A new V6 engine in the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder produces 284 horsepower, up from the previous engine’s 260 horsepower. (Manufacturer photo)

A new V6 engine in the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder produces 284 horsepower, up from the previous engine’s 260 horsepower. (Manufacturer photo)

Slick new V6 engine, safety updates boost Nissan Pathfinder

The SUV’s extensive redesign boosts towing capacity and adds driver assistance technology.

Nissan’s Pathfinder was one of the earliest SUVs, back when they were all truck-based and laden with heavy off-road equipment, remember?

Along with most other SUVs from that time, the Pathfinder became a car-based crossover. Its emphasis now is on practicality, functionality, comfort, convenience and transportation for families, and less on off-road performance. Nevertheless, Pathfinder’s current all-wheel drive system is sophisticated and highly capable.

For 2017, Pathfinder’s exterior is extensively redesigned to great effect, and it has a slick new 3.5-liter V6 engine delivering 284 horsepower (a 24-horsepower increase over the previous engine) and 259 lb-ft of torque. Towing capacity has been boosted to 6,000 pounds, and assorted new features and driver assistance technologies have been added.

Pathfinder has three rows of seats and is available in S, SV, SL and Platinum trim levels. All models can be had with two-wheel or four-wheel drive, with pricing starting at $30,890 including a $900 destination charge.

My tester was the mother of all 2017 Nissan Pathfinders, the Platinum 4WD with a richly appointed interior encapsulating an impressive number of premium comfort and convenience features usually enjoyed only by those who spend a lot more money than this on a large SUV.

Stowage space is the only area where extravagance isn’t in evidence inside the Pathfinder. But the Pathfinder interior excels in other thoughtful ways, such as having visor extenders, a large odometer reset button located in an obvious place, a generous amount of room for first and second row passengers, and close to zero unwanted noise.

It wouldn’t hurt the infotainment system to be more intuitive. The 8-inch display and its graphics and controls are great, and I managed some of the basic functions without having to spend the rest of my life with the owner’s manual, but this infotainment system rates medium on my loveability scale.

The new V6 engine is a powerhouse. Paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), it’s as smooth and competent as can be. City/highway/combined fuel economy is rated 19/26/21 mpg.

Blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, intelligent cruise control, and forward emergency braking are some of the driver assistance systems that are standard on the Platinum model.


Base price, including destination charge: $44,460

Price as driven: $44,685

Mary Lowry is an independent automotive writer who lives in Snohomish County. She is a member of the Motor Press Guild, and a member and past president of the Northwest Automotive Press Association. Vehicles are provided by the manufacturers as a one-week loan for review purposes only. In no way do the manufacturers control the content of the reviews.

Talk to us

More in Life

Alaina Livingston, a teacher at Silver Firs Elementary School, receives her Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine on March 6 in Everett. (Olivia Vanni / Herald file)
COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy: Understandable and irrational

Surveys show swaths of Americans are reluctant or flat out refuse to get one of the three authorized vaccines.

salmonberries. Getty Images
What to look for when picking wild berries native to our area

You can find nutritious huckleberries, salmonberries, salal, dewberries, thimble berries and more.

Owners Newton and Naomi Kellogg opened the Ulysses Coffee cafe on April 24. (Kira Erickson / South Whidbey Record)
South Whidbey’s abuzz over couple’s new coffee shop

The owners of Ulysses Coffee Co. drive-thru in Bayview have opened a sit-down cafe in Langley.

A primer on the health advantages of eating whole grains

Brown rice, whole grain pasta, oatmeal, popcorn and whole wheat bread offer whole-grain goodness.

Lo mein noodles tossed in a spicy peanut sauce get an extra boost from tender chunks of chicken. (Gretchen McKay/Post-Gazette/TNS)
Eat This: Chicken lo mein with spicy peanut sauce

This Thai-inspired noodle dish is a winner because it comes together in a flash — and is so full of flavor.

National suicide rate shows decline, but not all are benefiting

The number of deaths has dropped 5.6% in the last year, but suicides for people of color and youth are still high.

Josh Otusanya, 27, former Lake Stevens high soccer star turned comedian, has 4.6 million followers on TikTok for his inspirational videos from his family's home. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
A funny local TikToker with 5M followers offers life hacks

Josh Otusanya, a Lake Stevens soccer star turned New York comedian, reinvented himself in his family’s basement.

George Vasil, author of “The Lance,” in his home office in Arlington. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Arlington author explores an era of forgiveness and redemption

The plots of George Vasil’s novels unfold amid Byzantine Empire power struggles.

The 2021 Toyota GR Supra two-seat sports car is available in six-cylinder and four-cylinder versions. (Manufacturer photo)
Toyota makes significant changes to GR Supra for 2021

The six-cylinder model gets even more horsepower, and there’s a new turbo four-cylinder version.

Most Read