The original Nissan Pathfinder, introduced more than a quarter century ago, set the bar high for the generations that followed. Known as the perfect family adventure vehicle, each successive Pathfinder design has remained true to that original premise while evolving to meet the changing needs of its owners. Now, with the introduction of the all-new 4th generation, not only does Pathfinder provide capability with comfortable seating for seven, intuitive 4WD and 5000-pound standard towing capacity, but it resets the standard for the segment with an unprecedented level of premium style, comfort, fuel economy and thoughtful technology.
True to Nissan's philosophy of staying ahead of the competition, the 2014 Nissan Pathfinder offers a long list of both best-in-class and unique-to-class specifications and features, including:
- Best-in-class fuel economy*
- Best-in-class interior passenger volume**
- Best-in-class front headroom **
- Most standard towing capacity in class**
- Class-exclusive selectable 2WD, Auto and 4WD modes**
- Class-exclusive Xtronic CVT®**
- Class-exclusive Around View™ Monitor***
- Class-exclusive Easy Fill Tire Alert System**
The new Pathfinder also addresses the "innovation that excites" needs of today's drivers, with levels of responsive acceleration, braking, handling and ride comfort expected of a Nissan product.
"Our goal, which we've achieved, was to be the best not just on paper but in the real world. We focused our efforts on leadership in the areas that family SUV owners want most, such as Around View™ Monitor and Easy Fill Tire Alert," said Brian Thomas, Director of Marketing at Nissan Canada Inc.
Class-Leading Capability and Fuel Economy
Addressing buyers' desire for more efficiency in every aspect of their lives, the 2014 Pathfinder utilizes a refined drivetrain featuring a 3.5-litre DOHC V6 engine mated to a next-generation Xtronic CVT® (Continuously Variable Transmission) to help provide a 26 per cent**** increase in combined City/Highway fuel economy (over the previous V6-equipped model). Fuel economy is rated at 7.7L/100km Highway; 10.5L/100km City and 9.3L/100km Combined for the 2WD model and 7.9L/100km Highway; 10.8/L/100km City and 9.5L/100 km Combined for the 4WD model.
The new engine and CVT combination maintains nearly the same horsepower as the previous generation's larger displacement 4.0-litre V6 – 260 horsepower versus the previous 266 – and delivers responsive acceleration in a variety of conditions. The CVT holds the engine at the ideal rpm for the conditions at hand, offering responsive power for passing or towing when needed, and quiet efficient running at cruising speeds or around town.
With the available intuitive four-wheel drive, Pathfinder continues to serve as an excellent vehicle for inclement weather driving conditions. Pathfinder is the only vehicle in class with selectable 2WD, Auto or 4WD modes for its available intuitive ALL-MODE 4x4-i system. The system lets the driver choose full-time 2WD for maximum fuel economy, Auto mode to automatically monitor conditions and adjust the balance of power between front and rear wheels for best traction, or 4WD Lock mode when the confidence of full-time 4WD is desired. In addition, standard Hill Start Assist helps add control when starting and driving away on a steep incline (both 4WD and 2WD models).
With best-in-class standard 5,000-pound towing capacity, the new Pathfinder also retains its ability to tow boats, snowmobiles, trailers and a variety of other recreational gear.
"When it comes to supporting family adventures, the Pathfinder's rugged heritage comes through – allowing the driver to select the 4WD mode when desired, as well as offering an Auto mode or 2WD," said Thomas. "And the combination of best-in-class fuel economy and standard towing capacity, comfortable seven-passenger seating and best-in-class passenger volume makes this one vehicle worthy of the Pathfinder name."
In one other important measurement the new generation Pathfinder weighs as much as 500 pounds less than the previous body-on-frame design. This helps contribute to the enhanced fuel economy performance, as does the use of front and rear spoilers, rear tire deflectors and rear suspension fairings to help achieve one of the best aerodynamic performances in the segment. The 2014 Pathfinder's 0.34 coefficient of drag is a 13 percent improvement over that of the outgoing model.
Along with reduced weight, Pathfinder's new unibody platform provided the designers an opportunity to create the more aerodynamic exterior without compromising headroom or cargo capacity. Moving upscale in appearance, the new exterior styling presents a smart fusion of signature Nissan styling cues and dynamic strength. The look is adventure-ready with wheel-oriented muscular fenders and a strong, stable stance. The upper body features an open cabin with a low beltline and thin A- and D-pillars, which flow smoothly into the rugged, durable-looking lower body.
Other exterior details include a wide chrome grille and large aerodynamic headlights, recessed front windshield wipers, chrome door handles and large rear combination lights. An available Dual Panorama Moonroof, with sliding opening front panel and fixed rear glass panel which extends over the 2nd and 3rd rows, combines with the large windows to create an open, airy interior environment.
"With its new aerodynamically optimized shape, the styling is a major step forward in the evolution of the SUV – retaining its people- and cargo-hauling utility without looking quite so utilitarian," said Thomas. "As a true Next-Gen SUV, it's fitting that a vehicle that tackles adventures in a whole new way completely looks the part."
A Mid-Size SUV with Full-Size Comfort
The Pathfinder is a right-size, 3-row/7-passenger SUV with the seating and cargo capacity that growing families need, offering the benefits of a modern crossover with the comfort of a larger SUV. Use of the unibody platform provides numerous benefits, including a flat floor for enhanced interior packaging flexibility and more space. Overall interior roominess was increased last year by 238 litres versus the 2012 Pathfinder design.
"The new Pathfinder demonstrates that when it comes to modern interior design, you can have it all – SUV capability, roominess, premium features, versatility and user-friendly technology," said Thomas. "By giving equal priority to both the driver and each and every passenger – including those in the 3rd row – we've created a premium driving experience and environment for all."
Pathfinder's quiet, comfortable interior includes a wide range of available features, including three rows of rich leather-appointed seating surfaces, heated and cooled front seats, heated 2nd row seats, heated steering wheel, power tilt and telescoping steering wheel, Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push Button Start (standard), multiple user memory settings and an advanced Bose® Audio System with 13 speakers.
The Pathfinder's unique versatility comes to life in the design of the 2nd and 3rd rows with exceptional 3rd row access – thanks to large rear door openings and the EZ Flex Seating System™ with 5.5 inches of 2nd row seat travel for ease of entry and exit to the 3rd row. The 60/40-split 2nd row features innovative LATCH AND GLIDE™ technology that allows forward movement and access to the 3rdrow with a child safety seat remaining securely in place (on the passenger curb side).
"One of the dilemmas facing families with both young children and infants/toddlers is getting the older kids into the 3rd row without having to remove a child safety seat mounted in the 2nd row. This innovative design solves that issue," explained Thomas. "Plus, with the extensive 2nd row seat travel, it's easy to adjust legroom or accommodate cargo spontaneously as needed."
The 3rd row seat is a 50/50 split-folding design, offering added cargo flexibility, and it also reclines for greater passenger comfort. Both the 2nd and 3rd row seats fold flat for optimal cargo capacity and there is additional under floor storage in the rear cargo area.
Thoughtful technology is also found throughout the Pathfinder interior, starting with the instrument panel, which includes the Advanced Drive-Assist™ Display in the center of the instrument cluster right in front of the driver. The instrument panel also includes a large multifunction center IT display, available Nissan Navigation System with NavTraffic real-time traffic and NavWeather weather information (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), Zagat Survey® restaurant guide, Streaming Audio via Bluetooth® and RearView Monitor.
The new Pathfinder also features Nissan's advanced, class-exclusive Around View™ Monitor, which provides the driver a virtual 360-degree image of the area around the vehicle. Other technology includes Tri-Zone Automatic Climate Control, Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System, power rear liftgate, iPod® integration, and tri-zone entertainment system with 2nd row head restraint-mounted DVD display screens.
The Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) is available with individual tire pressure display and class-exclusive Easy Fill Tire Alert that provides both visual and audible signals to help owners conveniently maintain correct tire pressures without the use of a gauge. Available remote engine start function allows the climate control system to warm up or cool down the interior prior to driving.
"The new Pathfinder carries on the tradition of the previous generations of adventure-ready Pathfinders that have come before – offering a new level of family enjoyment and engagement that is just right for today's real-world, everyday uses," concluded Thomas. "After more than 25 years, Nissan is ready to tackle new terrain and the new challenges of modern family lives with the Next-Gen SUV, the 2014 Pathfinder."
# # #
*Ward's Large Cross/Utility segment and Canadian AIAMC Intermediate Sport Utility segment. 2013 Pathfinder vs. 2012 and 2013 competitors. 2013 Pathfinder 2WD EPA fuel economy estimate 27 city and 37 highway MPG. Actual mileage may vary with driving conditions — use for comparison purposes only.)
**Ward's Large Cross/Utility Market Segmentation. MY13 Pathfinder vs. 2012 Large Cross/Utility Class
*** Parking aid/convenience feature. Cannot completely eliminate blind spots or warn of moving objects. May not detect every object. Always check surroundings before moving vehicle. Not a substitute for proper backing procedures. Always turn to check what is behind you before backing up.
****MY13 EPA estimate of 27 mpg/city compared to MY12 EPA estimate of 19 mpg/city. Actual mileage may vary with driving conditions - use for comparison only