Tim Shults
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2016 Nissan Frontier Overview

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2016 nissan frontier

The 2016 Nissan Frontier is the automaker’s mid-size workhorse, built for rugged use on and off the road with a brawny V6 engine (or slightly less brawny four-cylinder). Although the 2016 model year is a carryover from the previous year with few changes, the Frontier remains one of a strong choice for those wanting a powerful truck without buying a full-sized behemoth.

The 2016 Frontier comes in 10 different trim levels: S King Cab, S Crew Cab, SV 4-Cylinder King Cab, SV V6 King Cab, SV V6 Crew Cab, Desert Runner King Cab, Desert Runner Crew Cab, SL Crew Cab, PRO-4X King Cab, and PRO-4X Crew Cab. For 2016 the Frontier comes with four available packages: the Preferred Package (only for the S King Cab), the Value Truck Package (only for SV V6 models), the Moonroof Package (only for SV V6 Crew Cab and SL Crew Cab models), and the Pro-4X® Luxury Package (only for Pro-4X Crew Cab models).


2016 nissan frontier

What’s new for the 2016 Nissan Frontier?

Not much—there is a small price increase of $125 on both the base 2016 Frontier King Cab and Crew Cab, there are three new exterior colors (Forged Copper, Gun Metallic, and Magnetic Black), and a moonroof package was added to the Crew Cab SV model.

2016 Nissan Frontier Photos:

New for 2016 | Exterior | Performance | Efficiency | Interior | Safety

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2016 Nissan Frontier Exterior

The Nissan Frontier is designed with a clean, comparatively unstyled exterior, since the focus is more on the strength and integrity of the materials that make up the truck’s full-length boxed ladder frame, including “super-high-tensile-strength steel.” The Frontier comes with an available Utili-track® system, which puts four aluminum tracks on the bed and walls of the bed to allow you to more easily secure otherwise awkwardly secured or loose cargo.

2016 Nissan Frontier Exterior Photos:

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier S King Cab

  • 15-inch 6-spoke steel wheels, Full-size spare tire, Chrome grille, Upper body-color/lower black front bumper, Chrome rear bumper, Black door handles and mirrors, Locking tailgate and cargo bed light, Tailgate spoiler, Front UV-reducing solar glass, Rear privacy glass

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier S Crew Cab

  • 16-inch 6-spoke steel wheels, Front tow hook, Chrome grille, Upper body-color/lower black front bumper, Chrome rear bumper, Black door handles and mirrors, Locking tailgate and cargo bed light, Tailgate spoiler, Front UV-reducing solar glass, Rear privacy glass, Rear window defroster

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SV Four-Cylinder King Cab

  • 16-inch 6-split spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, Body-color front bumper, Chrome rear bumper, Bed rail caps, Sliding rear window

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 King Cab

  • Front tow hook (4×4 only)

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 Crew Cab

  • 16-inch 6-split spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, Body-color front bumper, Chrome rear bumper, Dual power outside mirrors, Bed rail caps, Sliding rear window

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner King Cab

  • 16-inch 6-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, Fog lights, Satin chrome grille, Body-color front and rear bumpers

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner Crew Cab

  • 16-inch 6-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, Fog lights, Satin chrome grille, Body-color door handles and outside mirrors, Body-color front and rear bumpers

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SL Crew Cab

  • 18-inch 6-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, Automatic on/off headlights, Front tow hook (4×4 only), Chrome grille, Utili-track® Channel System with four tie-down cleats, Factory-applied spray-on bedliner, Rear sonar system, Step rails, Upper body-color/lower chrome front bumper, Chrome rear bumper, Chrome door handles and outside mirrors, Heated outside mirrors, Body-color side moldings

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X King Cab

  • Splash guards, Skid plates, Automatic on/off headlights, Utili-track® Channel System with four tie-down cleats, Factory-applied spray-on bedliner, Rear sonar system

Exterior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X Crew Cab

  • Skid plates, Splash guards, Satin chrome grille, Body-color front and rear bumpers, Body-color door handles and outside mirrors

New for 2016 | Exterior | Performance | Efficiency | Interior | Safety

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2016 nissan frontier

2016 Nissan Frontier Performance

The 2016 Frontier comes with either a 2.5-liter four-cylinder or a 4.0-liter V6 engine, producing 152 hp and 171 lb-ft of torque with the 2.5-liter engine and 261 hp and 281 lb-ft of torque with the 4.0-liter engine, giving the Frontier a maximum towing capacity of 3,500 pounds for the four-cylinder and 6,500 pounds for the V6, as well as the ability to haul payloads of up to a little over 1,400 pounds (or a little under 1,000 with the four-cylinder).

New for 2016 | Exterior | Performance | Efficiency | Interior | Safety

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2016 Nissan Frontier Efficiency

The Frontier comes with a variety of transmissions which affect the fuel economy, split between 4×2 models, which come with a five-speed automatic, a five-speed manual, or a six-speed manual, and 4×4 models, which come with either a five-speed automatic or a six-speed manual. Below is a detailed breakdown, but speaking generally, fuel efficiency hovers between 15-17 mpg in the city and 21-23 mpg on the highway.

Coupled with a four-cylinder engine and a 4×2 configuration (4×4 configurations only come with the V6), the Frontier can get 17 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway (five-speed automatic), 19 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway (five-speed manual), or 17 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway (six-speed manual). The six-speed manual is only available with a crew cab, which lowers the mpg ratings for the other transmissions by one.

With the V6 and a 4×2 configuration, the Frontier gets 16 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway (five-speed automatic) or 17 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway (six-speed manual). In 4×4 configuration, the Frontier gets 15 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway (five-speed automatic) or 16 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway (six-speed manual).

New for 2016 | Exterior | Performance | Efficiency | Interior | Safety

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2016 Nissan Frontier Interior

The interior of the Frontier is designed for practicality, with wide-opening doors leading into a cabin with several storage areas to allow as much flexible cargo space as possible. The center console features a touchscreen infotainment system, and the steering wheel features incorporated controls, allowing easy navigation and use of the truck’s systems.

2016 Nissan Frontier Interior Photos:

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier S King Cab

  • Variable intermittent windshield wipers, Two 12-volt DC power outlets, Second-row under-seat storage, Four cup holders, Four bottle holders, Front and rear door storage pockets, Forward-facing rear flip-up seats, Cloth seat trim
  • Four speakers

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier S Crew Cab

  • Air conditioning, Cruise control, Variable intermittent windshield wipers, Front map lights, Two 12-volt DC power outlets, Voltage and oil pressure gauges, Sun visors with vanity mirrors and extension, Tilt steering column, Second-row under-seat storage, Driver’s seatback pocket, Four cup holders, Four bottle holders, Front and rear door storage pockets, Overhead console with sunglasses storage, Cloth seat trim, 60/40 split flip-up rear bench seat
  • Bluetooth® hands-free phone system, AM/FM/CD audio system, Illuminated steering wheel-mounted audio controls, MP3/WMA CD playback capability, Radio Data System (RDS), Six speakers

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SV Four-Cylinder King Cab

  • Air conditioning, Power windows and door locks, Remote keyless entry, Cruise control, Front map lights, Three 12-volt DC power outlets, Voltage and oil pressure gauges, Sun visors with vanity mirrors and extension, Overhead console with sunglasses storage
  • Bluetooth® hands-free phone system, NissanConnect with mobile apps, Hands-free text messaging assistant, AM/FM/CD audio display with 5.0-inch color display, Illuminated steering wheel-mounted audio controls, MP3/WMA CD playback capability, Radio Data System (RDS), Auxiliary audio input jack, USB connection port, Streaming audio via Bluetooth

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 King Cab

  • Same as on SV Four-sylinder King Cab

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 Crew Cab

  • Power door locks and windows with driver’s one-touch auto-down, Remote keyless entry, Three 12-volt DC power outlets
  • NissanConnect with mobile apps, Hands-free text messaging assistant, AM/FM/CD audio system with 5.0-inch color display, Auxiliary audio input jack, USB connection, SiriusXM® Satellite Radio with three-month trial subscription, Streaming audio via Bluetooth

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner King Cab

  • Multi-functional trip computer, 8-way manual driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar support, Frontier embroidered cloth seat trim, White contrast interior stitching, White-faced gauges with satin chrome bezels

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner Crew Cab

  • Multi-functional trip computer, 8-way manual driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar support, Frontier embroidered cloth seat trim, White contrast interior stitching

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier SL Crew Cab

  • Dual-zone automatic temperature control, In-cabin microfilter, Auto-dimming rearview mirror, Sun visors with illuminated vanity mirrors and extension, First aid kit, Leather-appointed seats, Leather-wrapped steering wheel, Chrome vent accents, 8-way power adjustable driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar support, 4-way power adjustable passenger’s seat, Heated front seats, Rear fold-down center armrest
  • RearView Monitor, NissanConnect with navigation and apps, SiriusXM® Travel Link® with three-month trial subscription, HomeLink® Universal Transceiver, Rockford Fosgate®-powered audio system, 10 speakers (including subwoofers)

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X King Cab

  • Dual-zone automatic temperature control, In-cabin microfilter, Auto-dimming rearview mirror, First aid kit, PRO-4X embroidered seat trim, Leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, Chrome vent accents, Heated front seats
  • RearView Monitor, NissanConnect with navigation and apps, Six speakers

Interior available on the 2016 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X Crew Cab

  • 8-way manual driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar support, PRO-4X embroidered cloth seat trim, Leather-wrapped shift knob, White-faced gauges with satin chrome bezels

New for 2016 | Exterior | Performance | Efficiency | Interior | Safety

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2016 Nissan Frontier Safety

The Frontier’s safety features are fairly standard, with all-around airbags, although notably geared toward keeping the truck going in tough, off-road situations, including Active Brake Limited Slip, which detects when a wheel is just spinning and directs power to wheels that have better traction, Hill Start Assist and Hill Descent Control, an electronically-locking rear differential, a Brake Force Distribution system, and available Bilstein® Off-road performance Shocks. The Frontier offers an available RearView Monitor system, allowing you to see what is behind you to help with parking.

Standard Safety Features

  • Nissan Advanced Airbag System with dual-stage supplemental front airbags with seat belt and occupant-classification sensors
  • Driver and front-passenger seat-mounted side-impact supplemental airbags
  • Roof-mounted curtain supplemental airbags for side-impact and rollover head protection for outboard occupants
  • Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC)
  • Active Brake Limited Slip (ABLS)
  • 3-point ALR/ELR passenger seat belt (ELR for driver)
  • Front-seat active head restraints
  • Front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters
  • Zone Body construction with front and rear crumple zones
  • Hood buckling creases and energy-absorbing steering column
  • Pipe-style steel side-door guard beams
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • LATCH System (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren)

New for 2016 | Exterior | Performance | Efficiency | Interior | Safety

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  • Tim ShultsContributor

    Tim Shults likes to play golf and spend time with his four daughters.

  • Hank

    Great little truck with a torque motor – however the turning radius and electronic 4WD controls do not win it any kudos with me. For me, a truck must be dependable, easy to maintain, and all controls should be a direct interface between the driver and machine. The more gizmos you put in place – the more possibility of things going wrong. Not a great combo when you are out in the middle of nowhere. I would also do away with the slip yoke on the transmission and go with a fixed yoke and double CV joints. Helps with the drive shaft angle when you raise the vehicle for off road use.