Nissan has come a long way from its old Datsun days; today, it’s the proud manufacturer of the Nissan Altima, which is perhaps one of the best mid-sized sedans in the U.S. Let’s not forget the thundering Japanese super-car slayer, the Nissan GT-R, aka Godzilla, a 565-hp track monster. Nissan has everything a car owner could want, from the humble Nissan Leaf to the off-road never changing Nissan Frontier.
Nissan is also a major player in the new SUV craze with a wide number of entries, including the Rogue, Passport, Pilot, Murano, and Pathfinder. If you are the type who wants to stand out, you could also check out the Nissan Cube or Juke, whatever tickles your fancy. Here are ten of the best Nissan models of the decade.
10 2020 Nissan Frontier
Let’s face it; the 2020 Nissan Frontier is a fossil; however, this mid-size pick-up truck is still a workhorse. Unlike its full-size sibling, the Titan, the Frontier remains unchanged since it first debuted in 2015. Some of the tiny details that make this mid-size pickup truck likable are its configurable cargo box, as well as a durable interior, and well, of course, its affordable starting price.
It’s the perfect truck for tradespeople and contractors. It's not overwhelming when you check underneath the hood; it has the least powerful V-6 engine in its segment and still runs on an outdated 5-speed automatic transmission. However, it still offers competitive towing capabilities, and should prospective buyers need a manual version; there’s a 4-cylinder version with a 5-speed manual transmission.
9 2019 Nissan GT-R
Long live the King! It doesn’t matter what you call it, Godzilla, Nismo GT-R, or just GT-R. The Nissan GT-R is the prized baby of Nissan, a supercar slayer, with a stomping high-tech engine. There’s a reason why the Japanese track king gets its name; Godzilla and part of it are because it's been tearing up racing tracks since 1969.
The 2020 GT-R celebrates 50 years of supreme performance, and Nissan is making tweaks on the 2020 version to mark that milestone. The Nissan GT-R comes with a 3.6L twin-turbo V6 making 565 hp paired to a 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. It can do zero to 60 in 2.9 seconds, and if you are looking for a power-crazy variant, there’s a track-tuned Nismo version generating 600hp.
8 2018 Nissan Titan XD
Not a lot of people are crazy about this car; however, this pick-up truck sits between the regular and heavy-duty trucks on the workhorse spectrum without really hitting the mark. Compared to the Ford F-150 or Chevrolet Silverado, the Titan XD performs poorly when it comes to payload and towing capability.
However, it's driving dynamics, ride height, and fuel economy are on par with the Ford F-250 as well as the Ram 2500. The Titan XD comes with a 5.6L V8 making 400hp and 413 lb-ft of torque.
7 2019 Nissan Pathfinder
If you were to come up with a blend of modern three-row crossovers in a single concoction, then the 2019 Nissan Pathfinder will be your choice. While you get an off-road vibe with its nameplate, the current Nissan Pathfinder is a tame family-friendly SUV with seven seats, unlike the original, which was a truck-based four-wheel sport utility vehicle.
The 2019 Nissan Pathfinder offers a comfortable ride experience with a few rugged pretensions. While it's adequate, it’s not the quickest in its segment. It comes with a 3.5L V6 engine making 284hp. The Pathfinder has a towing capability of 6,000 pounds.
6 2019 Nissan Juke RS
The standard Juke gets a lot of hate from the car community due to its distinct, peculiar looks, but the Juke Nismo RS elicits a different reaction – fear! It’s a surge of insanity into the already cheeky juke, a sort of bad joke to all the internet trolls and haters alike.
It comes with a 1.6L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine making 215hp (211hp with AWD) and both of these variants come with a six-speed manual transmission and front-wheel drive. A torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive variant is available but with a mundane CVT.
5 2019 Nissan NV 1500/2500/3500
Let’s face it, the 2019 Nissan NV looks like somewhat of an offspring of the Titan Pickup truck, and perhaps not the most appealing looking truck you could get. However, this van appeals to a section of the population, including plumbers and delivery guys. It comes in several varieties with high roof models, three payload configurations, and a standard V6 making 261hp and a V-8 making 375hp for business users.
The Nissan NV3500 HD variant offers up to 12 passenger seating, curtain airbags, tinted side windows, and a navigation system, making it a popular choice for big families, sports teams, and as a delivery service vehicle.
4 2019 Nissan Murano
Nissan Murano has been a standout vehicle ever since it first debuted in early 2000, and claimed a stake between premium and non-premium SUVs offering a refined ride quality and standout styling with a well-appointed interior.
Today, the Nissan Murano is still in the value game with its base model featuring a navigation system, automated emergency braking, Android Auto, and Apple Car Play all packaged in an upscale design. The 2019 Nissan Murano comes with a 3.5L V6 generating 260hp. It comes standard with front-wheel drive and optional all-wheel drive. Both trims come with a CVT.
3 2019 Nissan Maxima
The 2019 Nissan Maxima is a well-rounded full-size sedan with enough comfort to attract a luxury car buyer, brute athleticism to keep adrenaline off-roaders engaged, and enough gadgetry to get respect from tech connoisseurs. It offers quite the sports car profile with a visual punch enough to attract attention.
The 2019 Maxima is also a value car, with most of its features offered standard across the range. It's among the quicker full-size sedans with a 3.5L V6 paired with a CVT automatic transmission making 300hp. All Maximas are front-wheel drive, which is acceptable under normal circumstances.
2 2018 Nissan Kicks
The Nissan Kicks is perfect for prospective buyers looking for a switch from a subcompact sedan to a subcompact crossover. However, don’t get fooled by its tiny dimensions, the Kicks is amazingly practical. It comes with a pocket-friendly price tag with a big back seat and plenty of room to hold cargo at the back.
While it comes with a noisy 4-cylinder engine, it feels peppy in city streets and is quite stingy on fuel. The new 2020 Nissan Kicks comes standard with driver-assist features as well as modern content, including support for Android Auto and Apple Car Play. The Kicks comes with a 4-cylinder engine generating 125hp.
1 2020 Nissan Altima
The 2020 Nissan Altima is quite an appealing mid-size sedan with all the comfort and features families like as well as exclusive content that can not be found elsewhere in its class. The Altima offers a spacious cabin with contemporary tech and is perhaps the only sedan in its class with an optional all-wheel-drive variant. The Altima comes with a cutting-edge engine known as the VC-Turbo that aims to maximize both fuel economy and performance.
With quite an impressive resume, the Altima still faces stiff competition from Honda and Mazda that offer more appealing designs and handling. The Altima comes standard with a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine paired with a CVT making 188hp. An optional variant comes with a 2.0L 4-cylinder turbocharged engine making 248hp.