The Nissan Titan 2WD 2008.5 was not the first vehicle to come out in the middle of a model year; however, the distinction was rare enough to be noticed. But then, the Titan has been a noticeable truck from its inception.
The company that became Nissan started in 1914, primarily as a builder of trucks. Japan had only a small market for passenger cars at that time. They have continued to build trucks through most of their history, hitting the full size modern pickup market in 2004 with the original Titan.
The Titan 2008.5 offers only one engine, a 5.6 liter V8 with 317 horsepower. There is no V6 because, in spite of its killer looks, the Titan was built to work. It also only has one transmission, a five speed automatic with overdrive. This combination gives it a respectable 12 miles per gallon city and 17 miles per gallon highway.
The 2008.5 came in Crew and King Cab, the latter with four full doors. Both had a seven foot bed, but you could get an eight foot bed with the King cab. The bigger cab sat five adults in reasonable comfort, though it advertised six. (The truth is, no one can sit comfortably in the front middle of any vehicle.) It would haul almost ten thousand pounds.
The 2008.5 2WD has three trim options: XE, SE and LE. These have the amenities you would expect, growing in price and quality as you step up in class.
There were two weaknesses with the 2008.5, though neither was major. One was safety. There were a number of respected safety features, including anti-lock brakes, electronic brake force distribution, the LATCH system for kids, side door beams, crumple zone and an energy absorbing steering column. And, of course, airbags all around were available.
The problem is that even with all that equipment the Titan still managed a five star NHTSA rating only for the driver front. Front passenger and rollover were both four star. Not bad, but not as good as most competitor trucks, which got five stars for both driver and passenger front crash.
The second weakness of the 2008.5 was price. The 2008.5 brought a "midcycle" price increase of $940, from a base price of $24,390 to a new base price of $25,330. The truth is that even that higher price was not out of line. But the complaint was twofold. First, that there was any increase at all, midyear. Second, that when you sat the 2008 and 2008.5 side-by-side most people wouldn't even know they were different year models unless they were looking for it.
Even with those "problems," the Nissan Titan 2WD 2008.5 remained a sharp looking, hard working truck that caught the eye of a lot of buyers.