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Nissan Claims Top Truck Brand Honors in J.D. Power 2023 Customer Service Index

There is nothing quite like the satisfaction of pulling up to a day on the job or weekend at the campsite with a heavy-duty truck. Ford, Chevy, Toyota, and Ram are the first four names that come to mind for some as they look for the perfect vehicle. As you take a close look at their other top-notch cars such as the Altima, it is evident that there’s another heavy hitter on the list that any diehard rig lover should take a close look at. Nissan has snagged the worthy honor as the number one truck brand in dealership service satisfaction.  

Nissan Claims Top Truck Brand Honors

The J.D. Power 2023 U.S. Customer Service Index Study surveyed more than 64,000 registered owners. The objective here was to see how satisfied the drivers were after service visits performed at a franchised dealer or aftermarket service facility. Screeching into a dominating finish with a score of 886 out of 1,000 possible points, Nissan claimed the number one spot while up against other brands have their own unique selling points.

As the auto industry’s global leader in analytics, J.D. Power has been delivering reliable auto intelligence for more than 50 years. The 2023 study found that satisfaction declines 23 points when the owner must comply with a recall.Since the 2021 study, the number of days that owners spend waiting for an appointment has increased 1.9 days for premium vehicles. This year’s study also found that parts shortages continue to be a driving factor in the time it now takes to complete service.

The unparalleled reliability and durability of the Frontier:

The shining star of Nissan’s 2023 model year truck lineup is the Frontier, which is ideal for every chore as well as faraway adventures. With six decades of standout leadership, the 2023 Frontier offers up 310 horsepower from its standard 3.8-liter direct injection V8. Since so many drivers are now looking to make high-octane memories off-road, the PRO-X and PRO-4X grades show up ready to get muddy and completely dominate.

The equipment that allows for this boulder and canyon-conquering prowess is nothing short of amazing! Bilstein off-road shocks, 17-inch wheels with all-terrain tires, and an electronic locking rear differential arm the Frontier properly for the wild. Much like other off-road capable trucks we’ve reviewed here at Headlights, there are also trusty underbody skid plates for the utmost protection from large obstacles.

The birth of an A-list work and play rig:

We already know that customers have a massive love for the Toyota Tundra, which is one of the first choices that “steps away from the big 3.” Chevy, Ford, and Ram long dominated the truck market into the late 1980s. Although it may have taken a little while for the Nissan brand to gain momentum, it now is a benchmark of reliability and durable quality. In the mid-1980s, Datsun became Nissan. The Nissan Hardbody was hailed by Motor Trend as “one of the most iconic and legit mini trucks of the ‘80s and ‘90s.”

The two-wheel drive Hardbody was excellent for urban slam drives, and the 4X4 version was primed for off-roading. The first American-built Nissan pickup truck was the 1984 Nissan 720. It was assembled at the Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant, which also produced the Hardbody. The Hardbody is recognizable by the prominent body line that runs from the headlight to the middle of the taillight. This highly favored truck’s name originated from its double-walled bed, firm paneling, and aggressive styling.

The wide appeal and durable luster of the Hardbody:

The D21 Hardbody was produced from 1986-1997. There were both four-cylinder and V6 engine options available. The 2.4-liter Z241 throttle-body injected 4-cylinder cranked out 106 horsepower. The 2.4-liter KA24E multi-point fuel-injected 4-cylinder cranked out 134 horsepower. The sought-after V6 engine option for the Hardbody was the 154-horsepower 3.0-liter VG80E fuel-injected powertrain.

Both rear and four-wheel drive regular cat and king cab extended models were available. Some of the later Hardbody models boasted the XE trim and an extra value package option. It offered alloy wheels, power mirrors, and some very cool chrome bits. The Desert Runner model displayed its dominance by winning its class during the 1987 Baja 500. There were just 1,000 of these made, with the Frontier eventually replacing the D21 in 1998.

The tough-as-nails sleekness of the Titan:

The Nissan Titan boasts the honor of being the brand’s first full-size truck. It debuted in 2003 and is still dominating dirt and pavement alike. The 2023 model comes in hot with a standard V8 engine, a very comfortable cabin, and segment-leading towing capacity. Some of its highest-quality traits are its clever 9-speed transmission, quiet cabin, and excellent safety tech. Many truck lovers will appreciate the V8 as the only option, along with a uniquely rugged exterior.

The Titan’s towing capacity is 9.370 pounds, and the Motor Trend team claimed that it fared excellently with a 4,500-lb horse trailer. The 2023 model is available in a 5.5-foot or 6.5-foot box. Wireless Apple CarPlay is now available on higher trim levels. The darkside-inspired Midnight Edition appearance package also debuts as an option for the SV Crew Cab trim. The Titan’s engine offers very quick acceleration and around 20-21 mpg on the highway.

Does Nissan fit the bill as the top truck brand for the masses?

As we have had the pleasure of reviewing many different trucks here on the website, we have seen how various brands stack up against each other. We have always had our eyes on the RAM line interior as being quite possibly the most luxurious of the bunch. The Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado all have their selling points too, as this particular survey was based on satisfaction. Let us know if the Nissan brand line is up your alley in the comments below, or check out another article about the Nissan Titan’s appeal!

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Jon Weirman
I am a freelance writer in the Midwest who specializes in vehicles built for expert-level off-roading, and anything with a staggering amount of horsepower. In my first life I worked in broadcasting for Starz Network and Discovery Channel. I also love retro video games and sci-fi movies. Everything from the loud and burly muscle cars of the late 1970s to new crossover SUVs with futuristic tech features have populated my inbox!

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