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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
In March of 2015, I decided to trade my beloved Pontiac Solstice for something practical that I would haul motorcycles with me on work trips where riding the bikes to those locations was not feasible, as well as hauling my Vintage Trials bike to events.

Looked at all the mid-sized trucks available at the time and the Nissan Frontier won out based on value, size, and looks. I started out by looking at the S model in black with manual transmission and the cruise control option. Then I saw the bright metallic blue Frontier and I knew that was the one I wanted.

I really wanted a 6 cylinder, 6 speed manual, but the closest one I could find was over 500 miles away. In hindsight, I should have done the road trip and made a deal on it.

I ended up finding a 4 cylinder, automatic locally and decided to practice my negotiating by going for a very aggressive transaction that I felt would be worth it if they accepted my offer, and if not, I would move on. After 6 hours, including leaving for an hour to eat lunch and let them think about it, I bought the 2015 Frontier I-4 SV automatic in metallic blue. That is my 1975 Vintage Trials bike in the back.



I added the following accessories to the truck to make it my own, and to protect the finish.

Nissan parts:
  • Bug Deflector
  • Mud Guards front and rear.
  • 4 pin trailer connector
  • Body Side molding
  • Fog lights
Aftermarket Parts:
  • Aries Bull Bar
  • Go Rhino Nerf Bars
  • In Pro Care Wear Anzo 49" LED 4-Function Taillight bar.
  • AutoVentshades In-channel Ventvisor
  • Curt class III receiver
  • GrillCraft MX Series Steel Mesh Grilles



Since owning the truck, I have had several opportunities to travel with it. Here are a sample of pics from some of the trips I have taken.

May – June 2015:
I had multiple work trips scheduled back to back so I took the opportunity to string them together with vacation time and make a great adventure.
I went to the Gulf Coast of Florida, Southern New Mexico, and coastal central California.

Packed and ready to go.


First week was spent working on the Gulf Coast. Everything is cable locked so that my adventure doesn’t get cut short because of some lowlife.



I got in some after work rides around the local area.





Then I rolled into New Mexico ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.



My plan was to camp in the national forest near Cloudcroft, NM at an elevation of 8,668 feet. Everyone told me the temperatures would be much cooler than the Tularosa Basin at an average of 4,500 feet. What they didn’t tell me was that at the end of May the temps can still drop into the low 30s at night. I was prepared and slept well, but I went into the sleeping bag as soon as the sun set, and took my time getting up the next morning. Here is my campsite in the Lincoln National Forest.



The next day I explored the top of the Sacrament Mountains. That is the White Sands National Monument in the distance down in the Tularosa Basin. There are a lot of gravel roads, jeep trails, and single track up in those mountains. My carbureted and tuned for sea level bike didn’t like the elevation too much.



That night I moved down to a state park outside of Alamogordo, NM where the temps would only drop into the low 50s at night.



Then I spent the next two days exploring the basin and jeep trails around the mountains.





After a week of work in the area, it was time to drive to the California coast and work a week. Then I added vacation time and explored the coast and mountains between Ventura and Monterrey, CA.

Set up camp in a state park just south of Hearst Castle.


Did a loop ride in the mountains,


And rode the Pacific Coast Highway to Monterrey and back.


I put about 5000 miles on the truck during that trip and at highway speeds got 18 mpg with the bike and gear loaded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
September 2015 anniversary trip to Blowing Rock, NC:
I borrowed a 5x8 enclosed trailer from a friend and used the Frontier to haul my 2014 Triumph Trophy SE to Blowing Rock, NC for my wife and my 30th anniversary. The 4 banger worked hard to get up those mountains, but I just let it take its time instead of revving the snot out of it. We alternated one day riding the bike in the mountains, and another day driving the truck and visiting wineries, etc.
The cabin we were staying in had a rough, pitted, and steep gravel drive that I did not want to risk riding the bike on so we hauled the bike to a rest area off the Blue Ridge Parkway and unloaded it for the rides. This worked well



We did end up on some dirt roads over the mountains in the truck. Good thing it didn’t start raining or I would have been wishing for 4x4.





The view from the cabin was worth the driveway.



A couple shots of the bike. Grandfather Mountain, and the Blue Ridge Parkway.



 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Sometime during 2015 I decided to get the Napier truck tent and the Air Bedz truck air bed so I could camp off the ground with the truck. Here I am at Rock Bayou State Park in Florida with my 2011 Versys.







After the trip to Rocky Bayou, I decided I needed a sub-400 lb bike to haul with me when I wasn’t using the little dual sport. Traded the Versys in on a 2015 Yamaha FZ-07.



The FZ-07 is much easier to load and unload, and because it isn’t as tall or heavy, the fuel economy improved.





I borrowed an open trailer from another friend and loaded up the Triumph for a weekend at Center Hill Lake. It is within riding distance, but my lovely wife prefers to bring along all her stuff and day rides are enough for her.





There are a lot of great curvy roads circumnavigating center hill lake. We got in some great riding!



In October I drove the Frontier out to NM for some meetings. I was glad I have an automatic and wasn’t on my bike like this poor soul.



I stayed in Las Cruses which is on the west side of the Tularosa Basin. Here are a couple of pics from the pass over the Organ Mountains and from inside the White Sands National Monument.





 
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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
As of last week the truck had 28,000 trouble free miles on it. I do my own maintenance and all was straight forward and easy to perform.

My average fuel economy is 20.74 mpg with a low of 14 mpg and a high of 23.9 mpg.

The four cylinder engine in this truck is adequate if you are not in a hurry and don't have towing needs above 2000 lbs. Sure, it is rated for 3500 lbs, but you will be working it hard if you get near the limit. It will downshift into 4th for most hills and many times downshift into 3rd and scream at 5000 RPMs to maintain speed.

When I bought this truck, I had in the back of my mind the S10 size trucks where the 4 banger was good enough and the V6 could barely keep the rear tires from spinning all the time.

I had lower back surgery the end of last year that is putting a huge damper on my motorcycle riding. During my recent trip to NM ( 2 weeks ago) I spotted the same color blue as my frontier in a 2017 Camaro. She was a beauty and I couldn't resist a test ride.



Really enjoyed the ride and decided to negotiate trading my Frontier for it. We got within $500 and then they realized that I couldn't qualify for one of the rebates because I did not reside in NM.

I got thinking about why I was willing to trade off the Frontier and it came down to the limitations of the 4 cylinder. I did a nationwide search for a metallic blue V6 King Cab and the only ones I found were in the rust belt. Then I decided to do a search for a Forged Copper V6 King Cab with the preferred equipment package and found a couple between NM and TN.

I only found 9 forged copper V6 King Cab trucks in the entire lower 48. Fortunately, one was in Lubbock, TX and the dealer was willing to make a deal over the internet. Got a hotel room in Lubbock, unloaded my truck, and made the trade.





Loving the power of this V6. It has close to the power my 2000 Sierra 4.8L V8 had, but this truck weighs less.

The 3 tanks of fuel driving an average of 75 mph for 1000 miles netted me 21.8 MPG. Pretty good, plus the engine RPMs were much lower then the 4 banger would be at those same speeds and got better fuel economy at those speeds. It also never needed to downshift to climb any hills.

There is only one minor thing that Nissan changed that made me say WTF? They moved the iPod connector from the center console to the dash. Really?

Now I have to figure out what accessories I am going to put on this truck.
 
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Great decision! The blue was a great looking truck, but the 4 cly. would always be
a drag down.

I tried the 4 cyl. too and really tried to convince myself I'd be good with it.
After test driving the 6 cyl. I knew there was no way I'd be able to accept the
4.

Keep us informed of how you mod it. :)
 

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Love the bikes... and good luck with the truck

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-T337A using Tapatalk
 

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Good luck nice trade up one ? though in your first pick is that a 81 kdx I see? I see the draw to the Camaro had them all my driving life 80 Z28 87 Formula Firebird an a 92 25th ed. but haven't looked back since acquiring the Frontier for 1 just don't need to go that fast anymore
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Good luck nice trade up one ? though in your first pick is that a 81 kdx I see? I see the draw to the Camaro had them all my driving life 80 Z28 87 Formula Firebird an a 92 25th ed. but haven't looked back since acquiring the Frontier for 1 just don't need to go that fast anymore
It is a 1975 KT 250 two stroke trials bike.

The 6th generation Camaro is much more than a muscle car. It is truly a curve hugging sports car now. For me it wouldn't have been about going fast, it would have been not slowing down for the curves. ::grin::
 
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