Will this bring in more buyers?
The Nissan Frontier is a dinosaur by today's automotive standards and yet it remains a strong seller for the Japanese automaker. Go figure. Perhaps it's because the Frontier is a no-nonsense, mid-size pickup truck that lacks many of today's advanced technologies. Truck people like basics. The full-size Titan, however, has been struggling to gain solid footing in the truck wars dominated by Detroit. If you recall, the Titan XD diesel is not expected to return for the 2020 model year or, at least, its Cummins V8 won't.
Nissan has yet to make an official announcement but CarsDirect has uncovered an interesting offer the automaker has authorized its US dealerships to make this month. This latest incentive is a free Midnight Edition upgrade for both the Frontier and Titan this month, valued at $995 and $1,250, respectively.
For the Frontier, the Midnight Edition Package on the SV 4x2 Crew Cab, which carries an MSRP of $30,780 with destination, adds a blacked-out grille, door handles, step rails, and special 18-inch wheels. According to Nissan, those upgrades alone are worth $2,495. Although this sounds like a good deal, for the same $30k or so one could buy a brand-new Ford Ranger XLT instead.
CarsDirect also points out Nissan is offering up to $4,495 in savings for the Frontier in various parts of the US, which includes up to a $2,000 rebate, $1,000 in available bonus cash, a $500 "Red Tag" bonus on some inventory, as well as the Midnight Edition upgrade. Will the latter incentive alone be enough to boost sales? Unknown at this time, but Frontier sales still remain quite strong, which is remarkable given that it was last redesigned in 2005.
For example, Nissan sold a total of 5,888 Frontier last month – that's a 29 percent increase from August 2018. The Titan, however, continues to struggle. Just 2,589 units were sold last month, a 45 percent drop compared to a year ago.
Equally troubling is that Nissan has been offering the Titan with discounts up to $6,000. Nissan needs to either give the Titan a dramatic mid-life refresh or consider leaving the full-size truck segment entirely. Meanwhile, a redesigned Frontier is just around the corner and, chances are, it'll be a formidable foe to the Ford Ranger, Toyota Tacoma, and the Chevy Colorado/GMC Canyon.