I am the proud owner of an 06 X-terra. I test drove a lot of SUV's in my hunt for this and my main criteria is that I have enough room.
I'm 6'8", and nearly 300 lbs. Before and after trying the X-terra I tried the Escape, Commander, Liberty, Grand Cherokee, Durango, Explorer, Outlander, Element, Pilot, CR-V, Montero, and Freelander. I found more leg room in the X-terra than in any of these others.
And it wasn't that I had room to stretch my legs, it was the "wiggle" room for my right leg between the steering wheel and the sound/climate control hump that drove me away from these others.
Most of the other manufacturers seem to want to bring that hump out toward the shifter which makes it hard for tall people to drive comfortably.
And it wasn't just the fit that sold me on the X-terra. The quickness and agility sent goose pimples up my back the first time I drove it. I feel more in control in this 4X4 than in any other 4X4 or most cars I've driven. Granted there were others I could have bought that were roomy and quick, but for the price, it's a steal.
I can get on the freeway in any given situation and by the time the ramp ends I am easily going freeway speed if not faster. Its like having a 4 wheel drive Maxima.
As far as off-roading goes, I would recommend getting an X-terra in the standard transmission. Even though the X-terra with auto is very capable, I would recommend the stick, especially in mud or snow.
Hi this is my review that I posted some years ago. I don't work for Nissan, I just really love this car!!
My Xterra now has about 68,000 miles on it. The only thing that has broken is the fuel sensor. It said you had gas when your tank was really empty, with the result being that I ran out of gas once. But the part was fixed by the dealer free of charge. Apparently there was a recall after I took mine in. Also had to change the tires on it. Still loving the car. The 4 wheel drive has saved my ass twice -- once in Lake Tahoe where I was buried in snow, and once stuck in a pile of mud.