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Crowd-sourcing is the new buzzword in the auto industry. In the age of social media, it's a way of letting thousands of people interact with large and otherwise impenetrable companies, and perhaps influence the design of a few models to a far greater degree than any focus group of days past.
It's also a chance to make an existing product look really cool—as Nissan has done with its crowd-sourced "Project Titan". Using suggestions put to the company through Nissan's Facebook page, the firm has prepared a 2014 Titan pickup with equipment needed to take on the wilds of Alaska, with Iraqi war veterans David Guzman and Kevin McMahon at the wheel. The pair are Wounded Warrior Project alumni, a decade-old organization dedicated to serving injured veterans.
Based on a 2014 Titan Crew Cab PRO-4X, Facebook fans were able to vote on ten different areas of customization to influence the Titan's new look. The Titan's 5.6-liter V-8 has been tweaked with a NISMO cold-air intake and Borla cat-back exhaust system. The standard wheels are ditched in favor of 18-inch Fuel Revolver D525 wheels, with a set of 35-inch Nitto Trail Grappler M/T tires. The obligatory bull bar helps prepare the car for any unfortunate wildlife incidents and Bulldog LED light bars on the grille and roof mean the crew get extra chance to avoid those incidents in the first place.
Inside, there's a new shifter and steering wheel plus some Katzkin leather-wrapped seats with Project Titan and Wounded Warrior Project embroidery. There's also tan stitching—matching the new exterior wrap—and to really offer the crew the full outdoors experience, a matching customized all-terrain camping trailer. Enclosed within are a camp-style kitchen, tent, water/fuel storage and a spare tire—everything the adventurer needs. Nissan's Fred Diaz says the Titan already provides a solid base for adventuring, but that "Project Titan is fully equipped for the Alaskan Frontier."
Nissan will document Guzman and McMahon's journey through the Alaskan wilderness on the Nissan Trucks Facebook page.