AAA Magazines

Nissan Frontier: still haulin’ after all these years

Photo courtesy of Nissan

This pickup has handsome bodywork and is a decent performer.

The Frontier in its current form has been around since the Stone Age—well, since 2005 anyway, the last time it received a serious makeover. Yet Nissan’s midsize pickup is no dinosaur. The simple, no-nonsense lines of its bodywork are still handsome, and this pickup remains a pretty decent performer. 

Like its competition, the Frontier comes with an extended cab (King Cab in Nissan-speak) or a crew cab. Though the Frontier’s interior lacks the modern design flourishes of the other midsize pickups, it’s functional with comfortable seats, simple controls, and a full set of easy-to-read instruments. And it’s available with a choice of two engines, a 152-hp 4-cylinder or a 261-hp V6, which is plenty peppy and has a tow rating up to 6,720 pounds. 

On the downside, the Frontier’s brakes have a spongy feel and the Frontier’s ride is, well, truck-like on rougher surfaces. But its steering is responsive and its handling is predictable. 

The Frontier comes in a variety of trim levels, including the basic S model (4-cylinder engine, stick shift, AM/FM radio, air conditioning, and no power windows) and the off-roading Pro-4X (locking rear differential, skid plates). The basic Frontier S undercuts the competition, with a sticker of about $20,000. But the least expensive Frontier with the more desirable V6 costs about $27,000.

With the Auto Club’s free Car Buying Service, members can enjoy a no-hassle experience when purchasing a new or used vehicle. Get estimated pricing and access to online inventory before visiting a AAA-recommended dealer near you. For details, go to or call 800-709-7222. 

Model years: 2016–2019
Vehicle layout: Midsize pickup, 4.0-liter V6 (261 hp), 6-speed manual, 4WD 
MSRP:  $20,035 (base), $37,000 (well equipped)  
MPG, city/hwy/combined: 19/23/21 for S model
Crash-test ratings: NHTSA: 4 stars overall 
Basic warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles
Spare tire: Full-size tire
Final assembly: United States

Zip code banner

Welcome to the

American Automobile Association

Please enter your home ZIP Code so we can direct you to the correct AAA club’s website.

back to top icon