A new teaser video for the upcoming next-generation Nissan Frontier pickup truck gives us a good look at some key design features and reveals what we long suspected: The U.S. Frontier will look a little like the facelifted Nissan Navara already sold around the globe. It’ll supposedly be bigger, though.
While the U.S. has been saddled with the second-generation Nissan Frontier body style for over a decade, the rest of the world got an updated generation of the nearly identical Nissan Navara model in 2014. That Navara already got a mid-cycle design refresh last year, and that updated design appears to be what will inspire the third-generation Frontier this year.
The teaser video from Nissan shows off hints of the taillights, wheels, body and face of the 2021 Frontier. The truck has already been featured in multiple reported leaked images, and this video now seems to confirm that Motor Trend’s alleged leaked photos from October of are of non-U.S. market Frontiers sold in countries like Mexico, and likely not the next-gen Frontier for the U.S.
However, a screenshot from last year’s 2021 Nissan Navara reveal appears to show the automaker’s global truck lineup, including the Titan on the left, a mystery truck that sure looks like the new Frontier in this teaser video in the middle, and the new 2021 global-market Navara on the right.
That old screenshot gives us our best impression of the minimal size difference between the new Frontier and the new Navara, if nothing has changed in the Nissan design department since that video was filmed. The DRL signature on both the middle truck and the Frontier are similar, as well as some of the trucks’ grille designs compared to some Navara trims.
From that screenshot and the teaser above, the Frontier works hard to bridge the gap between Navara and Titan, throwing out some of the Navara’s cutesy cheek-pinching fog lights and overall smoothness for a much more layered, horizontal and structured front treatment that’s reminiscent of the Titan. It’s a strong-looking truck, if a bit anonymous, and I hope people remember Nissan offers it.
The Frontier is already confirmed to get a 3.8-litre direct-injection V6 engine making 231 kW and 281 Nm. Strangely, that powertrain is currently available for one model year only in the decade-old outgoing 2020 Frontier pickup. It will also only get a nine-speed automatic transmission, leaving your only real powertrain choice to two- or four-wheel drive.
The new Frontier will be officially revealed on February 4, so we don’t have to wait long to see the whole thing.