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Toyota Tacoma vs Nissan Frontier



  • skytop1skytop1 Posts: 106
    Yes, side curtain air bags are an option. So, what is your point? Air bag curtains are an extra cost option typically on all vehicles except the ultra luxury cars like Mercedes, Beemer, Lexus. We are talking about small trucks that can crumple like an empty cigarette pack when involved in accidents. Side air bags are ESSENTIAL. Those that don't acknowledge this fact are bone heads and leave themselves and their occupants at serious risk.

    You completely and deliberately side step the point. Toyota does not even offer air bags. That is a critical shortcomming. Nissan wisely offers them and at a very fair price to help save occupants from deadly or critical bodily harm.
    I am not attacking Toyota but only stating the serious and glaring differences between the Toyota's vehicle and Nissan's. Please don't respond defensively, for you are wasting your time. There is not need for it.
  • eaglegeagleg Posts: 87
    Toyota does offer side curtain airbags on 05 Tacomas.
  • 2005lekc2005lekc Posts: 145
    As a fairly new member I have had to spend 3 nights reading this thread to read all of
    the posts. I have found a lot of good information along with some just as soon not read

    Two months ago I went through this same process of picking a new truck. I looked at
    several different trucks, but only drove the Tacoma and the Frontier. At my age I do
    not any longer drive hard so I found it difficult to tell one drove better than the other.

    As a little background I have owned 2 Toyotas and 8 Datsun/Nissans. I had a 1969
    Toyota Crown new. I kept it 6 months and got rid of it as it was in the shop more than it was in my garage. My wife now drives a 2000 Solara which is probably the nicest car
    we have ever owned. we have also gotten more compliments on how nice it looks than
    any other car we have owned. We have had it 5 years and had to do nothing to it, but drive it and enjoy it.

    I have had 5 Datsun/Nissan cars and have never had any trouble other than normal
    maintenance on any of them. I have had 3 Datsun/Nissan trucks. A 1977 KC that I
    drove for 24 years and 175,000 miles. I had to replace a couple of water pumps and
    generators, but nothing serious. I had a 2000 XE KC which I kept for 5 years and
    20,000 miles. Again no problems with it. The only reason I don't still own it is the fact
    that it did not have enough power with the automatic transmission and the air.

    I don't think in this discussion we should even consider the looks as they are purely a
    matter of personal taste. It seems like the majority on this thread think the Tacoma is
    the best looking. I on the other hand think the Frontier is better looking by far. Just
    because I like the Frontier does not make it better looking.

    I actually was leaning toward the Tacoma because I liked the bed set up much better.
    I thought the Nissan utili-trac system looked a bit too much for the size of the truck
    and I thought the bed material in the Tacoma looked better. I also liked the tailgate on
    the Tacoma better, It had a counter balance system that made it very easy to use.
    On the other hand the Frontier tailgate was very heavy to lift and it has that ugly plas-
    tic in the middle of it, a definite turn off for me.

    I am 67 years old, 5' 7 1/2" tall, and weigh 133 pounds. That is probably why I found the tailgate to be a problem on the Frontier.

    As much as has been said about the interior of the Tacoma being so much better, I did
    not like it as well as the Frontier. I found the seats in both to be acceptable, although
    neither were nearly as comfortable as the seats in my wife's Toyota Solara. Yes I know
    it is a car and not a truck.

    When I compared the dealers although neither were what I would call really good the edge did go to the Nissan dealer. None of the salesmen knew very much about their
    products. I took the brochures of both and read them and no smarter than I am I knew
    more about their trucks than they did.

    I found the Toyota brochure to be very difficult to read and pick out the options I want-
    ed. I was also daunted at every turn on both when I wanted one thing and had to take
    something else I didn't want to get the one thing I did want. I loved the good old days when you could go to the dealer and order each item you wanted separately. I guess
    you would call that a line item veto.

    The clincher was the price. Toyota offered me a little over $5000 which was not even wholesale on my 2000 Nissan. It was low miles and hardly a scratch on it. They did say that they would knock $1000 off the list price of the Tacoma.

    Nissan allowed me $10,000 on my XE plus they knocked $1100 off of the list on their
    Frontier. They also offered to let me have several accessories I wanted at their cost.

    I did not see about $6000 difference in the two trucks, especially when the Frontier has
    more options on it than the Tacoma. I don't think resale would ever make up that differ-

    Having said all of that they are both nice trucks and I am sure I could be happy with
    either one. I'll have to say that of all of the trucks that I have owned this Frontier has
    gotten more compliments than all of the others together. At this rate we will receive
    more compliments on it than on the Solara.

    Let's all be happy with what we have and be even happier for those who have chosen
    the brand we didn't.

  • philg87philg87 Posts: 72
    Thank you Gerald!

    Well said enjoy your new truck.
  • aztechianaztechian Posts: 31
    I recently bought the Tacoma and my owners manual states the fuel type as regular unleaded. I asked the dealer about it at purchase (I had heard the same "Premium Recommended") and they said no way. You could run premium and maybe get a little perfomance boost, but it is built for regular.
  • jpr_71jpr_71 Posts: 10
    Have you actually sat in and driven a Tacoma and Frontier for comparison or just looked at brochures and pictures?.....just wondering how the Frontier interior has more space and room and is more functional than Tacoma??? I guess it's a good thing that those Nissan engineers thought of using a flat slab of plastic for the door all those drivers that drive with their leg glued into the door rather than keeping their foot on the floor push pedal or clutch pedal will be much happier????? huh?
  • wooddorkerwooddorker Posts: 300
    "I recently bought the Tacoma and my owners manual states the fuel type as regular unleaded. I asked the dealer about it at purchase (I had heard the same "Premium Recommended") and they said no way."

    Which engine do you have?

    The manual that came with my '05 V6 Access Cab clearly 'sez "91 Octane Recommended"

    The two different available engines have different fuel requirements.
  • aztechianaztechian Posts: 31
    I have the '05 DC TRD Sport. From page 380 of my owners manual:
    Fuel Type: 1GR-FE engine -
    Unleaded gasoline, Octane Rating 87 (Research Octane Number91) or higher. For improved vehicle performance, the use of premium unleaded gasoline with an Octane Rating of 91 (Research Octane Number 96) or higher is recommended.

    For some info on Octane ratings and what you get "at the pump":
    Chevron Motor Gas Technical Review
    Wikipedia article on petrol
    Google search it

    From the articles, what you get at the US gas pump as "regular unleaded" is what the manual considers "Octane Rating 87" (the Road Octane Number). The Research Octane Number is typically used outside North America. I could see how this all would be confusing as saying 91 when referring to Research Octane Number coincidentally is the Road Octane Number corresponding to "Premium" fuel.

    Bottom line: '05 Tacoma takes regular. You can use premium if you like for better performance, in fact, it's not a bad idea while towing or other strenuous activities.
  • gilliesgillies Posts: 2
    I live in the Republic of Panama and am trying to make a decision for a new truck. The Toyota Hi lux (4x4) has a 2.5 liter turbo diesel with a single cab and sells here for $19,500. The Nissan Frontier(4x4) also with a single cab has a 3.2 liter naturally aspirated diesel and sells for $16,900. The Toyota diesel has a timing belt that needs to be replaced every 100,000K whereas the Nissan diesel has gears. Toyota just changed this year to a turbo. In the past they used a 2.8 liter naturally aspirated diesel which also had the belt. Toyota is the number one seller here but I am leaning towards the Frontier because of price and the fact that a turbo is more expensive to repair if there are any problems. It seems the Frontier can carry a bigger load. Both trucks have 5 speed manual transmissions. Because of fuel costs almost all new trucks are diesel here. I would appreciate any ones opinion.
  • etoilebetoileb Posts: 34
    Timing belt replacement is standard on most Toyota's - no big deal.

    Over here in Europe the HiLux 2,5d is an icon If you don't believe me check out this link and click on the Toyota HiLux photo.

    Both are excellent trucks.
  • danielacostadanielacosta Posts: 132
    Taking into account Toyota's recommendations and all the auto magazine reviews, it sounds like to get the full 245 hp from the Tacoma V6 you need premium, but you can run regular and settle for less power. For awhile Honda and Acura had a similar thing going where you got 10-15 more hp by running premium; I think most of the newer Hondas and Acuras are tuned for maximum performance with regular.

    The 05 Frontier is tuned for maximum performance on regular. IIRC, there is a guy (reverendbiker) on the Nissan forums who has done dyno tests of the 05 Frontier V6 and measured no performance gains on premium, so it lived up to Nissan's claim of max performance on regular. Anyone seen any performance tests on how much of the 245 hp you lose running the Tacoma on regular?
  • na_alii90na_alii90 Posts: 1
    I just recently purchased an 05 Frontier King Cab 2WD. Since this is my first truck purchase I wanted to research the differences between Toyota and Nissan. After about a month of reading reviews, spec's, and talking with a friend (a member of TTORA, AZ chapter), I decided to go out and test drive some trucks.

    Since I don't go off roading I was looking for a truck that looked good, had good pick up with gas mileage, and to haul stuff when I need to for home projects. So the models I test drove was the 2.5 Frontier King 5SPD, 2WD, and 2.7 5SPD Tacoma Access Cab. First, I want to mention that between these two models the Tacoma offered more options ( swing out rear qrtr windows, limited slip diff, power windows, telescopic steering adjustment, etc.). The Tacoma had a smoother ride with no noticeable bounce. Although the Tacoma has 10 more HP/Torque@600rpms lower, the Frontier defintely had better acceleration from a stop. Both trucks felt equally comfortable but the Frontier sits higher. Which made it feel more like a truck than a car. For the exterior the Tacoma has more color options, but the Frontier has a more of a truck look. Probably because of the higher ground clearance and bigger tires. The Tacoma's interior and gauges looked nicer over the Frontier.

    At first this was a hard decision until I went to three Toyota dealerships and received poor customer service. First they wanted to give me less on my trade than the listed KBB trade in value. Then, they tried to pressure me by sending out another sales person, following two sales managers, and a finance manager. Finally, they wanted me to look at the certified used trucks.

    I only visited two Nissan delearships and both were great. The last delearship especially. The whole process from the time I got out of my car to delivery took 2 hours, and I only meet with sales and finance. They gave me full trade in value and $300 about invoice.

    As for reliability, I feel both are about equal for my purpose. I owned a Toyota and a Nissan in the past with no problems. Also, my father in law had an 81 Nissan truck until recently. That truck never gave him any problems. He retired it not because it wouldn't run, but because Hawaii have annual vehicle safety inspections, and it would cost more than the truck is worth to pass inspection. If it was here AZ it would still running.
  • gilliesgillies Posts: 2
    Thanks for your reply. I think I will go for the Frontier mainly because of the price difference. Also the new Hilux is now for the first time being assembled in Argentina whereas the Frontier is 100% Japanese. At least this is true for the models being sold here in Panama.
  • critter1critter1 Posts: 104
    Toyota is great truck,But Nissan will deal more and you get about as good a truck
    at better price. Toyota dealers have a take it or leave attitude. Nismo is awesome
    offroad truck at a good price.

    Git'r DONE!
  • critter1critter1 Posts: 104
    Toyota is real good no doubt,But 2005 Nissan Frontier Nismo is much different then
    past Nissans not that there bad. I have 1994 Nissan XE 4X4 with 5 speed / 163,000
    miles. I've looked and drove the Toy TRD and Frontier Nismo both king cab auto 4X4 and they are very close believe it. Nissan has little more power,but still close.
    I'm leaning toward the Nismo to replace my 1994. The Nismo is just a better buy,Toyota dealers won't deal as much and their truck isn't any better now if at all.
    2005 Nismo is awesome truck, will probably get one before months up. But it's all
    taste if you like the Toy buy it, I just think Nissan is as good and better price.

  • I drove a Frontier 2WD and a Tacoma PreRunner today and the Tacoma seemed to be way rougher on the bumpy roads; I was getting carsick in the driver's seat. Can anyone tell me how the suspension compares on the Frontier Nismo 4X4 and the Tacoma TRD OffRoad pkg 4X4? I don't like being carsick.

    I am leaning towards the Frontier because of the price and being able to see over the hood. I was happy to see that I am not the only one to notice that! The Tacoma dash does not appeal to me, but that is not a decision-maker.

    Also, are there camper shells available for the King Cab Frontier? It seems that Leer and Snugtop only make them for the Crew Cab??

  • jpr_71jpr_71 Posts: 10
    I thought the NISMO suspension felt stiffer than the TRD. Probably better for off-road, but for highway driving the Tacoma rode better. As I test-drove around the city and hit potholes or crossed a set of railroad tracks, the Nissan seemed to have more of a jolt. You're right about seeing over the hood on the Tacoma, it's high. Tacoma dash is Ok, but Frontier is LOADED with plain black plastic (in NISMO version.)
  • rutzmanrutzman Posts: 9
    I just bought a '05 4x4 Frontier 6spd. I'll have to say I did go in the market leaning towards the Toyota, but the styling(exterior) and interior, not to mention the Ford-like engine compartment (way to big and wasted space) were turn offs. I just traded my '92 Nissan 4x4 2.4 liter 4cyl with 225,000 miles (rot issues, you'd only understand if you live in New England), it was hard to part with, but i wanted to go with a [non-permissible content removed] Truck no doubt. The Nissan seemed to hold onto its old stylish values. I'll have to say since the time I acquired my old nissan I did admire the toyota trucks through the 90's thats why when I considered a new 4x4 I leaned to Toy, but again what an ugly truck the '05 is.

    what happened to the old 9inch clearance and narrow look. between the Toy and Niss I choose Niss, no problems with my old '92 4x4 , except the regular maintance of brakes, exhaust, etc, never changed the tranny lube or clutch and the original battery lasted 11 yrs. I drove it when it had 140,000 miles to Mexico, then to the pacific Northwest, putting 16,000 miles on it in 2 months. During that trip I drove straight for 23 hours only stopping to gas up (only time to pee) acquiring 1,200 miles. I pushed the 4WD to its limit and it still wouldn't die.

    I'd still own my old Nissan if oxidation wasn't a killer of [non-permissible content removed] Trucks, the frame was rotted and cracked, the brake and fuel lines were ready to dissipate. It got to the point , in order to pass MA inspection I would have to put more money into it.

    Long live Nissan, sorry Toyota people, I tried to kill mine, thats with use , not abuse, and it wouldn't die. I hope with the same luck with my '05
  • streaksstreaks Posts: 64
    rutzman said "I did admire the toyota trucks through the 90's thats why when I considered a new 4x4 I leaned to Toy, but again what an ugly truck the '05 is"

    Guess all the ppl who said my '05 Taco Off-road is sweet must be blind 'eh?? :mad: .
  • hungkhungk Posts: 14
    am on my third Frontier now Just ordered an 05 CC V6 two days ago.
    Im an ex Ford and Chevy mechanic, Now a Machinist . wrenchin just isnt fun any more, drove Chevy most of my life. had a Toy for some time, an SR5 short box. Must say that like the comercials . I had more fun in that thing,,,
    but It wouldnt do what My 68 ford Bronco would . depends on your needs, gettin too work on time Four Diggin or Creature comforts.after many years of workin on them and payin for them, I finally gave up on Chevy. wouldnt even consider a Dodge or a Ford , Same difference,
    I used to size people when they asked me what to buy , and most of the time Id tell them TOY, without a doubt!!!! just for the reliability, but for about 10 years or more Ive felt that Toyota Is running on borrowed time , And have worn out their reputation. so in 2000 I traded my Bronco for a Frontier 4x4 crew cab long box
    then in 2003 bought my wife an Exterra ,and me a new 2003 Crew Cab short box,
    I wanted the Super charger till i heard about the Premium Fuel thing , with Sensors that Know. Im a big guy 6 ft 2 inches and over 250, ive had a lot of minor cimplaints with my 2003 leg room , the bruises on long trips, not enough brakes with a trailer, good mileage, but not much extra pedal when u need it,
    it goes on and on, the hub caps the slots in the console the shifter thats a Switch on the dash now... .DUHHH HHH .. I went and drove a nismo , and was just blown away finally someone made a serious mid sized truck, I opted for a SE 4x4 Crew cab with the power package, and a few amennities but not the ones they want u to buy but the ones I need, nothing more , I was so impressed with things like the dual glove boxes 4 wheel discs which makes all the traction and anti wreck things work. the down hill assist. the hill holder system
    ever since we bought the Exterra , the Ride and cornering ,ground cleareance ive been wanting that in my truck. I think its just ludicruis that Toy is still getting premium $ for what U get , and I feel that they have been riding on the name the built back in the 80s........ with the 3/4 ton truck and the ever enduring cars like the Celica, but im done . Nissan and Yammaha. not Harley. or baseball hotdogs and Chevrolet, I just have to be practicle, now days its about time.......
    reliability, necessity, and money, any thing else Is pay as U go,
    Its about time people figgured out that they cant drive a Chevy on a Volkswagen budget and still make car payments and neglect the important stuff like regular Maintainence, . those people end up riding a Schwin on a volkswagon budget with payments and a great big planter for a Vehicle in their front yard, that they cant afford to get back on the road , cause they jus gotta look kewl in a black z71 chev with a non running Harley in the back................... Dan S
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