The Nissan Frontier midsize pickup has been plugging along in the U.S. since Chevy was building the S10, Dodge the Dakota, and Ford the Ranger Splash, and stayed around when those brands took a break from the smaller-than-full-size pickup segment. It saw just two major redesigns over 35 years.
In 2014 Nissan split the Frontier from its world-market Navara platform mate; the rest of the world got another generation, but we kept our pickup as it was after the 2010 facelift. We got a look at the next new Navara pickup today, which goes on sale in Thailand in December, and we’re expecting the updates to mirror what’s coming next in our Frontier—If you’ll recall, earlier this year we got a new engine and powertrain, but new sheetmetal was TBD.
The new world market pickup gets a sleek but still recognizable Nissan front end. It joins the raft of automakers with “c-clamp” LED lights but what we really expect on our next Frontier is the full selection of modern safety features. We’ll see forward collision warning, emergency braking, Nissan’s around view monitor, and others.
Mechanically speaking, the Navara gets a strengthened rear axle, increase payload capacity, a bigger bed, an integrated step for easier access, and a new steering rack. Nissan also says will be quieter than the outgoing model with more noise isolation.
The Pro-4X version you see here is a just a visual upgrade in the world market vehicle, but the colors would look right at home on our Frontier. And so would that front end.
We talked to Nissan who reiterated that “the Navara is not the Frontier, it’s built for global markets,” and not to read too much into it. “The U.S. Frontier, which is built in Mississippi, will be unveiled at a later date.”
We’ll find out more soon.
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