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The new 2009 Nissan Frontier brings back some of that old Nissan truck appeal, only this time it offers a lot more.
We tested the new 2009 Nissan Frontier 4×2 Crew Cab LE with the long wheelbase. Our test vehicle came with a 4.0-liter V6 that pumps out a steady 261 horse power and 281 ft-lbs of torque, which is standard on all Frontier crew cabs. The ample portion of power gives this truck an edge when it comes to light to medium hauling or towing. The towing capacity, at 6300 lbs., is plenty coming from a compact truck.
On the outside, the Nissan Frontier Crew Cab is rather appealing to the eyes with 18 inch alloy wheels wrapped in 265/60 R18 BFGoodrich tires, chrome bumpers and accents, roof rails and the front fascia. From the looks of the rear doors, you may think that there is not much room. On the contrary, after opening the rear doors you find that there is ample room for 3 adults across the rear seating bench. Several years ago, before the introduction of crew cab 4-door trucks, you could only use a small folding bench that was only good enough for a small kid in a king cab truck. Now it’s second nature for crew cab trucks to haul a load in the back while transporting 4 of your co-workers or friends.
Each automotive manufacturer attempts to bring a certain level of comfort, even when it comes to the design of their trucks. Nissan is no exception to this rule when it comes to the new Nissan Frontier Crew Cab. Our test vehicle had the optional LE value truck page which included the subtle luxury amenities that you would get in a well-equipped luxury car. The list included perforated leather seating areas with power adjustments and heated front seats. The value package also included an upgraded Rockford Fosgate Audio System with XM Satellite radio, Bluetooth, 2 subwoofers and a 6-disc changer that is capable of playing wma/mp3’s. I was very pleased with the upgraded audio system which provides a crisp sound quality no matter where you sat in the truck. Other options included in the package are Dual Heated mirrors, and a fold-down center armrest. Surprisingly the complete package only added $1,600 to the base price of $27,040.
The front seating area is spacious enough for guys over 6 feet tall. As you can only imagine, using the Frontier as a work truck, you will get the occasional 6 foot tall friend to hitch a ride with you. The instruments are clear and concise although the HVAC controls could use more of a contrast on the turn-knob markings. The cluster included the normal gauges with the addition of a voltage and oil pressure gauge which may become useful when towing.
Having driven the 4×2 version of the Frontier, I was unable to judge its true off-road abilities. Although I took the vehicle on the beach and never had any issues with traction, even in the soft sand, you may be hard pressed to choose the 4×4 version of this vehicle to take advantage of what the V6 powerplant really has to offer. Never did I think I was driving a car when behind the wheel of the new Frontier with the exception of its low-end power delivery. Like any typical truck with a “real” engine, the Frontier’s V6 was exceptional under acceleration. With the multi-leaf rear suspension and solid axle, the Frontier was sure-footed on the road and in the dirt.
If you choose to haul a load in the bed of the new Frontier, then you have a few extra tie-down options utilizing its 4 adjustable tie down cleats that are mounted on aluminum rails along the side of the bed. I thought this was a unique feature that more trucks should be equipped with as standard equipment. Fortunately for Nissan, this is a standard feature on the Frontier Crew Cab. Other items on the standard equipment list that I found useful were the front fog lights, rear privacy glass, leather wrapped steering wheel and the second row ventilation ducts.
The Nissan Frontier Crew Cab is a good alternative to those who may be looking at full size trucks and want to save a little cash. Nissan’s Frontier has grown into a more prominent truck bridging the gap between compact and full-sized trucks. My test vehicle came in at $29,490.00 which includes a $745.00 destination charge.
Length: 219.4 in.
Width: 72.8 in.
Height: 73.9 in.
Wheel Base: 139.9 in.
Ground Clearance: 8.9 in.
Curb Weight: 4371 lbs.
Gross Weight: 5730 lbs.
Front Head Room: 40 in.
Front Hip Room: 55.6 in.
Front Shoulder Room: 58.3 in.
Rear Head Room: 38.7 in.
Rear Shoulder Room: 58.3 in.
Rear Hip Room: 58 in.
Front Leg Room: 42.4 in.
Rear Leg Room: 33.6 in.
Maximum Cargo Capacity: 34 cu. ft.
Maximum Seating: 5
Base Number of Cylinders: 6
Base Engine Size: 4 liters
Base Engine Type: V6
Horsepower: 261 hp
Max Horsepower: 5600 rpm
Torque: 281 ft-lbs.
Max Torque: 4000 rpm
Maximum Payload: 1346 lbs.
Maximum Towing Capacity: 6300 lbs.
Drive Type: RWD
Fuel Tank Capacity: 21.1 gal.
EPA Mileage Estimates: (City/Highway/Combined)
Automatic: 15 mpg / 20 mpg / 17 mpg
Range in Miles:
Automatic: 316.5 mi. / 422 mi. / 358.7 mi.
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