2012 Nissan Pathfinder

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$9,208–$18,872 Inventory Prices
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Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
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Safety & Recalls
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Key Specs

of the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • V-8 acceleration
  • Dashboard controls
  • Front-seat comfort
  • Rear visibility
  • Cargo accessibility

The Bad

  • Gas mileage
  • Ride over rough pavement
  • Handling and body roll
  • Dashboard plastics
  • Steering wheel doesn't telescope
  • Trucklike brakes

Notable Features of the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder

  • V-6 or V-8
  • Five-speed automatic
  • Seats seven
  • RWD or 4WD
  • 7,000-pound towing capacity

2012 Nissan Pathfinder Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

The Nissan Pathfinder is a body-on-frame SUV that comes standard with three rows of seats for seven-passenger capacity. It's the smaller sibling to Nissan's full-size Armada. The Pathfinder comes in S, SV, Silver and LE trims with a V-6 engine; a V-8 is available only in the LE. Competitors include the Toyota 4Runner and Dodge Nitro.

New for 2012
Select Pathfinder trims gain more features for 2012, with the Silver adding a power moonroof and a DVD entertainment system and the LE getting a standard navigation system.

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 the Armada's. Exterior features include:

  • 16-, 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Standard power mirrors
  • Optional running boards
  • Optional automatic headlamps
  • Optional heated mirrors
  • Optional power moonroof
  • Rear window can flip up independent of liftgate


Interior
Seven-passenger seating includes split, folding second and third rows. 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. Interior features include:

  • Cloth or leather seating surfaces
  • Optional dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Optional heat...
Vehicle Overview

The Nissan Pathfinder is a body-on-frame SUV that comes standard with three rows of seats for seven-passenger capacity. It's the smaller sibling to Nissan's full-size Armada. The Pathfinder comes in S, SV, Silver and LE trims with a V-6 engine; a V-8 is available only in the LE. Competitors include the Toyota 4Runner and Dodge Nitro.

New for 2012
Select Pathfinder trims gain more features for 2012, with the Silver adding a power moonroof and a DVD entertainment system and the LE getting a standard navigation system.

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 the Armada's. Exterior features include:

  • 16-, 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Standard power mirrors
  • Optional running boards
  • Optional automatic headlamps
  • Optional heated mirrors
  • Optional power moonroof
  • Rear window can flip up independent of liftgate


Interior
Seven-passenger seating includes split, folding second and third rows. 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. Interior features include:

  • Cloth or leather seating surfaces
  • Optional dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Optional heated front seats
  • Optional Bose stereo
  • Optional satellite radio
  • Optional Bluetooth connectivity
  • Optional DVD entertainment system with 7-inch screen
  • Optional heated steering wheel


Under the Hood
The Pathfinder is available with either a V-6 or V-8 engine. All Pathfinders have a five-speed automatic transmission. All models can have rear- or four-wheel drive, which includes automatic and low-range modes, except the LE V-8, which is four-wheel drive only. When properly equipped, the V-8 Pathfinder can tow up to 7,000 pounds; the V-6 is rated for 6,000 pounds. A tow-hitch receiver is standard. Mechanical features include:

  • 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 backup camera

 


Latest 2012 Pathfinder Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.6)
Performance
(4.6)
Interior Design
(4.1)
Comfort
(4.4)
Reliability
(4.6)
Value For The Money
(4.2)

What Drivers Are Saying

(4.0)

A great vehicle!

by Kamara?s from MD on August 10, 2018

My family of 7 can all fit in this vehicle. Everyone loves the car and can carry it all our belongings very well. Love it! Read full review

(4.0)

Happy to have it

by Me-G from Norman, OK on February 7, 2018

I bought this pathfinder used with 73300 miles on it. The pathfinder performs well especially acceleration. Lots of cargo room and storage areas. I am very pleased with this purchase. Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2012 Nissan Pathfinder currently has 2 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2012 Nissan Pathfinder has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranty

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 60,000 miles

CPO Program & Warranty

Certified Pre-Owned by Nissan

Program Benefits

24 Hour Emergency Roadside Assistance, Towing Assistance, Trip Interruption Benefits, 3-month free subscription to SiriusXM Satellite Radio on properly equipped vehicles, Complimentary CARFAX® Vehicle History Report™ and 3-Year CARFAX® Buy Back Guarantee

  • Limited Warranty

    7 years / 100,000 miles

    7-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty from original in-service date; $50 deductible
  • Eligibility

    Under 6 years / 80,000 miles

    Vehicles receive a 167 point inspection and reconditioning.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Pathfinder received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker