CHICAGO – Murphy's Law doesn't apply to Brian Murphy, a Chicagoland delivery driver who set a goal in 2007 to put a million miles on his Nissan Frontier pickup truck.
On workdays, Murphy starts before sunrise and returns home about 13 hours later. He drove about 50,000 hours to rack up the million miles on his pickup — a two-wheel-drive, 4-cylinder, 5-speed manual 2007 Frontier King Cab with a Red Brawn exterior that still has its original engine and transmission. A million miles is about the same distance as two roundtrips to the Moon.
"I had no doubt this truck would hit a million miles. It's tough and gets great fuel economy2, exactly what I need to get the job done," said Murphy. "I change my own oil every 10,000 miles and drive carefully. Nothing major has been replaced on this truck, it's really something."
For other routine maintenance, the truck has been serviced at M'Lady Nissan in Crystal Lake, the same dealership where the 62-year-old Murphy bought the vehicle new in June 2007.
"Brian Murphy is the perfect Frontier customer. It's encouraging to hear exceptional stories like this and to know our vehicles are dependably serving customers – let alone for a million miles," said Tiago Castro, director, Nissan Commercial Vehicles.
According to Murphy, the original clutch lasted 801,000 miles, the timing chain was replaced as preventative at 700,000 miles, and the radiator and alternator lasted about 450,000 miles each. Even the driver's seat lasted a half-million miles before being replaced.
The U.S. Department of Transportation3 says males in Murphy's age group drive an average of 15,859 miles per year. Murphy drives, on average, about 77,000 miles per year. The digital odometer stopped tracking at 999,999 miles on January 27, 2020, but the trip odometer kept rolling to prove the truck now has over a million miles.
Murphy began his career as a delivery truck driver 45 years ago in the Chicago area. He "retired" from corporate America 16 years ago and started his part-time job as an independent delivery driver in 2007. He has never used GPS to guide him on his route, and his driving record is free of any moving violations.
"My truck deserves to rest, but I've got to keep busy," said Murphy.
The "Million-Mile" Frontier was built at Nissan Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant in Smyrna, Tennessee. The company invited Murphy and his family to an event during the 2020 Chicago Auto Show.
1. MSRP Brian Murphy's achievement of driving 1 million miles in his Nissan Frontier is unique and not guaranteed for other Nissan vehicles.
2. EPA Fuel Economy Estimates for 2007 Frontier® 4-cylinder engine with manual transmission: 19 city / 23 highway. Actual mileage may vary with driving conditions – use for comparison only.