2017 Nissan Pathfinder Review
Pros & Cons
- V6 engine provides strong acceleration and respectable fuel economy
- User-friendly touchscreen interface comes standard on every trim
- Easily accessed third-row seat
- Robust towing capacity
- Below-average cargo capacity and small item storage
- Less third-row space than some rivals
- Platinum trim level's ride quality might be too firm for some drivers
- Automatic emergency braking safety feature available on top trim only
Edmunds' Expert Review
The Nissan Pathfinder is a better SUV to drive for 2017, with sharper steering and a suspension that keeps the Pathfinder more in control and settled when you're going around turns. Should you encounter a rolling bit of road or a big undulation in the pavement, the Pathfinder is now less likely to bob about. This is a good thing, but we also found that the ride quality suffers a bit as a result. If you're driving the Pathfinder Platinum, in particular, you're going to feel those sharp impacts when driving over rough pavement.
There's nothing but great news under the hood. Even with a load of people and/or gear aboard, the Pathfinder's revitalized V6 can accelerate you to highway speeds with relative ease. There's a newfound gutsiness to this engine, complete with a bit of a muscular growl. We also like that Nissan enhanced the CVT's simulated shift points to make it seem more like a regular automatic transmission — last year's monotonous droning noises have mostly been exorcised.
Not much has changed for the 2017 Nissan on the inside. It still offers competitive materials quality, an appealing overall design look and easy-to-use controls. One of the few interior improvements this year is a new touchscreen interface that is not only bigger but features better graphics and responses. It's one of the more user-friendly tech interfaces.
The front seats are a bit firm, and some drivers might desire more range of adjustment. The Pathfinder also isn't especially high off the ground, so we wonder if some drivers will find that it lacks the desired commanding view of the road. The second row offers a competitive amount of space and comfort, though, and we appreciate that it slides much farther forward for third-row access than most competitors can manage. You can even slide it forward with a child seat still in place. Once in the third row, though, space and comfort are merely acceptable. Teenagers and adults will be happier in a Honda Pilot or Dodge Durango.
The Pathfinder also continues to trail some of its competitors for overall utility. Up front, its center console lacks the multitude of useful storage compartments found in some rival crossovers, and its overall cargo capacity is only average, checking in at 47.8 cubic feet behind the second row and 79.8 cubic feet with both the second- and third-row seats folded.