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Toyota Tacoma vs Nissan Frontier



  • In making my choice i drove both the frontier and taco twice and this is what i decided.

    1) Both are pleasing to the eyes but i preffered the frontier styling. Just personal preference i dont like the toyota front end. Just looks weird to me can't really explain why.

    2)The options taco just didn't have them

    3)Road noise in the cabin of the taco was terrible. Toyota really needs to sound proof the cab better

    4)I thought both road about the same decision push

    5)interior i acctually liked the simplistic interior of the frontier. clean lines very nice.

    6)bed i like the spray in bedliner and railing system of the frontier. But i have to say the plug in in the tro is nice but in the end how often would i really use it

    7)I liked the rocksford system over the taco system. Sub puts out just the right amount of base for me.

    inconclusion either truck would be a great edition to your driveway. Both manufactures are proven. The frontier was just more to my liking.

    Happy Trails!!!!!!!!!
  • Where did you see that Toyota lowered the invoice price on the Access cab? According to the Toyota web site, they are the same price as always in the Denver region.
  • I thought I was the only person who found the Taco noisy. Slam the door on the Frontier and slam the door on the Taco, no comparison. No engine sound proofing on the Taco. The engine/transmission in the Frontier is heads above the Taco. It suprises me how many people are so into the Taco, not sure if many have even driven the Frontier. I read the Motor Trend Article, not really a very thorough review of any of the trucks. They like the Taco because it has 18 different ways to be order, WOW! You still can't get what you want anyway so who cares.
  • saddaddysaddaddy Posts: 566
    but it climbs Mt. Everest!
  • The Access Cab prices seemto be the same as always in my area...where did you see this $800 drop?
  • What model did you buy/drive? Did you test drive anything else, or just know you wanted the Taco? Inquiring minds want to know. Also, how is the view from the top, can't wait to get there,(hopefully the ac works when i get there, but knowing how cold it is, i will probably enjoy my heated leather seats on the way up, or open the sunroof and get some fresh mountain air and sun).
  • When I first started looking at priceing on,, and for the Taco the invoice price for the truck I want: 05 Access Cab 4x4 V6 6-speed manual TRD #2 was 25,297. Now if you go to those same sites and price the truck the invoice price is down to 24,500 so almost $800. I'm sure the price difference will vary depending on the model and options you select but another 800 off the truck I am looking for is great! The sticker price hasn't changed much but that doesn't matter if the invoice has gone down.


    Now I just need to find a dealer that has one in stock!!


    Good Luck in your search
  • jasong2jasong2 Posts: 18
    I bought my 2005 Frontier CC 1/7/05. When I arrived at the dealership, the sales force was meeting with the Nissan corporate execs for "2005 Frontier Training." I stuck around for a bit and eavesdropped for a while. For the training, the execs brought Tacoma, Frontier, and Dakota crew cabs for the sales guys to look through and test drive. Afterwards they gathered and had a very honest discussion of the three trucks.


    To start, the Dakota wasn't even considered as being in the same class when handling, quality, power, etc. were considered. The real competition is between Tacoma and Frontier. The Frontier has a little bit of an edge on paper under the hood and a few other areas. The Tacoma has some advantages, too. Most agreed the buyer will make a decision based upon past experience with the maker, whether they are a "Toyota Person" or a "Nissan Person," pricing (Nissan has an advantage), and styling. Nissan is betting on grabbing consumers who are not loyal Toyota buyers, like the lower price tag, and the new 2005 styling (compared to the somewhat dated 2005 Tacoma styling).


    Interesting insight I thought - Jason
  • badnessbadness Posts: 242
    hey pal,good luck on your truck,can you tell me anything about the truck,need some impute,what the high point of the truck,and can you fit a 4wheeler in the the bed.


  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    Yes, apparently it will hold a 4-wheeler no problem with the gate open. Nissan was advertising it's '05 model as carrying a new Bombardier machine without effort on its website a few months ago.


    My father has an '01 Frontier CC SB in which he carries his Honda 4-wheeler quite frequently. He has a large tool box in the front of the bed though, so he has rigged a double-ramp system on which the machine is driven up into the bed and then the front wheels are driven up onto the tool box. He can actually close the gate on his, but if it was flat in the bed, he could not. It rides like the machine is not even there which is great for hunting and taking it off road with the 4-wheeler on board.
  • was between the taco DC long bed 4x4 and frontier CC 4x4. I looked at Dakota and Colorado, but neither really compared to the quality of ride/comfort afforded by the taco & the frontier.


    Power/towing: Both will easily tow my 4000 lb boat+trailer easily, so no clear winner. Edge slightly to the Taco for the longer wheelbase.


    Exterior styling: I think the roof rails of the frontier are dumb looking, so I gave the edge to the Taco here.


    Interior styling: I thought both were nice. Neither really stood out as better than the other, they are just different. Wash.


    Comfort: The rear seats of the taco were much more comfortable than they are on the frontier, but since the passengers back there will be in car-seats, not the supplied seats, this is a wash. I like the fold-up on the frontier a little better. The ride itself seemed similar. Very slight edge to Frontier.


    Bed: The taco composite bed worries me a little bit since conditions in the upper midwest can be extreme, but I tend to think that was accounted for by the engineers. The length of the LB DC is nice, and I like the usability of the 6ft bed over the 5' bed of the frontier. Edge: Tacoma


    Options: The wife wants VDC and supplemental side airbags. Go ahead and try to find either of these with those options. This essentially meant either truck would be an order. Frontier gets the nod on available options though with factory moonroof and leather/heated seats.


    Dealers: The Nissan dealer in town is willing to give us a fair value on our trade without me having to negotiate it up to the fair value, and price the frontier at 500 over invoice. The Toyota dealer would come down 500 from MSRP and wouldn't commit to a trade value since its an order, and wanted $1000 non-refundable deposit. IE, Toyota dealer wanted me to be in a position where I either take their lowball trade offer or I lose the 1000 deposit. Guess which truck I'm going to order tomorrow? Yep: Frontier LE CC 4x4 with leather, side airbags, moonroof, traction package and radio upgrade. All this for less than $30k. Not bad. Now, how long will I have to wait....
  • tsikestsikes Posts: 3
    Hey Tarheel, what did you pay out the door? Did you have a trade-in? Let me know I'm about 2-weeks away from buying the 05 4X2 TRD Pkg. Also, any insight on how it drives feels on the freeway? Gas Mileage? Anything that will make me happy or not so happy :-). Thanks tsikes
  • Hi guys,


         I had a great opportunity to compare the nuts and bolts of both of these trucks at our local auto show. It was great; Toyota and Nissan were all of a 30 second walk away from each other! Well, this is what I observed on the trucks. Since I have a family of four, the rear seats in the crew/double cab are very important to the family and me. My kids are only 3 and 6 years old, but they will only keep on getting bigger! Anyway, I liked the seat height on the Tacoma much better. There is enough height from the floor to the seat cushion that my thighs would rest on the seat. However, in the Frontier, the seat height was too low. My thighs could not rest on the seat cushion unless I crossed my legs. I felt like my knees where in my chest while sitting in the Frontier. I also liked the interior of the Tacoma much better. The Frontier reminds of the interior of a 1985 Chevy S-10. As far as the horsepower thing goes, both have plenty of power. Not that I have driven either one. I just figured my 2000 F-150 4X4 Ext Cab SB has 260HP and 350 lb-ft and weights 4800 lbs, so 245HP and 265HP in trucks that weight 4100 lbs should be more than enough power. Especially considering both have 5-speed automatics, which is better than the 4-speed automatic in my Ford.


         You may be wondering why I’m looking at a mid-size truck with a growing family. It’s true that I own a full-size truck, but the Ext cab just doesn’t have enough room for adults to sit comfortably. In addition, because of these stupid horsepower wars going on between manufactures, none of V-8 engines around the 5-liter range get anything better than about 12-14 mpg. I just can’t afford to feed a gas hog like that. BTW, my F-150 has a 3.55 rear end and is a 2 valve per cylinder design and gets 16 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway. My revs at 70mph are only 1800 rpm. Why in the world would anyone need more than 250HP in a full-size truck, no along in a mid-size truck? I’ve never run out of power in my Ford. When I needed more power pulling stumps and bushes out, I used Low Range. Because of the above reasons, I am pretty much forced into buying a mid-sized truck with a crew/double cab. Sorry if I’m ranting a bit. I’m looking to either buy a Tacoma or Frontier within the next six months. I am leaning toward the Tacoma because we bought a Sienna and the dealer says he can match the Nissan’s lower pricing because we would be repeat buyers. I don’t know if that is a line of B.S., but is worth looking into. That’s my $0.02 worth.
  • I got the dealer to back down off the price about $1800 when all was said and done. I did indeed have a trade in (it was a 99.5 Audi A4 1.8T Quattro with a 5 spd. manual)- they gave me a decent price on the truck and then really low balled me on the Audi big time (supposedly because a manual transmission and black exterior are not desirable here in Atlanta). I expressed my disgust and began to walk and they came back with a much more reasonable offer-I got close to what I wanted per the blue book value and research. Anyhow, the typical games that we all have to play with them.


    I have taken one long trip to Savannah (about 260 miles) and it rode great...I think you feel a few more bumps with the sport TRD package than you would say with a standard SR5 package, but the handling is great for a truck like this which was important to me just coming out of a sporty sedan.


      I've switched back and forth with gas octanes and have gotten a bit over 18mpg in the city and 19-20mpg on the hwy (cruising around 75mph). Not quite as good as the 22mpg on the sticker, but ok. I'm hoping that the engine will get "worn in" and the mileage will go up? I don't believe there was much difference in gas mileage between the different octanes.


    Overall, I'm pretty happy with the truck and have gotten several complements from

    coworkers...including one who wants to trade in his '04 tacoma for the new one since he rode in mine. Dislikes, I have a few - I have the weird suspension noise that some have been complaining about-dealer has gone over it and has ordered new parts (apparently this is a relatively common problem across the country and they now claim to know how to fix it-we'll see). Also, with the sport package comes the hood scoop, which I like the looks of very much....however, I have a silver mica exterior and when the sun hits the scoop just right, it shines right in my face-very annoying. Luckily, it's not often, just in that one spot. Anyhow, good luck with your new Tacoma, which in my opinion, is still the best option in the mid-size truck market today.

    PS Just FYI my other household car is a 2001 Nissan Maxima SE which I would choose any day of the week over a camry...just so you know I'm not strictly a Toyota person.
  • tsikestsikes Posts: 3
    Tarheel, thanks for all the insight. This really helps me. I'll keep in touch once I get my new Tacoma. Tsikes
  • 210delray210delray Posts: 4,722
    ...I have a '98 Nissan Frontier 2-wheel drive 4-cylinder, 5-speed manual regular cab truck that's a lot more basic than what you all seem to be buying nowadays! It has only 46,000 miles, because I use it primarily for commuting and light hauling around town. However, we also take it to the beach in the spring and fall, so my wife and I can ride our bicycles there. I'd much rather carry the bikes in the truck bed than hanging off the back of our Camry sedan!


    It has been VERY reliable - the sole problem was a faulty (leaking) coolant hose clamp that the dealer failed to fix on 2 tries, but my favorite independent shop fixed properly. NO other problems. (I would have done the clamp myself, but it was in a very hard-to-access location.) There was a "service campaign" (recall) for a faulty A/C line bracket early on, which the dealer took care of, but I've never had any actual A/C problems.


    Since I have both a Toyota and a Nissan, I have no particular bias toward one or the other, so I think you can't go wrong with either the new Frontier or Tacoma.
  • Glad to hear a long time Nissan owner without problems. This is my first Nissan purchase, but a lot of my friends have had PF, Altima, Maxima, Xterra's. They really never had any problems that I was aware of. JD Power looks about the same between the 04 Taco and 04 Frontier. Cost of ownership is higher because of depreciation. Sounds like some people are leaning toward Taco because of reliability, but to me it seems the Frontier has as good of record as the Taco. Does anyone have a reliable source of quality other than "I have a friend who had a friend, who had problems"? Just wondering where everyone gets their information on quality. A new post on the Taco forum now with paint problems now, I hope Nissan did a better job than Toyota this time. I do not want a leaky truck, with a noisy air blower that rattles and the paint comes off.
  • Sorry but I never said "I have a friend who had a friend, who had problems"

    I know he has had these problems because I was the one out there until 2:00am helping to fix the clutch problem and replace the power window motor. I was also the one that picked him up at the dealer when he dropped his truck off to get the AC fixed since that happened when the truck was still under warantee.

    I have noticed that the Nissan cars don't have any problems like that so maybe Nissan will start putting that quality into their trucks!
  • I hope so as well. It has me worried that the Taco has had such problems. Really didn't mean to be sarcastic, but outside of JD Power, consumer report (which seems extremely biased), where do you find good quality data on reliability?
  • I went to the JD Power site and didn't see any info on the 05 frontier or Tacoma.

    As for reliablilty I am going by past experience of owning multiple and knowing people that have owned Nissan trucks. Also the resale value of a Toyota is a lot higher than any other vehicle so that says a lot about their reputation. 10 years ago Toyota had a bigger edge over the rest of the auto companies but now days it is a lot closer. Even still I think Toyota still has a slight edge... Just my opinion. I am just speaking from past experience.
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