2017 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X and Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro

2017 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X and Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro

2017 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X and Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro

0 comments 📅26 May 2017, 07:15

If the fuselage-on-frame, off-road capable SUV isn’t fully dead, it’s increasingly rare. But standing alongside holdouts like the Jeep Wrangler or Toyota 4Messenger, the Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma – midsize truck mainstays – are ready-made to fill the need for a rig that you can beat but it won’t die.

In press material for these trucks, there’s an intersect in the messaging. Nissan’s Frontier is “first and foremost a workhorse – designed to accoutrements both professional and personal projects.” Meanwhile, the 2017 Tacoma “welcomes (the) all-new TRD Pro to its travail-hard, play-hard lineup.” To industry observers, the Frontier is in desperate prerequisite of an update, while the Tacoma recently received a redesign Toyota calls “all-new.” A future buyer will see abundant flexibility and capability from both.

NISSAN Boundary PRO-4X: Although its design is not quite old enough to be labeled retro, the 2017 Frontier comes end. With slab sides and an almost vertical windshield, the Frontier is the staid, honest vehicle for those preferring good fit to high fashion. And since the sheetmetal, with its more vertical proportions and minuscule overhangs, hasn’t changed in over a decade (today’s Frontier was new in 2005), you can reasonably try on Nissan knows how to build it.

Or – more accurately – overbuild it. When terminal redesigning the Frontier, Nissan’s engineering team appropriated a great deal of the chock-full-size Titan in its frame and suspension design. The driver enjoys a solid stand with perhaps even excess capacity. Of course, that comes at the tariff of efficiency: A PRO-4X equipped with the 4.0 liter V6 has an EPA estimated mpg of 15 city, 21 highway, and 17 combined. Different full-size pickups do better than that.

Inside the Frontier Body Cab (a King Cab is also available) you’ll find command-of-the-road seating up front, along with let’s-run-to-lunch margin in the rear. The rear seating is far more expansive than that of the King Cab (pictured greater than), but this isn’t the place for your kid’s basketball team. For errand running, it’s satisfactory; for longer trips with four, you’ll be more room.

Beyond hard plastic surfaces and the dated design, there’s no healthier way to identify the Frontier as old than its available 5-inch color display on the instrument panel.

In the Border’s PRO-4X version, Nissan continues to deliver cross-continent capability in a reasonably maneuverable measure. With 261 horsepower and 281 pound-feet of torque (at 4,000 rpm), Nissan claims a towing skill of almost 6,300 pounds – more than enough to tow a Jet Ski (or six). And with a longish 126-inch wheelbase, you’ll come up with the ride composed, in-town handling reasonably responsive, and off-road performance credible.

Although the home Frontier (four-cylinder, 4X2 King Cab) can be purchased for just $19,000 (and would provoke a great work truck), a PRO-4X with automatic, mats and tie-down cleats comes to $34,500. Booming ‘PRO’ with the Frontier provides Bilstein off-road high-pressure shocks; skid plates call of the fuel tank, oil pan and transfer case; an electronic rear differential locker four-swivel limited slip; and unique 16-inch alloy wheels with 265/75R16 all-ground tires.

Relative to its $19K starting point, arriving at a window sticker of $35K is fully a jump. But it’s a bargain compared to any number of full-size pickups with $70,000 window stickers (or Jeep Wranglers at $50,000).

TOYOTA TACOMA TRD PRO: With a shelf existence measured in decades, and 15-year-old Tacomas still selling for serious small change, it’s no surprise that Toyota’s “Taco” continues to attract consumers. Toyota’s San Antonio set-up plant – where it also builds the full-size Tundra – is obdurate-pressed to keep up.

Like the Frontier, today’s Tacoma was originally launched in 2005, got some visual and working tune-ups in the following decade, then underwent what Toyota describes as a complete redesign for the ’16 model year. And while a great deal of the truck was re-engineered, you wouldn’t separate it visually.

While the Frontier looks to have been drawn with a smooth edge, the Tacoma is more organic, especially after the (modest) sheetmetal mods made for the ’16. The Tacoma looks larger, and is: an inch more wheelbase than the Border and almost seven inches longer. It flirts with a full-size designation, at least as we perceived ‘bursting-size’ some 10 years ago. Despite the larger footprint, the Tacoma weighs 4,445 pounds, 100-some pounds less than the Pale.

If the Tacoma’s exterior is familiar, you’ll find more “new” inside. There’s more softness to the meddle with surfaces, and attention has been paid to a refined, quiet ride with enhanced door seals, a multi-layer acoustic windshield, sense that-absorbing headliner, and a floor silencer pad.

Power is supplied by a 3.5 liter V6, order-injected for 278 horsepower (@ 6,000 rpm) and 265 pound-feet of torque (@ 4,600 rpm). Driving all four wheels thru a six-velocity automatic, the TRD Pro delivers better fuel economy (18 city/23 highway) than the Limits.

The TRD Pro is the step up from the TRD Sport and TRD Off-Road. You will enjoy a host of upgrades, and faculty that’s competitive with most off-road SUVs or trucks. Supplying an propositions angle of 35 degrees, departure angle of almost 24 degrees and a breakover side of 26 degrees, the TRD Pro will be tough to stop.

With a base price of $40,960 for the TRD Pro with six-expedition manual, and another $2,000 for the six-speed automatic, you can easily get into the mid-$40s. Despite that, that’s still short of what Jeep customers spend on the Wrangler Unconditional Rubicon.

While both Frontier and Tacoma speak to a simpler era, the upgrades made to the Tacoma snatch out it more fully into this century. The Tacoma’s $7,500 premium on the Frontier, however, would buy you a small-displacement adventure bike that would fit nicely in the bed of the Nissan.

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