First Drive: Redesigned 2022 Nissan Pathfinder Is a Modern Take on the Original Truck

    This roomy and comfortable three-row SUV is packed with standard safety systems

    2022 Nissan Pathfinder Photo: John Powers/Consumer Reports

    Update: Since this first drive was originally published in June, 2021, we finished testing the Nissan Pathfinder.
    See the complete 2022 Nissan Pathfinder road test.

    The redesigned 2022 Nissan Pathfinder is meant to reignite consumer interest in its three-row SUV, which over the past few generations has become overshadowed by newer and better midsized SUVs.

    When it debuted way back as a 1987 model, the Pathfinder was a blocky two-door, five-seat option in the burgeoning sport utility vehicle market. It promised the go-anywhere capabilities of a truck with family-friendly features like reclining second-row seats. I know, because my family owned one of the first ones in New Jersey. It covered tens of thousands of miles on family road trips, in addition to serving as my dad’s commuter vehicle and a snow blower hauler each winter for my driveway cleaning business.

    With this redesign, Nissan has gone back to the squared-off styling of that original. But that’s where any similarity ends. This new Pathfinder is a major step forward from the previous-generation SUV it’s replacing—let alone the one from 35 years ago.

    More on Three-Row SUVs

    While CR was waiting to buy a new Pathfinder when they become available at dealers, we rented a top-line Platinum trim version from Nissan to get some time behind the wheel. (We have since purchased and tested a Pathfinder. See the complete road test.)

    All Pathfinders come with a 284-hp, 3.5-liter V6 engine that’s mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. Both front- and all-wheel drive are available.

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    What we rented: 2022 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4WD
    Powertrain: 284-hp, 3.5-liter V6 engine; 9-speed automatic transmission; all-wheel drive
    MSRP: $48,090 Options: Lighting package (illuminated kick plates and welcome lighting) $795; captain’s chair floor mats $255
    Total options: $1,010 Destination fee: $1,150
    Total cost: $50,290

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