Skip to main content

Nissan knows a thing or two about producing reliable midsize trucks, and the Frontier is no different. For years, the Nissan Frontier has been a popular option for drivers that need a dependable vehicle. Check out some of the common issues reported by owners and what sort of reliability score this Nissan truck received. Not to mention the fact that it landed on the list of best trucks for the money.

For reliable midsize trucks, the Nissan Frontier is a good option

RepairPal has all of the Nissan Frontier reliability information based on the cost, frequency, and severity of repairs done by owners. The experts gave the Frontier an overall reliability rating of four out of five, which actually put it in first place out of seven similar midsize trucks.

Based on information from drivers, the average annual repair cost of the Nissan Frontier is $470. That’s lower than some of the competition, and the severity of those repairs is average, but the frequency is low. This is likely to increase over the life of the truck, but the Nissan Frontier is pretty reliable.

Nissan Frontier owners usually have to hit the repair shop an average of 0.2 times per year, according to RepairPal. That’s average for the midsize truck segment but lower than the average vehicle.

Even if it is a reliable midsize truck, here are some Nissan Frontier problems

Some common problems reported by owners include a check engine light, a stalling engine, and just some general noise from the engine area. Two hundred seventy-seven drivers reported the check engine light and erratic fuel gauge problem throughout the years, first appearing in the 1999 Frontier.

Unfortunately, this issue resulted in a recall from Nissan for the 2006 to 2008 trucks only. Since this erratic fuel gauge issue was present for many more years, leaving many drivers without a fix. One fix for this issue was a fuel pump replacement, which can cost around $648 to $886.

Another common complaint in the realm of Nissan Frontier reliability is an abnormal noise from the engine. Some drivers report this as a whining or buzzing sound that could come from the timing chain area. This can be caused by excessive slack in the secondary timing chains, and RepairPal says that both the secondary timing chains and tensioner shoes need to be replaced. In addition, the engine oil and filter should also be replaced at the same time. Depending on the severity, this can cost between $462 and $607. Nissan did issue a service bulletin (NTB09-128) about the common problem.

Nissan Frontier’s reliability is better than average

Reliable midsize trucks like the this Nissan Frontier are a good option
A 2005 Nissan Frontier | Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Even reliable trucks need repairs after a while. Another common issue on the Nissan Frontier is a defective charcoal canister vent control valve. This can cause a check engine light and might require replacement. The charcoal canister is inside the Evaporative emissions (EVAP) system, and a diagnosis can cost between $88 and $111.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has plenty of safety ratings and information about the Nissan Frontier. If you are looking at a specific year, check the NHTSA listing to find any recalls or service bulletins that might apply. There is also a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) search tool to check a specific vehicle.

The Nissan Frontier is a reliable midsize truck, but all vehicles benefit from routine maintenance. The correct intervals should be outlined in the owner’s manual.


3 Pickup Trucks Jamming Past 250,000 Miles With Ease