Vehicle Overview
The Nissan Pathfinder is a body-on-frame sport utility vehicle with three rows of seats. For 2008, the Pathfinder received a new V-8 engine, and its center dash controls were redone for a more refined appearance. The Pathfinder comes in S, SE and LE trims with the V-6; the V-8 is only available in the LE. Competitors include the Jeep Commander and Ford Explorer.

New for 2009
Side-impact and side curtain airbags are now standard.

Exterior
The Pathfinder features short overhangs and pronounced fender flares. The rear door handles are placed vertically on the C-pillars, and the SUV has an integrated front bumper. The Pathfinder's grille design is similar to Nissan's larger Armada.

Built on a 112.2-inch wheelbase, the Pathfinder is 192.3 inches long and 72.8 inches wide, making it just slightly smaller than the Explorer. The Commander is shorter and wider than the Pathfinder.
  • 16-, 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Standard front fog lamps
  • Standard power mirrors
  • Standard running boards (optional on S)
  • Optional automatic headlamps (standard on V-8 LE)
  • Optional heated mirrors (standard on LE)
  • Optional power moonroof
  • Tailgate's glass window can flip up independent of hatch


Interior
Seven-passenger seating includes split, folding second- and third-row seats. The front passenger seat also folds. The second-row seat is split 40/20/40. The 50/50-split third row folds into the floor with the head restraints in place. Eight utility hooks are installed in the rear cargo area, and storage is provided under the second-row seats.

Cargo room behind the third row is 16.5 cubic feet, which is better than the Commander and Explorer. The Pathfinder's 79.2-cubic-foot maximum falls just short of the Explorer (83.7) but exceeds the Commander (68.5).
  • Available cloth or leather seating surfaces
  • Standard dual-zone automatic climate control (optional on S)
  • Standard cruise control, power windows and speed-sensitive locks
  • Optional heated front seats (standard on LE)
  • Optional Bose audio system (standard on LE)
  • Optional DVD entertainment system
  • Optional navigation system


Under the Hood
The Pathfinder is available with either a V-6 or V-8 engine. All Pathfinders have a five-speed automatic transmission. When properly equipped, the Pathfinder can tow up to 7,000 pounds. A tow-hitch receiver is standard, and the SUV can have rear- or four-wheel drive, which includes automatic and low-range modes.
  • 266-horsepower, 4.0-liter V-6 with 288 pounds-feet of torque
  • 310-hp, 5.6-liter V-8 with 388 pounds-feet of torque
  • Five-speed automatic transmission
  • Rear-wheel drive, part-time or full-time four-wheel drive


Safety
Safety features include:
  • Standard side-impact and side curtain airbags
  • Standard antilock braking system with electronic brake-force distribution
  • Standard electronic stability and traction control
  • Optional rearview camera (standard on LE)
  • Active front head restraints