With this iteration, the long-running Pathfinder was transformed from a truck-based workhorse into a softer, gentler, car-based SUV with three rows and seven seats. The enlarged interior and easier access moved it closer to a family-friendly minivan substitute. But we found the Pathfinder to be a little too much like a minivan.
Alerts
There are 3 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
NA
2001
NA
2002
NA
2003
NA
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
NA
2007
NA
2008
NA
2009
NA
2010
NA
2011
NA
2012
NA
2013
2014
2015
2016
NA
2017
2018
2019
NA
2020
NA
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
NA
2001
2002
NA
2003
NA
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
NA
2007
NA
2008
2009
NA
2010
NA
2011
NA
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
2020
NA
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS standard. Side air bags available from 1999, standard from 2003. Head protection air bags available from 2003, standard from 2009. ESC available from 2003, standard from 2005.
Road Test

With this iteration, the long-running Pathfinder was transformed from a truck-based workhorse into a softer, gentler, car-based SUV with three rows and seven seats. The enlarged interior and easier access moved it closer to a family-friendly minivan substitute. But we found the Pathfinder to be a little too much like a minivan. It's practical but really boring to drive and no longer capable of the off-road ruggedness and substantial towing capacity of the old vehicle.

While it handles most of the everyday-driving basics pretty well, the Pathfinder doesn't stand out from the pack. It has a pretty good ride, decent power and straightforward controls. The second row can slide forward to clear a path to the third row. Kids will probably like the two-person third row seating just fine. Adults won't be comfortable there though, so this isn't a great choice for car-pooling grownups. Furthermore, mounting child seats can be a bit of a chore.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear, 2 third
Drive Wheels
4WD , Front
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • CVT
Engines Available
  • 3.5-liter V6 (260 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2015 Nissan Pathfinder owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"Sunroof had to be adjusted. Also while driving sunroof has wind noise so cover needs to be closed while driving"

Anonymous, IL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"The stripping associated with the luggage rack came loose and had to be reinstalled. Currently there is a similar sound (rubber in wind) that I can't tell if it's the luggage rack stripping again or maybe the door stripping"

Patricia S., MS (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)

"Weather stripping comes loose and flaps around in the wind when driving. Also when the weather gets cold the door do not close unless you slam them very hard. The dealership’s response is the grease the doors which does nothing."

Oliver B., MB (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Squeaks or rattles

"center consul is squeaking"

Morgan W., SK (2015 Nissan Pathfinder)

"Very noisy out of the rear portion of this auto. Reminds me of my 1968 Ford with a 428 cu in engine"

Charles P., CT (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"local dealer found source of squeak, a loose underbody bracket, and fixed it under the warranty."

Anonymous, MI (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"Sun roof cover squeaks incessantly, not loud but we find ourselves frequently wedging a foreign object into the cover to eliminate the squeaking."

Anonymous, CA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"There is a noise coming from the passenger side door area. There doesn't seem to be anything loose, but we've been unable to discover/fix the rattle."

John S., NY (2015 Nissan Pathfinder S 3.5-L V6)
Wind noise

"find it very noisy when it is windy"

Morgan W., SK (2015 Nissan Pathfinder)

"Windy response is noticeable and irritating after a while. I get to dump this car in a year and can't wait"

Charles P., CT (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Backup or other camera/sensors

"Had a blind spot sensor replaced by dealer. New one worsk fine"

Anonymous, GA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"The back up camera fails intermittently It goes from clear to foggy. The dealer told me it must fail completely to be replaced."

Michael C., PA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)
CD player

"CD player quit. Dealer wanted $2500 to replace the entire center console. We found private repair shop who fix it for $50. The read head stuck against the stop. HE pushed it loose and has worked ever since. This, by the way, prevented the loading of new GPS maps. So the GPS system was becoming obsolete."

Anonymous, MD (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Display screen difficult to see

"Sun"

Anonymous, HI (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
External music device interface (e.g., smart phone, MP3 player)

"hard to use, doesn't play well with Iphone, old tech. New cars should have a better system than this"

Anonymous, HI (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
In-dash navigation system (GPS)

"Navigation system had to be replaced. New one works great"

Anonymous, GA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Routine software updates

"Considering that the navigation system is installed and updated at the time of build it is usually not current when it is bought and may be as much as a year out of date. There should be at least one update available after the first year of driving."

Robert M., ON (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

"Nissan contacted us and replaced trans under warranty"

James C., NC (2015 Nissan Pathfinder 3.5-L V6)

"There is a tweeting noise in the transmission when slowing down. The vehicle has been worked on twice; once for a protracted period of time. The noise is still there and we were told by the local Nissan dealer that Nissan engineers said it was within specifications. It is very annoying and might put us off re-buying that brand of SUV."

Robert M., ON (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

"Due to the transmission slipping we had to have our transmission replaced. Luckily, we were still within our warranty period, so it was no cost to us. Unfortunately, we were still within our warranty period, which means the truck was basically still brand new! We tried to lemon this car out, but it didn't pass the test. We will be trading this car in for a new one (different make and model) soon."

Anonymous, TN (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"CVT transmission shudders, and prevents smooth acceleration"

Anonymous, FL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"Had the vehicle checked several times over the past 3 yearsfor improper shifting. Finally the dealership admitted the transmission was faulty & required a complete rebuild."

William H., LA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"transmission starting slipping during long drive. Barley made it back to dealer. Dealer could not replicate problem. Had to drive for another week until the transmission completely went. Stopped dead in the road and had to be pushed out of traffic. Dealer was awful. Transmission replaced."

Anonymous, PA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Rough shifting

"From the day I owned the vehicle I reported rough & improper shifting. Dealerships just said the computer need to be calibrated. Problem remained until Nissan admitted that model of transmission was faulty"

William H., LA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"no"

Anonymous, CO (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)
Slipping transmission

"When trying to accelerate the engine would rev but the transmission would chunk along until it caught then it would respond. This is NOT good if an evasive maneuver is required."

Anonymous, TN (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"Belts in trans slipping"

Mark W., VA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Transmission computer

"car would not accellerate. Brake switch failure and firmware upgrade"

Anonymous, FL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)

"Soft ware update for shifting."

Anonymous, (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

4WD/AWD components

"At very slow sustained speeds the vehicle would buck"

Anonymous, TN (2015 Nissan Pathfinder 3.5-L V6)
Driveline vibration

"Worn out U-Joints"

Anonymous, VT (2015 Nissan Pathfinder S 3.5-L V6)
Driveshaft or axle

"Vibration from worn U-Joints"

Anonymous, VT (2015 Nissan Pathfinder S 3.5-L V6)
Electrical failure

"break switch failure and computer firmware upgrade. Car would not accellerate"

Anonymous, FL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)

"Electrical connection to the mag drive loose caused intermittent operation and eventual broken connection"

Douglas H., OH (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Cooling fan

"Had it replaced twice."

Anonymous, NY (2015 Nissan Pathfinder)

"The bearings failed and made a noise. I learned that it is a common problem with this model/fan. Due to the fan failure, I was unable to use the vehicle until the fan was replaced. Otherwise I could have over-heated the engine, causing significant damage."

John S., NY (2015 Nissan Pathfinder S 3.5-L V6)

"$60 cooling fan bearing noise. They charged my wife $1500 to replace 2 fans and the shroud rather then replacing the $60 fan that is available at Autozone. They did not offer any alternative to $1500"

Anonymous, MD (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Radiator

"One of the fans started making a pinging noise, turns out it was one of the fans that needed to be replaced."

Anonymous, AZ (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"Rubber trim around back windows coming completely off car"

Anonymous, MA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder 3.5-L V6)

"Weather stripping came off"

Anonymous, ON (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)
Loose interior trim or moldings

"Trim loose and sun visor broke"

Stan S., AL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

"Headliner falling off"

Anonymous, FL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Blower (fan) motor

"Fan Assembly bearing failed with the left fan."

Jarrard B., TX (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

"Slowly increase in noise whenever A/C or heat tuned on which was the result of a cooling fan issue. Turns out that this problem is common in this vehicle and Nissan knows about it but will not cover the replacement cost of over $1400. Nissan’s attitude will likely drive me away from this brand next time I am shopping."

Oliver B., MB (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Condenser

"It was making a horrible noise when the AC was on"

Stephanie D., TX (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Engine computer

"Computer died after two weeks. Had to be completely replaced"

Anonymous, CA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)
Oil leaks

"pan gasket leaking. Not in stick and had to be ordered. dealer lprovided loaner car for two weeks"

Timothy R., NM (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Shocks or struts

"Faulty seals on shocks"

Anonymous, ON (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)
Steering linkage (includes rack and pinion)

"Bad joint in the steering colum"

Anonymous, NY (2015 Nissan Pathfinder S 3.5-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Antilock system (ABS)

"The abs system malfunctioned which cause swooshing noise when brakes were applied and also caused pedal to travel further than usual. The Nissan dealer spent 3 weeks working on it and ended up replace all major components of the brake system"

John C., NC (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)
Rotors

"I have owned Nissan's for over 30 years and this Pathfinder is no different when it comes to pulsating rotors. After 25000 miles a distinct vibration comes when applying the brakes. The dealer will either cut or replace at no charge under warranty. You would think after all these years of using subpar steel it would make sense to make a better rotor. They should upgrade to a better rotor. I've had my rotors replaced over a dozen times over the years."

Michael C., PA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Tailgate, hatch or trunk

"The hatch tend to close immediately after opening"

Mike F., SC (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Other/unsure

"Rear blind spot warning system just didn't work. Failure light appeared on dash. Turned system off with a switch but it comes back on (failed) when car restarted."

Anonymous, IL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SL 3.5-L V6)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

"Took car to dealer for correction of factory recall"

Anonymous, AL (2015 Nissan Pathfinder SV 3.5-L V6)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"Left Brakelight bulb burned out"

Anonymous, VA (2015 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 3.5-L V6)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

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