Nissan Frontier vs. Toyota Tacoma: Which Truck Is More Reliable?

There is one thing you always hear about the Toyota Tacoma, and it’s that it will run forever. But what about the Nissan Frontier? Is the Nissan Frontier a reliable truck that can rival the Tacoma? Which one will last longer? 

Is the Nissan Frontier more reliable than the Toyota Tacoma?  

An image of a 2022 Nissan Frontier parked outdoors on a sandy trail.
2022 Nissan Frontier | Nissan

To get to the bottom of if the Frontier is more reliable than the Tacoma we will consult Consumer Reports. They send out surveys to thousands of vehicle owners to see what challenges they faced. 

Drivers use the surveys to report on 17 different potential trouble spots. Some of the issues involve major transmission problems or minor electrical system issues. If Consumer Reports receives enough data, they can use it to provide a predicted reliability rating for each model. 

According to Consumer Reports, the 2021 Nissan Frontier has a reliability rating of three out of five, which is average. 

But Consumer Reports also listed a predicted reliability rating of three out of five for the 2021 Toyota Tacoma. So, this won’t do! We can’t leave you with a tie score. 

What potential trouble areas do the Frontier and Tacoma face? 

RELATED: Not Buying The Nissan Frontier Is A Huge Mistake

The data for the Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma seems to vary. The Frontier has a higher concentration of more server issues for the 2015 – 2018 models, including transmission problems, paint and trim issues, brake trouble, body integrity issues, and power equipment problems. 

It looks like the Toyota Tacoma has less severe issues spread out across more model years. The problems still involve power equipment issues, body hardware problems, paint and trim issues, and transmission issues. But both trucks have fewer reports of these problems on newer models, meaning they could have been corrected. 

According to VEHQ, the Frontier is expected to last around 100,000 miles. But with the proper care and maintenance, Frontiers can easily make it past 200,000 miles. VEHQ’s information suggests that earlier Frontier models from 2006 to 2010 struggled with transmission issues. This could have put a dent in its predicted longevity. 

According to 4WHEELDRIVEGUIDE, the Tacoma is expected to last beyond 200,000 miles. A Tacoma isn’t considered to have too many miles until it reaches the 150,000-mile mark. But this also depends on how well the truck was taken care of. Common issues include frame rot and clutch problems. 

Is the Frontier or Tacoma the better option to buy? 

2021 Toyota Tacoma Off Road with TRD Lift Kit
2021 Toyota Tacoma Off Road with TRD Lift Kit | Toyota

If you want a used Nissan Frontier or a used Toyota Tacoma, you will have to do your research. While some sources list the Tacoma as more reliable, RepairPal actually lists the Frontier as the slightly more reliable option. 

The Tacoma got a refresh in 2016, but the Frontier was pretty much the same since 2008 until the 2021 model received significant upgrades. Both trucks should provide their value’s worth, and the Frontier might have cheaper options available. 

Before buying a Frontier or Tacoma, do your due diligence by adequately inspecting the truck, giving it a test drive, and reviewing the vehicle’s history. Knowing how well the truck was cared for can help you determine if it’s a good investment.