Can i use regular 87 octane gas?

I just purchased a 2008 nissan frontier with a 4.0 six cylinder engine. while reading the owners manual I found out that (and this is how it reads)"Nissan recommendsthe use of premium unleaded gasoline with an octane rating of at least 91AKI (anti-knockIndex) number (research octane number 96)If unleaded premium gasoline is not available, you may use unleaded regular gasoline with an octane rating of at least 87 AKI number(research octane number 91) but you may notice a decrease in performance. I did not know of this when I purchased the vehicle. But my question is would i harm anything by running regular gas instead of premium? I won’t be towing anything or hauling anything very heavy other than some firewood ocassionally. I would like your opinion on this. this is the first nissan I have owned.

Based on the manual, no harm would be done. Try each and see if you notice much of a difference in performance.

You will most likely notice the change in performance. The engine was designed to run on premium. The computer, however, is designed to prevent the pre-ignition problem that would normally occur using a lower octane by retarding the ignition timing. This prevents damage to the engine, but makes the engine less efficient. You will also notice a reduction in fuel economy, maybe as much as 2 mpg. The biggest problem is that you’ll really feel the difference if you have any steep hills to climb or if you need to accelerate quickly to pass that slow-moving semi.

I have owned a 2006 V6 Frontier (same engine as yours) since new and have always used 87 octane gas and never had a problem with it. The truck has no problems climbing steep hills and when you floor it, it really goes. I have towed a garden trailer, a 17 foot boston whaler, and a 2500 pound car on a car trailer on short and long trips with no problems. Hope this helps! Enjoy the truck, I love mine!

Every vehicle they sell with the “Premium Fuel Recommended” words in the owners manual, they get a kick-back from the oil companies…If it says “Premium Fuel Only”, they get a bigger kick-back…That’s the only way they can sell it…

Remember, the oil companies started selling “Premium Unleaded Fuel” before a single car “required” it…That’s when it only cost .05 cents a gallon more than “Regular Unleaded”. Five octane points?? Most engines can’t tell the difference…

You may notice a change in performance, but it’ll do no harm to try regular.

Your motor must have a “knock sensor” which is common in modern motors. If the sensor detects a knock it retards the timing and keeps the motor from damage due to knocking.

If you never really challenge the motor you can use 87 and not see any difference in performance. If you have to tow a big trailer up some big hills for that trip you’d be better off using premium. Once the heavy load of whatever is behind you then go back to 87.

If the owners manual said premium fuel “required” then the story would be different. I have a car that says “required” and it gets premium.

When was this, the 40’s?

I own a Toyota Supra and it calls for 91 octane. Put 87 octane, and it will run, but the mileage drops and it stumbles when you try to accelerate quickly. It is only happy with 91 octane or better, as the manual states. BMW owners I’ve spoken with have similar experiences.

Remember Murphy’s law, “If something can go wrong, it will!”. You can spin the roulett wheel if you wish. Some have, and won. Some have, and lost. Place your bet!