The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder Review: The Nissan Pathfinder has been around since 1987, and over those nearly 30 years has grown from a small pickup truck with a roof and rear seats to a big family hauler that weighs in at well over two tons. The fourth-generation Pathfinder, which debuted for the 2013 model year, gets some significant updates for 2017. To the eye, the face is redone, with a fresh iteration of Nissan’s V-Motion grille, surrounded by an updated hood and front bumper. At the other end, the taillamps get tweaked.
More important than the new suit, however, is the new power plant. Nissan has been well known for its award-winning V6 engines, but this new Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG) 3.5-liter unit contains more than 50 percent new parts, including a new combustion chamber design, pistons, intake manifold, and more. This update helps push horsepower from 260 to 284 and torque from 240 to 259.
The fresh V6 is mated to an XTRONIC continuously-variable transmission (CVT), which means belts find the ideal ratio rather than gears, and it sounds a bit different when you apply the accelerator. Sadly, this power train didn’t give me the fuel economy that the window sticker promised.
The EPA rates the four-wheel-drive Pathfinder at 19 City, 26 Highway, and 21 Overall. However, the best number I saw was 16.2 mpg, and in the end, it read just 10.3 mpg. Was the system misreading something? I didn’t drive any differently than usual. EPA Green numbers are 6 for Smog and 4 for Greenhouse Gas, normal for an SUV this large with a V6 engine.
When all three rows are being used, there’s not a lot of space behind the third row, about 16 cubic feet, but drop the second and third rows and you get nearly 80 cubic feet of useful capacity.
Nissan went through a period of offering cheap looking interiors, but that’s over now, and even though many of the Pathfinder’s surfaces are hard plastic, they look buffed and strong. The tan leather seats are attractive and comfortable. Slim pockets on the center console look like they’d be great for maps, if anyone uses them anymore. I liked the handsome knurled knobs for audio and climate control.
Another larger knob was for the ALL-MODE 4x4-i system, which electronically controls settings for 2-wheel drive, automatic, or auto locking four-wheel drive. There’s hill descent control (4wd models only) and Hill Start Assist, handy for tackling the streets of San Francisco. The Pathfinder is proud to offer 6,000 pounds of towing, if properly equipped.
I was fortunate to drive the top model in a range that runs from S, SV, SL to Platinum. My tester came in Midnight Jade, with the interior in Almond. The dark green body was elegant and the tan trim inside was bright. The S is decently equipped from the get go, but the SV brings in a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, intelligent key, power driver’s seat, remote start, Homelink transmitter and more.
As you move up, the SL adds leather seats in the first and second rows, gives the front passenger power seat controls, a power liftgate, the amusing “Around View” monitor (shows you from above somehow), and more. The Platinum level bumps wheel size up from 18 to 20 inches, adds LED headlamps and a Bose 13-speaker premium audio system, plus a moonroof, and some other goodies.
The Pathfinder offers the Motion-Activated liftgate with position memory. Wave your foot under the center of the liftgate and it opens. They aren’t the first to offer this feature, but it’s mighty handy. Another worthwhile update is the Advanced Drive-Assist Display, which gives you useful information on your infotainment and other features directly ahead of you. Voice command is now easier with an improved microphone.
My car had the Family Entertainment Package for $1,700, perfect for keep the young ones entertained on long trips when singing rounds or playing punch car isn’t enough. The viewing screens are on the front seatbacks, at a better and lower level than the kind that drop from the ceiling.
Pricing starts at $30,890 for the S, topping off at $44,460 for the Platinum. Including destination charges my test 2017 Pathfinder Platinum Edition came to $46,160.
By Steve Schaefer © AutoWire.Net - San Francisco
The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder Bottom Line Review provided by: Tony Leopardo © AutoWire.Net
The Bottom Line: The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder is a large crossover model and crossovers are hot in the market place today. This one is in the upper middle price range, and is a perfect vehicle for growing families. Plus it gets a top five-star overall rating in government safety tests. Built in Smyrna, Tennessee, it’s the station wagon of today.
The Pathfinder feels substantial on the road, and sails along smoothly during in-town errands, or on long highway jaunts. It’s a seven-passenger hauler, so families will find it a comfortable fit. The EZ Flex Seating System with LATCH AND GLIDE makes it easy to load passengers into the third row, while keeping your second-row child seats in place. And maybe, just for those reasons alone, you should “Drive one, Buy one, Today ©”. This Bottom Line Review is provided by: Tony Leopardo © AutoWire.Net
“Tony the Car Guy” is an automotive writer, editor and publisher in the San Francisco Bay Area. If you have a question or comment for Tony send it to TonyLeo@pacbell.net or visit AutoWire.Net at www.autowire.net - And remember: “You Are What You Drive ©”
Column Name: A nice crossover wagon for families
Topic: The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder
Word Count: 965
Photo Caption: The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder
Photo Credits: Nissan Internet Media
Series #: 2017 - 29
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2017 Nissan Pathfinder
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2017 Nissan Pathfinder