The 2006 Nissan Frontier pickup, which was completely redesigned for 2005, positions Nissan squarely in the midsize pickup market. The Frontier includes a number of features shared with the Nissan Titan, including its rugged suspension design, innovative factory-applied spray-on bedliner, Utili-track bed channel tie-down system and fully boxed, all-steel frame based on the Titan’s F-Alpha platform.
“The award-winning Titan sets the standard for innovation in pickup design, regardless of size. Titan, in turn, set the tone for the creation of the Frontier,” said Mark McNabb, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division. “With the Titan and the Frontier, we're solidifying Nissan's truck presence in both the full-size and mid-size truck segments – essentially giving buyers the same tough truck in large and extra large.”
For 2006, Frontier adds several new and enhanced features, including a Power Package for the King Cab XE, satin ring accents for meter gauges and chrome vent trim on NISMO and LE models, standard glove box lock and three new exterior colors – Red Alert, Red Brawn and Majestic Blue.
The 2006 Frontier is offered in both King Cab and Crew Cab body styles and in 2WD and 4WD driveline configurations. The Frontier, like the previous generations, is assembled at Nissan's manufacturing facility in Smyrna, Tennessee.
A Powerful Platform
Frontier’s solid foundation is based on Titan's F-Alpha platform. Starting with strong, fully boxed frame rails, the platform provides a rugged foundation on which to build. The 2006 Frontier's wheelbase is 9.8 inches longer than the previous generation’s, which helps enhance ride comfort and stability. The overall length of 205.5 inches is larger than the 2004 model (+2.6 inches King Cab, + 5.6 inches Crew Cab), though it remains a perfect "activity size" for buyers who don't need a true full-size pickup.
The 2006 Frontier shares its suspension layout and many component designs based on the Titan, including an all-steel double-wishbone front suspension and solid axle rear suspension with overslung leaf springs and a long suspension stroke for optimized off-road dynamics.
The Frontier, like Titan, provides exceptional acceleration, towing capacity and all-around off-roading ability, due in large measure to its powerful engine – a 4.0-liter DOHC V6 producing 265 horsepower* and 284 lb-ft of torque.
The 4.0-liter DOHC V6 is based on the award-winning Nissan VQ engine series used in the 350Z, Maxima, Altima, Murano and Quest, but is specifically tuned for the unique demands of truck use. At the same time, it offers excellent fuel efficiency and smooth operation.
The 4.0-liter V6 design includes a Continuously Variable Valve Timing Control System (CVTCS), Nissan variable Induction Control System (NICS), silent timing chain, microfinished camshaft and crankshaft surfaces, Teflon®-coated pistons, resin intake manifold, forged crankshaft, digital knock control system, high capacity muffler, lightweight aluminum block and cylinder heads and 105,000-mile spark plugs. The Frontier V6 is assembled at Nissan's advanced engine production facility in Decherd, Tenn., which also produces Titan’s 5.6-liter V8.
A 2.5-liter DOHC inline 4-cylinder engine is also available on the base Frontier King Cab 2WD model with 154 horsepower and 173 lb-ft torque.
The Frontier is offered with a choice of transmissions – an advanced 5-speed automatic, a 6-speed manual transmission or 5-speed manual (King Cab I4 model). Frontier 4WD models include a shift-on-the-fly 4-wheel drive system with 2WD/4H/4LO modes operated by an electronically controlled part-time transfer case.
An advanced off-road traction system is available with 4WD models. It includes an advanced 4-wheel limited slip system, which helps transfer power to the drive wheel with more grip on low traction surfaces.
The available Hill Descent Control (HDC) feature allows slow hill descent without the constant application of the brake pedal. HDC must be engaged by the driver (via a switch) and is available only when the transfer case is engaged in 4H or 4LO (it works in both forward and reverse). It can be activated at speeds up to 21 mph in 4H and 15 mph in 4LO.
Hill Start Assist (HSA) allows the driver to stop on an incline, release the brake pedal and not roll back for up to two seconds while the driver moves their foot to the accelerator for a smooth, controlled start. HSA is available on 4WD models in 2WD, 4H and 4LO. HSA is designed for rugged, low-speed off-road driving situations.
Also available are off-road tuned NISMO-spec Bilstein® performance shocks and an electronic locking rear differential. To maximize the off-road benefit of all of these state-of-the-art features, Nissan engineers tucked all key underbody hardware up to the frame rails for a minimum 10.1-inches of running ground clearance. This combines with outstanding approach and departure angles for exceptional off-road capability.
Other 2006 Frontier driveline components include engine-speed-sensitive power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering and 4-wheel disc brakes with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS).
The 2006 Frontier is offered with a range of available wheels and tires, including 17-inch wheels with 265/65R17 tires.
The Frontier’s maximum towing capacity is rated at up to 6,500 pounds (when properly equipped).
NISMO Frontier - The Ultimate Off-Road Performer
The NISMO Frontier, the first-ever NISMO branded Nissan vehicle in North America, represents the highest level of factory off-road performance available in the 2006 Nissan Frontier. Launched with the all-new Frontier in 2005, Nissan and NISMO engineers discussed the opportunity in the development process to offer a specialized model purpose-built for off-road adventure. The NISMO Frontier includes an extensive list of performance-oriented parts, including off-road tuned NISMO-spec Bilstein performance shocks, skid plates, unique 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with aggressive P265/75R16 BFGoodrich Rugged Trail T/A off-road tires and an electronic locking rear differential.
The NISMO Off-Road model is offered in both King Cab and Crew Cab body configurations and in 4WD and 2WD.
“Nissan has a long, highly successful history of racing trucks, from the famous Baja racing trucks of the ‘70s and ‘80s, to the Championship Off-Road Racing (CORR) Frontier teams,” said McNabb. “As fitting for a truck carrying the NISMO name, this special model is the ultimate off-road Frontier.”
The NISMO Off-Road model differs from the other 2006 Frontier models in a number of performance areas, including special off-road suspension tuning and a collection of unique-to-the-model electronic traction control systems. It includes 4-wheel limited slip for 4WD models and 2-wheel limited slip for 2WD models, which helps redirect engine torque to the non-slipping drive wheel on low traction surfaces.
An electronic locking rear differential is also standard on both 4WD and 2WD models.
A Design That’s All Truck
“The Frontier projects a more modern, rugged truck look and feel, both inside and out, with a robust, athletic style and intelligent-utility design features,” said McNabb.
As with Titan, Frontier’s exterior design is bold, expressive and adventurous. Frontier utilizes signature Nissan truck themes, including a chrome, angled strut grille, chrome bumpers, short front and rear overhangs, large, stamped steel, geometric fender flares.
Three new colors are available on Frontier for 2006 – Red Alert, Red Brawn and Majestic Blue.
Like Titan, Frontier offers new levels of innovation in areas where it matters most to truck owners, including the bed. Both the Frontier King Cab and Crew Cab models offer an available high-utility bed that includes a factory-applied spray-on bedliner and the Utili-track tie-down system first introduced on Titan.
The Utili-track system provides ultimate cargo hauling flexibility through the use of five special "C" cross-section rails mounted in the bed (two channels in the bed floor, and one each on the bed side rails and the bed header panel). Removable utility cleats slide into the channels, providing a wide range of attaching points for securing cargo.
In addition to the tie-down cleats, a full range of accessories are offered for use with the channel system, including bed dividers, sliding cargo trays and modular storage units.
A Highly Flexible Interior
Just as the high-utility bed offers Frontier owners an exceptional level of flexibility and utility, the Frontier's interior features outstanding functionality combined with comfort and intelligent design. Both the Frontier King Cab and Crew Cab feature large rear doors (rear hinged on King Cab) for easy access to the rear seating and cargo area.
The Frontier King Cab features flip-up rear seats and both cab styles offer new solutions to cab storage and flexibility. Removable storage boxes are tucked beneath the rear seats, while the front passenger seat folds flat for added load carrying capacity (except on leather-trimmed models). A dual glove box with lock, damper and lamp, center console storage, 1-liter storage integrated into the front doors and a multitude of cupholder and power points are standard. Frontier also offers leather-appointed interior and factory-installed sunroof.
The 2006 Frontier adds satin ring accent treatment for the meter gauges and chrome vent trim standard on NISMO and LE models. In addition, a new shift knob design is added on 2006 NISMO manual transmission models.
The 2006 Frontier also includes a long list of safety equipment, including Zone Body construction with front and rear crumple zones, Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (which includes dual-stage front supplemental air bags with seat belt sensors and a front occupant classification sensor), and 3-point front seat belts with pretensioners and load limiters.
Also offered are supplemental front seat side-impact air bags and available supplemental curtain air bags for side impact and rollover protection for front and rear outboard passengers, 3-point seat belts for all rear seat occupants, including center position (Crew Cab) and the LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) child seat anchor system (Crew Cab).
* All horsepower ratings are per SAE J1349 JUN1995