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$19,290 - $37,150
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2019 Nissan Frontier Review

The 2019 Nissan Frontier ranks at the back of the compact pickup truck class. It has a cheap and cramped interior, a low safety score, and lackluster driving dynamics.

Pros & Cons

  • Comfortable ride
  • Good off-road ability
  • Outdated interior and tech features
  • Cheap cabin materials
  • Cramped rear seat
  • Below-average safety score

7.2

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 6.4
Performance: 6.9
Interior: 6.0
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.8
Safety: 7.9
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2019 Nissan Frontier Overview

Is the 2019 Nissan Frontier a Good Used Truck?

Yes, the 2019 Nissan Frontier is a fine option if you’re shopping for a bare-bones used pickup truck. The Frontier has respectable payload and towing capacities, easy-to-use features, a comfortable ride on road, and impressive capability off road. As for pricing, used Frontier models are often far less expensive than any other compact pickup truck. There is a reason for that though.

The Frontier is thoroughly outdated. It lacks modern tech and safety features like Apple CarPlay and blind spot monitoring. The interior is snug and trimmed with cheap plastics, and the truck’s gas mileage is among the worst in the class. The Frontier also has low crash safety ratings.

If you want a basic used pickup truck at a price that typically can’t be beat, give the Frontier a look. Otherwise, you’re better off with an alternative like the 2019 Toyota Tacoma, 2019 Ford Ranger, or 2019 Chevrolet Colorado.

Compare the Frontier, Tacoma, and Ranger »

Why You Can Trust Us

We’ve analyzed 92 Nissan Frontier reviews, as well as data points like reliability ratings and fuel economy estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our team has decades of experience in the auto industry. Though we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to providing helpful consumer advice. To maintain objectivity, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies.

How Much is the 2019 Nissan Frontier?

Based on listings for the 2019 Nissan Frontier, the average list price is $20,920. Prices range from $19,290 to $37,150 and vary depending on the vehicle’s condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2019 Nissan Frontier Cost to Own?

The 2019 Frontier’s five-year costs for gas, insurance, taxes, fees, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be about $28,900, or $5,780 per year. That’s below average for the class.

2018 vs. 2019 Nissan Frontier: What's the Difference?

There’s only one main difference between the 2018 and 2019 Frontier models. Nissan added a larger touch screen (7 inches, up from 5) to the Frontier’s standard equipment for 2019. Otherwise, the 2019 Frontier is largely unchanged, and that remains true dating to its last redesign for the 2005 model year.

Compare the 2018 and 2019 Frontier »

Here are the key changes for the Nissan Frontier over the last several years:

  • 2013: Desert Runner trim added
  • 2014-17: no major changes
  • 2018: rearview camera and air conditioning became standard
  • 2019: 7-inch touch screen became standard

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2016 Frontier, 2017 Frontier, and 2018 Frontier reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Best New Car Deals and Best New Car Lease Deals pages to learn about savings and discounts you can find on new vehicles.

How Reliable Is the 2019 Nissan Frontier?

The 2019 Frontier has a slightly above-average predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of five.

Read more about Frontier reliability »

2019 Nissan Frontier Recalls

There have been 1 safety recalls issued from NHTSA.

BACK OVER PREVENTION: SENSING SYSTEM: CAMERA Recall Date: 09/11/2019
  • Summary: Nissan North America, Inc. (Nissan) is recalling certain 2018-2019 Nissan Altima, Armada, Frontier, Kicks, Leaf, Maxima, Murano, NV, NV200, Pathfinder, Rogue, Rogue Sport, Sentra, Titan, Titan Diesel, Versa Note and Versa Sedan vehicles, as well as Infiniti Q50, Q60, QX30 and QX80 vehicles. Additionally included are 2019 Nissan GT-R and Taxi and Infiniti QX50, QX60, Q70, Q70L vehicles. The back-up camera and display settings can be adjusted such that the rear view image is no longer visible and the system will retain that setting the next time the vehicle is placed in reverse. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 111, "Rear Visibility."
  • Potential Number of Units Affected: 1228830
  • Consequence: The lack of an image in the back-up camera display increases the risk of a crash.
  • Remedy: Nissan will notify owners in phases, having dealers update the back-up camera settings software, free of charge. The recall began November 11, 2019 and all affected VINs should be activated. Owners may contact Nissan customer service at 1-800-867-7669 or INFINITI customer service at 1-800-662-6200.
  • Dates of Manufacture: MAR 31, 2018 to MAY 29, 2019
  • NHTSA Campaign ID: 19V654000

See more information on Nissan Frontier safety recalls »

Which Used Nissan Frontier Trim Is Right for Me?

The 2019 Nissan Frontier comes in two body styles – King (extended) Cab and Crew Cab – as well as five trim levels: S, SV, Desert Runner, PRO-4X, and SL. All trims are available in both body styles except for the SL, which comes only as a Crew Cab.

The base Frontier S is a fine starting point for most shoppers, but you’ll need to upgrade to the Frontier SV if you want convenience features like power windows and power door locks. Choose the Frontier SL if leather seats and a moonroof are must-have items.

  • Nissan Frontier S: The base model Frontier S is available with a 152-horsepower four-cylinder or a 261-horsepower V6 engine, a manual or automatic transmission, and rear- or four-wheel drive. Standard features include a 7-inch touch screen, a USB port, Bluetooth, four to six speakers, manual door locks, manual windows, cloth upholstery, manually adjustable front seats, a rearview camera, a locking tailgate, bed tie-down hooks, and 15-inch wheels.
  • Nissan Frontier SV: The Frontier SV adds power windows, power door locks, remote keyless entry, and 16-inch wheels.
  • Nissan Frontier Desert Runner: The Frontier Desert Runner trim is available only with the V6 engine, a five-speed automatic transmission, and rear-wheel drive. This trim adds fog lights and Bilstein off-road shock absorbers.
  • Nissan Frontier PRO-4X: The rugged Frontier PRO-4X trim comes only with the V6 engine and four-wheel drive but with a choice of a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission. This trim adds a navigation system with a 5.8-inch touch screen, satellite radio, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, rear parking sensors, a locking rear differential, skid plates, and a spray-on bedliner.
  • Nissan Frontier SL: The Frontier SL trim comes only with the V6 and five-speed automatic, and with either rear- or four-wheel drive. This trim lacks the off-road equipment of the PRO-4X, but it adds leather seats, power-adjustable front seats, a 10-speaker stereo, a moonroof, heated side mirrors, and 18-inch wheels.

See 2019 Nissan Frontier trims and specs »

What Does Nissan's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Nissan offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles six years old or less and with fewer than 80,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Nissan extends the original new-car warranty to seven years from the original sale date or 100,000 miles. To become certified pre-owned, each Nissan CPO vehicle must pass a 167-point inspection. Additional benefits like rental car reimbursement, a three-month SiriusXM satellite radio trial subscription, a Security+Plus Extended protection plan, towing, and 24-hour roadside assistance may be available, so read the Nissan warranty page carefully.

According to our research, Nissan’s CPO program is about average for an affordable auto manufacturer. Mazda, Honda, and Chevrolet all have more robust programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the Frontier?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2019 Frontier an overall safety rating of four out of five stars. The Frontier received three stars in the frontal crash test and five stars in the side crash test, despite the driver’s door becoming unlatched and opening. Rear-wheel-drive models received three stars in the rollover test, while four-wheel-drive models received four stars.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the 2019 Frontier the highest rating of Good in the moderate overlap front crash, side crash, and roof strength tests. The Frontier received the second-highest rating of Acceptable in the rear-end collision test and the second-lowest rating of Marginal in the two small overlap front crash tests. This Nissan received the lowest rating of Poor for how well its headlights illuminate the road ahead.

Standard advanced safety features:

  • Rearview camera

Available advanced safety features:

  • Rear parking sensors

See Frontier safety scores »

2019 Nissan Frontier Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2019 Nissan Frontier or 2019 Toyota Tacoma?

The 2019 Toyota Tacoma is a much better used compact pickup truck than the Frontier. The Tacoma has a higher-quality interior, better crash safety ratings, and far more advanced safety features like standard forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking. The Tacoma also offers a heftier payload capacity and better fuel economy from both its four- and six-cylinder engines. While used Tacoma models are typically more expensive than used Frontiers, you do get a lot more truck for your money. Go with the Toyota.

Which Is Better: 2019 Nissan Frontier or 2019 Nissan Titan?

The 2019 Nissan Titan is a full-size pickup truck. It may be overkill for what many buyers need, but on the whole it’s a better pickup than the Frontier. The Titan has a nicer interior with more seating space than the Frontier. It’s available with more safety features, and it boasts superior payload and towing capacities. The Titan is a bit more comfortable and enjoyable to drive as well, and its V8 engine lineup ensures there’s lots of power on tap. If you can afford it, consider upgrading to the Titan.

Compare the Frontier, Tacoma, and Titan »

2019 Frontier Performance

How Does the 2019 Nissan Frontier Drive?

The Frontier’s driving dynamics are largely disappointing. The steering is light and imprecise, and the brake pedal is soft under hard braking. The Frontier tends to sway and lean around sharp turns, though that’s pretty typical for a pickup truck. On the plus side, the Frontier soaks up bumps and dips in the road comfortably, and the suspension articulates nicely over rough terrain. The Frontier has about 9 inches of ground clearance, making it a decent off-roader – especially the PRO-4X trim, which features specific components to improve performance off the pavement.

This Nissan is available with two engine options. The standard four-cylinder feels peppy enough around town, but it struggles to heave the Frontier up to highway speeds or pass other vehicles, especially with a loaded bed. The available V6 is a better match for the Frontier. It accelerates the truck up to speed swiftly and yields stronger passing power. Also, its burly low-end torque pays off when lugging a heavy trailer.

The Frontier’s five-speed automatic transmission operates smoothly for the most part. The five- and six-speed manual transmissions have fairly precise gear changes, and the clutch pedal is easy to modulate.

  • Base engine: 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 152 horsepower and 171 pound-feet of torque
  • Available engine: 4.0-liter V6 with 261 horsepower and 281 pound-feet of torque
  • Drivetrain: standard rear-wheel drive; available four-wheel drive (4WD)
  • Transmission: five-speed manual, five-speed automatic, or six-speed manual
Does the 2019 Nissan Frontier Get Good Gas Mileage?

The Nissan Frontier gets poor fuel economy for a compact pickup truck.

  • Four-cylinder, manual, RWD: 19/23 mpg city/highway
  • Four-cylinder, automatic, RWD: 17/22 mpg
  • V6, manual, RWD: 16/22 mpg
  • V6, automatic, RWD: 16/23 mpg
  • V6, manual, 4WD: 16/21 mpg
  • V6, automatic, 4WD: 15/21 mpg
2019 Nissan Frontier Towing Capacity

The Frontier can tow between 6,110 and 6,720 pounds when equipped with the V6 engine and a Class IV trailer hitch. The Frontier four-cylinder models are rated to tow up to 3,810 pounds.

Read more about Frontier performance »

2019 Frontier Interior

How Many People Does the 2019 Frontier Seat?

The Nissan Frontier is available in two body styles. The Frontier King (extended) Cab has four seats, while the Frontier Crew Cab has five seats. Regardless of body style, the front seats provide adequate head- and legroom, even for taller occupants. The seat cushions are soft, but they’re also flat and unsupportive. The King Cab’s rear seats are practically unusable because of their paltry legroom and bolt-upright seating position. On the other hand, the Crew Cab’s rear seats are soft and roomy enough for kids to sit comfortably, but they’re still a bit too cramped for adults.

The Frontier’s interior is trimmed with lots of hard, grainy plastics. They should hold up well to abuse over time, but they give the cabin a cheap appearance. The decade-old styling doesn’t help this low-buck look either. Many interior panels haven’t changed since the Frontier was last redesigned for 2005.

Standard seating features:

  • Cloth upholstery
  • Manually adjustable front seats

Available seating features:

  • Leather upholstery
  • Power-adjustable front seats
  • Heated front seats
How Many Child Car Seats Fit in the 2019 Nissan Frontier?

The Frontier has two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors for the rear outboard seats and a single tether for the rear middle seat. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the extended cab’s LATCH system the second-highest rating of Acceptable for ease of use because the tether anchors are difficult to locate. The IIHS gave Crew Cab models the second-lowest rating of Marginal, nothing that the tether anchors are hard to find and could be confused for other hardware. Also, the lower anchors are difficult to maneuver around.

2019 Nissan Frontier Features

The Frontier comes standard with a 7-inch touch screen. A navigation system with a 5.8-inch touch screen is available. Both displays have straightforward menus and respond quickly to inputs, but neither supports Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The air conditioning and audio controls are about as basic as it gets nowadays. These controls consist of a few chunky buttons and knobs on the dashboard.

  • Standard infotainment features: a 7-inch touch screen, Bluetooth, and a USB port
  • Available infotainment features: a 5.8-inch touch screen, a navigation system, and satellite radio
  • Additional standard features: manual windows and manual door locks
  • Other available features: power windows, power door locks, remote keyless entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a moonroof

See 2019 Nissan Frontier specs »

Read more about Frontier interior »

2019 Nissan Frontier Dimensions

Nissan Frontier Cargo Space

The Frontier comes in two bed configurations: a 6-foot bed and a 5-foot bed, depending on which cab you get. The maximum payload ratings for this compact pickup truck range from 890 to 1,460 pounds, depending on the model.

2019 Nissan Frontier Length and Weight
  • Length: 17 feet, 2 inches to 18 feet, 3 inches
  • Curb weight: 3,779 to 4,624 pounds

Where Was the 2019 Nissan Frontier Built?

Nissan built the 2019 Frontier in Mississippi.

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