PROS Handsome styling • Reasonably good at most truck chores • Marginally better than before
CONS Dated ride/handling, power, 4WD hardware, safety technology • Heavy steering • Uncomfortable back seat
The styling did nothing to dampen our hopes; the new Frontier’s looks captivated us. We found it handsome and chunky, aside from the accessory “sport bar” we thought ruined the pickup’s proportions. (Still, we’ll keep it in mind should we ever feel the need to employ the Frontier for an overland expedition.)
VEHICLE LAYOUT Front-engine, 4WD, 5-pass, 4-door truck ENGINE, TRANSMISSION 3.8L direct-injected DOHC 24-valve 60-degree V-6, 9-speed automatic CURB WEIGHT (F/R DIST) 4,966 lb (55/45%) WHEELBASE 139.8 in LENGTH x WIDTH x HEIGHT 224.1 x 74.7 x 72.9 in EPA City/Hwy/Comb 17/22/19 mpg
But once we drove the Frontier, delight quickly turned to disappointment. We knew the new model was built around a modified version of the old truck’s frame—no big sin there—but we didn’t expect the whole creation to feel so dated. The almost complete lack of innovation was a real letdown. Features editor Christian Seabaugh summed up our thoughts: “It’s like reanimating a corpse: new heart, new lungs, but the bones are old and brittle. This was the perfect time for Nissan to raise the bar. Instead, it did … this.”
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