Nissan Frontier Vs. Toyota Tacoma

By Justin Cupler | May 23rd, 2019

Midsize pickups are up and coming once again in the Sarasota area, and the 2019 Toyota Tacoma and 2019 Nissan Frontier are great options. Both models offer buyers a lot, but which one is best for our Tampa/St. Petersburg area buyers? Continue reading to find out.

Exterior

The Nissan Frontier is an oldie but goodie, as its last redesign came way back in 2005. This may make it seem old, but it has given Nissan over a decade to perfect it. And perfect it Nissan has done with its available PRO-4X model that looks the part of a rugged off-roader. Plus, it has honed all its exterior features to match the most in-demand features for truck buyers, including an available adjustable in-bed cargo tie-downs.

The Toyota Tacoma went through its last redesign in 2016, making it more modern than the Frontier. It boasts a rugged, angular look that is right up the alley of most truck buyers. Like the Frontier, the Tacoma also has an adjustable in-bed cargo- tie-down system, but it is standard instead of optional. The Tacoma also offers a rugged off-road model dubbed the TRD Pro. This model is more capable than the PRO-4X, but it is over $9,000 more expensive than the PRO-4X.

Measurement 2019 Nissan Frontier 2019 Toyota Tacoma Difference
Length 205.5 to 219.4 inches 212.3 to 225.5 inches -6.8 to -6.1 inches
Width 72.8 inches 74.4 to 75.2 inches -2.4 to -1.6 inches
Height 68.7 to 70.1 inches 70.6 to 71.6 inches -1.9 to -1.5 inches
Wheelbase 125.9 to 139.9 inches 127.4 to 140.6 inches -1.5 to -0.7 inches
Ground Clearance 7.6 to 8.9 inches 9.4 inches -1.8 to -0.5 inches
Curb weight 3,781 to 4,624 pounds 3,980 to 4,445 pounds -199 to +179

 

Advantage: 2019 Toyota Tacoma

  • More modern looks
  • Rugged TRD-Pro model

Advantage: 2019 Nissan Frontier

  • Smaller and easier to handle
  • Familiar design

Interior

Inside, the 2019 Nissan Frontier shows its age with its basic design language and older interfaces. While some may not appreciate its simplicity, some buyers miss the old days of easier-to-navigate cabins. Despite its older looks and interfaces, the 2019 Nissan Frontier is not without some more moderns amenities, including Nissan Connect, leather upholstery, embossed seating, and more.

The 2019 Toyota Tacoma boasts a newer cabin with a thinner dash, accent colors, circular air vents, high-resolution touchscreen, and more. It takes its style up a notch with its TRD Pro model, which adds premium materials, special seating and even more technology.

In terms of seating room, the Nissan Frontier has more legroom all around, making it more useful for buyers looking to haul their families or coworkers.

 

Measurement 2019 Nissan Frontier 2019 Toyota Tacoma Difference
Front headroom (all cabs) 39.7 inches 39.7 inches
Front legroom (all cabs) 42.4 inches 42.9 inches -0.5 inches
Front shoulder room (all cabs) 58.3 inches 58.3 inches
Front hip room (all cabs) 55.8 inches 57.2 inches -1.4 inches
Rear headroom  (extended cab) 36.6 inches 34.9 inches +1.7 inches
Rear legroom  (extended cab) 25.4 inches 24.6 inches +0.8 inches
Rear shoulder room  (extended cab) 54.9 inches 56.5 inches -1.6 inches
Rear hip room  (extended cab) 55 inches 51.7 inches +3.3 inches
Rear headroom  (crew cab) 38.6 inches 38.3 inches +0.3 inches
Rear legroom  (crew cab) 33.6 inches 32.6 inches +1 inch
Rear shoulder room  (crew cab) 58.3 inches 58.9 inches -0.6 inches
Rear hip room  (crew cab) 58 inches 56.3 inches +1.7 inches

 

Advantage: 2019 Toyota Tacoma

  • More stylish cabin
  • Even more style in the TRD Pro model

Advantage: 2019 Nissan Frontier

  • Simple interior appeals to some buyers
  • More legroom

Performance

Small trucks are no beacons for performance, but they get the job done. Both the 2019 Nissan Frontier and 2019 Toyota Tacoma use standard four-cylinder engines and optional V-6 units. The Frontier boasts a standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder with 152 horsepower, while the Tacoma has a standard 2.7-liter four-cylinder with 159 horsepower. Despite their low power, these pickups can tow 3,800 and 3,500 pounds, respectively.

The 2019 Frontier’s optional V-6 engine pumps out 261 horsepower and plays a role in its 6,600-pound towing capacity. The Tacoma’s V-6 engine injects 278 horsepower and pushes its towing capacity to 6,800 pounds.

The real distinguishing factor between the 2019 Nissan Frontier and the 2019 Toyota Tacoma is the latter is available with a four-cylinder engine and four-wheel drive. Unfortunately, the four-cylinder-powered Frontier is not available with four-wheel drive.

2019 Nissan Frontier 2019 Toyota Tacoma Difference
Engine 2.5-liter 4-cyl (King Cab only) 2.7-liter 4-cyl
Horsepower 152 hp at 5,200 rpm 159 hp at 5,200 rpm -7 hp
Torque 171 lb-ft at 4,400 rpm 180 lb-ft at 3,800 rpm -9 lb-ft
Standard transmission 5-spd manual 6-spd automatic
Optional transmission 5-spd automatic 6-spd manual
Driveline RWD RWD (std.) / 4WD (opt)
0-60 time
Towing capacity 3,810 pounds 3,500 pounds +310 pounds
Payload capacity 910 pounds 1,620 pounds -710 pounds
MPG City 17 to 19 mpg 19 to 20 mpg -3 to +0 mpg
MPG Highway 22 to 23 mpg 22 to 23 mpg
MPG Combined 19 to 21 mpg 21 mpg -2 to +0 mpg
Optional engine 4.0-liter V-6 3.5-liter V-6
Horsepower 261 hp at 5,600 rpm 278 hp at 6,000 rpm -17 hp
Torque 281 lb-ft at 4,000 rpm 265 lb-ft at 4,600 rpm +16 lb-ft
Standard transmission 6-spd manual 6-spd automatic
Optional transmission 5-spd automatic 6-spd manual
Driveline RWD (std.) / 4WD (opt.) RWD (std.) / 4WD (opt.)
0-60 time 7.3 seconds 7.7 seconds -0.4 seconds
Towing capacity 6,640 pounds 6,800 pounds -160 pounds
Payload capacity 1,430 pounds 1,540 pounds -110 pounds
MPG City 15 to 16 mpg 17 to 19 -4 to -1 mpg
MPG Highway 21 to 22 mpg 20 to 22 mpg 1 to +2 mpg
MPG Combined 17 to 19 mpg 18 to 21 mpg -4 to +1 mpg

 

Advantage: 2019 Toyota Tacoma

  • Higher V-6 towing capacity
  • More power across the board

Advantage: 2019 Nissan Frontier

  • More standard towing
  • Quicker V-6 acceleration

Pricing and Features

The 2019 Nissan Frontier is available in four trim levels — S, SV, Desert Runner, and PRO-4X — and their respective starting prices range from $19,090 to $33,530.

 

There are six trim levels in the 2019 Toyota Tacoma lineup, and they include the SR, SR5, TRD Sport, TRD Off-Road, Limited, and TRD Pro. Their prices range from $25,850 to $42,960.

2019 Nissan Frontier Key Features and Pricing by Trim

S: $19,090

  • King Cab body
  • 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine
  • Rear-wheel drive
  • Five-speed manual transmission
  • 15-inch six-spoke steel wheels
  • Chrome grille
  • Body-color upper front bumper/black lower front bumper
  • Body-color rear bumper
  • Black door handles
  • Black mirrors
  • Rear privacy glass
  • 7-inch touchscreen
  • Bluetooth connectivity with streaming audio
  • Hands-free text messaging
  • Siri Eyes Free
  • Air conditioning
  • Cruise control
  • Variable intermittent windshield wipers
  • Front map lights
  • Two 12-volt power outlets
  • Second-row under-seat storage
  • Overhead console with sunglasses holder
  • Four-way manual front seats
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Four-speaker AM/FM audio system
  • Steering-wheel-mounted controls
  • USB port
  • Rearview camera

 

SV: $23,960

  • All S features, plus
  • 16-inch six-split-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Body-color front bumper
  • Chrome rear bumper
  • Power outside mirrors
  • Sliding rear window
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Power door locks
  • Power windows with driver’s one-touch down
  • Tilt steering column

 

Desert Runner: $26,400

  • All SV features, plus
  • 4.0-liter V-6 engine
  • Five-speed automatic transmission
  • Larger front brakes
  • Bilstein off-road performance shocks
  • 16-inch six-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Fog lights
  • Satin-chrome grille
  • Body-color rear bumper
  • Bed rail caps
  • Multifunctional trip computer
  • Driver’s seatback pocket
  • Eight-way manual driver’s seat
  • “Frontier” embroidered cloth seating
  • White contrast stitching
  • White-faced gauges with satin-chrome bezels

 

PRO-4X: $33,530

  • All Desert Runner features, plus
  • DANA 44 rear axle
  • Switch-operated two-speed transfer case
  • Electronic-locking rear differential
  • Hill-descent control
  • Hill-start assist
  • Oil pan, fuel tank, and transfer case skid plates
  • Auto-on/off headlights
  • Front tow hook
  • Splash guards
  • Black door handles
  • Black outside mirrors
  • Utili-Track bed-channel system with adjustable tie-down cleats
  • Spray-on bed liner
  • NissanConnect infotainment system
  • 5.8-inch touchscreen
  • Navigation
  • NissanConnect mobile apps
  • Voice recognition
  • SiriusXM Traffic and Travel Link
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror
  • First-aid kit
  • “PRO-4X” embroidered cloth seat trim
  • Heated front seats
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • White contrast stitching
  • Heated front seats
  • Chrome vent accents
  • Six-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system
  • MP3/WMA player
  • SiriusXM

2019 Toyota Tacoma Key Features and Pricing by Trim

SR: $25,850

  • Extended cab body
  • 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine
  • Six-speed automatic transmission
  • Rear-wheel drive
  • 16-inch styled-steel wheels
  • Projector-beam headlights
  • Dark gray grille with black surround
  • Color-keyed, heated, power mirrors
  • Color-keyed door handles
  • Color-keyed rear bumper
  • Deck-rail system with four adjustable tie-down cleats
  • Four fixed tie-down cleats
  • Two-speed windshield wipers
  • Sliding rear glass
  • Engine and front suspension skid plates
  • 4.2-inch color multi-information display
  • Air conditioning
  • One USB media port
  • Two USB charging ports
  • Four-way adjustable front seats
  • Urethane steering wheel
  • Steering-wheel-mounted controls
  • Tilt and telescoping steering wheel
  • Entune Audio infotainment system
  • 6.1-inch touchscreen
  • Six-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system
  • Advanced voice recognition
  • Bluetooth audio streaming
  • Siri Eyes Free
  • Automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection
  • Lane-departure alert
  • Automatic high-beam headlights
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Hill-start assist

 

SR5: $27,625

  • All SR features plus
  • Integrated fog lights
  • Charcoal grille with a chrome surround
  • Chrome rear bumper
  • Variable-intermittent windshield wipers
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Entune Audio Plus infotainment system
  • Entune App Suite
  • Scout GPS link
  • SiriusXM

 

TRD Sport: $32,545

  • All SR5 features, plus
  • 3.5-liter V-6 engine
  • TRD sport-tuned suspension
  • 17-inch machined alloy wheels
  • Projector-beam headlights with LED daytime running lights
  • Wide-angle fog lights
  • 120-volt deck-mounted power outlet
  • Wireless smartphone charging pad
  • Leather-wrapped shift lever
  • Keyless unlock
  • Keyless ignition
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror
  • Entune Premium Audio infotainment system
  • 7-inch touchscreen
  • HD Radio
  • Class-IV towing hitch receiver
  • Four- and seven-pin connector
  • Engine-oil cooler

 

TRD Off-Road: $33,800

  • All SR5 features, plus
  • Double cab body
  • TRD-tuned off-road suspension with Bilstein shocks
  • 16-inch machined contrast alloy wheels
  • Multi-terrain Select
  • Crawl mode
  • Electronic locking rear differential
  • Gray grille with smoked finish and chrome surround
  • Black overfenders
  • Chrome rear bumper
  • 120-volt deck-mounted power outlet
  • Power-sliding rear window
  • Wireless smartphone charger
  • Leather-wrapped shift knob
  • Keyless unlock
  • Keyless ignition
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror
  • Entune Premium Audio with Integrated Navigation
  • 7-inch touchscreen

 

Limited: $37,790

  • All SR5 features, plus
  • Chrome fog light bezels
  • Silver grille with chrome surround
  • 120-volt power outlets
  • Power moonroof
  • 18-inch polished alloy wheels
  • Power-sliding rear window
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Wireless charging pad
  • Leather seats
  • Leather shifter lever
  • Keyless unlock
  • Keyless ignition
  • HomeLink universal garage door opener
  • Entune Premium JBL Audio with Integrated Navigation
  • Six JBL speakers and a subwoofer
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Rear parking sensors
  • Class-IV towing hitch
  • Four- and seven-pin trailer connector

 

TRD Pro: $42,960

  • Four-wheel drive
  • Active Traction Control
  • TRD Pro cat-back exhaust
  • Six-speed manual transmission
  • TRD-tuned off-road suspension
  • 2.5-inch FOX internal bypass shocks
  • Rear remote-reservoir shocks
  • 16-inch TRD Pro black alloy wheels
  • Rigid Industries
  • Black taillight bezels
  • Heritage “TOYOTA” grille
  • Black badges
  • Black overfenders
  • Hood scoop
  • Mirror-integrated turn signals
  • Power moonroof
  • TRD Pro front skid plate
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Black TRD Pro leather interior
  • TRD Pro shift knob
  • TRD Pro floor mats
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Rear parking sensors

Who Should Buy the 2019 Toyota Tacoma?

The 2019 Toyota Tacoma is great for buyers who must have the latest and greatest in design and technology, Also, with its more powerful V-6 and higher towing capacity, it better suits buyers who do a moderate amount of towing.

Who Should Buy the 2019 Nissan Frontier?

Buyers who want a simple midsize truck and have a tight budget will find the 2019 Frontier is their best option. With a starting price just north of $19,000 and plenty of options, it is an excellent pick.

 

Whether you’re hitting the job site in Sarasota, commuting to work in St. Petersburg, or just dropping the kids off in Bradenton, the 2019 Nissan Frontier is a great option for you. Head down to our Sarasota area showroom today to test drive the 2019 Frontier and see what it offers you and your family. Can’t make it in today? Check out our online inventory to see what 2019 Frontier models we have in stock and schedule a test drive later.