auto dealer reported that a lot of Xterras that come into his shop for repair have an average of 225,000 to 300,000 miles.

He also clarified that proper maintenance coupled with routine oil change is essential to the longevity of the Nissan Xterra.

How Soon Should You Expect Rust on a Nissan Xterra?

Just as it is for a lot of vehicles, rusting is also one major issue for the Nissan Xterra. This is one problem that made Nissan issue a recall of Xterras from 2002 to 2004.

Regardless, it takes about three to four years before rust or corrosion surfaces on the Xterra.

This is independent of the type of climate the vehicle is in. It should, however, be noted that rust will occur quicker if the Xterra is often exposed to the elements by often parking it outside. Failure to wash the vehicle regularly, especially if you drive on salted roads or live near the coast, can also promote rust.

How Long Do Nissan Xterras Last Compared to Similar SUVs?

Below, we compare the Nissan Xterra with similar SUVs:

Nissan Xterra vs. Ford Escape

Comparing the mile coverage of the vehicles, the Nissan Xterra has the upper hand. You can expect it to cover an average of 200,000 miles before any major issue, while the Ford Escape can only provide the best service for 150,000 miles before it’ll need a major repair.

The two vehicles both have a 4.0 out of 5.0 RepairPal reliability rating.

However, when other factors like an unscheduled visit to the repair shop and severity of repair are considered, the Escape is positioned at the 16th place on RepairPal’s list. The Xterra stands two positions below as the 18th out of  26 compact SUVs.

In terms of maintenance cost, the Xterra is cheaper to maintain, with a difference of $86. It has an average annual maintenance cost of $514, while that of the Ford Escape is $600.

Read more: How Long Does The Ford Escape Last? (7 Important Facts)

Nissan Xterra vs. Honda CR-V

The CR-V can last as long as 300,000 miles with regular maintenance and proper use. This is 100,000 miles more than that of the Nissan Xterra’s 200,000 miles.

The CR-V is also more reliable and sits at the 2nd position for all compact SUVs with a RepairPal reliability rating of 4.5 out of 5.0. The Xterra is at the 18th position with a 4.0 out of 5.0 RepairPal reliability rating.

The Honda CR-V is also the cheaper vehicle to maintain. It costs an average of $407 to maintain the CR-V annually while the Xterra costs $514.

Therefore, we can argue that the Honda CR-V is a better investment than the Nissan Xterra.

Read more: How Long Do Honda CR-V Last? (Solved & Explained!)

How Reliable Is a Nissan Xterra?

RepairPal gives the Nissan Xterra a 4.0 out of 5.0 reliability rating. The website rates the reliability and durability of vehicles based on maintenance cost and frequency and severity of their unscheduled visit to the repair shop.

The Xterra has an annual average maintenance and repair cost of $514, with a 0.3 annual unscheduled visit to the repair shop. Only 14% of these visits are because of major issues and severe repairs.

Another trusted rating website is the J.D. Power. It gave the last edition of the Nissan Xterra a 79% rating for quality and reliability.

You should also be reading our article which talks about How Long Do Nissan Rogues Last?

The Best and Worst Years for Nissan Xterras

The Nissan Xterra suffered few issues in its lifespan. The most common issue of the Nissan Xterra is the transmission problems.

According to CarComplaints, the 2005 to 2007 Xterras have an issue of leaking coolants into the transmission. This results in transmission failure that costs about $3,500 to repair.

The 2005 model year had this issue the most and had a total of 6 recalls based on this problem. This makes the 2005 model the worst year for Nissan Xterras.

In 2015, before its discontinuation, Nissan corrected many of these issues and added a lot of technology to the vehicle. This made the 2015 Nissan Xterra the best year for the Xterras.

Related: How Long Do Toyota RAV4 Last? (Solved & Explained!)

What About Recalls for These Models?

Before its discontinuation, Nissan recalled the Xterra 27 times. The Xterra recalls were mostly because of problems in the front wheel bearing hub assembly and corrosion in the steering column joint.

The 2008 model has the highest recall of seven and is followed closely by the 2002 and 2005 models, which were both recalled six times. Below is the list of all recalls for Nissan Xterras.

  • 2012: 2 recalls
  • 2011: 1 recalls
  • 2010: 5 recalls
  • 2009: 4 recalls
  • 2008: 7 recalls
  • 2007: 2 recalls
  • 2006: 5 recalls
  • 2005: 6 recalls
  • 2004: 3 recalls
  • 2003: 3 recalls
  • 2002: 6 recalls
  • 2001: 5 recalls
  • 2000: 5 recalls

Nissan Xterra Model Year List

Below is a list of the Nissan Xterra model years:

GenerationModel Year
First Generation (1999 to 2005)


2000 Nissan Xterra

2001 Nissan Xterra

2002 Nissan Xterra

2003 Nissan Xterra

2004 Nissan Xterra

Second Generation (2005 to 2015)


2005 Nissan Xterra

2006 Nissan Xterra

2007 Nissan Xterra

2008 Nissan Xterra

2009 Nissan Xterra

2010 Nissan Xterra

2011 Nissan Xterra

2012 Nissan Xterra

2013 Nissan Xterra

2014 Nissan Xterra

2015 Nissan Xterra

Are Nissan Xterras Expensive To Maintain?

Nissan Xterras are not expensive to maintain. With an average annual maintenance and repair cost of $514, these SUVs are cheaper to maintain compared to many other competitors.

The repair cost falls below the $521 average maintenance and repair cost for all compact SUVs and $652 for all vehicle models.

RepairPal reports that the Nissan Xterra has an annual unscheduled visit to the repair shop for an average of 0.3 times with 14% of these visits being a severe repair or major issue.

Comparing this with the 0.4 times for the annual unscheduled visit for all vehicle models, the Nissan Xterra is not only cheap to maintain but also not prone to frequent repairs.

Here are some of the common repairs on the Nissan Xterra and their corresponding cost range, according to RepairPal data:

  1. Air Conditioning System Leak Inspection: $53-$67
  2. Battery Cable Battery Terminal End Service: $26-$33
  3. Suspension System Inspect: $70-$89
  4. Battery Replacement: $167-$174
  5. Brake Power Booster Unit Check Valve Replacement: $33-$40

How Long Do the Brakes Last?

You can expect the brakes of the Nissan Xterra to last between 30,000 to 40,000 miles, though the longevity depends on the driving habit of the driver.

The brakes may not last 30,000 miles if you engage them aggressively, especially for those frequently commuting in huge traffics.

Experts advise people that drive in this type of environment to inspect the braking system regularly to ensure maximum longevity.

How Long Do the Tires Last?

You can expect the tires of the Nissan Xterra to last up to 60,000 miles.

The tires can last over 60,000 miles in proper conditions and or give up as quickly as 10,000 miles in bad and extreme conditions.

Physical conditions like wear and tears can affect and reduce the longevity of tires. Conditions like bad roads, extreme climate, and poor driving habits can also reduce the tire lifespan.

How Long Do the Transmissions Last?

The Nissan Xterra’s transmission can last up to 200,000 miles before getting any major issues. Getting this high mileage requires proper usage of the vehicle. Overloading the SUV and using the transmission to stop the vehicle may lead to serious problems.

How Long Do the Spark Plugs Last?

The Nissan Xterra’s spark plugs can last about 100,000 miles before there will be a need for replacement.

It is important to inspect the spark plugs at intervals to ensure they are in a good condition to get the best engine performance.

A faulty spark plug cannot ignite the fuel to create the combustion reaction the engine needs to work properly.

What About Insurance Cost?

The insurance cost for an average Nissan Xterra is $78 per month, according to The Zebra. Note that factors such as the vehicle’s age and mileage, your age, credit history, location, and driving record can influence your insurance rates. 

Tips to Prolong the Life of Your Nissan Xterra

Some of the essential maintenance tips to prolong the life of your Nissan Xterra are:

  • Servicing the engine regularly without neglecting the maintenance schedule.
  • Replacing the fuel filter every 30,000 miles.
  • Changing the engine oil and its filter every 5,000 miles..
  • Rotating the tires every 5,000 miles.


Nissan Xterra Repair: Service and Maintenance Cost | RepairPal

2015 Nissan Xterra |

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