The 2021 Nissan Frontier mid-size pickup truck will be a carry-over model until the redesigned 2022 model debuts early this year, Nissan confirmed to The Car Connection on Monday.
"The all-new 2022 Nissan Frontier will debut in early 2021," Nissan spokesperson Kevin Raftery said via email. "A model year 2021 Frontier will be produced until the 2022 model production commences at Nissan’s Canton Vehicle Assembly Plant in Mississippi."
The 2022 Frontier will be shown in early 2021 and 2021 models are expected to go on sale later this week. The launch date for the 2022 model is unknown.
For the 2020 Frontier, Nissan dropped in a new V-6 that marked the first significant change since it was last redesigned for 2005. The 310-hp 3.8-liter V-6 with a 9-speed automatic transmission was an upgrade over the 261-hp 4.0-liter V-6, but Nissan last year also eliminated the base engine. That 152-hp 2.5-liter inline-4 with a 6-speed manual or archaic 5-speed automatic was the source of the Frontier's budget-minded appeal.
Even the new V-6 in 2020 and now 2021 models costs about $2,000 more than the outgoing V-6 with a starting price of $27,885 in rear-wheel drive form. An available part-time four-wheel-drive system is available, and the Frontier continues to ride on a solid rear axle with leaf springs. There was speculation that last year's update would lead to a fully redesigned 2021 model, but that is not the case.
The mid-size pickup truck market has gotten increasingly competitive in recent years, with the return of the Ford Ranger for 2019, the launch of the 2020 Jeep Gladiator and the refreshed 2021 Honda Ridgeline. More mid-size pickup trucks are coming with the 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz, as well as electric trucks such as the Rivian R1T and Lordstown Endurance.