After a 17-year run, Nissan redesigned the 2022 Frontier pickup truck to groom its rugged good looks with modern conveniences. The 2022 model could not come at any better time than now as the previous frontier was way behind other midsize trucks in regards to technology, comfort, towing, and hauling performance.
The 2022 Frontier retains many of the 2005 model characteristics, although it’s four inches longer and 2.0 inches taller and the bigger creased hood sits higher. Pro models add skid plates protruding between red front tow hooks and vertical air intakes raise the profile while rectangular LED headlights sandwiched by DRLs broaden the face. The Pro 4X trim buffs up the crew cab and short bed with 17-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 32-inch Hankook all-terrain tires rolling under flared fenders. It looks more like a Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro.
The Exterior Design
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The Frontier retains many of the 2005 model characteristics. The Pro models add skid plates protruding between red front tow hooks and vertical air intakes raise the profile while rectangular LED headlights sandwiched by DRLs broaden the face. The Pro 4X trim buffs up the crew cab and short bed with 17-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 32-inch Hankook all-terrain tires rolling under flared fenders. It looks more like a Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro.
The Interior Design
One of the previous Frontier’s most glaring drawbacks was its outdated and cheap-looking interior. With such a state, any redesign would be an improvement. Nissan up their game as the cabin and center button layout looks much more deserving of a modern midsize truck for the 2022 Frontier.
There are Zero Gravity seats as standard in the front, expected to make long drives vastly more enjoyable. There are even neat design features such as big, looping grab handles and sharp accent colors on certain models. Sure, there’s still a lot of hard plastic, and the buttons and dials don’t exactly shout “deluxe.” The new model will come with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration. An 8-inch touchscreen is standard (upgradable to a 9-inch unit), as is a 7-inch driver information display flanked by analog gauges.
Other features include two front USB ports come standard, while a Wi-Fi hotspot, a wireless charging pad, rear USB ports, and a nine-speaker Fender premium audio system are all optional. On models with the larger touchscreen, you can even add a surround-view camera with an off-road mode for navigating precarious mountain trails.
The rear legroom stretches from 26.2 inches to 33.2 inches with the crew cab. Underseat storage can be had in the truck. Frontier Pro models come standard with the crew cab and short bed. A 6-foot bed is available and can hold nearly 50 cubic feet; the short bed holds about 40 cubes.
The Engine Performance
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The Frontier’s powertrain comes with a 3.8-liter V-6 tuned to 310 hp and 281 lb-ft. Accompanied by a 9-speed automatic transmission that provides quick, confident shifts off the start and up the gears. There is a greater chance that it will hesitate when downshifting out of overdrive gears for passing moves. The Frontier return an EPA-rated 18 mpg city, 24mpg highway, and 20mpg combined. With rear-wheel drive it can carry 1,600 lb and tow 6,720 lb, which is on the lighter side of body-on-frame trucks of this size; the Toyota Tacoma can tow up to 6,800 lb, while the Ford Ranger can tow up to 7,500 lb. The 4X with the short bed and 4WD can tow 6,270 lb and haul 1,230 lb.
A part-time four-wheel-drive system with an electronically locking rear differential and hill descent control can be optioned and the Pro 4X model adds Bilstein shocks for more low-speed off-road articulation and higher-speed stiffness. The most surprising thing about the new Frontier is the improved ride quality thanks to hydraulic cab mounts and front and rear stabilizer bars. This shed the worst trait of the outgoing model.
The truck comes with Intelligent Cruise Control which enables and maintains a driver-set distance between the Frontier and the vehicle in front. Another very important feature is the Intelligent Forward Collision Warning. This feature alerts the driver of a possible collision with the vehicle in front. There is also the Intelligent Around-View Monitor. This provides you with a top-down view of the Frontier and its surroundings for tight parking situations. The truck comes standard with automatic emergency braking, active lane control, and adaptive cruise control attracts extra cost on the Frontier and it remains to be seen if the Nissan will earn the same five-star crash-test rating as the Honda.
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