Nissan Debuts Three New Frontier Concepts

Photo By: Image by Nissan Motor Corporation
The New Nissan Frontier Concepts | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Nissan Design America (NDA) debuted three new concept vehicles based on the new, second generation Frontier at this year’s Chicago Auto Show. The new version of the Frontier was unveiled in February of 2021 and is already off to a strong start, with sales up 115% over the previous model in the first three months since hitting dealer showrooms. The Project 72X, Project Hardbody, and Project Adventure concepts provide three different takes on the platform, all tied to the manufacturer’s 62 years of truck heritage.

Nissan Frontier Project 72X Concept | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Nissan Frontier Project 72X Concept | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Nissan Frontier Project Hardbody Concept | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Nissan Frontier Project Hardbody Concept | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Nissan Frontier Project Adventure Concept | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Nissan Frontier Project Adventure Concept | Image by Nissan Motor Corporation

Project 72X Frontier

With so much of the new Frontier’s design referencing the iconic Nissan Hardbody design of the ‘80s and ‘90s, it’s no surprise that NDA had design nostalgia. The Project 72X is a reimagining of one of Nissan’s early pickup truck successes and its first vehicle manufactured in the United States, the Datsun 720. Based on a 2022 Crew Cab S 4×4, the design of the Project 72X combines design cues of the Datsun with its retro body graphics, white steelies, and sport bar behind the cab with modern PRO-X tires, 2.5-inch lift, and adjustable front upper suspension arms.

Project Hardbody

NDA has been vocal about referencing the Hardbody D21 DNA and off-road racing bona fides in the new Frontier. Project Hardbody develops that design connection further by giving us their contemporary take on a built-up Hardbody of the ‘80s and ‘90s. In essence, this is the evolution on what those of us that were around back then dreamed of doing to our Nissan trucks, had we been old enough to own them. The concept truck is based on a Frontier Crew Cab SV 4×4 model, with a 3-inch lift, Hardbody-inspired block wheels, 33-inch tires, sport bar, and a bed-mounted spare tire carrier.

Project Adventure

The Project Adventure concept is NDA’s take on an overland-centered build using the Frontier platform. The design is based on a Crew Cab PRO-4X model, augmented with 34-inch mud terrains and a 5-inch suspension lift. A roof top tent atop a Yakima bed rack system, a set of Maxtrax recovery boards, a custom carbon fiber snorkel, and the obligatory overlandesque map on the side of the build round out the theme.

READ MORE: What Is an Overlanding Vehicle?

While none of the concepts are scheduled for production, they do provide a glimpse into the platform’s potential. The new 310-horsepower body-on-frame design features a 9-speed automatic transmission, improved fuel efficiency, and a long list of new or improved safety, technology, and driver-assist features. While the Frontier has long had a passionate group of fans in the overland community, the new platform is likely to become a more prevalent overlanding platform moving forward.

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