Old and Bold: the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV 4X4 [Review]

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The 2014 Nissan Frontier SV is still a great truck to go head to head with the Toyota Tacoma, but both trucks are getting up there in years. After Roman and I sampled the new GMC Canyon and Chevrolet Colorado, the lack of refinement in both trucks was pretty obvious. Still, as a reliable, tough-as-nails mid-sized truck, the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV delivers.

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Nothing has changed in the engine department for the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV as its 4.0-liter V6 still makes 261 hp and 281 lbs-feet of torque. It’s gutsy and the power-delivery is very smooth through the five-speed automatic. There is a six-speed manual available for the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV (only a few trims have that option).

The styling has not changed either. This is pretty much the same design that’s been around for years. It’s a design that needs some updating.

IMG_3297The 2014 Nissan Frontier SV is a mid-level trim package that starts at $27,460 (Crew Cab) and is one of the more popular setups for consumers. The 2014 Nissan Frontier SV comes with USB connection port for iPod® interface and other compatible devices, 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, SiriusXM Satellite Radio and remote keyless entry standard. Add a few popular options (like the $630 bedliner & tow package) and the

Maximum towing for the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV 4X4 is 6,100 lbs. The 4X2 model can tow 6,300 lbs. Maximum payload is 1,390 lbs with the 4X4 and 1,481 lbs with the 4X2. My 4X4 tester is EPA rated at 16 mpg city and 21 mpg highway, I averaged 17 mpg over a few days of combined driving – that’s not very good.

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ere’s the odd part: you have to pay $28,390 for the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV 4X4 wi
th the six-speed manual. That’s a $930 premium for amanualtransmission.

The driving position and seat comfort of the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV is slightly better than the equivalent Toyota Tacoma. Rear seat comfort is poor as the rear seat-back cushions are nearly straight up. Kids don’t seem to mind and this configuration is ideal for small families.

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Interior quality is not very impressive, nor is the esthetic and ergonomic design. It feels like a truck build in the 1990s, and that’s no longer acceptable given the new competition. Still, it’s a simple layout and a fairly comfortable ride.

Power is excellent and, once you get used to a very large turning radius, it handles nicely. Brakes are strong and, with a small load in the bed (100 lbs or so), the highway ride is better than the King-Cab version. The engine note sounds like an industrial machine, but the big six-cylinder is fairly composed during commuting.

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I’ve towed about 5,400 lbs in the past with a similar model and it was a breeze. It would be nice to have slightly larger mirrors and standard rear-view camera, but the tow-vehicle I used did the job well without those items. The six-banger had no issues pulling the load, none whatsoever.

Overall, the 2014 Nissan Frontier SV 4X4 is a smart choice for people who need to tow light loads, haul medium loads and have a small enough truck that gives you extra space in your garage. Still, after driving the new competition, I can’t say anything positive about how civilized this truck is compared to the new kids.

Bottom line: Nissan needs to update the interior, exterior and increase the Frontier’s efficiency right now.

Here’s a video demonstrating how far the competition has come.

Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed  worldwide.
Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed
worldwide.
Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism - Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. Brought up in the California car culture and educated in theater, childhood education, film, journalism and history, Nathan now lives with his family in Denver, CO. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed worldwide.