DETROIT -- Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. said Thursday that prices for its new full-sized Nissan Titan pickup would run $2,600 to $4,200 less than sticker prices for comparable models from the Big 3, before incentives.
The U.S.-built Titan, which goes on sale this month, is widely considered the first major foreign competitor for pickups from General Motors, Ford Motor Co. and the Chrysler group.
To offset a rising level of incentives over the past two years, GM, Ford and Chrysler have raised sticker prices and encouraged buyers to spend their rebates on options.
"This segment has been one with a lot of price increases," said Duane A. Leffel, Nissan's director of pricing strategy and analysis. "Our strategy basically is to come out with a price ... that's a fair market value price for the consumer."
The Titan's base prices range from $22,400 for a two-wheel-drive King Cab version to $34,200 for a four-wheel-drive Crew Cab with several options. Extra options can push the sticker price close to $40,000, similar to other high-end trucks. Most pickups in the segment sell for $27,000 to $29,000.
Unlike the Big 3 pickups, the Titan is offered with one engine choice, a 305-hp V-8, and all models have four doors. Nissan executives said they felt they wanted to concentrate on the higher end of the market rather than sell two-door, V6-powered pickups mostly bought by businesses.
Fred Suckow, Nissan's North American marketing director, said the company expected about 30 percent of Titan buyers to be current Nissan owners. He said the company was targeting buyers who were already receptive to the idea of driving a foreign brand vehicle, in a segment where owner loyalty to domestic brands is among the strongest.
"The toughest (group) to crack is the pure loyalists," Suckow said. "We know they need time and more credibility, and we respect them."
Nissan expects to sell 100,000 Titans a year once its plant in Mississippi is ready for full production by January.
Nissan executives said it was just a coincidence that national advertising for the Titan will begin Thanksgiving Day, during the NFL game between the Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions -- the franchise owned by the Ford family.