This version of the Frontier shares a platform and components with the larger Titan pickup and Xterra SUV. It is a big step forward compared to the old version. We found this Frontier quick and nimble with a tolerable ride. The powerful engine gives it a V8-like feel. The tight rear seat is a drawback and the tailgate is very heavy. Side- and curtain-airbags and stability control are standard equipment.
Alerts
There are 4 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Reliability

Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how used vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system.

Overall Reliability
Most Common Trouble Spots
Common Trouble Spot
Common Trouble Spot
The 2009 Nissan Frontier has been recalled 4 times by NHTSA. View Recalls
Research Years *Redesign year
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Overall Reliability Verdict
NA
NA
NA
NA
Potential Trouble Spots
Engine Major
NA
NA
NA
NA
Engine Minor
NA
NA
NA
NA
Engine Cooling
NA
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Major
NA
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Minor
NA
NA
NA
NA
Drive System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Fuel System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Electric System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Climate System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Suspension
NA
NA
NA
NA
Brakes
NA
NA
NA
NA
Exhaust
NA
NA
NA
NA
Paint/Trim
NA
NA
NA
NA
Body Integrity
NA
NA
NA
NA
Body Hardware
NA
NA
NA
NA
Power Equipment
NA
NA
NA
NA
In-car Electronics
NA
NA
NA
NA
Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey for about 420,000 vehicles, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how 2000 through 2019 vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system. NA indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.

Learn more about car Reliability.

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2009 Nissan Frontier owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Premature brake wear

"Brake stuck as if they were on"

Anonymous, KS (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"Put 4 complete sets of brakes including rotors in 40,000 miles. This is on all four wheels"

Gary K., WV (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"The engine controller unit keeps the engine rpm up too high when you want to stop. This creates a situation where you have to push the brake pedal MUCH harder than you should have to below 15 mph. The truck is always too hard to stop. I have had to replace the brakes every 35000 miles as they are completely worn out (metal to metal contact) by then"

Anonymous, MI (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)

"Brakes had to be replaced twice in first 24000 miles"

Gary K., WV (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"All four rotors and brake pads had to be replaced twice in the first 24000 miles"

Gary K., WV (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"The emission canister, sensors and wiring had to be replaced at a cost of about $1,300.00"

Anonymous, TN (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)

"Canister control valve and canister control solenoid failure"

Anonymous, TN (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"see previous comment"

Anonymous, TN (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"It is too expensive to fix so I am living with the check engine light on. Repair is estimated at $75 for valve and $500 for labor"

Anonymous, MD (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

"had to replace at cost of approx. $850 with only 67000 miles and 4 months of ownership"

Anonymous, TN (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Traction control

"The traction control is dangerous! When you turn sharply from a stop and when you try to accelerate rapidly (so you don't get hit), the truck senses that the left and right side wheels are turning at different speeds & assumes that they are spinning. The truck then reduces the throttle and applies the brakes. I have narrowly avoided death on several occasions by driving off the road due to this design flaw. The dealer informed me that this is normal for this truck!"

Anonymous, MI (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)
Driveshaft or axle

"noise problem. under warranty. replaced all of the rear end axle"

Anonymous, IN (2009 Nissan Frontier Unsure 4.0-L V6)

"rear end seals failed leaking caused differential to fail"

Russell L., OH (2009 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X 4.0-L V6)
Differential

"drive shaft and differential failed due to loss of fluid due to axle seal failure"

Russell L., OH (2009 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X 4.0-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Alignment

"Alignment issue mostly caused by wheel bearing issue"

Anonymous, SC (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"left leaf spring broke"

Kenneth H., PA (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)
Steering linkage (includes rack and pinion)

"Steering gear had to be replaced. There was power steering fluid leaking from the unit and it was worn beyond repair"

Anonymous, HI (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)
Wheel bearings

"Needed to be replaced due to excessive vibration"

Anonymous, SC (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Squeaks or rattles

"WHEN DRIVING AT INTERSTATE SPEED WIND CREATES A RATTLE AT BACK OF CAB"

Richard R., TN (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"Persistent body or front suspension squeak, unable to locate source. Most negative aspect of vehicle is it's large turning radius & steering wheel lock to lock turns. V6 with 6 speed manual transmission has otherwise very good performance & 4X4 allows it to be "flat towed" behind motorhome"

Tom L., CA (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

"The vehicle has a noticeable air leak/noise around the passenger door"

Jim L., TN (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Engine mounts

"increasing rough idling beginning at 30,000 which was due to both worn engine and transmission mounts. Upon replacement the rough idling disappeared"

Anonymous, NM (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)
Accessory belts or pulleys

"I replaced the belt tensioner and belt late fall because of constant squeaking. Not even a year later squeak coming back. Bad design"

Jason T., CT (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)
Engine knock or ping

"On cold starts the engine knocks for a brief second....dealer said nothing wrong but blogs online said most people with 4.0L engine experiences this"

Jason T., CT (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 4.0-L V6)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

"paint peeling in gutters on roof"

Warren T., CA (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)
Loose exterior trim or moldings

"Front grill trim cracking and door sill paint wearout"

Robert M., ON (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Clutch replacement

"One day it just started shifting harder. Then just froze up one day. (manual clutch) Repair shop could only duplicate problem once but replaced it so that I did not get stuck again somewhere. It was my decision to replace it and it has worked since"

Anonymous, MA (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Transmission rebuild or replacement

"No heat in vehicle. Heating unit leaked fluid into transmission. Transmission replaced"

Anonymous, CO (2009 Nissan Frontier Unsure 4.0-L V6)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Tire pressure monitor

"Repeated flashing light. All tire sensors failed sequentially. Then all dashboard warning lights stayed lighted. Only resolved after master cylinder was replaced. Dealer could not explain how they were connected. Brakes remain very low before engaging. Dealer says it's normal. It's not"

Larry C., MA (2009 Nissan Frontier LE 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Tire pressure stems are made of aluminum and rust out in NE climate. After many replacements we changed to rubber. We changed to rubber but the sensor does not work with the sensor. Sensor kites are now on all the time"

Anonymous, NY (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Muffler

"Welds gave out"

Thomas T., CT (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Pipes

"corrosion"

Thomas T., CT (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Heater system

"Heat disappears when at idle"

Robert S., FL (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Radio

"WHEN THE TEMPERATURE WARMS UP YOU CAN'T GET ANY RADIO STATIONS, WORKS FINE WHEN COOL"

Richard R., TN (2009 Nissan Frontier SE 4.0-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

Compare 2009 Models

No Data Available
Recalls
PROVIDED BY
EQUIPMENT:ELECTRICAL:NAVIGATIONAL SYSTEM(GLOBAL POSITIONING SYSTEM)
Sep 10 2010
OVERHEATED BATTERIES COULD RESULT IN A FIRE.
Summary:
NISSAN IS RECALLING CERTAIN VEHICLES THAT WERE EQUIPPED WITH A GARMIN NUVI MODEL 750 NAVIGATION SYSTEM. THE BATTERIES CONTAINED IN THE AFFECTED GPS UNITS CAN OVERHEAT.
What should you do:
NISSAN WILL NOTIFY OWNERS AND THE REPAIRS WILL BE PERFORMED BY GARMIN TECHNICIANS BY REPLACING THE BATTERY AND INSERTING A SPACER ON TOP OF THE BATTERY FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL BEGAN ON SEPTEMBER 16, 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT GARMIN DIRECTLY AT 1-866-957-1981 OR NISSAN AT 1-800-647-7261.
For more information:
OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO <A HREF=HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV>HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV</A> .
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 10V401000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 7948
EQUIPMENT
Sep 03 2010
AN IMPROPERLY DEPLOYED AIRBAG COULD RESULT IN SERIOUS INJURY.
Summary:
MARATHON IS RECALLING CERTAIN SEAT COVERS, BRAND SUPERHIDES WITH PART NUMBERS 593, 594, 578, 960, 228, 228-09, 267-08, 333, 625, AND 630, SOLD FOR USE AS AFTERMARKET EQUIPMENT FOR VARIOUS PASSENGER VEHICLES. THESE SEAT COVERS ARE MADE OF HEAVIER THREAD AND ARE NOT COMPATIBLE WITH SEATS CONTAINING SIDE AIRBAGS. THE HEAVIER SEAT COVER COULD INTERFERE WITH FULL DEPLOYMENT OF THE AIRBAG IN THE EVENT OF A CRASH.
What should you do:
MARATHON WILL NOTIFY OWNERS OF RECORD AND REPLACE THE SEAT COVER FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL BEGAN ON SEPTEMBER 14, 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT MARATHON AT 1-800-735-2769.
For more information:
THIS RECALL ONLY PERTAINS TO AFTERMARKET MARATHON SEAT COVERS AND HAS NO RELATION TO ANY ORIGINAL EQUIPMENT INSTALLED ON GENERAL MOTORS, FORD, CHRYSLER, TOYOTA, OR NISSAN VEHICLES.OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO <A HREF=HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV>HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV</A> .
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 10E043000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 294
SUSPENSION:FRONT:CONTROL ARM:LOWER ARM
May 20 2010
IF THE COLLAR WELD SEPARATES, THE VEHICLE HANDLING WILL DETERIORATE, POSSIBLY RESULTING IN A VEHICLE CRASH.
Summary:
NISSAN IS RECALLING CERTAIN FRONT AND REAR LOWER LINKS, P/NOS. 54501ZQ00A, 54500ZQ00A, 551A1ZQ00A, 551A0ZQ00A , 54501EA00A, 54500EA00A, 551A1EA500, 551A0EA500, 54501ZR00A, AND 54500ZR00A, SOLD BETWEEN NOVEMBER 25, 2009 AND MAY 14, 2010 AS REPLACEMENT PARTS FOR MODEL YEAR 2004 THROUGH 2010 TITAN, ARMADA, AND QX56, AND MODEL YEARS 2005 THROUGH 2010 FRONTIER, XTERRA, AND PATHFINDER VEHICLES. THE LOWER CONTROL LINK ASSEMBLY HAS TWO CYLINDRICAL COLLARS FORMING THE INBOARD ATTACHMENT POINTS TO THE CHASSIS. DUE TO AN IMPROPER WELDING PROCESS SOME COLLARS MAY CONTAIN WELDS THAT DO NOT MEET STRENGTH SPECIFICATIONS.
What should you do:
NISSAN WILL NOTIFY OWNERS AND DEALERS WILL REPLACE ANY AFFECTED LOWER LINK FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL BEGAN ON JULY 12, 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT NISSAN AT 1-800-647-7261.
For more information:
OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO <A HREF=HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV>HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV</A> .
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 10E019000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 1873
AIR BAGS:FRONTAL
Dec 29 2008
THIS ISSUE COULD RESULT IN THE NON-DEPLOYMENT OF THE DRIVER AND PASSENGER FRONT AIR BAGS IN A CRASH, INCREASING THE RISK OF PERSONAL INJURY.
Summary:
NISSAN IS RECALLING 242,720 MY 2005-2009 PATHFINDER, FRONTIER AND XTERRA VEHICLES ORIGINALLY SOLD IN OR CURRENTLY REGISTERED IN THE STATES OF CONNECTICUT, DELAWARE, ILLINOIS, INDIANA, IOWA, MAINE, MARYLAND, MASSACHUSETTS, MICHIGAN, MINNESOTA, MISSOURI, NEW HAMPSHIRE, NEW JERSEY, NEW YORK, OHIO, PENNSYLVANIA, RHODE ISLAND, VERMONT, WEST VIRGINIA, WISCONSIN, AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. IN THOSE AREAS OF THE COUNTRY WHICH USE HEAVY CONCENTRATIONS OF ROAD SALT IN THE WINTER, A MIXTURE OF SNOW/WATER AND SALT CAN ENTER INTO THE FRONT CRASH ZONE SENSOR (CZS) HOUSING. IF THIS OCCURS, THE CZS MAY INTERNALLY RUST RESULTING IN A SIGNAL INTERRUPTION. IF THIS HAPPENS, THE RED AIR BAG WARNING LIGHT WILL ILLUMINATE TO ALERT THE VEHICLE OPERATOR.
What should you do:
DEALERS WILL REPLACE THE FRONT CZS WITH A REDESIGNED SENSOR. THE RECALL BEGAN ON JANUARY 26, 2009. OWNERS IN THE OTHER STATES WILL RECEIVE EXTENDED WARRANTY COVERAGE FOR THE SENSOR TO 10 YEARS. THESE OWNERS WILL BE NOTIFIED OF THE WARRANTY EXTENSION BY MAIL AND WILL RECEIVE A STICKER TO PLACE IN THEIR WARRANTY BOOKLET EXPLAINING THE EXTENDED WARRANTY COVERAGE. OWNERS MAY CONTACT NISSAN AT 1-800-647-7261.
For more information:
CUSTOMERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO <A HREF=HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV>HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV</A> .
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 08V690000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 242720
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