I've driven both of those trucks. Style wise I like the Toyota much
more. The interior isn't so dated, and it doesn't have those ugly JC
Whitney looking fender flares. Also the nissan has this wierd bar in
the front that I have no idea what it's for.
Anyhoo there is a new Toyota coming out that is going to be bigger and
have bigger engine and everything. I think you may want to wait for
that. If you prefer the smaller truck, this is the last year for
them, and the dealerships should want to clear their lots soon. I
still see a lot of double cabs in the lots, but the reg cabs are few
and far between.
I looked at both (ended up buying a used 4Runner for now). I like both
vehicles but the Tacoma DC seems a higher quality vehicle with better
styling (what is up with those fake bolts on the fenders of the Frontier?
Cheesy!). For the money, though, the two are close because the deals I saw
on similarly equipped Frontiers were several thousand lower than the
Pardon my ISP... rcn don't seem to be able to handle NGs!
Those fake fender flares are partially why I *bought the
Or is it just the fake bolts that offend you??
I was going for the taco, because toyota *may* have a slight edge
in reliability, but I fell in love w/ the nissan electric blue, those
"cheesey" flares (love'em!), and 04 the frontier is one of the few lines
that offers the crew cab AND a long bed (74"), and it seems a few more
amenities, like cargo lites, locking tailgate, 3 12V cab outlets, cabin
filter, etc. AND is cheaper--poss. considerably cheaper than the taco, w/
the 2500 cash back.
The sports package w/ the frontier has nice racks and side rails.
Don't know much about the taco engine, but the mileage and power
on most compact trucks sucks, except for mebbe the Dakota, which has sucky
mpg's but good power. The fronty still has a distributor!! But lots of room
under the hood.
But a nice civilized ride in both, from what I gather.
The taco has a locking rear wheel differential, which, iffin yer
climbing Mt Everest, might come in handy. The sports package in the fronty
offers limited slip differential.
Also, in the nissan, you lose the 4 cyl engine pretty
quick--can't have it w/ a crew cab OR 4WD. W/ the taco, you can still have a
4 cyl w/ 4WD (but not w/ crew cab), but I hear people bitch about the low
power. I believe it, and I'm not a hp guy, either--even the reg V6's leave
something to be desired. But then 4WD crew cabs/long beds are heavy.
Also, the listed payload for an extended cab taco is really
high--1500-1600 lbs, vs 900-1200 for almost all other trucks, including some
full-size!! I don't know if these numbers are real, or if it's easy to bump
up the 1100 lbs in the fronty.
Styling-wise, there is no comparison, imo, between a crewcab
fronty w/ sports package, and a taco. Esp w/ some of the nissan colors.
Get the power package (windows,locks, mirrors, remote, cruise,
tilt) in the fronty--makes it civilized. Lot of people go for the
super-charged V6's, but to me it's more gas, more to break.
there is also a nice support group for fronties,
nissanfrontier.net. Quite helpful.. These people are serious about their
In 05, things are different. I heard Toy is also offering a
long bed crew cab. And nissan is putting a bad-assed 4.0L in the frontier,
sposedly the hottest engine in its class.
But if you wait around for mid-December, you should get some
really good deals on either the taco or fronty 2004s (whatever's left!), and
mebbe, if the saleguys are hungry, a good one on 05s. For me, it was the
crew/longbed combo, and then styling and price --some bad-assed big tires on
the fronty, it seems. P265/70R15 tires, on alum rims; considerable extra on
You'll get more stares in the fronty--esp w/ the solar yellow,
or even the electric blue--very pretty. But either the taco or fronty will
do you good. Shop hard for price. My dealer tried to bang me with an
**$1800** extended warrantee. Goodgawd...
One more thing: the nissanusa.com site allows you to locate
vehicles matching your specs (or close to) at specific dealers, within your
choice of radius. Toy don't do this, AFAIK. This helped me quite a bit.
Without this info, dealers hook you down there w/o telling you that nothing
is on the lot, and then pound the crap out of you. W/ the nissan locator,
you know more than some of the salesmen know about their inventory! Once you
know where "your" car is, the deal goes smoother.
Most dealers don't push accessories, because access are from
the service/parts dept, and sales and svc don't seem to be in sync. But I
recommend not taking any access other than the bedliner (and you may want to
have your own "sprayed" on instead--about $400 from what I've read--but
proly should be able to get it much cheaper). One reason is that a dealer
can screw up a license plate holder, and you may just want to sit w/ yer
truck for a while, and decide/shop around, for better tonneau covers,
etc.--all those snaps are a PITA. But, sometimes the dealer accessories are
in fact cheaper than a lot of aftermarket stuff, and I was offered a lot of
accessories below msrp, w/ no charge for installation. Declined
anyway--just easier to pick up the truck stock, and get outta there.
formerly Droll Troll
Yes, the fake bolts deeply offended me, not unlike the way a fat woman is
offended when someone congratulates her for being pregnant.
Seriously, I actually liked the fender flares but IMO the fake bolts kinda
make it look like a toy.
The 04 Frontier is being phased out for the new model, which has a larger
engine and shares some design cues with the Titan. Just a FYI...
I'm just shopping now so there's no URGENTCY at this point in time. I would
like to see the Tachoma get a bit better milage but from what I'm reading
it looks like this might no come true with the 05 models. I had a 97
4Runner and it got 27 on the freeway and 19 around town but the Tachoma
only get's 20 on the freeway. What happened?? The 4Runner had the same 6
cylinder engine as the Tachoma so, what's up with that?
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