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Nissan Xterra Towing Capacity: Can It Tow a Camper Trailer, Boat, or Jet Ski?

We all know that the Nissan Xterra is a powerful compact SUV, but how much is its towing capacity? Does it have what it takes to tow a fully loaded jet ski, motorcycle, or teardrop trailer? What are the other options in this category, and how much towing capacity do they offer? Let’s discuss the answers to all these questions by starting with the obvious one:

The first generation of the Nissan Xterra was introduced in the early 2000s and had a towing capacity ranging between 3,500-5,000 pounds. This variation has been removed in the latest generations, and all Nissan Xterra models now have a towing capacity of 5,000 pounds. Also, the towing variations of the old car types have been removed between two-wheel drives and four-wheel drives.

This information is just the tip of the iceberg. Following are various tables and details that provide you in-depth analysis of the towing capacity of this car in relevance with several trailer types. We have also discussed the average towing capacities offered by other manufacturers. Let’s get right into it.

Maximum Towing Capacity By Year

The following table is the evolution chart of the towing capacities of different variants of the Nissan Xterra. These variations started from 2000 until 2015 when Nissan decided to discontinue the manufacturing of these cars.

YearEngineMaximum Towing Capacity (lbs)Car Type
2015All5,000All
2014All5,000All
2013All5,000All
2012All5,000All
2011All5,000All
2010All5,0002WD
 All5,0002WD
2009All5,0002WD
 All5,0002WD
2008All5,0002WD
 All5,0002WD
2007All5,0002WD
 All5,0002WD
2006All5,0002WD
 All5,0002WD
2005All5,0002WD
 All5,0002WD
2004 KA24DE (4 cyl) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5004WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0004WD
2003 KA24DE (4 cyl) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5004WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0004WD
2002 KA24DE (4 cyl) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5004WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0004WD
2001 KA24DE (4 cyl) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5004WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0004WD
2000 KA24DE (4 cyl) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5002WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0002WD
  VG33E (V6) MT3,5004WD
  VG33E (V6) AT5,0004WD

Also read:

Can It Tow a Trailer, Boat, or Jet Ski?

Trailers come in all shapes and sizes. We have done extensive research to identify the exact weighing limits of different types of trailers. We have then matched these weight limits against the towing capacity of the Nissan Xterra.

The newer generations of the Nissan Xterra can tow small and medium-sized trailers with a maximum weight limit of 5000 pounds. It has the power to tow both empty and loaded trailers such as the Canoe/Kayak, Jet Ski, Teardrop, and Small Open Utility Trailers. The list of these trailers is long, which signifies the towing capacity of this SUV.

Trailer TypeAverage Empty Weight (lbs.)Average Total Loaded Weight (lbs.)Can A Nissan Xterra Tow It?[SK1]
Canoe / Kayak Trailer200                                                 400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Jet Ski Trailer300                                              1,800Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Motorcycle Trailer500                                              2,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Teardrop Trailer1,700                                              2,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Open Utility Trailer700                                              2,500Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
A-Frame Camper1,700                                              2,900Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Enclosed Utility Trailer1,000                                              3,200Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Fishing Boat Trailer600                                              3,300Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Pop Up Camper2,300                                              3,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Travel Trailer2,800                                              3,600Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Tow Dolly600                                              4,000Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Large Enclosed Utility Trailer2,700                                              7,100It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Small Horse Trailer2,900                                              7,200It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Travel Trailer6,700                                              8,300No.
Car Trailer1,900                                              9,000It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Flatbed Trailer3,00010,400It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Boat Trailer2,200                                            13,600It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Dump Trailer4,500                                            16,900It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Toy Hauler7,600                                            17,900No.
Large Livestock Trailer7,300                                            18,700No.
5th Wheel Camper12,700                                            18,700No.
Gooseneck Flatbed Trailer7,200                                            23,200No.
  • Kayak: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a kayak trailer. On average, an empty kayak trailer will weigh 200 pounds. A loaded kayak trailer will weigh an average of 400 pounds with a maximum of 800 pounds which is well within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Jet Ski Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a jet ski trailer. On average, an empty jet ski trailer will weigh 300 pounds. A loaded jet ski trailer will weigh an average of 1,800 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Motorcycle Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a motorcycle trailer. On average, an empty motorcycle trailer will weigh 500 pounds. A loaded motorcycle trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds with a maximum of 3,500 which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Teardrop Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a teardrop trailer. On average, an empty teardrop trailer will weigh 1,700 pounds. A loaded teardrop trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra. Some teardrop trailers will weigh a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the limits of the  Nissan Xterra.
  • Small Open Utility Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a small open utility trailer. On average, an empty small open utility trailer will weigh 700 pounds. A loaded small open utility trailer will weigh an average of 2,500 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • A-Frame Camper: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an a-frame camper. On average, an empty a-frame camper weighs 1,700 pounds. A loaded a-frame camper will weigh an average of 2,900 pounds with a maximum of 3,600 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Small Enclosed Utility Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty small enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty small enclosed utility trailer weighs 1,000 pounds. A loaded small enclosed utility trailer will weigh an average of 3,200 pounds with a maximum of 7,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Fishing Boat Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty fishing boat trailer. On average, an empty fishing boat trailer weighs 600 pounds. A loaded fishing boat trailer will weigh an average of 3,300 pounds with a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Pop-Up Camper: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a pop-up camper. On average, an empty pop-up camper weighs 2,300 pounds. A loaded pop-up camper will weigh an average of 3,400 pounds with a maximum of 4,000 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Small Travel Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a small travel trailer. On average, an empty small travel trailer weighs 2,800 pounds. A loaded small travel trailer will weigh an average of 3,600 pounds with a maximum of 4,500 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Tow Dolly: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow a tow dolly. On average, an empty tow dolly weighs 600 pounds. A loaded tow dolly will weigh an average of 4,000 pounds with a maximum of 5,000 pounds which is within the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Large Enclosed Utility Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty large enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty large enclosed utility trailer weighs 2,700 pounds. A loaded large enclosed utility trailer weighs an average of 7,100 pounds with a maximum of 10,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Small Horse Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty small horse trailer. On average, an empty small horse trailer weighs 2,900 pounds. A loaded small horse trailer weighs an average of 7,200 pounds with a maximum of 8,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Nissan Xterra.
  • Car Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty car trailer. On average, an empty car trailer weighs 1,900 pounds. A loaded car trailer weighs an average of 9,000 pounds with a maximum of 15,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Large Flatbed Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty large flatbed trailer. On average, an empty large flatbed trailer weighs 3,000 pounds. A loaded large flatbed trailer weighs an average of 10,400 pounds with a maximum of 26,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Nissan Xterra.
  • Large Boat Trailer: All Nissan Xterra models will be able to tow an empty large boat trailer. On average, an empty large boat trailer weighs 2,200 pounds. A loaded large boat trailer weighs an average of 13,600 pounds with a maximum of 34,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Nissan Xterra.

Also read: The Exact Bolt Pattern Of A Nissan Xterra

How Well Can It Tow Compared to its Competitors?

Compact SUVs have slightly less towing capacities than other large-sized SUVs, but still, they are considered a powerful towing option. This is because most SUVs in this category have a powerful engine and a favorable design for towing purposes. Also, these vehicles have a robust build quality which is another key factor in this regard. The following table mentions several cars that compete with the Nissan Xterra and mentions their towing capabilities accordingly. We can realize that the highest towing capacity in this category is 5,000 pounds, and Nissan Xterra is level with the 2015 Toyota 4runner, 2015 Nissan Pathfinder, and 2015  Toyota FJ Cruiser.

Year / Make / ModelMin. Towing Capacity (lbs.)Max. Towing Capacity (lbs.)
2015 Toyota 4runner<5,0005,000
2015 Nissan Pathfinder<5,0005,000
2015  Toyota FJ Cruiser<5,0005,000
2015 Jeep Wrangler<2,0002,000
2015 Honda Element<1,5001,500