Nissan has the longest history in the U.S. among import automakers selling compact and midsize pickup trucks.
Towing and payload figures for the Nissan Frontier are comparable to the Toyota Tacoma, the segment's best-seller.
New for 2011
The Frontier receives only minor changes, including renamed trim levels and a reshuffling of popular features.
The entry-level XE, middle-of-the-road SE and upscale LE trims have been renamed to S, SV and SL, respectively. The PRO-4X off-road identifier is unchanged. The SV Frontier can be optioned with a Premium Utility Package, and the PRO-4X can be upgraded with an optional Luxury Package. A vehicle immobilizer and bed rail caps are standard on SV, PRO-4X and SL models.
The Frontier is only available in King Cab (extended cab) and crew-cab body styles with either a 4x2 or 4x4 drivetrain. Navy Blue exterior paint is now available on Frontier SV pickups.
Exterior features include:
- Tough PRO-4X appearance package
- Off-road-worthy approach/departure angles
- Muscular but not intimidating wheel flares
- Factory spray-on bedliner on V-6 models
- Adjustable tie-down system on V-6 models
- Locking tailgate
The interior is carried over without change from 2009. Interior features include white-faced gauges and red-stitched leather on the steering wheel and manual gearshift knob. The PRO-4X model has a unique interior with custom seating. The center stack gets a new look on V-6 models, and SL models receive new seat fabric. Leather seating and a Rockford Fosgate premium audio system are available on crew-cab models. All models have supportive, comfortable front bucket seats. Adults have adequate legroom in the rear of the crew cab. The four-cylinder SV Frontier receives upgraded seat fabric to match the SV V-6 model.
Interior features include:
- Removable underseat storage in King Cab
- Easy-to-read gauges
- Two glove boxes, two 12-volt outlets
Under the Hood
Mechanical features include:
- Base engine is a 152-horsepower, 2.5-liter, dual-overhead-camshaft inline-four-cylinder that makes 171 pounds-feet of torque, mated to a five-speed manual transmission
- 261-hp, 4.0-liter, dual-overhead-camshaft V-6 that makes 281 pounds-feet of torque
- Available five-speed automatic transmission (standard on crew cab) is now available on entry-level Frontier XE models
- Available six-speed manual transmission on King Cab
- Electronically controlled, shift-on-the-fly, part-time transfer case
The Frontier offers side curtain airbags as standard equipment on all four- and six-cylinder models and a standard electronic stability system on all V-6 models.
The electronic stability system helps prevent loss of vehicle control during extreme handling maneuvers and inclement weather by automatically applying brakes and cutting throttle when it senses unsafe vehicle movement.
Active Brake Limited Slip, in which the truck's antilock braking system is used as a virtual limited-slip differential, is available for all SV and SL V-6 models.
Hill start assist and hill descent control are standard on all SV and SL four-wheel-drive models equipped with automatic transmissions. Hill descent control allows slow hill descent without constant pressure on the brake pedal. Hill start assist allows the driver to stop on an incline, release the brake and not roll back for two seconds as the driver's foot moves to the accelerator.
Safety features include:
- Three-point seat belts in all seating locations
- Latch anchor system in crew cab
Of Interest to Truck Owners
- Maximum towing capacity: 6,500 pounds (4x2 V-6), 6,300 pounds (4x4 V-6)
- Maximum payload range: 899-1,547 pounds (depending on trim, engine, transmission)
- Maximum towing capacity: 6,300 pounds (4x2), 6,100 pounds (4x4 V-6)
- Maximum payload range: 1,125-1,437 pounds (depending on trim, transmission)
- Standard bed dimensions: 59.5 inches long, 58.8 inches wide at tailgate, 44.4 inches wide between wheel wells
- Long bed dimensions: 73.3 inches long, 58.8 inches wide at tailgate, 44.4 inches wide between wheel wells
- Approach angle: 32.6 degrees (4x4 PRO-4X)
- Departure angle: 23.3 degrees (4x4 PRO-4X)
Cars.com Expert Reviews
|Mike Hanley||Cars.com National||August 31, 2011|
|Mike Levine||PickupTrucks.com||October 15, 2010|
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