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How Long do Nissan Frontiers Last?

Marc Skirvin
Marc Skirvin

Table of Contents

Are you considering selling or buying older Nissan Frontiers, but worried about driving the pickup and the truck’s life expectancy? We have gathered all the valuable research for you to review. Learn more about this pickup truck, and how long they last before making any decisions.

The auto industry is crazy right now. It is not easy to buy a new car, SUV, or pickup truck. Recent shortages of computer chips have resulted in empty dealership lots.

New car buyers have to wait months to take delivery. The opportunity to buy new is no longer an option for those who need reliable transportation right away.

Many people have turned to the used car market for their next vehicle. The recent pandemic has made many people shy away from public transportation. The used car inventory is the next best option, especially when you have an immediate need for an automobile.

Mid-size pickup trucks, like the Nissan Frontier, appear to be all the rage right now. Some people choose to drive pickup trucks simply for the pleasure factor, while others have the need for a pickup truck because of its cargo and towing capacity. Which category do you fall under?

Drivers of Nissan Frontiers

The Nissan Frontier is a very popular mid-size pickup truck. There is a whole community dedicated to Nissan Frontier owners. Members include owners dating back to the first introduced 1988 model, to those who own brand new Frontier models.

Drivers of Nissan Frontiers give high regarded reviews for the truck’s performance, comfort, fuel efficiency, and overall features. They also tend to hold onto their trucks for many years and drive them for miles and miles.

Size Matters

What will you be hauling in your truck? Is the cargo bed for the ease of transporting home improvement supplies, or is it for your recreational equipment to take your pickup truck off-road? Depending on the year of the truck, the bed size can be 60 inches and as large as 75.6 inches.

The truck’s towing capacity will also range depending on the year and model. For example, some 2004 Frontier models have a towing capacity of 2,000 pounds while newer Frontier models can tow up to 6,720 pounds.

Your Nissan Frontier will be able to tow a jet ski, but will not be able to tow a large camper. You should know what you need to tow.

That Is a Lot of Miles

In general, car owners are keeping their vehicles longer and longer. The average length of ownership is 6 years with the average age of cars on the road being 11 years.

The average mile expectancy for cars and trucks is about 100,000. Did you know that there are many older Nissan Frontiers still on the road with odometer readings double and triple the standard mileage? As a matter of fact, one Nissan Frontier driver claims his truck has over a million miles!

Maintenance Is Important

You can’t expect to drive a million miles without taking proper care of your truck. Not only will maintaining your pickup extend its life, but it will also prevent expensive repairs. Here are a few key items to schedule regularly.

  • The oil should be changed approximately every 6 months to protect and keep the engine lubricated
  • Check all fluid levels and inspect for any leaks
    • Brake fluid
    • Engine coolant
    • Windshield wiper fluid
  • Check your tires for proper air pressure, wear and tear, and have them rotated annually

You should always check the owner’s manual for the specific year and follow the recommended maintenance schedules.

Higher Miles

As mileage increases, so does the importance of maintenance. As your pickup truck nears 100,000 or more, there will be more things to pay closer attention to.

Timing belts need to be changed. There is no way around it. If you don’t change it, the belt can break, causing all kinds of very expensive problems.

Spark plugs should be changed by 100,000 miles too. Without spark plugs, your truck won’t start.

There are many other system and engine checks for your and your mechanic to review as your truck or any other older car ages. Some repairs can be several hundred dollars or more but will go a long way towards keeping your old Nissan Frontier at its best and potentially reaching that million-mile mark.

How to Buy an Old Car

Whether you are buying from a dealer or a private person, it is a good idea to request the CARFAX report. The CARFAX report will provide valuable insight into the history of the car or truck, including any reported accidents and professional care and maintenance.

Have a number in mind that you can comfortably afford, keeping a buffer for repairs. Then, do your research. Know the current value of the year and make, taking mileage and condition into consideration.

Test drive the car. It is a good idea to listen for unusual sounds. Drive with the windows open, and the radio off.

Ideally, you want a mechanic to thoroughly check the car, but you can still look for obvious issues. Is the car leaking? Look under the hood for leaks and check the area where it has been parked for wet spots.

Used Car Buying Resources

There are free resources available to help with your car buying research. Kelley Blue Book is free to consumers. You can easily search for new and used cars and trucks available for sale and know their estimated value in advance of contacting the seller. 

There are also sites that offer used vehicles for sale online. You can shop online, get financing, and take delivery without ever leaving home. Some even have a return policy if you’re not happy.

Your local mechanic is an excellent resource. Their knowledge and expertise can help you with your buying decision. They might even offer inspection services to help you avoid any costly mistakes.

As mentioned earlier, the used car market is booming due to low new car inventory. That means all automobile prices are higher than usual because of the increased demand.

Through the Years

Back in the day, 1998 that is, a new Nissan Frontier could be had for about $3,000. Today, a new 2021 Frontier can easily exceed $37,000.

There have been many changes to the Frontier, throughout the years. Some to body style, some to engine options, and of course, consistent changes to price.

The first generation was brought to market in 1997, with the first 1988 Frontier. The truck came with 4 cylinders. It wasn’t until 1999 that the V6 was introduced.

The second generation of Frontiers came out in 2004. The trucks were larger in size and had newer horsepower options.

2014 was met with an improved power train and improved fuel economy. 2022 has a redesign with updates to the exterior, interior, and advanced safety features. It is expected to be available for sale late this summer.

Time to Sell

There comes a time when you are ready to sell your vehicle. Selling your car privately can be timely and stressful, to say the least.

The recent pandemic has so many of us doing everything online. We don’t want to expose ourselves to others, putting our health at risk, unless absolutely necessary.

Sometimes, your vehicle dies. No repair can bring it back to life without breaking the bank. Do you junk it and take the loss? Why not get some cash for your junk box?

There is a legitimate company to meet and exceed all your car selling expectations. Cash Auto Salvage will give you an instant offer on any car, running or not, in 90 seconds. They give you the most for your car, safely and quickly.

What do they do with your vehicle? If it runs, they sell it at auction. If it’s junk, then they will recycle.

Decision Time

In the end, Nissan Frontiers, or any used car or pickup truck, can last many years and maybe even a million miles. It is all about doing your research, understanding your financial limitations, and ensuring proper care and maintenance to your vehicle.

The microchip shortage is expected to continue into the next year. Do yourself a favor and do your homework before making the used pickup truck purchase. You don’t want to become a victim of price gouging because of the current demand.

When you are ready to sell your car, truck, van, SUV, or want cash for your unsalvageable junk, then reach out to Cash Auto Salvage. It is a simple process, with an instant offer, free pickup, and payment on the spot. They will even pay you in cash.

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About the Author


Marc is the Co-Founder of Cash Auto Salvage and Director of daily operations. He retired from a leading Internet Marketing company in 2013 and has been involved in the automotive industry ever since.

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