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2013 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab

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2013 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.3

The Nissan Frontier is one of just two mid-size pickups on the market for 2013. With the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon siblings taking a year off ahead of new model introductions, that leaves only the Toyota Tacoma as the Frontier's primary competitor. Unlike the Tacoma, the Frontier does not offer a regular-cab model, but rather the more spacious King Cab and Crew Cab setups. The Frontier makes a great alternative to a full-size truck. It is ideal for hauling everything from mulch to motorbikes, and feels solid on road or off. With a stronger V6 engine than the Tacoma and features like a navigation/infotainment system, spray-on bedliner and Nissan's Utili-track tie-down system, the 2013 Frontier remains one of the finest mid-size trucks we've seen in recent years.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you want a tough but well-equipped truck that's smaller and more fuel-efficient than most full-size pickups, the Nissan Frontier is a solid choice. The 2013 Frontier can tow up to 6,500 pounds and tackle rugged paths while still offering good looks and a decent highway ride.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Those who need to tow really heavy loads will have to step up to a full-size truck like the Ford F-150, Ram 1500 or the Frontier's big brother, the Nissan Titan. If you want a basic compact truck with a regular cab, your sole option for 2013 is the Toyota Tacoma.

What's New for 2013

The NissanConnect navigation and information system is now available on Crew Cab versions of the Frontier. Top-line Crew Cab models receive a backup camera, rear parking sensors and dual-zone climate control. Desert Runner off-road editions are available, and fuel economy has increased for most models.

Driving the Frontier Crew Cab

Driving Impressions In everyday driving, the Frontier performs as well any mid-size SUV we've tested, though the truck's ride becomes noticeably harsher over rough pavement. Paired with the refined 4.0-liter V6 engine...

that is standard on Crew Cab models and all but the two lowest trims of the King Cab, the Nissan Frontier has plenty of power for passing vehicles and pulling loads. With the exception of wind noise from the large side mirrors, we found the Frontier's cabin quiet and comfortable. Those who go off-roading – or just want to appear as if they do – will be interested in the Desert Runner or even more hardcore PRO-4X models. During our test with a PRO-4X 4-wheel-drive (4WD) model, the Nissan Frontier easily tackled tough terrain thanks to features like a locking rear differential and Bilstein performance shocks.

NISSANCONNECT
In addition to a much-needed navigation system, NissanConnect provides information about traffic, weather and points of interest. The system takes prompts from voice command or the touch of a finger on its 5.8-inch color screen.

UTILI-TRACK BED CHANNEL SYSTEM
If you own a truck, you're more than likely to move something in it. Nissan's Utili-track makes the job easier and more secure thanks to adjustable tie-down cleats built into the bed.

2013 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab Details
Interior

The 2013 Frontier's cabin is versatile and comfortable. King Cab models feature a pair of small, forward-facing rear seats with storage bins beneath, while Crew Cab models have a 3-row bench that's comfortable enough for adults. The King Cab has easy rear access thanks to half-size rear-hinged doors, while Crew Cabs use regular doors. All Frontiers boast storage versatility with rear seats that flip up to create open space and a front passenger seat that folds flat to become an impromptu workstation. Cloth is the standard seat material, with leather available. Lumbar support in higher trims improves driver comfort. We wish the steering wheel would telescope and not just tilt.

Exterior

With its raised fender flares and blocky design, the Frontier has a familiar family resemblance to Nissan's Xterra SUV and Titan full-size truck. Unlike the mammoth Titan, the smaller Frontier has a sportier, more athletic attitude. King Cab and Crew Cab models have the same overall length of 205.5 inches. A long bed is available in Crew Cabs, giving them the same 73.3-inch size of those found on King Cab models. PRO-4X models have multiple skid plates to protect vital parts from nature's jabs. Top-line Crew Cab SL trims have tubular roof rails similar to those on the Xterra.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Most 2013 Nissan Frontier models are reasonably well equipped with the exception of base S trim King Cab models. Those least expensive of Frontier models lack air conditioning, power mirrors, power door locks and power windows, cruise control, and even a radio. Stepping up to SV trim adds features like an AM/FM/CD/USB audio system with color display. PRO-4X models have 4-wheel drive standard and a locking differential. Crew Cab SL models come very well equipped with leather seats, Rockford Fosgate premium audio and the NissanConnect system. Frontier King Cab models come with a 4- or 6-cylinder engine, while all Crew Cab models exclusively use the V6. Wheels range in size from 15 to 18 inches.

Optional Equipment

Most convenience and performance features are tied to varying trim levels of the Frontier, but some packages are available. Among them are a Preferred Package for King Cab S models that add the much-needed AM/FM/CD player and air conditioning. Higher-trim models can add features such as the Utili-track tie-down system, a rear-view monitor, a tow hitch, navigation, Bluetooth wireless streaming, and Pandora radio. Crew Cab models can substitute their roughly 5-foot-long bed for one that's just over six feet like those in King Cab models. Accessories include a bedliner, step rails and even a dome tent for the truck bed.

Under the Hood

Two engines are offered in the 2013 Nissan Frontier: a 4-cylinder that's available in rear-wheel-drive King Cab models, or a more powerful V6 offered in all Crew Cab models and higher trims of the King Cab. Transmission choices include 5-speed and 6-speed manuals or a 5-speed automatic. Even 4-cylinder models have a respectable tow rating of 3,500 pounds, and rear-wheel-drive V6 models can tow up to 6,500 pounds. All 2013 Nissan Frontiers run on regular unleaded gasoline. The Frontier's fuel economy has improved slightly, but is still rated at only up to 23 mpg for 4-cylinder models or 22 mpg for V6 versions.

2.5-liter inline-4
152 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
171 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/23 mpg (2WD, manual), 17/23 mpg (2WD, automatic)

4.0-liter V6
261 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
281 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/22 mpg (2WD, manual), 16/22 mpg (2WD, automatic), 16/21 mpg (4WD, manual), 15/21 mpg (4WD, automatic)

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2013 Nissan Frontier Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 532 Ratings for the 2005 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Beware the Transmission Recall!

By on Monday, June 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 112,000

10 3.0
overall rating 3 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
3/10
Value
3/10
Reliability
3/10
Quality
4/10
Performance
3/10
Styling
4/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "Cheaper than Toyota"

Cons: "You won't get over $125,000 without spending $$$$"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"A known issue with these trucks is that the radiator fluid leaks INTO the transmission and vice versa. I have spent about $5,000 now trying to get the damage fixed and am still having troubles. I will never buy another Nissan again. They told me it wasn't covered because I had surpassed the mileage of my warranty, yet they knew about this problem and nobody told me when I could have gotten it fixed long ago, when it was still covered. The turning radius is worse than any truck I've ever owned, even far larger ones. It turns like a boat. The interior is pretty basic compared to most vehicles of the same year and price range."

8 people out of 20 found this review helpful

Great family truck

By on Monday, June 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 44,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Reliable and handles well."

Cons: "Requires a large turning radius"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This truck has served our family well in providing a 4-door vehicle that has great carrying capacity. We have an aluminum cover over the bed so we have lockable storage, which makes it even more versatile. I haven't had any mechanical problems and we have moved from Utah to Texas in the truck. It rode great and handled well totally loaded."

6 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Reliable

By on Saturday, June 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "payload"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Have not had a single issue in 5 years. Very quick and great power. Good mpg if driving to conserve."

9 people out of 17 found this review helpful

2012 nissan frontier sv v6

By on Sunday, May 31, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 40,400

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Good power fun to drive"

Cons: "Gas milage poor , Confort of interior not good"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"It has been a good truck, My dislikes are gas milage is not that good as i could get same milage n fullsize truck. Interior seat material is not that good as i have 40000 miles ad material starting to wear out. The metal that Nissan uses is very thin compaired to american trucks as it gets dents very easy. Its ok but next truck will not be a Frontier"

10 people out of 19 found this review helpful

Best truck I have ever owned.

By on Thursday, May 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 62,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Lots of power and a great price."

Cons: "Needs replaceable batteries for the valve stems."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This truck should get more notice by buyers. Its beats the Toyota trucks by a long shot and as most after market parts builders and magazines say, it is not a Toyota. What a bunch of bad stuff. This truck is all I could ever want in a truck and it rides like a Cadillic in the woods with all the power you would want, plus good MPG's to boot. The only thing I have did to this truck is replace the radiator and the valve stems because the batteries went dead. A better truck at a great price."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

I purchased my 2013 frontier v6 brand new!

By on Saturday, May 02, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "love the back up camera/and price"

Cons: "needs better rim syles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I love this truck! I looked at many trucks, and for a female (that has no clue about whats under the hood) this truck fit perfect! It drove so smooth, and wasn't a monster and did its job for anything from driving kids to cheer to long drives to southern and northern cali! Unfortunately, recently I was in a four car accident, when somebody rear ended me and I collided into a suburban. Though I'm sad that my Frontier is totaled, I couldn't be happier this truck saved me! I am looking into purchasing another frontier soon. Not only the comfort, style, and its does the job from point A to B with kids. I feel safe to know this truck can also with stand accident like I experienced! I would really recommend this truck to mothers/fathers for safety!"

12 people out of 21 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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