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Nissan Frontier why no love

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Lots of Tacoma fans but hardly any frontier fans.   I really like the idea of the 4x4 model except for the 21 mpg .   The ultarian look keeps it simple and affordable.  I don’t care for bells and whistles.   

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airmedic1

I like mine.  I bought it new in 2007 and it still looks and drives good and has 118,000 miles on it.  Mine has got 20 mpg average since the day I bought it and I haven't had any trouble other than ordinary maintenance.  I'm thinking about buying another one when I retire.  They don't have the resale of the Toyota but they don't cost as much either.

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Jacquidog

My 2012 has been trouble free,  brakes, battery and tires about it.  The turning radius is terrible, only real drawback.  My pro 4 will go anywhere I want it to go.

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MAArcher

No love is because of transmission failure caused by coolant fluid leaks in model years 2005-2010.  Big bucks to fix and it can only be made as good as original, so its prone to fail again.  Also my brother is an auto insurance adjuster and he says that Nissan parts are too expensive comparatively.  

 

I've had a couple pre 2005 Xterra's and love them.  Trouble free 300k mile vehicles for short money.  Poor gas mileage though.

 

 

 

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apachecadillac

I'm not sure the transmission issues are the reason.  The 'Strawberry Milkshake of Death' has got to be one of the greatest names for a design flaw in history, but, from what I understand, only a few years of production (ca. 2005-2010) were affected.

 

I think the basic reason for no love is that buying one is an utterly pragmatic and practical decision, a little cheaper going in than the Toyota, a little less resale going out, a decision that tends to get made by people who don't invest much of their identity in their vehicle.  Said by a guy who has close to 100,000 miles on a Nissan Xterra that is five years old and has given me exactly zero problems in that time.  The OEM tires lasted to 68,000 miles, and according to the tire guy, had another 7500 miles or so of tread on them when I had a catastrophic failure on a forest service road --I think I hit a granite ledge, or something, not very fast, but with enough force for a complete separation of the belt and the tread.  And I've had to replace two windshields--more road damage.  None of that is on the vehicle, it's just hard use.

 

The gas mileage is about what you'd expect from a drive train that's fifteen years old.  In the next few years, I'd expect to stop using the Xterra as a daily driver, but have no intentions of ever getting rid of the thing.

 

 

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GLS

I had a 1980 Datsun King Cab 4x4 ( eventually name changed to Nissan) that was manual shifted and was reliable.  Passed it on to B-I-L who passed it on to a farmer and it was driven forever on the farm.  The "Strawberry Milkshake of Death" moniker is only bested by "The Prince of Darkness" as to Lucas.  The push to better gas mileage by some with turbocharged 4 cylinder engines gives me pause about longevity with the answer years down the road.  The Frontier can be a good bargain as most yearly changes in design were incremental ( a la Toyota) with bugs worked out.  I'd look out for a manual transmission.   I am more concerned about the price of parts per mile rather than MPG.  Multiples of thousands of dollars for parts can buy a lot of gas.  Gil

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gunsrus

My bud owns a transmission shop . He says every other car in the shop is a Nissan . Enough said .

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tut

My buddy owned a quad cab version.  Averaged 18 MPG.  Had the turning radius of an 18 wheeler.  Noisy engine.  Back seat was like sitting on 2x10's.   I was not a fan.  PS.  I had a 1988 Nissan Pathfinder and it was a fantastic vehicle.  Still had the bad turning radius but everything else was first rate.  Damn thing would climb a tree and was tough as nails.  Went over 200K and zero transmission problems.  That was before they turned the vehicle into something more suitable for soccer mom's. 

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River19

Agree with what is said above.  Side note......to the OP, I think most if not all Tacoma owners would love 21mpg if they could get it........unless they have a 4cylinder 2WD or early gen 4wd they will only see 20mpg with a sail hoisted, a strong tail wind and rolling down hill.

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airmedic1

My Frontier has a six speed manual, not an auto, but I have friends that have the Altima with an auto and over 200K with no tranny issues.

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Illini

Interesting read.  I was just fly fishing last month with a buddy who bought a new Frontier despite the known transmission issues. He said he could get into it several thousand less than a Tacoma and it had much better mileage rating.  He also thought the Nissan transmission issues were overblown.  Then the following week we replaced the tranny in my son's Altima...

 

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tut
1 hour ago, Illini said:

Interesting read.  I was just fly fishing last month with a buddy who bought a new Frontier despite the known transmission issues. He said he could get into it several thousand less than a Tacoma and it had much better mileage rating.  He also thought the Nissan transmission issues were overblown.  Then the following week we replaced the tranny in my son's Altima...

 

 

My daughter was all set to buy a Altima and then read about the issues with the transmission.  Then I talked to my local mechanic about them and he gave me the stink eye and told me to stay away from Nissan for reliability issues.   She ended up with a 2018  Mazda 3 with the 2.5L and loves everything about it.  PS.  Zoom Zoom

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Windrider

Tacoma:

Huge after market following,

does great off road (like one passed my lifted Jeep on a trail and I couldn’t keep up in the “superior trail vehicle”)

runs 4-ev-uh....

hold value extremely well if you don’t keep vehicles until they die

better gas mileage

better styling 

 

Frontier

Notably less expensive 

180-250k drivetrain

depreciates like a falling brick

a few aftermarket firms support it with a passion

Has a real truck engine that develops torque on the low end 👍👍


interestingly Frontier sales seem to be increasing as the midsize truck segment becomes more popular.  A rising tide seems to raise all boat.

 

with 15 year old fully depreciated forms.  Every truck sold is like printing money for them.

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Dave Erickson

I got 25 mostly trouble-free years out of a couple Nissan trucks. I had a 93 Nissan 2wd "Pickup" that was bulletproof and was running well at 12 plus years and 240K when I sold it. No major issues. Then I almost went with a Tacoma in 05, but based on my little Nissan pickup's run I went with a new Frontier and had no major problems for the next 12+ and 220k. I did have some niggling electrical problems with the Frontier and the dealer wanted $1800 to fix the gas gauge (not impressed with that!!). I used the trip-set for the last few years. The Frontier wasn't the greatest for gas mileage, but it was a potent-punchy fun truck to drive. I made the switch to a Tacoma this time around and so far so good. 

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snapt

I had a Nismo 4.0 liter, can't remember the year exactly but same as the current body style. I never got over 16mpg, could have had a larger truck with bigger capacities that got better MPG. +1 for the turning radius of a submarine. Otherwise it was a bulletproof truck and perfect for hunting, fishing etc. Sadly a drunk driver hit me and totaled it at 60K miles.

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