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Nissan Pathfinder



  • phil47phil47 Posts: 394
    When you say you "keep the steering wheel straight", do you mean you are holding the steering wheel level and the truck goes left? If so, it may be the steering wheel which is off-center (not uncommon) and not an alignment problem. I had mine straightened at the first scheduled maintenance and it hasn't been a problem since.

    If it is pulling hard left w/o significant input from you on the steering wheel, that's a problem.
  • I've always thought my 2001 LE was a little jolting driving through dips in the road or speed bumps, but always chalked it up to it being a truck/SUV. My old Jeep Grand Cherokee was no better. But after reading the many posts regarding this issue, I finally took my PF in to the Nissan dealer and gave the service adviser the related TSB #'s regarding the bottoming out issue as well as the temperature display being inaccurate. He ordered the parts and a few days later both issues have been resolved. What a difference in the suspension! The drive over bumps in the road are much more tolerable and my temp display is fairly accurate. Additionally, I've not experienced the alignment issue as some of you people have. I have 14K on the odometer and have had the tires rotated pulling or shimmy problem here. While waiting for my PF, poked around the show room and saw a dark blue Murano...very nice and a eye catcher it is! But IMHO, like my traditional boxy looking PF over the Murano or RX300 any time.
  • pathstarpathstar Posts: 201
    Just took my 2001 LE into the dealer for the first time (dreaded "Service Engine Soon" light). I waited a month to see if it was the gas cap - it wasn't. Both oxygen sensors were bad. Was told it was a common fault - too much sulpher in the fuel. There is a TSB on it. I was worried they would charge me as when I first checked with them, they said it would cost me $37.50 to connect it to the "Consult II" system to read the code, and that I should make sure it wasn't the gas cap. It ended up no charge. The warrenty is worth something! So, first dealer service at 28,000 km. Not bad I guess.

    While there I test drove the Murano. Neat vehicle. Lots of storage compartments. Kind of different to accelerate with the engine RPM staying constant. Nice engine braking too, if you shift to the "S" mode. I like it. Just have to justify the rather large cost of trading up. It is not an "off-road" vehicle of course, just a very capable 4WD passenger vehicle. I would guess it would be more suitable than the Pathfinder for perhaps 70% of SUV owners as most never take their vehicle off-road ;-).
  • Wow!!, I really like it. This is the vehicle I was really looking for.I ust say that I'm very, very happy with my PF. I was looking for a dependable cargo hauler and did not want a minivan.I've hauled alot of stuff in it and have even used it for a few off road excursions and curb jumpings so I definetly made some use of it's capabilitites. Our first choice was the Highlander but and maybe this will give a little comfort to world traveler, Toyotas makes excellent vehicles but I think you pay a premium on them. I mean you don't get a lot of extras for the money. Buying the PF has given me a lot respect for Nissan. It has just as good build quality,they treat you nice and are great value for the money. I'm sure that the 03 PF content is a lot higher than the 03 4Runner for the money. Especially as the PF has a lot of discounts. I know it's an older design but on a truck it doesn't seem as important. I've seen some early 90's PF and still think they are nice looking.
    Back to the Murano,
    The interior is gorgeous and luxurious, could pass for a marquis nameplate. The exterior reminds me of a life size Hot Wheels car. Ride was smooth and quiet even with gigantic 18 in. wheels. Funny thing,test drive did remind me of my PF just more car-like.Back seats are extremely roomy and comfortable.Murano's cargo area is noticeably smaller. Any one used to a PF would be right at home in a Murano and since I'm not a boulder hopper like some of you nor do I live in a place with alot of precipation, I think the Murano suit me to a T. Just gotta figure out how to trade in my 02 PF and not get reamed.

    Happy Pathfinding !!!

  • I recently purchased a 02 PF LE of which it doesn't have the latch brackets. Does anyone know if Nissan offers a latch bracket that can be installed or if there is any aftermarket latch bracket.

    Also, wanted to know if anyone is using a Britax R/A car seat with the tether. If so where are you connecting the tether when using it in the rear facing position?

  • Any suggestions or recommendations on aftermarket hitch packages for the Pathfinder. I am looking for something I can install myself.
  • I am seriously considering terminating my lease early on my 2002 Pathfinder SE.

    When I was looking at the Pathfinder to replace my 98 Pathfinder SE, I did not do much research. I just went into the dealership, said I wanted a SE w/ Sunroof and Pop Package. I took a quick test drive, the papers were then signed and that was it.

    I saw the new roof rack on it, I wasn't crazy about it, but I still took it. I thought that the LE was much more expensive, but I did not know the differences, nor the fact that it was roughly within $500 of a SE w/ S/R and Pop.

    But for the extra $500 you get so much more. The most important thing I did not know about was the fact that it had a different 4WD system. Instead of the lever and part time it had an Auto 4wd system. Since I stay on the road about 99.9% of the time, this would have been great, especially in the rain, where you can't use 4wheel drive, but sometimes you need it when going around corners, etc where you can fishtail and spin your wheels.

    Also, it did not have the roof rack that came on my Pathfinder and it had nicer 17" Alloy Wheels.

    I wish I would have known, but it was too late.

    I am 7 months into my lease, I think I want to get rid of it though. Does anyone have any advice?

    I know that the Pathfinders are being discounted greatly now, so its possible I could get a good deal on a LE, the only problem being that Leather is now standard (and thus $2,000 more). However, I have seen dealers advertise Invoice, and I could probably even get it below that, so it shouldn't be that bad.

    My only concern is terminating my lease. Does anyone know NMAC's policy, or how much of a hit I am going to take, etc, etc.

    Thanks for listening.
  • I bought a Valley hitch that was designed to fit Pathfinders. It was recommended by a friend who works for NAPA. He further recommended that I get it from Pep Boys Auto Parts. The whole thing worked out quite nicely.
    Also-- I had developed a pull to the right, and suspected the tires. I got a realignment and a set of Cooper Discoverer H/T tires for this 1998 XE. The cure has happened. There is no trace of pull.
  • Sorry to hear you want to get rid of your 02 PF. I have a 02 SE 2wd Pop Pkg no SR and love it. I actually liked it over the LE because of the roof racks ,which I think create less wind noise, and side rails.

    If I were you I would try to find out what the buyout price is. You can usually get this from the finance co. via automated tele. call and try to see if you can sell it on your own. Hopefully you put enough down so the payoff is close to wholesale price. There are also companies around that will assist you in getting out of leases. Can't remember the name but there is one in San Diego. Sorry for all the holes in my info but there was an article on Edmund's web site about turning in and selling your leased car early. The story was for a Nissan P/U leased through NMAC. Maybe this board host can help?

    I bet the dealer would love to sell you another PF. Sometimes they try to break even on the trade if they make money on the new car sale. The reason I bought my PF was because they pretty much took my Accord 4 months prior to its lease end. See what they offer you have nothing to lose and can easily walk away if the price is not right. My Accord payoff was 13,400 and they offered 11,200 at first. They knew we were going to wait a few months and buy the Highlander and they then offered us 13,200. BTW Toyota would even consider taking my car.

    I also wouldn't mind selling my PF and getting a Murano. I paid cash for my PF and I think if I turn it in now I would lose about 8,500--- purchase price with tax&lisc. 28,500 turn in price 20,000, for 9 months of use. I still like my PF quite a lot and I think I'll hold onto it for awhile. Excluding the AWD system it might be cheaper to get new rims and roof rack?
    Good luck!!!

    Happy Pathfinding!!!

  • Funny how opinions vary on the roof racks. I love the rack on my 2002 SE. I have hauled two kayaks around on this thing from Lake Placid to North Carolina, attached a cargo pod to it, Christmas trees, all kinds of stuff. If I had bought an LE I would have tried to exchange for this rack! The ONLY thing I find negative is that you lose a bit of sky through the sunroof due to the fairing, which you'd think they could offer in a clear or tint... but that's it. I think the big crossrails give you a lot to work with if you're someone who really uses the rack.

    All personal taste, I know, but I get a lot of comments and compliments on that rack as well from people with MDXs and the like with the looks-not-function racks...
  • Thanks both for your reply. The rack and wheels are just minor reasons for my looking to get rid of the SE. Mainly, it is the AWD system. If I did not find out that the LE had one after I had leased my SE, I probably would not care at all. But since I found out a few months after, thats what made me want to change for that.

    I saw in the members photo's section that someone with a Se did put on a Le rack. I don't think I am going to change mine however, I don't mind the rack too much.

    Again, with the wheels, just a minor thing, I wouldn't buy them to switch, like I said, it is really the AWD system that I want, and the only way to get it is an LE.

    This brings up an interesting question. Why is Nissan not offering the AWD system on the SE as well? In 2002, the LE and SE were pretty much the same cost (when comparing a SE w/ S/R and Pop) to a LE w/o Leather. Of course in 2003 the Leather is required.

    But if there wasn't much of a difference, I wonder why they are doing this. To me, it puts the Pathfinder at a disadvantage to the competition. The 4runner has a full time 4wd system (can be used on dry roads), and many others do. I think the Pathfinder SE must be one of the last mid-size SUV's with a part time system.

    Its just a lesson I learned, I have to do more research before I purchase my next vehicle.

    If I were to buy it out, I would get reamed I am pretty sure. With the way the Pathfinders are discounted, I am sure that if I choose the same configuration on a 2003 SE I could get it for 2K less, and then you have to factor in its a 02, has some miles on it (only 10k), but with the way the market is, I probably wouldn't get more than 22K on it.
  • Interesting how Nissan packages for the US market. Here in Canada all automatic transmission PF's have had the auto AWD system since 2001.As far as I know the Chilkoot edition 5 speed is the only PF to still have the lever on the floor 4hi/4lo system.
  • Just a reminder that while the Auto-mode is nice to have for driving around town in crappy weather, its still not something that is supposed to be used on the highway when you are going over 60+ mph (since it drops from RWD into 4-HI). Personally I dont think it would be that big of a deal to use the shift lever. It certainly wouldnt be worth losing a great deal of money on IMO. Instead if you are bent on trading in, you'd probably be happier with the true AWD system in the new Murano.
  • Are you sure about this? I know there's been a discussion about not using auto mode over 70 MPH but I was under the impression that auto applied various amounts of power between the front and rear wheels as needed while 4Hi had the centre diff locked with a 50/50 split.My owners manual says not to engage or use 4Hi on dry pavement or above 80KPH(approx 50MPH).It makes no mention of a speed restriction on Auto mode.It's probably not a major issue.If conditions are slippery enough to need 4WD you shouldn't be going that fast anyway.
  • Hi,

    Im looking to sell my model year 2001 SE 4WD and
    am curious to what people are really getting. I
    think that these numbers that edmunds has are way
    high, as much as I would like to believe them.
  • phil47phil47 Posts: 394
    The AWD system is one of the major reasons why I traded in my 2000 PF LE for a 2001 PF LE (well...that and the new engine!).

    The AWD system is quite advanced and does distribute torque as needed between the front and rear differentials (up to 50/50). It does not lock the center differential unless you choose 4Hi (or 4Lo). While driving in the city with the former part-time 4wd system, I found it a royal pain to always remember to take it out of 4wd when going from slippery to dry conditions then back to slippery conditions (ie. in and out of a parking garage onto snow covered streets). Now I just leave it in AWD until a long spell of dry weather is expected.
  • Just wanted to let you all know that we just took our '02 LE on it's first 700 mile road trip. Such a pleasure! Smooth the entire trip. And talk about room, so convenient to have the cooler in the back, and all the luggage, and stuff you have to take, all out of the way. It actually didn't do too bad on gas mileage, we got about 330 miles to the tank, and averaged between 70-80 miles per hour. Is this on track with everyone else??
  • mazadimazadi Posts: 26
    I used a Britax, rear facing, with the tether in my Pathfinder. Our Britax came with a little secondary loop for the tether. I used that little loop to put around the track of the front seats. It's a tight fit, but it seemed to work pretty well.
    On another note, our neighbor recently took their car seat in to make sure it was installed correctly. The inspector told them that they recommend the tethers not be used on rear facing seats. You might want to look into that.
  • Well my info is really coming from a discussion a few weeks back where a LE Owner contacted Nissan and was told by the head technician that if the car slips in auto-mode and you are going faster than the recommended 4WD-Hi max speed that you may damage your vehicle. I for one was NOT happy to hear this since this information is not in the manual. I would _love_ to be proven wrong as a matter of fact.
  • intmed99intmed99 Posts: 485
    Isn't it on a Nissan car overseas (forgot name)?? I assume that it would not be a problem at high speed.
  • Yeah the literature claims the Auto-mode is based on the Skylines AWD system which definately goes over 60!

    The discussion which I mentioned relating to this issue took place on the Problems and Solutions board starting at around post 445. The owner was complaining of a fluttering at hi-speeds in auto-mode. A corporate Nissan customer service rep (and a local tech) explained that like 4-Hi you shouldnt use auto over 60mph. This would lead one to believe that there is no AWD mode and instead it really just shifts between RWD and 4WD-Hi as needed (which again is pretty contrary to what the manual seems to imply).

    Anyone care to get a definitive answer?
  • phil47phil47 Posts: 394
    to ask them the same question. They said not to worry about it but mentioned that it would naturally lead to increased wear-and-tear on the clutchpack over time (not unusual and typical for most AWD systems out there). They certainly did not consider it a safety issue.

    If you've ever driven the PF at 60 mph on dry pavement in 4-Hi vs AWD, you'll know the center diff is locked in 4-Hi (besides the fact a little idiot light tells you it has locked up). The NVH (noise, vibration, harshness) increases dramatically in 4-Hi vs AWD. You KNOW you shouldn't be pushing it! In AWD, it's just as smooth as in 2WD.

    As far as I'm concerned, the manual doesn't tell me to worry, my dealer doesn't tell me to worry, and Nissan Canada told me not to I don't worry.
  • Just wondering if others are finding the PF fuel gauge quite inaccurate .I filled up the last few times with the gauge hard on E and the low fuel light having been on for the last 10-20 kms.In each instance the tank (which has a published capacity of 80L) took between 60 and 63 litres.I don't mind having a reserve but it seems a little much to be hard on E when you've only used 3/4 of a tank. BTW,I seem to be averaging around 14-14.5 miles per US gallon in mostly city driving. Is this about right?
  • How does one find or obtain information on the TSB's that everyone refers to that are out there?

  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    will give you the number and title of them. You have to pay for them if you want the whole thing.

  • Same thing here !!! But I like it that way. I prefer to fill up 60 liters than 75 since I usually wait for the red light to fill up.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    You can also find them here (The Edmunds Maintenance Guide) and at the NHTSA site.

    Our library just started a subscription with Alldata so it looks like I can get full text copies there if I need them. Unfortunately you have to go there in person to pull them - no online access.

    Steve, Host

  • Been shopping around and researching the hell out of vehicles for about a month and a half. This board and others have been pretty informative. Started with small SUV's then graduated upto the mid-size b/c the small ones just didn't have the versatility that I am interested in. Finally decided on the '03 PF-LE b/c of the total package. I am hoping Nissan creates good incentives for the end of year/holiday push. Does anyone have any insight about new incentives for Dec?? I live in CO and nothing yet. I am in no rush to buy since my car runs great with no problems.

    Normp1: In reference to your possible alternator squeaking on start up: Have you tried using belt dressing?? Had this problem before in cold weather with and old Bronco, no problem after I sprayed them...

    If Nissan goes for a good discount, this is the site that will clue you in. I look at it frequently, and have used it to successfully acquire vehicles, here in Colorado.

  • Thanks fleetwoodsimica, I have been keeping my eye on that site but nothing yet. The 3.9% ended the 2nd, I am hoping they come up with something better to match Ford, Dodge, etc. I am wondering if any forum members have an inside tip...
    Also, besides, the 4-Runner (insurance 250/yr more than PF + less equipped for more $), is there any other comparable vehicle similarly equipped for the $ that I have overlooked??
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