Complete Nissan Pathfinder lineup, specs, economy, dimensions

2022 Nissan Pathfinder V - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions2021 Nissan Pathfinder SUVPathfinder V4 Trims 275 to 284 Hp 2017 Nissan Pathfinder IV (facelift 2017) - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions2017 - 2021 Nissan Pathfinder SUVPathfinder IV (facelift 2017)2 Trims 284 Hp 2013 Nissan Pathfinder IV - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions2012 - 2016 Nissan Pathfinder SUVPathfinder IV2 Trims 260 Hp 2010 Nissan Pathfinder III (facelift 2010) - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions2010 - 2013 Nissan Pathfinder SUVPathfinder III (facelift 2010)3 Trims 190 to 231 Hp 2005 Nissan Pathfinder III - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions2004 - 2010 Nissan Pathfinder SUVPathfinder III4 Trims 174 to 269 Hp 1995 Nissan Pathfinder II - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions1995 - 2004 Nissan Pathfinder SUVPathfinder II6 Trims 131 to 253 Hp

The Nissan Pathfinder is a compact or mid-size SUV first produced in 1985. It is now in its fifth generation of design.

Nissan Pathfinder Design and Introduction

As the popularity of the SUV grew in the 1980s, Nissan decided to step up to the plate and compete with the likes of the Chevrolet Blazer, Ford Bronco, and Toyota 4Runner. The Japanese automaker's response came on the same body-on-frame platform as the Nissan Hardbody Truck, but as a two or four-door passenger vehicle with a covered cargo area, called the Nissan Pathfinder. In Japan, the Pathfinder was known as the Terrano and was sold at Nissan Bluebird Shops. Due to Japan's tax incentives that offered significantly lower road tax consequences on smaller vehicles with engines staying at or below 2.0L displacement, the Terrano was an upmarket vehicle that received many luxury upgrades like power amenities and air conditioning. But in other markets where this Nissan SUV was marketed as the Pathfinder, it was available in lower trim levels that put utilitarian purposes as the main objective. It started out as a two-door model that was designed to work very similarly to a covered truck, but in North America, it quickly converted to a four-door model in 1985, which eventually extended to other markets by 1989.

Features and Engine Choices

A distinctive feature about many Nissan SUVs of today and the Pathfinder since the four-door inception is the placement of the rear door handles. Rather than match the usual side-of-door placement of the front doors on almost every vehicle in existence, Nissan wanted the four-door models to more closely resemble a covered pickup truck and placed the door handle up higher in the C pillar to hide it. The engines available in the initial Nissan Pathfinder SUVs included a 3.0L VG30i V6 with 143 horsepower and 162 lb ft of torque, and the smaller 2.4L Z24i inline-4 with 106 horsepower. In certain markets, a 2.7L diesel engine was offered, with a turbocharger option start in 1988. The Pathfinder was available in two-wheel drive and four-wheel drive variants.

Second and Third Generation Nissan Pathfinder

In 1995, the Pathfinder moved to a unibody construction as the second generation (R50) Nissan Pathfinder hit the markets. Much of the overall design was carried over from the previous generation. Engine choices now included 3.3L and 3.5L V6 gasoline options with up to 168 horsepower, and where offered, a 2.7L, 3.0L, and 3.2L turbodiesel engine could also be fitted. The 2001 model year brought in a new V6 with an impressive improvement up to 240 horsepower with the 4-speed automatic and 250 horsepower with a 5-speed manual transmission. This generation stopped being sold in Japan and was now exclusive to North America, Europe, and the Middle East. The smaller Nissan Murano SUV replaced the Japan-only Terrano.

The third generation Nissan Pathfinder was released as a 2005 model year. It was assembled at the Smyrna, Tennessee place for the US models, but Nissan also use facilities in Barcelona, Spain and Saint Petersburg, Russian for assembly. This model was completely redesigned for the latest introduction, now utilizing the Nissan F-Alpha body-on-frame platform. The exterior was wholly changed, with the vast majority of the front end being restyled, and perhaps more importantly, the rear end received a more vertical design to maximize interior cargo space, compared to the previous generation's design with a sloping rear window. Engine choices bumped up in size to a 4.0L V6 and a massive 5.6L V8 with 310 horsepower and 388 lb ft of torque. Select markets also received diesel engine options, including 2.5L and 3.0L turbodiesel choices. Transmission choices included a 5 or 7-speed automatic transmission or a 6-speed manual.

Fourth and Fifth Generation Changes

In 2012, Nissan introduced a completely different Nissan Pathfinder in the fourth generation design. The flip flop between frame-on-body and unibody construction continued, now moving back to the unibody design on the Nissan D platform with the R52 Pathfinder. The external appearance was also wholly reshaped, now using a much more rounded appearance that was more akin to the crossover SUV segment. For this generation, fuel efficiency was a higher concern and the engine choices shrunk down to a 3.5L gasoline and 2.5L diesel. A mild hybrid system with a 2.5L inline-4 began being offered in 2013, but only lasted for two model years.

The fifth generation for the Nissan Pathfinder came in 2021 with the R53, still built on the Nissan D platform. The front end look now featured much slimmer, refined headlights and robust color-matched bumpers, while still retaining much of the rounded features from the past generation with some slightly more aggressive and sharp lines used throughout. It comes with a 3.5L V6 engine with a modest 284 horsepower paired to a smooth 9-speed ZF automatic transmission. Intelligent four-wheel drive system has seven different settings, along with trailer sway control, making it a very capable SUV. Premium trim levels included second-row bucket seats, leather seating, and upgraded off-road suspension.