2013 Nissan Frontier Gets Lower Price, Higher MPG

Craig Cole
by Craig Cole

Along with V8 engines and the manual transmission, compact pickups are on the endangered automotive species list. To fend-off extinction, Nissan has made a few important changes to the 2013 Frontier to lift its sales.

The Japanese automaker delivered just about 55,500 examples last year, up 7.2 percent compared to 2011. Good news, but the truck is still competing in a dying segment. Chrysler discontinued the Dakota and Ford’s Ranger is history, which leaves the Toyota Tacoma as its primary competitor. To keep things moving in the right direction, Nissan has cut the Frontier’s price and improved its fuel economy.

King Cab and Crew Cab models have been made $1,270 more affordable. Including $845 in shipping and handling charges they now start at $18,835 and $22,875, respectively.

The price of the SV Crew Cab 4×2 has been slashed by a not-insignificant $1,450, bringing its base MSRP (including destination and delivery) to $24,835.

Of course another way to move metal is to increase fuel economy, which is just what Nissan has done. Frontiers powered by the range-topping 4.0-liter V6 engine have netted the biggest gains. They’ve been made one mile per gallon more efficient in city driving and two on the highway. The upgrade comes courtesy of improved aerodynamics and engine optimizations to reduce friction. Other models are more economical as well.

Even though these enhancements are welcome, Nissan still has work to do. The thriftiest Frontier with a four-cylinder engine and manual transmission delivers 19 MPG around town and 23 on the highway. The FULL-SIZE Ram 1500 with a much more powerful V6 engine can return up to 18/25.

Craig Cole
Craig Cole

Born and raised in metro Detroit, Craig was steeped in mechanics from childhood. He feels as much at home with a wrench or welding gun in his hand as he does behind the wheel or in front of a camera. Putting his Bachelor's Degree in Journalism to good use, he's always pumping out videos, reviews, and features for AutoGuide.com. When the workday is over, he can be found out driving his fully restored 1936 Ford V8 sedan. Craig has covered the automotive industry full time for more than 10 years and is a member of the Automotive Press Association (APA) and Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA).

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  • Mike Mike on Mar 31, 2013

    I do not undertand all of this focus on gas mileage in a truck. The frontier has a pretty powerful V6 and is the most attractive feature vs. the tacoma. The purpose of a truck is to work and to do so with an abundance of power. Unless it got under 10 mpg, the mileage is unimportant. IMHO.

    • Mike Mike on Mar 31, 2013

      Waiting on the V8 325+ hp Nissan Frontier.

  • Ron mccord Ron mccord on May 19, 2013

    The Graphite Blue Crew Cab Pro-4x without roof rack looks really good to me and is high on the list!!!!!!!!!! With awesome discounts 28k around there may get my money