2022 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum

2022 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum

The first order of business for the 2022 Pathfinder is to bring back the sharp boxy styling of the original model.

Debuted in 1985, the Nissan Pathfinder is one of the original and longest running SUV nameplates in North America. Over the years, it has slowly morphed from a body-on-frame off-roader to a dedicated family hauler, but much of its edge was unfortunately lost along the way. When it came time for a fifth generation, Nissan vowed to bring back some of that ruggedness and we spent a week with the all-new 2022 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum to find out whether it succeeds in retracing its roots.

The overall design gets tidied up with straighter lines when compared to the previous generation, leading to a tougher overall image with a vastly different appeal. Nissan’s signature V-motion front grille is prominently displayed up front, setting the tone for the much-improved exterior design, and its designers added a set of C-shaped LED headlamps and a unique floating roof to give it a modern twist.

The Pathfinder’s interior had also received a thorough makeover to keep up with its peers. There is a nine-inch touchscreen display in the middle of an attractive gloss black trim, a new 12.3-inch customizable digital instrument cluster, and a new head-up display. We observed vivid screen resolution but the operating system could use a software update as its response was laggy. Fortunately, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity is now supported, and our tester is equipped with an optional wireless charging pad and wireless Apple CarPlay to help keep the interior free of clutter.

Materials and interior space are two of the biggest improvements from the previous generation. Most of our contact points inside are soft and the layout looks clean, and the new shifter design is one that can be mistaken as one from a German luxury crossover. There is ample of passenger space inside the 2022 Pathfinder, and for the first time ever, it can now accommodate either eight passengers through an extra third seat in the rear row, or seven comfortably with captain’s chairs in the top-of-the-line Platinum trim.

Cargo capacity is rated at 470 litres behind the third row, and expands to a generous 2,280 litres with all of the second and third row seats folded flat.

While there is lots of space in the first row, we find that ergonomics can be improved for long journeys as the power-adjustable semi-aniline leather seats are a bit too wide and flat to be supportive and the armrests are too low. It makes up for it with good ride quality thanks to a composed suspension tuning as well as acoustic laminated front glass, thicker second row glass, increased door and floor isolation, and enhancement in engine noise absorption. The front seats are climate-controlled with heat and ventilation and the steering wheel and second-row seats are heated on the Platinum trim.

All of the 2022 Nissan Pathfinders are powered by the brand’s tried-and-true 3.5-litre V6 engine that pumps out 284 horsepower and 259 lb-ft. of torque. There is one very notable change to its powertrain – an all-new ZF nine-speed automatic transmission is now tasked to deliver power to all four wheels rather than a continuous-variable transmission (CVT).

The V6 engine produces plenty of get-up-and-go power across all situations, and the Pathfinder has a linear power delivery that is comparable to other crossovers in the segment such as the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander. The nine-speed automatic gearbox is a marginal improvement over the CVT as we found its response a little lagging but certainly a step in the right direction.

Though lacking in feel, the Pathfinder’s electric steering system is light and easy to row, which helped to mask its size in the city. There is a seven-position Drive and Terrain Mode selector to adjust the Pathfinder for the suitable road condition ahead – Standard, Sport, Eco, Snow, Sand, Mud/Rut, and Tow – and we enjoyed the Sport mode for a better on-road driving dynamic.

The brakes were confidence inspiring with accurate pedal feel. Those who are looking to tow with their 2022 Nissan Pathfinder can do so up to its 6,000-pound maximum capacity – leading majority of its competition – and can get the help of a standard Trailer Sway Control feature.

To protect its occupants and their surroundings, every 2022 Nissan Pathfinder comes standard with Nissan Safety Shield 360 driver assistance suite. This includes Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning, High Beam Assist and Rear Automatic Braking. Intelligent Forward Collision Warning, Intelligent Driver Alertness, Blind Spot Intervention, Intelligent Lane Intervention and Rear Door Alert.

Pathfinder SL and Platinum trims also add the new ProPILOT Assist with Navi-Link function that combines steering assist, Intelligent Cruise Control, and navigation map data to proactively reduce speed for upcoming highway curves and exits.

The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder starts at $43,998 for the base S trim level, and our as-tested Platinum model starts at $54,598. The Platinum adds second-row captain’s seats, rain sensing wipers, wireless charging pad, 12.3-inch digital dashboard, and quilted semi-aniline leather seats over the Pathfinder SL Premium. The only option our tester had was the $950 two-tone Scarlet Ember Tintcoat and Super Black Metallic paint job which brought the as-tested total to $55,548.

When compared to the outgoing model, the new Pathfinder is about $5,000 extra across the board which is significant for a budget conscious segment. However, the increase only puts it in line with its major competitions such as the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander, and more importantly, the overall appeal is now comparable. With fresh styling, an improved powertrain, and ample interior space and towing capacity, the 2022 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum is improved from last year and is an excellent contender in the three-row crossover segment.

See Also:

2021 Honda Pilot Black Edition

2021 Toyota Highlander XSE AWD

2021 Mazda CX-9 100th Anniversary

Ben So
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