2017 Nissan Pathfinder: More power, more tech, same pizazz and good value proposition

22 Nov 2016 | 332 views | No Comment
By Donald Hammonds I remember Nissan Pathfinders from days gone by long ago. Back then, it was a kick-ass offroader that seemed to be at home in the outback, so to speak.   It was a nice looking, ruggedly built SUV that had a bouncy ride, okay but not flashy interior and seemed to last forever, based on the number of old ones we would see ---and still see--on the road. But the Pathfinder of today  has been transformed  into a classy looking family car that looks like a 21st century station wagon. It has plenty of creature comforts inside and out with lots of quality everywhere, and lots of streth-out room throughout the Pathfinder.. And gas mileage is definitely a strong point with this crossover.  We consistently got two to three miles per gallon over the figure of 22 miles per gallon overall that was made by the federal government. [caption id="attachment_8456" align="alignnone" width="686"]Pathfinder, one of Nissan’s best known and most popular nameplates in its nearly 60-year history in the United States, is reborn for the 2017 model year with more adventure capability, a freshened exterior look and enhanced safety and technology – pure Pathfinder taken to a higher level of performance and style. Pathfinder, one of Nissan’s best known and most popular nameplates in its nearly 60-year history in the United States, is reborn for the 2017 model year with more adventure capability, a freshened exterior look and enhanced safety and technology – pure Pathfinder taken to a higher level of performance and style.[/caption] For the 2017 model year, a lot has been done by Nissan's design team to upgrade the Pathfinder. According to a Nissan press release, the new features for this year include: Major redesign includes bold new front end with signature boomerang-shaped headlights with LED Daytime Running Lights and available LED headlights. There is a new  3.5-liter V6 engine that adds direct injection system, and horsepower increases to 284, and maximum towing capacity is now a class-leading 6,000 pounds (when properly equipped ). The company also has enhanced Pathfinder user friendliness with features that range from Motion-Activated liftgate to updated vehicle connected services. Also for 2017:
  • New advanced driver assistance technology includes Forward Emergency Braking, Intelligent Cruise Control and Around View® Monitor with Moving Object Detection. Our test car was the SL all wheel drive version of the sub-brand. It came with the aforementioned the more powerful new 3.5 liter, 284 horsepower V-6,  along with a continuously variable automatic transmission.
  • Fuel economy rating was 22 overall with 19 city and 26 on the highway.  The federal government says that you will spend $1,250 more on gasoline over five years than  you would on comparable vehicles, and your annual fuel cost is about $1,650 based on 15,000 miles of driving annually over five years and gasoline costing $2.45 a gallon.  Of course, the Pathfinder uses regular gasoline. To drive 100 miles, the Pathfinder uses about 4.5 gallons of gasoline.
The base price for our tester was $37,390. Standard safety features include driver and front passenger side impact and curtain airbags; lower anchors and tethers for children; electronic brake force distribution, vehicle dynamic control, traction control, Blind Spot Warning system, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert; Nissan Vehicle immobilizer system; vehicle security system, and tire pressure monitoring system with Easy Fill Tire Alert. Other standard features include seven passenger leather seating; EZFlex Seating System, Latch and Glide Technology; second row 60/40 and third row 50/50 split fold-flat bench seat with recline feature; eight way power driver seat with lumbar support; four way power front passenger seat; heated driver, passenger and second row seats; diver seat and outside mirrors position memory; heated leather wrapped steering wheel; leather wrapped shifter; Nissan Intelligent Key; Push Button Ignition; Remote Engine Start system; motion activated liftgate; tri-zone automatic temperature control with second row-center console controls, Nissan Connect; an eight inch color audio display unit; a six speaker AM/FM/CD Audio system; Sirius XM satellite radio; Sirius XM Travel Link; Around View Monitor with moving object Detection; Individual Tire Pressure Display; fog lights, autro Off/On headlights; heated Roof Rails and a host of other standard features. A SL Tech Package that included navigation and services, a premium Bose Audio system, a tow hitch receiver with an integrated finisher and other items brought the price to $40,390. The Pathfinder comes with a three year/36,000 miles basic warranty. The Pathfinder is far and away one of the most comfortable crossovers you can buy in the "family" category, with truly brisk acceleration. Both of those assets make it one of the most desirable family crossovers if you do a lot of long distance road traveling.  The only drawback?  The back seat is a little tight and many reviewers say it doesn't have the abundance of little cubby holds and out of the way places to stow things. But we think if you are, say, a family of four, with little use for lots of cargo space, and you definitely lean to the stylish side of the crossover equation, the Pathfinder definitely deserves a spot on your shopping list.  

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