Sunday, January 31, 2016

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve had the opportunity to test drive the 2016 Infiniti QX50, 2016 Equinox LTZ, and now the 2016 Pathfinder Platinum. Out of the three, the Pathfinder surprised me the most! In fact, I wasn’t even going to bother test driving it. It’s been around since 1985, I didn’t think there would be much to wow me. Boy was I in for a treat!

Let’s start by how it looks from the outside. It’s a larger SUV, 6 passenger, 20” alloy wheels; with a classic look, integrating chrome detail. I found the exterior to be quite similar to the Equinox, but more curvy and modern.

When I hopped inside I was blown away! It feels like a Land Rover with all of the leather detail and tech options. Nice leather, perforated seats, with a heating AND cooling seat option for both the driver and passenger. The second row passengers also have heated seats that they can control from the back, and they can adjust their seats for more leg room. Heated steering wheel, panoramic sunroof with a small partition in the middle, 13-speaker Bose sound system, full size plug outlets for laptops or whatever you like, 7-inch rear screens on the back of the driver and front passenger’s headrest for gaming or to watch DVDs, headphone jacks and power outlet for second row passengers, optional 4X4 and 2WD mode, around view monitor system to help you park, easy fill tire alert system, hill start assist, 5,000 pound towing capacity, great navigation program, heated side mirrors and blind spot alert… the list goes on and on! I can’t believe how much this vehicle has to offer for just under $49,000. They really thought of everything!

Unlike the Equinox that is of similar size, yet only 4 passenger, I found this vehicle much easier to park in downtown Toronto. You can see through the front much easier and the rear camera includes an overview picture as well, to assist you when backing up. Leaving much fewer blind spots. To be honest, I didn’t even realize this vehicle had two rows of back seats until I opened the trunk! It really doesn’t feel large at all from behind the wheel. It handles well around corners, just like a sedan. The Pathfinder also has a lot more power than the Equinox, but it is of course a V-6, 260 hp, so that’s to be expected. It’s great on gas; Nissan says it gets 8.9 hwy and 12.1 city L/100km. The Pathfinder is solid over bumps, just a really nice ride! Again, I felt it drove similar to a Land Rover, only less bumpy.

Unfortunately, unlike the QX50 there isn’t a button to press to lay down the back seat. You have to manually put it down and bring it back up again. Both passenger rows can be folded down flat. I think this may be my only complaint, I found it a bit hard to do.
It has a great power liftgate! You can control from inside the vehicle or by using the main fob. Just press it down to open and press down again to close. Great feature for shopping! The engine is also a push start, no key.

All in all, the 2016 Nissan Pathfinder is a great family vehicle, or for anyone who loves going off-roading and the outdoors! It definitely comes equipped with plenty of extra features to earn a “luxury vehicle” pass from me! 

Amanda Risser
New, Luxury

Vehicle Blogger

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