The brand-new Frontier marks 62 years of Nissan building pickup trucks for the US - here's a brief history
The 2022 Frontier is Nissan's brand-new, third-generation Frontier midsize pickup.
Nissan has been making pickups for the US market since 1959 when it was still called Datsun.
The first Frontier debuted in 1997.
On Thursday, Nissan unveiled the brand-new, third-generation Frontier pickup truck.
As the first new Frontier since the outgoing generation was introduced in 2004, the 2022 Frontier finally sports modern pickup-truckish looks and more onboard technology to help it compete with contemporaries from Ford, Chevrolet, Jeep, and Toyota.
But while the Frontier might be new, Nissan has in fact been building pickups for the US market for more than 60 years. The legacy of the 2022 Frontier started with the 1959 Datsun 220 - which, according to a company press release, was the first compact pickup truck in the US.
Keep reading to see the evolution of Nissan's pickups.
The 2022 Frontier is the brand-new, third generation of Nissan's popular midsize pickup truck.
It has new, aggressive styling that makes it look meaner and bigger.
Still, though, it uses a 310-horsepower V6 that debuted in the 2020 Frontier.
The new Frontier is the latest in a long line of trucks Nissan has built for the US market.
The first compact truck in the US, according to Nissan, was the adorable 1959 Datsun 220.
It was followed by the Datsun 520, the first half-ton compact pickup truck.
The subsequent Datsun 620 had the first long bed, while the 1977 620 had the first King Cab body.
The 1983 Datsun 720 became the first compact truck to be made in the US from an import brand.
In the mid-1980s, however, Datsun became Nissan. The Nissan Hardbody is, according to Motor Trend, "one of the most iconic, legit mini trucks of the '80s and '90s."
Source: Top Gear and Motor Trend.
In 1997, the very first Nissan Frontier debuted for the 1998 model year. In 2001, the Frontier SC V6 was the first supercharged compact pickup truck.
The second-generation Frontier debuted in 2004 for the 2005 model year. Nissan gave it a new, 310-horsepower V6 in 2020.
And now here we are: the 2022, third-generation Nissan Frontier. A pickup born from adorable, compact Datsuns.
You can trace all of Nissan's pickup highlights in this infographic.
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