4x4Car News

Nissan Navara V8? Facelift and engines in the works

Platform updates to the US Navara-sibling the Frontier could bring a heavy facelift and new engine options to Australian Navara models.

NISSAN IS MAKING plenty of changes to its model lineups lately and one model which is overdue for some love is the Navara ute.

Fresh reports out of the US confirm sources close to Nissan have said that the update to the Nissan Frontier – the US version of our Navara – will be updated in 2021 with much of the styling seen on the Nissan Titan Warrior concept (pictured above).

It will have breakaway styling from what we’ve seen on past and present Navaras, adopting the chiselled look of the larger Titan pickup but on the smaller ute’s body. Though Autoblog suggests the new Frontier could be on either a shortened Titan platform or the Navara’s D23, prior comment confirming the codename for the project as ‘D23’ point to it riding on D23 architecture.

Nissan Titan Warrior concept
The Nissan Titan is a bit larger than the Navara

So we could see a refresh to local Navara models bringing the same updates as the US will adopt. After all, the current Frontier looks the same as the corresponding Navara generation.

But what’s interesting is that those same sources which said the US’ new D23 will look like a mini-Titan pickup, also confirmed that a rumoured new V6 powerplant will arrive. But rather than a 3.5-litre engine, it will be a 3.8-litre naturally-aspirated petrol V6 mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission.

Nissan Navara Frontier V8 concept
This is the Nissan Frontier, with a V8 in the hood

And beyond that is speculation of a high-performance off-road model (like the locally-developed Navara Warrior, a rival to the Ford Ranger Raptor here) but one that could technically use the Titan’s (and Patrol’s) 5.6-litre petrol V8 engine. That’d be one heck of a rival to the upcoming Ford Ranger Raptor V8. In fact, Nissan already unveiled the Frontier Desert Runner at SEMA last year which housed that engine up front.

Nissan Australia has already said it’s keen on the Titan coming to Australia, and that a proper Nismo-badged ute should have an appropriate engine. It could get both if these updates also arrive for Navara.

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Alex Rae

Alex Rae