First off, the Xterra is not a vehicle for everyone. It rides like a truck, is built like a truck, and feels like a truck. So if this does not appeal to you, look elsewhere. If you like the idea of a vehicle that has a lot of storage, holds 4 people and gear in decent comfort, then the Xterra is a great choice. The vehicle is extremely useful. There are pockets, and bins all over. It is the first vehicle I have owned that lets me keep all the junk I carry with me organized.
Storage, utility tracks in the rear, quick turning radius, good view from the driver seat, and the 4 power outlets. Oh and the fully boxed frame makes the vehicle very rigid. So far I have had no mechanical problems, and nothing that seems like it may be a problem.
I would like to see a long wheelbase version since the rear doors sit right on top of the wheel wells. Also, since the wheelbase is short, the front seats don't move very far back, which if you are over six feet it may be a problem.
This is a fun car to drive with a lot of pluses, although there are also some negatives. The pluses include the industrial styling - if that's your thing, lots of power, storage galore, easy to clean interior, vehicle stability control, low tire pressure warning gauge, very quiet interior - even at 80+mph, interior tie down points everywhere, great door cup holders, and a great sounding stereo system. The negatives include interior plastic pieces that scratch very easily, chintzy chrome handles, semi-functional center cup holders, difficult rear entry/exit due to short wheelbase, base stereo does not read MP3 cds or have an auxiliary audio input.
More power than you will ever need to accelerate to freeway speeds. It is very smooth and quiet on the freeway. It is also very comfortable to sleep in as the rear seats fold flat.
Scratch-resistant interior plastic - especially in the cargo area. MP3 capability for base stereo.
Very well built and well thought out veh. All the little things like tie downs, roof storage are, dual glove box, door cup holder, are great to have. This veh would not be a very good for people who would have to use the back seat b/c of fender/wheel clearance area. Other than that this veh is awesome. Strong motor, good steering, nice stereo (even the standard one), in trunk floor storage, etc. All of the seats will fold flat including the front passenger seat. There are steps on the rear bumper which allow access to the roof of the vehicle if needed. Engine feels strong and I havent had a single problem with this veh since the day i bought it new
Quiet interior even on the highway. Lots of different options for the buyer. Entire veh feels like it was built strong and will not break
Standard temp gauge in the rear view mirror. Softer suspension, most people (95%) wont be taking this veh off road so a softer ride would be nice
I've owned Chevy SUVs in the past but had not driven one (SUV) for several years until the Xterra. I wanted one for awhile but the engine choices just seemed too limited and the design was almost there until the new style and engine of 2005. This is the most fun vehicle to drive ever! The fuel economy, while not the greatest, is admirable. I drive 90% on the highway and get about 21 mpg, however, you don't buy one of these for great mileage but for everything else this baby has to offer, and the list is huge. What a great experience this has been, of course I've only had it a few months so hopefully I'll still be singing praises in a couple of years!
Height, ergonomics, comfort, very well thought out cabin and storage and just plain cool looking! Big bang for the price.
Odd turn signal, if you don't touch it just right you flick on the high beams, especially annoying at night with the lights on. Right arm rest/storage unit further forward. Door locks that lock automatically when in drive.