This 1996 Nissan Pathfinder is my third vehicle. The first time I toke this pathfinder for a test drive i fell in love! Out of all the vehicles I have owned and driven this one is truly the best! All the build materials used don't feel cheap it all feels solid and when you close the door you can hear the quality that was put into this SUV.
My favourite feature on this vehicle is the 4X4 as the first time i went into mud with it i got out no problem in fact since this first time i have had to pull out many people and the 4X4 has never failed me yet! My other favourite part is the interior of the LE as it has fine finishes such as full leather interior and wood grain dash panels which make for a "classy" interior.
The only thing i think that should have been improved upon is the steering wheel, as it is almost to thin and is not the comfiest steering wheel to hold onto for long trips. That being said if you put a nice steering wheel cover on it you are good to go!
At almost $4.00 a gallon, I'm driving it less and less. I was riding home from work this winter in the dark and enjoying the Christmas lights at 20 degrees (Fahrenheit) from the back of my even-more-ancient Yamaha.
But, mpg aside, when I do drive my 96 Pathfinder, I have an absolute sense of confidence. At 16 years old with only 95000 on the odometer, I think I could get another 16 out of it. Nothing has gone wrong with the vehicle since I have owned it (second owner). Recently, at about 90000 miles, I replaced the timing belt and water pump just because it was time. Most of the exhaust system was rotted away this year. $400 later, with a shiny new exhaust, we're still just rolling along.
Favorite feature is the bombproof nature of the vehicle. Utter reliability without any doubts. I am thinking about driving the James Bay Road and Trans-Taiga road (Look them up.) this Summer, or maybe next I have no questions about this cars ability on the pavement or off.
Well, it's waaaay too late to improve this particular model, but gas was cheap and Nissan didn't give a hoot about mpg apparently. Also, Nissans have always had a reputation for rusting away. At my Pathfinder's age and mileage, I'm surprised that there is not much rust at all. 96 was the first year for unibody construction and better quality steel. If you're contemplating buying one of these you don't
have to worry about the horror stories of rusty frames breaking in half when you are on a bumpy road.
This car is part of the family. The '96, my wife's vehicle, currently has over 243,000 miles on it. Over the past 6 months a few things need attention but overall this SUV has been a pleasure to own. I do not have one complaint other than the MPG, but I can deal with that knowing I always had a vehicle I could count on. We recently purchased a Honda and I have having a hard time parting ways. Great SUV, built solid and tickled to death that I have able to own a vehicle I could believe in.
Owned it from new! gave her a name then and Jenny has never let me down.. until last week! she and a Dodge ram got into a tiff.. But thats ok cause Jenny is in getting a 4800 facelift.. one of the best trucks i have ever owned i use it for work to fire hall. in northern ontario she has no problem going through 3 feet of snow! belts, brakes and wipers and tires.. and struts but that cheap if you do it your self! $400 bucks..
4X4, leather heated seats still work 12 years later..385,000 kms!!!!!!!
I bought my Pathfinder in 99 with 34000 miles on it. Now, almost 10 years later, it has 170,000. By far the best vehicle I've ever owned. The only non-maintenance items were a manifold, that Nissan covered, and rear suspension bushings. Otherwise, the Pathfinder drives like it did the day I bought it. Fabulous reliability!