We bought the 2008 Pathfinder having in mind we travel to Mexico at least once a year and we needed a vehicle reliable on seriously hard roads. This one didn't disappoint. Its off road ability it's outstanding. Plenty of power for anybody and decent fuel economy. On the city, it delivers a quiet and smooth drive. With nearly 16000 miles on it, I haven't had the so much mentioned rough down shift issue other users reported. For me, it's the perfect mix.
Cargo space. Central console is well designed. Great driving experience!
I traded a 2004 Isuzu Rodeo S for my '08 Pathfinder so right off the top I was immediately impressed. The exterior styling is commanding yet sleek; great ground clearance; and I was pretty pleased that the hitch was standard on the one I bought. I've seen some Pathfinders around with these weird contoured pinstripes, but mine doesn't have that fortunately. Even for a base model I was pleased with the remote keyless entry, power windows, locks and tint. It rides much smoother than my Rodeo (and the Lincoln Aviator and Acura MDX which I've driven), but not quite as nice as the Lexus GX470. The rear seats are a bit tight, but we just put the kids back there anyway.
Exterior styling, good storage, fold flat rear seats, smooth ride, tight turning radius, fair fuel eco for an SUV of that size (I average 18 mpg)
Doors do not auto-lock when moving, rattling and LOUD wind noise when rear windows are the only ones lowered, the doors open a bit too wide and it's a stretch to close the door every time, tailgate lifts too high to open in garage; transmission "thunks" loudly when changing between gears (P, D, R)
I had to go out and drive my Pathfinder to see what everyone is talking about vis-a-vis the transmission. Basically it clunks if you go on and off the gas when travelling around 40mph. I drive with a smooth throttle foot so I never noticed it. My wife, on the other hand, drives with a continuous throttle-on-throttle-off style so I'd imagine that she would elicit that type of transmission behavior, but she would never notice it because, well, frankly she's mechanically clueless. Thankfully I drive it 90% of the time so I don't think we'll need to replace the transmission, u-joints, or rear diff anytime soon.
Heck, even with the base model you get power steering, power brakes, power windows, power mirrors, A/C, and a radio. What more do you need? We live on an island, so fancy stuff like nav is useless - we already know our way around. The only option we got was the side curtain airbags, just in case.
I wonder if Nissan could improve the fuel economy? Maybe a cylinder cutoff feature? At 3,500 miles we're averaging 18.6 and it continues to improve a little bit, but still, gas ain't getting cheaper - currently it costs us $75 to fill 'er up.