Nissan considering diesel, hybrid drivetrains for next Frontier

The next Nissan Frontier might boasts advanced drivetrains.

The next-generation Titan might not be the only Nissan pickup truck to offer buyers the option of a diesel powertrain.

We already know that Nissan will offer its next Titan with a 5.0L diesel V8 from Cummins, but the Japanese automaker has revealed that it is also considering an oil burner for its Frontier midsize pickup. Such a move would follow in the footsteps of General Motors, which is planning to offer its latest compact pickups - the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon - with diesel engines.

However, diesel isn't the only alternative powertrain on the table for the next Frontier. Fred Diaz, Nissan Division senior vice president for U.S. sales, marketing, parts and service, says that Nissan is also mulling a hybrid drivetrain for the next-generation of its popular Frontier.

"There's a lot of different technologies that we're considering for the Frontier,” Diaz told The Detroit News. "It may be all-gas. It may be diesel. It may be a hybrid. There's so many things we're looking at right now.”

It should come as no surprise that Nissan is pushing for greater fuel economy in its compact pickup. After fielding numerous request from dealers, Nissan stopped building V6 versions of the truck and focused on the Frontier's more fuel-efficient four-cylinder model. The result? Sales of the Frontier grew 13 percent to nearly 63,000 vehicles in 2013, including a 47 percent spike in December.

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