A practical and capable midsize pickup truck.

2019 Nissan Frontier Review | CarMax

The 2019 Nissan Frontier continues the legacy of the popular third-generation design with a mix of practicality and capability that suits a midsize pickup truck. Among Nissan trucks, it is a smaller, easier-to-manage alternative that's a good option for hard work. Among compact trucks, the Nissan Frontier is built to be a daily driver, weekend recreational vehicle, and moderate workhorse all at once. It's ideal for someone who doesn't find themselves at construction jobs every day but frequently needs to move around equipment. Here's what we’ll cover in this 2019 Nissan Frontier review:

Key Specs & Features

  • The 2019 Nissan Frontier sports a standard 152 hp 2.5L four-cylinder engine that gets 171 lb-ft of torque on the S and SV trims.
  • The upgraded, more powerful 261 hp 4.0L V6 engine option comes standard on the Desert Runner®, PRO-4X®, and SL trims in addition to being available on the SV trim.
  • The King Cab® and Crew Cab Long Bed cab/configuration options both feature 73.3-inch beds while the Crew Cab features a 59.5-inch bed.
  • 2019 Nissan Frontier Review: Cargo | CarMax
  • The 2019 Nissan Frontier King Cab® features 92 cubic feet of interior space while the 2019 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab configurations feature 107 cubic feet of interior space.
  • Choose your 2019 Nissan Frontier from the standard 2WD and available 4WD drivetrain configurations.
  • The 2019 Nissan Frontier 2.5-L engine comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission and the 4.0-L engine comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission. Both engines feature an optional five-speed automatic transmission.
  • The standard seven-inch touchscreen display on the 2019 Nissan Frontier offers simple, powerful infotainment system control.


5 Reasons to Buy

1. Capable Performance

2019 Nissan Frontier Review: Engine | CarMax

A midsize truck doesn't have to mean midsize-performance. You can choose the standard 152 hp 2.5L four- cylinder engine if you're looking for the optional 261 hp 4.0L V6 engine if you're looking to haul around heavy gear or materials. The standard and upgraded engines push 171 and 281 lb-ft of torque respectively, which will come in handy at the workplace.

2. Towing Capabilities

The 4.0L engine option offers an estimated 6,720 lbs. of maximum towing when properly equipped and a 1,430 lbs. of estimated maximum payload.1 The standard engine also boasts impressive capabilities with an estimated 3,800 lbs. of towing capacity when properly equipped and an estimated 900 lbs. of maximum payload.1

3. Exciting Audio System Options

The 2019 Nissan Frontier Pro-4X® and SL trims are an audiophile's delight with the Rockford Fosgate® audio system upgrade: your favorite songs will sound clear and full over the 10-speakers and subwoofer. The Pro-4X® and SL trims also feature a high-end audio system that is a delight for drivers and passengers alike.

4. Standard Manual Transmission

If you're a driver who prefers the extra control and easier braking, the Frontier is a great option for you. However, the 2019 Nissan Frontier comes standard with a five-speed or six-speed manual transmission on the smaller and larger engine options respectively. The manual transmission inclusion differentiates this truck from many in the pack.

5. Touch-Screen Display

2019 Nissan Frontier Review: Dashboard | CarMax

New for the 2019 model, the Nissan Frontier offers a seven-inch touch-screen display. You can easily navigate the bigger display with the upgraded interface. You’ll be able to access the dashboard and adjust settings very quickly, along with the benefits of a bigger display for reading.

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What You Need to Know

2019 Nissan Frontier Trim Levels

The 2019 Nissan Frontier comes in five trim levels: S, SV, Desert Runner®, Pro-4X®, and SL.

The base S features as standard:

  • 15-inch six-spoke steel wheels
  • Active Brake Limited Slip
  • Seven-inch touchscreen display with AM/FM audio system
  • Bluetooth® connectivity
  • Illuminated steering wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls
  • Power windows and locks

The mid-level SV adds:

  • Trim-exclusive Crew Cab Long Bed configuration
  • Available 4.0L V6 engine configuration
  • Remote keyless entry
  • 16-inch six-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Sliding rear window
  • Tilt steering column

The mid-range Desert Runner® alternative trim builds off the SV with:

  • Frontier embroidered cloth seat trim
  • Bilstein® off-road performance shocks
  • 16-inch six-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Fog lights
  • Satin chrome grille
  • Multi-functional trip computer

The high-mid-range Pro-4X® trim alternative also builds off the SV adding:

  • Body-color outside mirrors
  • Utili-track® Channel System
  • PRO-4X embroidered cloth seat trim
  • AM/FM/CD audio system with six speakers
  • Bilstein® off-road performance shocks
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror

On the top-range SL trim, which also builds from the SV, you get:

  • Leather-appointed seats
  • 2019 Nissan Frontier Review: Front Seats | CarMax
  • 18-inch six-split spoke aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Chrome front bumper
  • Chrome door handles
  • Chrome outside mirrors
  • HomeLink® Universal Transceiver

The 2019 Nissan Frontier is available in the following selection of colors:

  • Glacier White
  • Brilliant Silver Metallic
  • Gun Metallic
  • Magnetic Black Pearl 
    2019 Nissan Frontier Review: Backseat | CarMax
    Image caption goes here
  • Arctic Blue Metallic
  • Cayenne Red Metallic

Similar Vehicles

Ford Ranger

The 2019 Ford Ranger is a great option if you're looking for a midsize pickup truck that balances performance and strength while having a little fun on the way. It runs on a highly-capable 2.3L EcoBoost® engine that gets 270 hp for up to an estimated 7,500 lbs. of maximum towing when properly equipped.1 The 2019 Ford Ranger also boasts a standard, ten-speed automatic transmission which contributes to its impressively efficient EPA-estimated 21/26 mpg.2 You can choose from three trim levels: XL, XLT, and Lariat with optional Chrome, STX, and Sport package upgrades. The Ranger is a great option if you're looking for a truck for work and play.

Chevrolet Colorado

Whether it's work, play, or just your day-to-day, the 2019 Chevrolet Colorado is a pickup truck with a lot to offer. If you're looking for a low-frills, work-focused option the 2019 Chevrolet Colorado Base trim will work for you. The standard 200 hp 2.5L four-cylinder engine is ideal for lighter work with an EPA-estimated 26 highway mpg.2 The 2019 Chevrolet Colorado also offers a beefier engine upgrade: a 308 hp 3.6: DOHC V6 engine that gets an estimated 7,000 lbs. of maximum towing when properly equipped.1 The Chevy Colorado is a versatile midsize pickup with a wide selection of options to help you find the truck with the features you want most.

Nissan Titan

The 2019 Nissan Titan is a workhorse of a truck, built to take on the toughest jobs with its standard 390 hp 5.6L Endurance® V8 engine and available 310 hp 5.0L Cummins® V8 turbo diesel. Single Cab models can tow up to an estimated 12,710-lbs. with the turbo-diesel engine option when properly equipped.1 This truck also features an impressive selection of luxury upgrades like black/brown leather seating and a Fender® audio system. Titans make a great choice if you're looking for a powerful truck that's just at home at the worksite as it is on the daily commute to work.

The Bottom Line

The 2019 Nissan Frontier is a great overall choice. With five trims to choose from, there's plenty of options to help you find exactly what you're looking for in a midsize pickup truck. The Nissan Frontier has you covered at both work and play without the bulk of a larger, heavy-duty truck.

Looking to learn more about the 2019 Nissan Frontier and similar vehicles? Check out these related articles:

1Various factors may impact towing capacity, including weight of passengers, cargo, and options/accessories.
2Fuel economy figures are based on EPA estimates when vehicles sold as new. Fuel economy may vary for reasons like driving conditions and vehicle history. Unless specified, figures are for vehicles equipped with an automatic transmission. See fueleconomy.gov for details.
Unless otherwise noted, information related to these featured vehicles comes from third-party sources, including manufacturer information. Product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of third-party entities. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by these entities.