Redesigned, 8-seater 2022 Nissan Pathfinder gains throwback looks, smart innovations

Chris Teague

Chris Teague

Nissan introduced the redesigned Nissan Pathfinder today.

The fifth-generation Nissan Pathfinder was revealed today wearing throwback looks with an interior chocked full of innovation and modern technology. As ever, it remains a family-friendly staple of the Nissan lineup.

The new Nissan Pathfinder was inspired by the original Nissan Pathfinder. That doesn’t mean that it’s a square-bodied relic. Quite the contrary. All-new from the ground up, the Pathfinder is designed to look rugged and aggressive, saying a firm farewell to the bubble-like body of its predecessor. At the front is Nissan’s new take on the V-motion grille and the company’s new logo with C-shaped standard LED headlights on either side with upper daytime running lights. It looks a lot like the Armada.

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The SUV’s grille is reminiscent of that on the new Armada.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The side of the vehicle reveals a two-tone paint job, a first for Pathfinder, with the shape of the steel giving the Pathfinder a muscular identity. Nissan will offer the Pathfinder in a total of 14 color combinations including five new two-tone treatments. The Pathfinder shown today is wearing Scarlet Ember body paint with a Super Black Metallic roof.

Circling around the back, the eye catches slim taillights with an elongated “Pathfinder” across the tailgate.

The 2022 Pathfinder will be offered in S, SV, SL, and Platinum trim levels. Depending on the trim level, the Pathfinder rides on 18- or 20-inch wheels.

Under the hood of the three-row SUV is a 284-horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 engine that yields 259 pound-feet of torque – that’s unchanged for the new generation. Nissan has paired the engine with a new nine-speed automatic transmission. That’s right, no more continuously variable transmission (CVT). Fuel economy numbers are expected to remain about the same for the new model.

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The design of the new Pathfinder is inspired by the original Pathfinder.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

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Two-wheel drive is standard on the new Pathfinder. Nissan will sell the model with available Intelligent 4WD with a seven-position Drive and Terrain Mode Selector. Drive modes include Standard, Sport, Eco, Snow, Sand, Mud/Rut, and Tow.

The 2022 Pathfinder has a 6,000-pound towing capacity when properly equipped, which is better than the Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander, Kia Telluride, and Honda Pilot. A 3,5000-pound capacity is standard. Like on the 2022 Nissan Frontier, Trailer Sway Control is also standard.

In front of the driver is an available 12.3-inch fully digital information cluster, which first appeared in the 2021 Rogue. A 10.8-inch head-up display is available as well and can offer turn-by-turn directions. An 8.0-inch infotainment touch screen is standard and a 9.0-inch screen is available for the center stack. It sits above revised climate controls that cleanly simplify operation of the vehicle.

An electronic shifter, just like the one in the Rogue, sits next to the SUV’s cup holders, an electronic parking brake lever, drive mode selector, and an easy-to-reach button that shuts off the engine’s auto start/stop functionality.

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The interior of the Armada has been refined and offers additional soundproofing.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

As show in a high trim level, the Pathfinder offers a near-premium in-cabin experience. Seats are wrapped in standard woven cloth but buyers can upgrade to leather or premium quilted semi-aniline leather-appointed seats. Brushed bronze metallic accents are features in the cabin of the model shown and are part of one of the seven interior schemes available. There is new ambient lighting.

Nissan has improved the interior noise level of the Pathfinder for the new model year adding acoustic laminated front glass, thicker second-row glass, increased door and floor isolation, and a 60-percent increase in engine noise absorption.

Pathfinder seats up to eight people, including the ability to fit three adults across the back row. Captain’s chairs are available for the second row and the center console of that row can be quickly removed using no tools. The standard second-row bench seat features one-touch release fold and slide functionality that allows car seats to remain in place on both the driver and passenger sides. The third row features 60/40 split-folding capability.

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The three-row SUV now has seating for eight.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

There is 16.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row. The rear cargo area of the Pathfinder can accommodate a 120-quart cooler or four golf bags with all three rows up. With the third-row folded, there is 45 cubic feet of cargo space and with the second- and third-row folded there’s 80.5 cubic feet. Those numbers are all an improvement on the outgoing generation’s. The SUV can carry 4×8-foot sheets of plywood with no problem, according to the manufacturer.

Nissan has given the Pathfinder standard NissanConnect technology with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Available features include 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, climate controlled front seats, tai-zone automatic climate control, heated rear seats, a Wi-Fi hot spot, wireless smartphone charter, wireless Apple CarPlay, a 13-speaker Bose Premium Audio system, NissanConnect Services, navigation, and an upgraded 360-degree camera view.

Nissan is making ProPilot Assist available on Pathfinder SV and SL. It combines steering assist and adaptive cruise control to control acceleration, braking, and steering on the highway. The top-tier Pathfinder Platinum upgrades to ProPilot Assist with Navi-Link, which was just introduced on the Rogue. It combines the driving assistance tech with navigation map data to further automate the driving experience.

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Wireless Apple CarPlay is available on the new model.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

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Nissan Safety Shield is standard on the Pathfinder. It’s a suite of technology that includes automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, high beam assist, and rear automatic braking. Blind Spot Intervention, Intelligent Lane Intervention, a seat-mounted supplemental airbag, and traffic sign recognition technology is available.

Pricing for the model is not yet available. It will go on sale this summer.

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