Nissan’s 2016 Titan XD isn’t just the Texas Auto Writers Assn. “Truck of Texas,” it may be the fastest land speed racer in the world. That is, if development of the special “Project Triple Nickel” model in cooperation with Cummins can break existing speed records.
The two companies have teamed up on the project to produce a new land speed record. The truck features Cummins 5L V8 Turbo Diesel producing 555 lbs.-ft. of torque. The specially outfitted truck was unveiled this week at the 2015 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas.
“What better place to show off the latest collaboration between Nissan and Cummins than the 2015 SEMA Show,” said Pierre Loing, vice president, product planning, Nissan North America, Inc. “Land speed record racing is one of the most intriguing and difficult forms of motorsport, and what we learn from this undertaking will be beneficial to all as TITAN is continuously developed.”
Cummins and Nissan North America began modifying a 2016 Titan XD recently with a lowered suspension, salt-flat style disc wheel covers, Mickey Thompson tires, an Ultra Shield seat, a Stroud Safety parachute, a custom-fabricated front air dam and bed covers and a custom, brushed nickel-colored wrap. Additional modifications are planned, including a roll cage, additional safety equipment and more.
The hope is to have the truck ready for testing by early next year. Both companies employ land speed class record holders, both at Bonneville as well as the East Coast Timing Assn., will tap that knowledge in building the truck.
The companies intent to have the truck compete in the D/DT class (current record 191 mph) as well as the FIA class A-III-9 (record 115 mph).
“Cummins and Nissan have had an innovative partnership for more than five years, with excellent results, including the award winning powertrain for the all-new 2016 TITAN XD truck,” said Jeff Caldwell, general manager of Global Pickup & Van Business, Cummins. “Our working teams have been discussing a land-speed record racing project for some time now, and we are thrilled to debut this truck at the 2015 SEMA Show. Our founder, Clessie Cummins, would be proud of the volunteers willing to spend the time pushing his diesel to its limits.”
Cummins has been involved in land-speed racing for decades, dating back to 1931 on Daytona Beach and continuing to the salt flats of Bonneville and the airstrips of Wilmington, OH.
Likewise, Nissan has tried its hand at speed racing, most recently with a 1994 “Hardbody” compact pickup truck, which raced at El Mirage and Bonneville. That truck set multiple records in the mid-1990s for a four-cylinder truck, most notably a run of 142.9 mph on the salt flats, Nissan said.