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Is it just us, or is the 2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody making things hot in here? We hope that the Nissan Frontier Hardbody concept becomes a reality because it looks great. The Frontier benefits from a beefier, retro style. 

The 2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody is lit 

The 2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody concept in the desert
2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody concept | Nissan

Feast your eyes upon the 2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody concept! It pays homage to the classic Nissan Hardbody pickup. It’s also only one out of three modified Frontier concepts that are on display at the 2022 Chicago Auto Show. 

So, if the Frontier Hardbody doesn’t do it for you, there are two more attractive designs to consider. The trucks are called Project Hardbody, Project 72X, and Project Adventure. The two based on classic models are the D21 Hardbody and Dastun 720. 

You can go check out these Nissan Frontier models in person at the Chicago Auto Show. It takes place February 12 – 21 at McCormick Place. 

The Hardbody is built upon a 4×4 Frontier SV model with a hot shade of red paint. It has a three-inch Calmini lift kit with adjustable upper control arms. The 33-inch BFGoodrich all-terrain tires are surrounded by Pro-4X overfenders. 

Using blocky three-spoke wheels to match the ones on the old Hardbody is a nice touch. Plus, the retro 80’s decals are attractive. You’ll find a spare tire carrier mounted in the bed, a blacked-out front end, and a sport bar with Rigid 10-inch LED lights too. 

What happened to the Nissan Hardbody? 

Nissan Hardbody Desert Runner
Nissan Hardbody Desert Runner | Nissan

We can’t geek out about the 2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody concept without reminiscing about the original Nissan Hardbody truck. According to Motor Trend, Hardybody refers to its double-walled bed, firm paneling, and aggressive styling. It was one tough brick-like truck. 

Before we had the Hardybody, we had the Datsun 1000. This compact truck was introduced in America in 1959 and was followed by the Datsun 220 and N320, and 520 in the ’60s. Then the Dastun N521 emerged as the first half-ton mini truck in 1969. The Datsun 620 introduced the log bed in 1975. In the 1980s, the Datsun 720 became the Nissan 720. 

The Nissan Hardbody came out in 1986 and had a prominent body line that ran through the entire truck. This provided it with a distinctive look. Also, the Hardbody is officially coded as the Nissan D21, but that name wasn’t as popular. 

In 1998 the D22 Nissan platform replaced the D21 Hardbody and became the Nissan Frontier. The Frontier slowly became a midsize option instead of a compact truck during the following years. 

Can you buy a Frontier Hardbody? 

While we would jump at the chance to buy a 2022 Nissan Frontier Hardbody concept, the models are currently just for show. But don’t lose hope! Auto manufacturers often use auto shows to gauge reactions. 

If fans react well to these retro-styled beefy off-roaders, then perhaps Nissan will decide to develop a few special editions. We’re sure a Nissan Frontier Desert Runner would be met with open arms. Also, we heard that Nissan ordered a second set of wheels to test for production.

A special Frontier edition would spice things up in the truck game. All the attention is on the Ford Maverick and super trucks like the upcoming Ranger Raptor. We’ll keep an eye on the Frontier if it decides to challenge rivals.


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