Used 2004 Nissan Pathfinder

2004 Nissan Pathfinder
List price range

Pros

  • Smooth and powerful engine, carlike driving dynamics, high-quality interior, solid reliability record, rear entertainment system option.

Cons

  • Tight rear accommodations, high price tag, no third-row seat option.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Although newer midsize SUVs offer more room and optional V8 power, the Pathfinder remains an appealing choice, thanks to its handsome interior, smooth V6 and carlike handling.

vehicle overview

Nissan's hardy Pathfinder has frequently been a good choice for seeking a new path to the premium outlet center. Though the exterior may exude that tough-guy outdoorsy image, the interior has always been comfortable enough for the dilettante woodsman who doesn't like to get his nails too dirty. The current model's last full redesign dates back to 1996. That's a long time, but Nissan has been able to keep the Pathfinder relatively fresh by making frequent updates. In 2001, the company addressed the vehicle's biggest problem -- a lack of power -- by dropping in a 250-horsepower V6 engine. The interior was also restyled, and more standard features were added. We've long admired the Pathfinder for its excellent ride and handling, further enhanced by solid unibody construction. Quality construction, supportive front seats and useful features make the interior one of the friendliest of any SUV on the market. Last year, the Pathfinder received minor updates, including a stability control system and a tire-pressure monitor. Though the Ford Explorer and Toyota 4Runner offer better overall packages, the Pathfinder still holds its own in the midsize SUV segment. It's reliable and offers an excellent compromise between a carlike ride and trucklike utility. For us, that's more than enough to warrant a solid recommendation.

trim levels & features

There are only two trim levels available: the SE and Platinum Edition. The SE includes features like 16-inch wheels, heated outside mirrors, cruise control, power windows and locks, remote keyless entry and air conditioning. On the Platinum Edition, you get those features plus 17-inch wheels, leather seats, a moonroof, power front seats, an in-dash six-disc CD changer, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, automatic climate control, electroluminescent gauges, aluminum door sill plates and special dark wood trim. Most of these features can be ordered as optional equipment for the SE. For 4WD Pathfinders, heated front seats are optional on the SE and standard on the Platinum. Both models can be ordered with a wide array of optional equipment. Highlights include an entertainment system that offers a video or DVD player and ports to plug in a gaming console. The Pathfinder can also be equipped with an XM or Sirius Satellite Radio system.

2004 Highlights

The LE models are now called Platinum Editions and include electroluminescent gauges, aluminum door sill plates and special dark wood trim. Rounding out the minimal changes for this year are three new exterior colors -- Canteen, Luminous Gold and Platinum.

performance & mpg

The Pathfinder is powered by a 3.5-liter DOHC V6 engine. It makes a stout 240 horsepower and 265 pound-feet of torque. A four-speed automatic is the only transmission. This powertrain provides plenty of power whether asked to haul sports equipment to the mountains on the weekends or merge onto freeways during rush hour commuting. The Pathfinder comes with either rear-wheel drive (2WD) or part-time four-wheel drive. Four-wheel-drive SE models get a shift-on-the-fly transfer case that can be engaged at speeds up to 50 mph. On Platinum Edition models, a more advanced automatic All-Mode four-wheel-drive system is standard. If you want to tow, the Pathfinder can handle up to 5,000 pounds.

safety

The 2003 Nissan Pathfinder comes with antilock front disc/rear drum brakes supplemented by Electronic Brakeforce Distribution. Platinum Edition models come standard with front seat-mounted side airbags and side curtain airbags. These are optional on the SE. There is also an optional stability control system that helps to prevent dangerous skids and spins. If you are planning to load up five passengers, note that the rear seat's center position has just a two-point lap belt. The IIHS gave the Pathfinder an overall rating of "Marginal," the second-lowest ranking possible, for its 40-mph frontal offset crash test. In government crash testing, the Pathfinder earned four stars (out of a possible five) for frontal impact safety and five stars for side-impact safety.

driving

The Pathfinder is easy to maneuver and pleasurable to drive on the freeway and on winding canyon roads. In the dirt, it's not as adept as some other SUVs (the Jeep Grand Cherokee comes to mind), but it is still quite capable when going off-road.

interior

The Pathfinder can haul a substantial 85 cubic feet of cargo, a surprising figure for what appears to be a relatively small vehicle. However, some of this space, in our humble opinion, should have been used to alleviate the cramped rear accommodations. There's just 31.8 inches of legroom for rear passengers, about five inches fewer than what is offered in the Ford Explorer.


Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2004 Nissan Pathfinder.

Pathfinder
BL2003, 11/29/2003
I've only had mine for 6 months, but I've had absolutely no problems. All reviews that I've read online and discussion boards indicate that the Pathfinder is an extremely reliable vehicle. 3.5 V6 also has tons of power making the vehicle really great to drive. Check with the dealer, mine came down thousands off the sticker price. This is a fantastic underrated vehicle.
Old Dog - New Life
DC, 11/4/2016
Bought this 2004 Pathy in 2016 as a reliable every day run about that would be capable of hauling almost anything short of large commercial supplies. When purchased, it had only 59k miles on it. It was a bit tired and needed some TLC. Body, paint, and interior in remarkable condition given its age. Replaced the tires, shocks and struts and had a local Nissan dealership give it a good look-over. It is one tough little SUV. The acceleration is quick, rides very comfortably and is small enough to easily park it anywhere. The only downside is the 16 - 21 mpg's. I can live with that. Great vehicle and intend to drive it until it dies, which given its low mileage, will not be any time soon.
Very happy with this truck
04cobrasc, 6/10/2015
I bought a used 2004 Pathfinder LE with 74k miles, all the bells and EXCELLENT SHAPE, really like new condition in 2012. So, 21 months later not one issue, very reliable truck and awesome in the Chicago winters after mounting a set of New Firestone Dest LE2 on all four corners. Don't understand fuel capacity?? Says it has a 21 gal tank and its never taken more than 16 at the pump?? The only thing I would change on this truck would be the 4 speed transmission! Really needs a min of a 5 speed which would much improve the fuel economy. I now have 107k miles, truck is still in excellent shape and running as strong as day one. Solid Solid no non-sense truck.
Nissan Pathfinder -
pbartunek, 11/29/2003
This is my second path finder - both have been excellent vehicles... I have owned more than 35 cars through out my life and these two have been among the most reliable and fun to drive.
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Features & Specs

MPG
14 city / 18 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Gas
240 hp @ 6000 rpm
MPG
14 city / 18 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Gas
240 hp @ 6000 rpm
MPG
15 city / 19 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Gas
240 hp @ 6000 rpm
MPG
15 city / 19 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Gas
240 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all Used 2004 Nissan Pathfinder features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Marginal

More about the 2004 Nissan Pathfinder
Used 2004 Nissan Pathfinder Overview

The Used 2004 Nissan Pathfinder is offered in the following submodels: . Available styles include SE 4WD 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 4A), LE Platinum 4WD 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 4A), LE Platinum Rwd 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 4A), and SE Rwd 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 4A).

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