- Pro-4X upgrades
- Good standard features
- Very quiet cabin
- Good towing capacity
- Sizable in-cabin storage spaces
- High floor for backseat passengers
- No wireless Apple CarPlay
features & specs
The redesigned 2022 Nissan Frontier is thoroughly modernized with big improvements in ride quality and technology.
What kind of vehicle is the 2022 Nissan Frontier? What does it compare to?
The 2022 Nissan Frontier is a mid-size pickup truck competing in a surging utility truck segment that features fresh takes on the Ford Ranger and Honda Ridgeline to newer models such as the Jeep Gladiator.
Is the 2022 Nissan Frontier a good truck?
With its ride improvements and cabin updates, the redesigned 2022 Nissan Frontier earns a TCC Rating of 5.6 out of 10. The 17-year gap between generations of the Frontier left the new truck a lot of work to do, but it has transformed into a modern mid-size pickup with plenty of standard technology and style to go around. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
What's new for the 2022 Nissan Frontier?
Redesigned for the first time since the 2005 model year, the 2022 Nissan Frontier sports an overhauled exterior, a new interior, and new suspension components. The third-generation Frontier rides on a revised high-strength steel ladder frame carried over from the outgoing model.
With Nissan calling it the right-sized pickup for the segment, the new Frontier retains many of the dimensions of the outgoing model. The same 126.0-inch wheelbase comes with the same 5-foot bed on crew cab models, and the same 6-foot bed comes with the extended cab with a long wheelbase. It’s pretty much the same width, but it’s 4.5 inches longer in front due to a more pronounced grille and bumper.
The Frontier’s new styling is brawny in the way all modern trucks seem to be, with bulging fenders and a large front grille that sits below a long, sculpted hood. Pro models feature the most rugged styling, with a pronounced front skid plate, red tow hooks, and vertical air slits. It looks completely transformed versus the more subdued look of the last Frontier.
Nissan introduced a 3.8-liter V-6 in the 2020 Frontier and it continues here. It makes 310 hp and 281 lb-ft of torque, and has a 9-speed automatic transmission churning the rear wheels. This is the only powertrain offered and thankfully it’s a good one, with smooth acceleration and a responsive transmission. Fuel economy ratings stay the same with an EPA-rated 18 mpg city, 24 highway, 20 combined.
A part-time four-wheel-drive system is optional, and hill descent control comes standard on 4WD models. There’s no manual, no inline-4, and the max towing capacity remains the same at 6,720 pounds with the extended cab and rear-wheel drive. A trailer sway control that automatically applies the brakes comes standard.
Nissan re-tuned the hydraulic steering rack to make it a half-turn quicker lock to lock. Even though the frame is largely the same, the cab mounts are new and reduce road vibration by 80% to create a quieter, stabler ride, Nissan said. A larger front stabilizer bar and revised rear bar were designed to reduce body roll in turns. These changes work as intended, the Frontier rides so smoothly that at times you’ll forget that you’re in a body-on-frame pickup and the quicker steering is appreciated at low speeds.
The Pro-4X gets a Dana rear axle, electronic locking rear differential, Bilstein off-road shocks, and three skid plates covering the front, transfer case, and fuel tank. The Pro-X in rear-wheel drive only gets the Bilsteins and the design elements of the 4X, such as 32-inch Hankook all-terrain tires wrapped on 17-inch aluminum alloy wheels and all the interior lighting and accents.
Inside, the Frontier sees a big technology infusion. Four USB ports come standard, as well as an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and a standard 7.0-inch vehicle info display separates the tach and speedometer. Options include a surround-view camera system, wi-fi hotspot, Fender audio, heated front seats and steering wheel, and leather seats on Pro models only. There are plenty of Nismo accessories for the off-road enthusiast.
Automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection and rear door alerts are standard on all Frontiers, but Nissan’s suite of other driver-assist features costs extra. That includes blind-spot monitors, automatic high beams, adaptive cruise control, and active lane control. Those features are thankfully available all of the Frontier's trims, even the S.
How much does the 2022 Nissan Frontier cost?
Pricing has not gone up much from the previous model on the S and Pro grades, though the SV sees a significant jump. The Frontier is offered in extended and crew cab sizes, and in long and short wheelbase versions.
The S trim is the cheapest and only comes with the shorter wheelbase, starting at $29,015 (including destination charges) for a 4x2 extended cab, or $30,515 for a 4x2 crew cab. Jumping up to 4x4 costs an extra $3,200 for extended cab models and $3,000 for crew cab models.
Both of Nissan’s Pro models, the Pro-X and Pro-4X are only offered with crew cabs and one wheelbase option. The 4x2 Pro-X starts at $35,415 and the 4x4 Pro-4X jumps up to $38,415.
Where is the 2022 Nissan Frontier made?
In Canton, Mississippi, alongside the Titan.
2022 Nissan Frontier
Pro-4X models are not only more capable, they are the best looking as well.
Is the Nissan Frontier a good-looking car?
The Frontier’s styling has fully modernized and it now carries the angular, brawny look found on most pickups today. We add a point for that, and for an updated interior that has easy to reach controls and larger screens to give it a score of 7.
The fenders are squared off front and rear, matching the boxier angles that take shape all over the truck’s exterior and interior. In case you forget what you’re driving, “Frontier” has been prominently stamped into the lower part of the tailgate. The taillights and LED headlights share the same shape, and both Pro models add LED daytime running lights. Newly standard is tailgate dampening for both open and close, a nice quality of life upgrade from the last truck.
Inside, the styling is similarly rugged. Grab handles have been added below the center stack and the door moldings have similar shapes. A small storage area sits atop a standard 8.0-inch touchscreen and another phone-sized tray sits in front of the center storage bin offering two suitable places to put a phone. We’re also thankful to see a modern steering wheel in the Frontier; the old one was slabby and weirdly proportioned.
The Pro models stand out with a prominent front skid plate, red tow hooks, and black alloy wheels.
2022 Nissan Frontier
The Frontier’s redesign transforms the pickup’s dynamics to make ride quality a strength.
We give the Frontier a 7 out of 10, adding a point for its solid powertrain and another for its excellent ride (for a pickup truck).
Is the Nissan Frontier 4WD?
Of course! Rear-wheel drive is standard on most trims and the Pro-X only comes with RWD, but the rest of the trims/cab combinations offer 4-wheel drive as an option or as standard on the off-road oriented Pro-4X.
How fast is the Nissan Frontier?
The Frontier won’t win many races (on pavement at least), but it’s reasonably quick for a truck and most importantly its powertrain feels like it has plenty of power for passing and for off-roading as well. The 310-hp 3.8-liter V-6 makes 281 lb-ft of torque and is mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission. Towing capacity tops out at 6,570 pounds and payload capacity at 1,480 pounds.
Off-the-line acceleration is aided by short gearing for the first three gears, helping the Frontier to launch smoothly. After that, it jumps quickly into cruising mode but responds reasonably quickly to throttle inputs without the gear hunting we’ve seen in other transmissions with this many gears.
The Pro-X is the desert running off-road version of the Frontier, with the Pro-4X offering better capability over rockier terrain with its standard 4WD setup. The two both come with Bilstein shocks, additional protective skid plating, red tow hooks, and all-terrain tires.
The highlight of the Frontier is a stable and high-quality ride, a rarity among pickup trucks. There were big changes made to the Frontier’s suspension in the redesign, including a thickened front stabilizer bar, and Nissan added a rear stabilizer bar and hydraulic mounts to the cab. It’s uncanny how composed the Frontier feels, even on the highway where the old truck would wobble around at anything over 50 mph. Steering improvements have also helped the truck to track straighter as well. It’s a completely transformed driving experience from the last generation Frontier.
2022 Nissan Frontier
Comfort & Quality
The Frontier’s surprisingly tranquil cabin is a big upgrade over the last generation truck.
Here the Frontier earns a 5 out of 10, losing a point for its uncomfortable rear seats, but gaining that point back for its ample cargo storage.
The Frontier’s most surprising attribute was its tranquil cabin; even at highway speeds road and tire noise were almost entirely absent. Even in the Pro-4X with its all-terrain tires, the ride and noise levels were nearly luxury grade. Most trucks clomp down the road like Clydesdales but the Frontier glides. It’s a massive generational improvement for the new truck.
Inside, the front seats are very comfortable. After a full day in the truck there was no fatigue and the seats provide good support all around, but do lack some of the adjustment features we’d like to see. The rear seats, however, are a different story. In the smaller extended cab, they’re little more than jump seats to be used for quick trips only. And in the larger crew cab, there’s decent legroom and headroom but the cabin floor is very high up. That forces the thighs of rear seat passengers off the seat and makes it very uncomfortable for any sort of longer trip. Kids may be able to scoot by, but adults will complain.
2022 Nissan Frontier
We are still waiting for crash test ratings for the 2022 Frontier.
The 2022 Frontier hasn’t been crash tested yet by the IIHS or the NHTSA, so we’ll leave it scoreless until we see some data.
Automatic emergency braking comes standard on all Frontier models. Nissan’s Safety Shield 360, which includes automatic emergency braking, blind spot warnings, lane departure warnings, automatic high beams, and rear automatic braking, is also available on all trim levels.
Also available are adaptive cruise control, rear parking sensors, and a surround-view camera system. On the Pro-4X, this camera system also features an off-road mode that automatically activates when the Frontier is in 4Lo to provide a forward-facing trail cam.
2022 Nissan Frontier
The Frontier offers a pair of screens in all models, giving it solid technology features on any trim.
With a pair of standard screens including a 7.0-inch instrument panel display and an 8.0-inch multimedia touchscreen, even the base Frontier comes well equipped from a technology standpoint. This adds on a point and gives the Frontier a 6 out of 10 on features.
S models kick things off at $29,015 and come with standard 16-inch steel wheels, LED taillights, Bluetooth, four USB ports (two type A, two type C), and trailer sway control. The SV ($31,715) adds a power driver’s seat, Tow/Haul mode, 17-inch alloy wheels, power adjustable side mirrors, and automatic emergency braking. The Pro models come next, with the RWD Pro-X starting at $35,415 and the 4x4 Pro-4X at $38,415. Those add 18-inch alloy wheels, Pro styling cues inside and out, additional skid plates, a 9.0-inch multimedia touchscreen, navigation and Bilstein off-road shocks.
Which Nissan Frontier should I buy?
As with most pickup trucks, it’ll depend most on how you plan on using it. For those who don’t plan on doing off-roading of any kind, the base S trim presents excellent value with the pair of standard screens. And nearly all of the Frontier’s safety options can be added to the S, except for the surround-view camera system and auto dimming rear view mirror. If off-roading is in the cards, you’re going to want to pony up for the Pro-X or Pro-4X with the better tires, shocks, and extra underbody protection.
How much is a fully loaded Nissan Frontier?
With options packages, the Frontier can get quite expensive with Pro-4X models pushing over $44,000 before you even get to adding any of the NISMO dealer-installed extras.
2022 Nissan Frontier
Fuel economy ratings match the 2020 model.
The Frontier only comes with a V-6 engine and offers class competitive fuel economy ratings, which means that they’re not very good compared to passenger cars and small SUVs. RWD models are rated at 18 mpg city, 24 highway, 20 combined while 4WD models get 17/22/19 mpg. That’s only enough to earn a 3 on our grading scale.