But you'll pay through the nose for the privilege of a six-pot.
The midsize Nissan Frontier pickup is an absolute warrior of a truck, refusing to die despite being more than a decade old. However, 2020 brought the biggest update yet, with a new 3.8-liter V6 engine developing 310 hp and 281 lb-ft of torque introduced for the new model year. But it's putting a band-aid on a gunshot wound at this stage, and the Frontier really needs a complete overhaul. The good news is that a new one is in the works, and should be unveiled in time for a 2021 debut. The new truck will likely be based on the foreign-market Nissan Navara, which has been around since the mid-2010s elsewhere, and we already know that the new 3.8-liter engine will feature in the new truck. But an early fleet ordering document uncovered by Cars Direct has now given us more info on the next-generation truck, including a big price scare.
While the document is meant as an early indication of pricing for fleet buyers to plan ahead, and the figures are merely guidelines, the document points to the 2021 Frontier carrying an MSRP of around $7,000 more than the outgoing model. This means a base model Frontier is expected to carry a base MSRP of around $30,000, which will make it markedly more expensive than rivals like the Ford Ranger and Toyota Tacoma. Invoice prices are expected to be slightly lower, with the document indicating an estimate of $26,280 excluding destination charges, bringing the Frontier closer to the Ford Ranger's base price.
But there's a caveat to the price increase, in that the current 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine offered as a base powertrain on the current truck will no longer be available, and in fact, there will no longer be a four-cylinder engine at all. That will mean that every Frontier will be powered by the 3.8-liter V6, handing it a massive power advantage over more budget-oriented rivals. The Toyota Tacoma's 2.7-liter four-cylinder, for example, only produces 159 horsepower, and equipping the 278 hp V6 pushes the MSRP up to just more than $29,000.
We'll have to wait for official pricing and for the actual truck to be unveiled to see if it's worth it, but it seems after more than a decade, the Frontier might no longer be the cheapest truck around.