With one of the oldest designs, Frontier could surely benefit from a redesign and many updates. Its non-U.S. market equivalent Navara got in the third generation in 2014. But like we said it’s not intended for U.S. costumers. We know that Nissan was busy with Titan but we now strongly believe that now the focus should be put on new Frontier. When you have in mind that current generation is already 12 years old with only one facelift in 2011, you know things must change in order to keep Frontier competitive. So 2018 Nissan Frontier should come with many updates and more than just a facelift. We expect that new generation will finally be on the market.
2018 Nissan Frontier – New Design
Although Nissan’s North America spokesperson, Dan Bedore, has stated that the European Navara is not indicative of a Frontier replacement, we strongly believe that Navara is a good starting point. And why is that? We already said that current Frontier is already over a decade old. And to think how much has to be done almost from the drawing board just to keep up with new crash tests and futuristic design, this solution is much easier. You can see rendering photo on how could new Frontier look. And you can see that Navara is used as a starting point. Of course, Nissan will surely tweak the exterior and interior to suit it for the American market.
So, on the front, we expect that the chrome grille will get horizontal inserts. While chrome elements will decorate lower part and around the license plate. On the side, wheels arches will be more pronounced with a line over them that stretches from front end to the rear. For easier entering the cabin, Nissan will have in option several looking side steps. 2018 Nissan frontier will also get larger side mirrors with turn indicators on them. The rear end might not get so many design updates but nevertheless, we expect innovative cargo bed technology.
2018 Nissan Frontier – Interior
Other than that, 2018 Nissan Frontier should also offer single cab configuration in addition to King Cab and Double Cab. That would make him the first or the second manufacturer to offer Single Cab in the mid-size pickup segment. Even if that might come we don’t know will it be the first or the second. It’s because there are rumors that Ford Ranger will for 2018 model year do just that. Whatever could be the case, the interior might not come with so many updates as exterior. Moreover, some key design elements could get carried over from new Titan. So expect larger knobs, four-spoke steering wheel, and somewhat larger buttons.
Note: Image of 2016 Nissan Navara interior
As for technology, all trim levels of Frontier will get standard features like rearview camera and blind-spot monitoring. Lane departure warning will also be standard. But for the highest trim levels, there will be Bird’s-eye view, a 360° camera for easier maneuvering in narrow spaces.
2018 Nissan Frontier – Engine Options
It’s quite difficult to know what is Nissan cooking in engine department for Frontier. But we think it’s unlikely that 2.5-liter 4-cylinder from Navara will be under the hood of new Frontier. But with in partnership with Cummins they have produced 2.8-liter 4-cylinder turbodiesel for Frontier Concept in 2014. This engine might found its place in engine lineup. But for U.S. market more likely is an offer of larger volume gasoline ones. There will surely be a V6 engine. We’re thinking about the current 4.0-liter which will have better output and efficiency numbers. Other than that a 5.6-liter V8 could also found its place in 2018 Nissan Frontier. It’s the engine for second-generation Titan XD, but it should be revised with newer technology.
Note: Image of 2016 Nissan Navara
As for the gearbox options, there will not be anything new. So expect a transition of six-speed manual and seven-speed automatic from Navara. A manual transmission will likely be in connection with a 4-cylinder engine. As for the drive system, 2018 Nissan Frontier will have 4WD as an option.
2018 Nissan Frontier – Safety
Design and powerful engines don’t make the whole pickup. Of course, it has to be appealing and strong, but it also must be safe. When IIHS introduced small overlap front crash test, only Ford F-150 managed to get “G” (good) rating. Euro NCAP evaluated the safety of European 2015 Navara and it has four out of five stars rating. So Nissan has to step up the game and work really hard to increase safety level of new Frontier.
Note: Image of 2016 Nissan Navara
2018 Nissan Frontier – Price And Release Date
Of course, like most, price is a mystery. Price it will surely be higher than current Frontier. But to keep competitiveness with Chevrolet Colorado and Toyota Tacoma, we expect the price just a little below the $20.000 mark. The release date is still far, we predict it could be in the last quarter of 2017.