2005 Nissan Pathfinder SE Off Road 4WD 4dr SUV (4.0L 6cyl 5A)
The issue is quality and reliability. Our time owning this vehicle was beleaguered with numerous mechanical problems, break-downs, recalls and quality issues. The vehicle had chronic fuel pump and fuel sender failures (Google and read owner blogs). This resulted in the fuel gauge not working or fuel pump failing altogether. Fuel pump issues left us stranded twice (towed to dealer both times). We replaced the sender and fuel pump 3 times while owning. We had ball bearing and CV issues in the front end. We had the car battery explode once, leaving my wife stranded (towed to dealer again). We had the transmission slip out of drive a few times and one time out of 4WD while pulling the boat out on a ramp. The ECM (electronic control module) had to be fix/replace twice. The sliding moon roof rode off its track, became jammed and had to be completely replaced. The back lift gate pistons failed to keep the back gate open. The cargo board liner came undone (I fixed myself), passenger cup holders broke off (poorly placed by design). Styling molding covers on the roof rack came off on the highway. The banding on the exhaust heat shields rusted away resulting in a metallic rattle between the exhaust pipes and heat shielding which require re-banding (I fixed myself). The underbody shows far too much rust development for a modern make, this made me concerned about the vehicles long term handling of underbody rust. 2nd row passenger AC/heat control buttons kept coming off. The paint chips and scratches easily. The interior plastics are soft, also scratch easily and the lighter tone plastics are hard to clean. The font bumper cover cracked and tore pushing through a snow drift.
2005 Pathfinder along with its successive model years is a sporty looking, rugged and capable off road vehicle. We liked the looks, versatility, 7 PAX seating, towing capability and off road performance.
Like many that choose to own SUVs we have several children, like to drive on the beach, like to get around regardless of weather conditions and pull a boat and jet skis during the summer months. The Pathfinder fits these needs well in an overall nice package.
Ride quality is lack luster. The truck resonates road noise while driving at any speed. Engine has a high rev/snarling during acceleration. The engine causes light interference in the radio speakers which makes a slight whine when the sound system is not on, this is distracting and annoying for front occupants. The cloth seats fray along the edged stitching near the doors. They dont come apart but it makes the seats look very worn prematurely.
When 4WD is engaged (high or low), truck lacks the refinement in 4WD/AWD engineering. When in 4WD the engine rev increases significantly even at idle, steering becomes considerably more harsh to manage, if you get stuck the limited slip differential/traction control actually make getting unstuck more difficult. The Pathfinder feels clumsy and handles poorly in city driving conditions.