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We’ve spent time behind the wheel of the new Chevrolet Colorado and Nissan Frontier to see how they compare along the same off-roading trails, downtown loops, and off-roading routes. Surprisingly, the 2023 Chevy Colorado has a few significant flexes over the 2023 Nissan Frontier. 

2023 Chevy Colorado vs. 2023 Nissan Frontier: Real-world Comparison 

The 2023 Nissan Frontier parked near a scenic mountain lookout
2023 Nissan Frontier | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

We drove the 2023 Chevy Colorado Z71 and the 2023 Nissan Frontier all over the state of North Carolina for a week. We made sure to give these trucks equal off-roading tests and road trip adventures to see how they perform. 

Both trucks did great, from twisting mountain roads, steep climbs, dirt trails in the woods, long stretches of highway, and downtown areas that require parallel parking. However, the Colorado did a little better. 

1. The 2023 Colorado is easier to drive 

The 2023 Chevy Colorado Z71 off-roading though mud
2023 Chevy Colorado Z71 | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

The 2023 Chevy Colorado performs better on the highway and in downtown areas. It provides more visibility and has fewer blind spots than the 2023 Nissan Frontier. The Frontier needs larger mirrors, and it’s challenging to see over the taller hood. 

Plus, the Colorado is more agile. It has a 20.26-foot turning radius, while the Frontier has a 21.61-foot turning radius. It’s easier to turn around in the Colorado, especially while off-roading. The Colorado can make u-turns, while the Frontier often requires three-point turns. 

Also, the Colorado has well-weighted steering that feels more responsive and direct. At lower speeds, the Frontier has heavy steering that takes getting used to. But the Frontier Pro-4X has a game-changing 360-degree display, and the Z71 doesn’t. 

Both trucks have a suspension lift, all-terrain tires, and heavy equipment, such as a locking rear differential, that could impact ride quality. 

2. The Chevrolet Colorado is more comfortable than the Nissan Frontier 

We found the 2023 Chevy Colorado to be a more comfortable truck, especially over gravel and sand. It has a smoother performance. Overall, it does a better job of dampening impacts in the pavement for a smoother performance. Smaller impacts can make the 2023 Nissan Frontier rattle. 

Also, the Colorado truck interior is quieter at highway speeds, but the Frontier interior isn’t that much louder. The front seats in Chevy’s midsize pickup truck are more supportive for hours of comfort, while the seats in the Frontier start to feel stiff after about an hour’s ride. 

Both trucks have strong dual-zone climate control systems to keep you cool during hot and humid afternoons. The ventilated seats in the Colorado aren’t very strong, but they aren’t available in the Frontier. 

3. The Nissan Frontier has dated tech 

The 2023 Nissan Frontier Pro-4X off-roading in the woods
2023 Nissan Frontier Pro-4X | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

The 2023 Nissan Frontier Pro-4X has modern features like a wireless charging pad, 360-degree camera, and wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto. However, the 11.0-inch touchscreen and digital guage cluster look dated. 

The camera resolution and graphics could use an upgrade. The menus are pretty basic, but the system works quickly. The Frontier also feels a bit limited and not as intuitive as the system in the Colorado. 

Meanwhile, the 2023 Colorado has a very attractive digital gauge cluster and a vibrant 11.3-inch touchscreen. The voice-activated Google Assistant is extremely responsive, and the system is intuitive. 

However, the only way to change a few settings, like the automatic headlights, is through the infotainment system. There are a few odd things to get past, but overall the Colorado feels more advanced. 

Is the Chevy Colorado better than the Nissan Frontier?

The Chevy Colorado and the Nissan Frontier each have their ups and downs. In the end, the choice will come down to the specific buyer’s needs and preferences. Regardless of our takeaways, shoppers who are in the market for a new midsize pickup truck will learn more about what’s out there by test driving prospects for themselves. What’s a must-have for some could be a deal breaker for others.

It’s also worth noting that the Frontier received its redesign for the 2021 model year and the midsize truck Chevy offers is freshly updated for a new generation that begins in the 2023 model year. As with smartphones and other popular tech, two years can make a big difference.

The Frontier certainly has wins to consider, such as easier access and a little extra storage space. But the Colorado is easier to drive, more comfortable, and has advanced tech.