Nissan Pathfinder Recalled Because Hood Latch Can Open Unexpectedly

There isn’t a fix yet, but owners should look out for a letter in the mail telling them what to do about the problem

2015 Nissan Pathfinder exterior Photo: John Powers/Consumer Reports

Nissan is recalling over 322,000 Pathfinder SUVs from the 2013 through 2016 model years because their hood latches may malfunction. Owners should look out for recall notices sent by mail because the letters will have important instructions on whether the car should be brought directly to a dealership, or if owners should first try to fix the problem at home.

The problem is due to dust and dirt building up on the secondary hood latch—the one that opens from outside the vehicle. If that happens, the latch may remain open. If the primary hood release (the one inside the vehicle) is opened inadvertently or if the hood isn’t shut properly, and the secondary latch isn’t working, either, the hood may open while the vehicle is in motion and could obstruct the driver’s view.

Nissan told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in a document that it does not yet have a fix for the problem. Later this week, the automaker will mail recall notification letters to what it calls a “selected sample” of 40,000 owners of recalled Pathfinders. Those owners will be told to bring their vehicles to Nissan dealers for a free inspection, and dealers will replace the secondary hood latch if it is broken. Nissan will collect and examine any broken hood latches in order to develop a fix for the problem.

Starting in early August, Nissan will send letters to all the owners of recalled vehicles, with instructions on how to inspect and clean the secondary hood latch themselves. If owners don’t feel comfortable doing this, or if their hood latch is broken, they can take their car to a dealership.

This isn’t the first time Nissan has had a problem with hood latches. The automaker also recalled the Altima sedan in 2016 and 2020 because its hood latch may malfunction due to rust.

The Details

Vehicles recalled: Nissan Pathfinder SUVs manufactured between June 20, 2012, and July 27, 2016.

The problem: Dirt and dust may build up on the secondary hood latch, causing it to stay open. If this happens and the primary hood latch is open as well, the hood may raise up and obstruct the driver’s view.

The fix: Nissan is still working on a fix for this issue.

How to contact the manufacturer: Owners may contact Nissan at 800-867-7669.

NHTSA campaign number: 22V420. Nissan’s own numbers for this recall are R22A2 and R22A3.

Check to see whether your vehicle has an open recall: NHTSA’s website will tell you whether your vehicle has any open recalls that need to be addressed.

If you plug your car’s 17-digit vehicle identification number (VIN) into NHTSA’s website and a recall doesn’t appear, it means your vehicle doesn’t currently have any open recalls. Because automakers issue recalls often, and for many older vehicles, we recommend checking back regularly to see whether your vehicle has had a recall issued.

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Head shot photo of CRO Cars CIA editor Keith Barry

Keith Barry

Despite my love for quirky, old European sedans like the Renault Medallion, it's my passion to help others find a safe, reliable car that still puts a smile on their face—even if they're stuck in traffic. When I'm not behind the wheel or the keyboard, you can find me exploring a new city on foot or planning my next trip.