SUVs

Nissan Had Another Swing and a Miss With This SUV

Nissan is known for creating strong cars that are built to last. Despite its aging appearance, the Nissan Frontier has one of the best reliability ratings out of any pickup truck. Nissan also offers a midsize SUV called the Pathfinder, but is it better than other SUVs?

Before committing to buying a car, it’s best to check out websites like Kelley Blue Book or Consumer Reports. The latter provides in-depth reviews relating to crash tests, overall satisfaction, and reliability. Compared to other SUVs, the Nissan Pathfinder doesn’t have great reviews. Here’s what Consumer Reports had to say about the car.

Low buyer opinion

According to reviews, only 48% of customers said that they would buy the Pathfinder again. Drivers noted that the car was prone to a lot of problems as time went on.

Many had complaints with the A/C system, which would either produce too little or too much heat. The Pathfinder has also had several recalls over the years due to transmission issues.

The latest Nissan Pathfinder currently has two recalls. An issue regarding a malfunctioning backup camera has affected over 1 million vehicles. The camera randomly fails to display images, which could be potentially hazardous at night. This problem caused many drivers to be disappointed with the Pathfinder. 

Dated interior

Customers also had issues with the Pathfinder’s interior. Like the Frontier, the Pathfinder suffers from a cabin that hasn’t seen many major updates. Many felt that the materials inside felt cheap and looked unappealing compared to similar SUVs. Its infotainment screen is responsive but doesn’t have the best picture quality.

It also doesn’t have as much cargo capacity as its competition. After folding the third row down, there’s 47.4 cubic feet of storage space. However, the folded seats don’t create a completely flat floor, which proved to be a hassle for some drivers.

Disappointing ride quality

The interior may be old, but the Pathfinder’s seats are still decently comfortable. However, some drivers were disappointed with the car’s handling. The brakes were found to be too mushy and the car wasn’t particularly agile. It also has a stiffer suspension, which gave many drivers a rough ride over bumpy roads.

The cabin has an ample amount of space, with plenty of storage cubbies and big cupholders. The second row has a lot of legroom, but some noted that the seats felt too firm. The third row is easily accessible but too cramped for most adult passengers.

Good points

Despite these issues, others still had positive things to say about the Pathfinder. The front seats are very comfortable and supportive. On higher trims, leather upholstery is standard, along with ventilation and heating.

It also has a V6 3.5-liter engine with 284 hp and a continuously-variable transmission. It’s noisier than its rivals while accelerating, but still powerful. It also gives the Pathfinder some of the best fuel economy ratings in its class. It gets an estimated 20 mpg on city roads and 27 mpg on the highway.

What SUV can I get for the same price as the Nissan Pathfinder?

The Nissan Pathfinder isn’t a bad SUV overall, but its rivals definitely have more to offer. The Kia Telluride costs as much as the Pathfinder, but its interior is far more stylish. It also has more technology features, like standard smartphone integration and Bluetooth.

The Honda Pilot provides a better overall driving experience. Its second and third rows aren’t as cramped as the Pathfinder, even for adult passengers. It also comes with more standard safety features, like forward-collision warning and lane-keep assist. However, its cabin doesn’t feel as luxurious compared to the Telluride.

With these options out there, the Pathfinder just can’t compete. Despite being a solid all-around vehicle, the crowded SUV market means being mediocre isn’t good enough.