Nissan’s Hoping That a New Engine Will Hold the Frontier Over Until the Next-Gen Model Arrives in 2021
The 2020 Nissan Frontier made its debut at the Chicago Auto Show, and, well, it still looks the same. The front design is the same, and so is the rear. The body is the same, too. There’s not much going on in the wheels section, either. Instead, Nissan is offering the 2020 Frontier with a new engine that delivers more power than its previous iteration. A handful of new changes are also included, but, for the most part, the 2020 Frontier is the same pickup as it was before. The big change is set to arrive in 2021 when the all-new Frontier makes its debut.
2017 - 2020 Nissan Armada
The new Armada is a giant leap forward for Nissan. Its comfort levels, active and passive safety features, and rigidity within the ladder frame and body structure are all vastly improved. It also bookends the automaker’s complete revision of its SUV and crossover lineups over the last three years, with new editions of the Pathfinder, Murano, and Rogue.
As before, the Armada sits atop the Nissan SUV lineup as the flagship. It offers the highest levels of available luxury and comfort, especially in its range-topping trim, the Platinum. Lower trim levels include the “base” SV and mid-grade SL trims.
Update 2/5/2020: Nissan has updated pricing for the 2020 model year and introduced a new wheel package. Learn about the updated pricing and everything else you need to know in our “What’s New for 2020” section below.
2020 Nissan Rogue Sport
When seen from a bird’s eye view, Nissan is actually managing its crossover portfolio quite well. At the entry-level, the Japanese automaker has the Kicks and, at the top, it has the Nissan Rogue. Nissan had the Juke to fill the gap in between, but the model was discontinued a couple of years back. Although it looked like the Kicks will have to manage two duties, Nissan quickly came up with a much better replacement for the Juke in the form of the Nissan Rogue Sport. The Rogue Sport was specially designed for the U.S. market and is not being sold anywhere else.
2019 Nissan Titan Rocky Ridge Concept
At the Nissan USA stand at the Chicago Motor Show we had the chance to see a rather surprising and intimidating truck called the Nissan Titan K2 Rocky Ridge Concept. It is a lifted Titan truck, engineered by Rocky Ridge, specialists in “making big bad lifted trucks” with more than 30 years of experience. Although revealed in concept guise, let me tell you that the Rocky Ridge Titan K2 is ready to pounce. The Georgia-based truck magicians made sure of it with a comprehensive set of additions that made this Titan K2 Rocky Ridge Concept as tough and as terrifying as possible. This is what we learned about it at the Show.
2019 Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek Edition
The Rock Creek Edition is a special-edition version of the Nissan Pathfinder that includes new accessories and a few extra features at no additional cost. Introduced at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show, it freshens up the somewhat dated fourth-generation Pathfinder, which was launched in 2012 and went through a mid-cycle upgrade for the 2017 model year. Offered on SV and SL grades (no soup for you if you want the base model or the range-topping Platinum trim), it costs only $995. Nissan says it will save you $1,315 compared to a similar vehicle with all those features ordered separately, but is it worth it? Let’s find out in the review below.
The 2020 Nissan Rogue Sport Is Semi-Autonomous But Still Only With An N/A Engine
Apart from the Pathfinder Rock Creek Edition Package, Nissan showcased the 2020 Rogue Sport at the dawn of the 2019 Chicago Motor Show. The exceptionally successful small compact SUV has been slightly updated inside out with Nissan especially focusing on safety. Considering that Kia revealed the new Sportage at the show and gifted it with all kinds of safety gear, I can only say that the compact crossover segment is really evolving. All new cars from the segment are exceptionally well endowed with all kind of safety gear. With a bit of markup though, the new 2020 Nissan Rogue Sport easily surpasses the rest. You can have the small and fairly cheap 2020 Nissan Rogue Sport with a freaking ProPILOT Assist system (a semi-autonomous driving system). True, the tech was available on the European Qashqai (the Rogue Sport for the Old Continent) before, and for the U.S. in the Rogue. Nevertheless, with it in the Rogue Sport, I am rather confident that the tech will be scaled down to basically all Nissan cars.
Nissan Adds Off-Road Looks To The Pathfinder with the Rock Creek Edition Package
The current-generation Nissan Pathfinder is six years old, but without an all-new model on the way, Nissan has taken to rolling out special edition packages to keep its SUV as fresh as a daisy. The new package, called the Rock Creek Edition, provides an off-road look to the to three-row crossover to go along with a handful of useful equipment that you can use in the outdoors. The Nissan Pathfinder will be on display at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show. Available to the mid-tier SV and SL trims of the Pathfinder, pricing for the special edition SUV starts at $35,265 for the SL trim and $38,915 for the higher-spec SL trim. The Rock Creek Package itself costs just $995.
Nissan Once Again Beats The Winter Blues With Armada Snow Patrol In Chicago
For those of you who may be unaware, the Midwest has been under siege this winter, as a series of heavy storms have dropped tons of the white stuff on the regular throughout the region. But while some are freaking out over it, Nissan isn’t deterred, as its got just the right lineup of customized powder machines to make the most of the frozen landscape. Back in 2016, the Japanese brand headed to Chi Town with a trio of tread-equipped SUVs dubbed the Winter Warriors, and now, its returning to the 2018 Chicago Auto Show with more of the good stuff, including this one-off Armada that shows what can be done to beat the winter blues.
Continue reading for the full story.
The Nissan 370Kzi Is a V-6-powered Snowmobile You can’t Buy
Be honest now, how many of you thought that when Nissan first teased the 370Zki it was talking about a special-edition model or even some sort of update to the 370Z? As you probably found out, the 370Zki is nothing more than a convertible 370Z with skis at the front and snow tracks to the rear. Yes, it’s a V-6-powered snowmobile. It’s definitely cool, but far from what Nissan really needs right now. And let’s face it, cars and crossovers with snow tracks are getting a bit old. Not to mention that Nissan has built quite a few in recent years. Unless it’s planning to open a museum or something, I’d say the Japanese would be better off doing something useful. Like a brand-new 370Z already!
Nissan Debuts Suspension Lift Kit for Titan & Titan XD
Jeep isn’t the only automaker now offering factory-backed lift kits. That’s right Nissan is launching a suspension lift for the Titan and Titan XD pickups. The hardware comes from ICON Vehicle Dynamics, a well-respected company that designs and builds suspension lifts and other off-road gear for trucks and SUVs. The lift kit will give Titans up to three inches of additional height while not voiding the truck’s factory warranty.
Continue reading for more information.
2018 Nissan Armada Snow Patrol
There must be something about the Chicago Auto Show that brings out Nissan’s creativity. Two years ago, the Japanese automaker unveiled the Winter Warrior Concepts, a collection of outrageously engineered Pathfinder, Murano, and Rogue SUVs that featured snow tracks instead of actual wheels. This year, Nissan is returning to the Windy City with a pair of concepts that might as well be spiritual successors of the Winter Warriors. One of these concepts is a fresh take on the Nissan Armada, called the Snow Patrol. It’s not as outlandish as the Winter Warriors or its present counterpart, the Nissan 370Zki, but the Armada Snow Patrol is unique in its own right for a variety of reasons.
There’s no going around Nissan’s objective with the Armada Snow Patrol. Billy Hayes, the vice president of Nissan North America’s Commercial Vehicles and Trucks, called it a “return to roots” concept for the Armada model. “(The Armada) has a long off-road heritage as the Nissan Patrol, a global expedition vehicle,” he said. "As part of our celebration of winter at the Chicago Auto Show, we wanted to remind our growing family of Armada owners and enthusiasts that this full-size SUV stands ready to take you to the mountains, or at least safely through Chicago streets covered in lake effect snow."
One look at the Nissan Armada Snow Patrol and you’ll see exactly what Hayes is talking about.
2018 Nissan 370Zki
There’s a prevalent belief within automotive circles that the Nissan 370Z is in dire need of an update. The current version of the sports coupe has been on the market since 2009. That’s a long time for any car, let alone one that belongs in a niche segment. As the clamoring for a next-gen 370Z grows louder, Nissan has apparently been listening all along. All this time, the Japanese automaker was actually developing a new 370Z. The only problem is it’s not the 370Z replacement we’re expecting.
Feast your eyes on this creation. It’s a Nissan 370Z…on skis. Nissan calls it the 370Zki, and it’s actually something the automaker is bringing to the 2018 Chicago Auto Show later this month. I don’t suppose it’s the version of the 370Z that we’ve all been waiting for. On the bright side, it is a positively cool creation, at least once you get past the awkwardness of seeing the compact sports car sitting on snowmobile equipment.
Nissan Announces 370Zki Concept for Chicago Auto Show; Proves How Little Creativity Nissan Has
Here I am going over the things to look out for at the Chicago Auto Show and what do I come across? The Nissan 370Zki. The 370Zki was announced with a rather mundane teaser video that showed nothing more than some tracks in the snow to go with the wonderful noise created by the Z’s 3.7-liter V-6 – most likely the Nismo version with 350 ponies as opposed to the standard model with 332. But that isn’t the point. The current Z has been around since 2009. That makes it nine years old as of this writing, and it’s in dire – I repeat, dire – need of replacement. Nissan has said that it’s working on a new Z-car, but there isn’t a timetable. To put it simply, Nissan refuses to kill this poor car and give us something fresh. And, when they do, it’ll (god, we sure hope not) end up being a crossover.
We’re now right smack dab in the middle of auto show season, and we’re seeing all kinds of new cars – Chevy brought out the new Silverado, Ram the new 1500, and Ford brought about the new Bullitt Mustang. Hell, even Honda came correct with a new Insight as did Toyota with the new Avalon. Meanwhile, Nissan showed up to Detroit with the never-going-to-see-production Xmotion concept and decided to showcase the GT-R next to it. No new vehicle, no hint of a new vehicle, nothing.
Fast forward a few weeks and the Chicago Auto Show is about to begin. All kinds of special editions are said to be showing up at the show. Even Toyota is bringing a trio of off-road whips for the masses. What is Nissan going to show up with? Well, it’s going to follow its usual trend: Take something that people are starting to not care about and throw some snow tracks on it. It’s becoming a trend with the brand and while vehicles like the 2017 Nissan Rogue Trail Warrior and the 2016 Winter Warrior concepts were cool and all, don’t you think doing to the Z is going a little too far? Don’t throw snow tracks on it; Create a new damn Z-car already. I’m really starting to question the creative minds over at Nissan. Do they have real people coming up with these ideas or are these ideas generation by artificial intelligence ran on an old Windows 95 machine? And yes, before the comments start coming in, I am a little butthurt – the 370Z needs to die and make way for something else already, and something that isn’t a crossover.
But, I digress.
Check out the teaser video below. There’s not much to it, but you know… why not?
2017 Nissan Murano Midnight Edition
This year’s Chicago Auto Show is shaping up to be a bonanza of special edition models, with every other debut being some sort of tweaked and tuned car, truck, or crossover. Nissan is no different, announcing that no less than five models will now enjoy the Midnight Edition special trimmings. Originally slated solely for the Maxima SR trim grade, the Midnight Edition package now makes its way to the Murano mid-size crossover, bearing visual updates like blacked-out wheels, trim pieces, and aero, as well as offering optional special edition floor mats.
In addition to the Murano, the Midnight Edition package can also be had with the Sentra, Altima, Rogue, and Pathfinder, not to mention the original Maxima as well. The move makes sense for a number of reasons – not only are blacked-out special editions particularly popular right now, but Nissan has divulged that the original Midnight Edition package was included in an impressive 85 percent of sales when it was originally just for the Maxima SR. As such, it makes sense to extend the styling tweaks to the models that make up the majority of Nissan’s U.S. sales.
For the Murano, the Midnight Edition package was made available for the Platinum trim level, the highest in the range. Like the other Midnight Edition models, the Murano Midnight Edition gets new wheels, a black spoiler, black side-view mirrors, and optional special edition floor mats.
The Murano’s exclusive wheels come with a 20-inch diameter and are made from aluminum alloy. The Murano’s roof rails were also painted black for the package, as are the splash guards behind the wheels. The unique floor mats get Midnight Edition badging and a dark coloring.
Speaking of hue, the Midnight Package was originally only offered with black for the exterior body panels, but now it can be added to models painted in Pearl White Cayenne Red, Gun Metallic, and Magnetic Black.
Interestingly, Nissan says adding the package will actually save a few bucks when compared to optioning in all the extras piece by piece. The package is on sale now and retails for $1,195, while the Murano Platinum trim level (sans-Midnight Edition) starts at $39,610.
Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan Murano Midnight Edition.
2017 Nissan Rogue Midnight Edition
The Chicago Auto Show has carved a unique niche in the auto show calendar. Whereas other events like Geneva and Detroit are considered the two biggest shows in the world, the Windy City’s version has evolved into a place where automakers showcase their latest accessories and special editions. Nissan, for example, is heavily involved in Chicago because most of its high-profile models, including the best-selling Nissan Rogue, are showing off their new Midnight Edition packages.
You might remember that Nissan initially offered the Midnight Edition package for the Maxima sedan a year ago. Well, it turns out that a lot of people liked the essence of the package that they started clamoring the Japanese automaker to expand its availability to other models wearing the Nissan badge. And so, here we are. Nissan not only gave in to those demands, it went above and beyond what was asked and developed packages for not one, but five new models, including the aforementioned Rogue compact SUV.
The Midnight Edition package for the Nissan Rogue consists mainly of aesthetic upgrades meant to infuse some sporting character to the vehicle. In as far as objectives are concerned, the Rogue’s Midnight Edition package not different from others of its kind, even if the specifics do vary depending on the model.
Remember though that if you’re looking for extensive upgrades to your Nissan Rogue, the Midnight Edition package doesn’t address everything you might be looking for. For one, engine upgrades are nowhere to be found and the interior add-ons are minimal at best. But if your expectations are right where they should be, the package should be an attractive option, especially since the added cost of it won’t necessarily burn holes in your pocket.
Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan Rogue Midnight Edition package.
2017 Nissan Altima SR Midnight Edition
Redesigned for the 2013 model year, the current Nissan Altima was updated for 2016. Somewhat surprisingly, the facelift added many new features, as well as a significantly redesigned exterior with styling cues borrowed from the gorgeous Maxima. Inside, the sedan gained a new center stack, softer materials for the Zero Gravity seats, and blue accents for the SR trim. The engine compartment is the only one that remained unchanged, but it’s not something customers will complain about. For 2017, Nissan enhances the Altima by adding the Midnight Edition model.
Launched at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show, the Altima Midnight Edition is part of Nissan’s new offensive to offer this special-edition package on six models. Initially created for the Maxima in 2016, the Midnight Edition was a huge success last year, accounting for 85 percent of Maxima SR sales. As a result, Nissan wants the bundle on more cars, including the Sentra, Altima, Rogue, Murano, and Pathfinder.
The idea of expanding the availability of the Midnight Edition package was driven by customers who loved the blackout treatment on Maxima SR and asked for it to be available on other popular Nissan vehicles,” said Christian Meunier, senior vice president of Nissan Sales & Marketing and Operations. “The six models offering Midnight Edition packages account for more than 75 percent of our U.S. sales, so we think they will find a receptive audience.”
Much like on the Maxima, the Altima’s Edition Package is restricted to the SR trim, but only the version powered by the 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. The SR Midnight Edition is already available to order in the U.S. for small premium over the standard model.
Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan Altima SR Midnight Edition.
Nissan Titan And Titan XD Receive New King Cab Body Style
Nissan has finally introduced the King Cab body style for its Titan and Titan XD pickups. This marks the third and final body style offered by the Titan, adding to the four-door Crew Cab and two-door Regular Cab. All three cabs, combined with several bed lengths, cover a large portion of the personal and commercial pickup truck market, including fleet buyers. The King Cab utilizes rear-hinged doors for entry into the second-row bench seat. Nissan is also offering the industry’s first rear bench delete option, giving commercial buyers more interior cargo room without having to purchase the larger Crew Cab.
Fred Diaz, VP and GM for Nissan North America Trucks and Light Commercial Vehicles, summed up the Titan King Cab’s launch by saying:
“The launch of the new King Cab body is the last step in a journey that began in December 2015 with the debut of the breakthrough Titan XD, which continues to carve out a unique white space between competitors’ heavy-duty and half-ton trucks. Now, with the addition of a half-ton Titan, our new Endurance V-8, three body configurations, three bed lengths and a range of grade levels and equipment packages, we’re covering nearly every segment in the personal and commercial full-size truck markets. Add to that the industry’s best five-year/100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and the Titan family is even more compelling.”
The King Cab is offered on both the Titan and Titan XD, and can be paired with three trim levels. These include the base S grade, mid-level SV, and off-road biased PRO-4X. The truck will come standard with RWD, but 4WD is optional. All Titan models currently come standard with the new 5.6-liter Endurance V-8 backed by a seven-speed automatic transmission. Titan XDs can be optioned with the 5.0-liter Cummins V-8 turbodiesel, which is paired with an Aisin six-speed automatic built for heavy-duty use.
The half-ton Titan King Cab is rated to tow 9,420 pounds or haul 1.640 pounds in the bed. Opting for the Titan XD boosts those max numbers to 12,510 pounds and 2,710 pounds respectively.
There is more to the Titan King Cab, so keep reading for the full run-down.
Continue reading for more information.
Nissan’s Midnight Edition Package Is Plain Silly and Shows Why Marketing Sucks
I’ll be honest here, Nissan is among my favorite car brands nowadays. The Japanese firm has a solid lineup, an attractive design language, reliable drivetrains, and offers great value for the buck in just about any segment. But this new Midnight Edition package introduced in the U.S. is a silly attempt to improve sales and proves once again that there’s a thin line between tasteful and ridiculous when it comes to marketing.
Needless to say, the Midnight Edition was a big success on the Maxima SR, accounting for 85 percent of sales, since its introduction in 2016. For this reason alone I can fully understand why Nissan is expanding the bundle to Sentra, Altima, Rogue, Murano, and Pathfinder. However, a quick look at the Sentra Midnight Edition promo (hit "play") shows why this package isn’t anything to get excited about.
Yup, black wheels, black mirror caps, a black rear bumper insert, and "Midnight Edition" floor mats and that’s it. Seriously now, does anyone care about the lettering on their floor mats?
I’m going to be fair here and mention that other models also get features like LED headlamps, remote engine start, roof rails, and illuminated kick plates (not all at once of course) and that pricing doesn’t exceed $1,195 in its most expensive configuration, but calling it an "Edition" is still too much. Special editions are supposed to be special, and a few black body parts don’t cut the mustard if you ask me. At least Chevy’s Redline bundle, also introduced at the Chicago Auto Show, has a few unique elements and not just body parts of different colors.
But hey, it seems that marketing departments work just like tabloids nowadays. All show and no go if you will, with "show" being the bad habit of calling every little option added an "Edition." And I say "departments" because Nissan isn’t the only automaker in this.