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Nissan Pathfinder



  • I agree on the 4WD , having the All Mode 4WD only on the LE is a turn off. However, to be fair you can only get the similar system on the V8 4Runners. The V6 4Runners have the part time system also.

    The Dec Motortrend compares the PF with others in the field. Overall it did well, I was jazed with the 0-60 time, 7.3, much better than I expected. However, it couldn't quite keep up on the very tuff Off road hill that was part of the test. They tested an SE, so I bet if they had the LE with the All Mode 4WD it would have made it up the hill.

    I was hoping the Dec Car and Driver would have a comparo but no luck, maybe in Jan.
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    However, it couldn't quite keep up on the very tuff Off road hill that was part of the test. They tested an SE, so I bet if they had the LE with the All Mode 4WD it would have made it up the hill.

    Actually, the all-mode probably wouldn't have helped. The best hill-climbing performance is realized in 4LO, which is functionally identical to the all-mode's 4LO (except for a difference in the gear ratio). My guess is that the poorer performance was due to highway-biased tires, insufficient clearance, or limited axle articulation (due to the independent suspension).
  • Actually there were a couple of strange things about the Motor Trend Test.

    First, they tested an SE with the Off Road tires that come on the PF SE Off Road model. However I looked very closely at the Pics and there was no "Off Road" badge on the front door of the PF. Any official picture I've seen of an SE OR Model has the badge on both front doors.

    Second They tested the Infiniti QX56 (Nissan Armada) which has the All Mode and Traction control and it made it up the hill. MT said the Traction control made the difference, but I'm not so sure because the PF has that 4 Wheel limited slip which is like traction control.

    The fact is the new Jeep Grand Cherokee and the 4Runner with its Torsen setup and locking differentials are better off roaders, but I think the PF is a better package overall and cheaper to boot.
  • I test drove the PF LE 4X2 today. They only had that one to test drive. They also had an SE that just arrived 2 hours before I got there.

    The ride was very nice and stable, although I didn't get to drive it on the highway. It was more stable than the 4Runner I test drove a while ago. Maybe because PF has an independent rear suspension.

    The A/C worked very well (dual automatic), although the controls were digital and hard to see the air flow arrows on the LCD.

    Plenty of power, on tap. I punched it and that thing took off. The transmission was very smooth and you could hardly feel it was changing gears.

    The third row seat was very cramped for my size (6'). In my opinion, only small children can use it (less than 7 years of age).

    One thing that caught my attention was a constant squeaking noise from the left rear door behind me. I couldn't figure out where it came from.

    Over all, I really liked the truck. I think I would buy it over the 4Runner. Too bad I'm not in the market to buy a new vehicle. They also had 7 or 8 new '04 models they hadn't sold. This is in Sunnyvale, CA, Flore Nissan on El Camino.
  • There are crazy cars at SEMA show, here is one of them:


  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    However, to be fair you can only get the similar system on the V8 4Runners. The V6 4Runners have the part time system also.

    Not true. On V6 4-Runners there is a full-time 4WD mode. It's not "permenent" full-time 4WD as per the V8, but "selectable" full-time 4WD, meaning the driver has to select that mode. There is also a part-time 4WD mode too.

  • vik66vik66 Posts: 10
    so, who can tell which one perform better off road: 4Runner or PF05 ? did anybody take it off-road, SE Off Road , how it is?
    I am thinking to buy a new vehicle next year, I like 4Runner, but PF really impressed me as well.
    Thank you
  • vik66vik66 Posts: 10
    but 05 Xterra going to be much better... i think...
  • "Not true. On V6 4-Runners there is a full-time 4WD mode."

    Yeh, what I meant was the All Mode 4WD system on the PF LE is similar to the 4Wd system in the V8 4Runners. It varies torque to each axle as conditions dictate. The regular 4WD system in the PF-XE,SE and V6 4Runners can be set to full time but the torque is set (40/60 for 4Runner) for each axle and doesn't vary if wheel slippage occurs.
  • Bought the SE with Conv Package, floormats, spashgaurds,molding,air filter - MSRP $30,200 - invoice $27,683 - traded in my '02 CRV EX with only 17,000 miles - paid $12,000 difference - works out to be invoice for the new PF and Kelly Blue Book Trade in of $15,800 for the CRV - Dealer tried to add $695 "Dealer Maint" - I refused to even consider that - financed through local bank at 3.9% for 60 months - love the car, especially the power, Granite color was best in my opinion - rides & handles nice -
  • beach15beach15 Posts: 1,305
    The Armada had and still has a lot of quality problems, some big, some small. A ton of rattles, consoles falling off the ceiling, brakes and steering screwed up, etc. The PF is built off a modified version of the same platform, but what have you guys thought of the quality--particularly those who already bought one? Cheap, junky parts? Rattling/creaking body or interior?

    Or, tight, smooth, solid and really nice?
  • dweiserdweiser Posts: 288
    Am I correct in thinking the PF and Armada are built in different states and the PF "factory" hasn't had the quality problems the Armada factory has?
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    The regular 4WD system in the PF-XE,SE and V6 4Runners can be set to full time but the torque is set (40/60 for 4Runner) for each axle and doesn't vary if wheel slippage occurs.

    Are you sure about that? My understanding is the V6 4-Runner (and V8 Sequoia) can be set to either full-time or part-time 4WD, whereas the Pathfinder SE & SE Off Road can only be set to part-time 4WD.

    The Pathfinder LE has an on-demand (All-Mode) 4WD, which is much like the Explorer's Control Trac, which is RWD until the front tires start slipping, in which they then engage. The V8 4-Runner (and Land Cruiser) have permenent 4WD, in that there is no 2WD mode whatsoever.

  • Yes, The 4WD PF XE, SE & SE Off Road can be set to Full time 4WD. They have 3 settings 2WD, 4HI & 4LO. That is basically the same as the V6 4Runners. However , 4HI doesn't vary torque to the axles like the All Mode does on the LE. The LE has 4 settings 2WD, 4HI, 4LO, & Auto. I'm not sure if the Permanent system on the V8 4Runners varies torque like the All Mode or not. But the 4Runner does have a Torsen Limited-Slip Center Differential on all Models that can send as much as 71% of Torque to the rear or 53% to the front. That's one feature that the PF Doesn't have.

    Basically the All mode 4WD should be better in slippery conditions like Rain, Ice and snow because it can send more grip to the wheels that are slipping. However, I'd like to see a test in a magazine or something to validate that premise. I also can find the real meat of how the All Mode works, Nissan just has a short overview of the system nothing really specific.
  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 168
    Bob, I believe you are right. But I think you meant to say that it's RWD until the REAR tires start slipping.
  • atlgaxtatlgaxt Posts: 500
    Not to muddy the waters, but a system with 2wd, 4 Hi and 4 Lo is still a part time system. If the center differential is locked (does not vary the power) it should not be driven on dry pavement. You need an AWD or Auto mode to drive on pavement.
  • I stand corrected. The 4Hi in the PF XE, SE & SE Off Road is not for Dry Pavement and is therefore Part Time. I didn't realize the Torsen Center Dif on the 4Runners makes their "Part Time" system essentially a "Full Time" System. I found a blurb on it.

    "Toyota’s Multi-Mode 4WD system is standard on all four-wheel drive models. The Multi-Mode 4WD feature is actually an open center differential with locking capability that provides a full-time 4WD system with the ability to select 2WD mode. The all-wheel multi-mode 4WD system may be used in normal driving conditions on all types of roads from dry, hard surface roads, such as pavement, to wet or snow-covered roads. Driving with the Multi-Mode's 4WDl drive system engaged provides the driver with a more sure-footed feel because power is applied evenly to all four wheels which improves traction."

    I also found 2 very informative posts #7371 and #7373 that address the PF 4WD in more detail. Below is a quote from that discussion.

    "As other members have commented, part-time systems lock the front and rear axles together, and are therefore not recommended for use except off the pavement (even when it's just wet from rain). Only full-time 4WD (or "All-Wheel-Drive") systems can be operated on any type of terrain without any problems. Shift-on-the-fly part-time systems are used on all Pathfinders except 2001+ LE models and all Infiniti QX4's"

    I also found a link on Auto world that gives a good explanation of the All Mode 4WD
  • mpapimpapi Posts: 3
    I'm currently in the market for a new suv. I'm torn between the 05 4runner and the 05 pathfinder. I've test driven both and am leaning more towards the pathfinder because it has more options for the money and seems to handle nicer. (More pickup, smooth ride, etc.) The only thing I am worried about is the reliability since it is a redesigned model and production was moved from Japan to the US. Anyone have any experience with both toyota and nissan or may have purchased one over the other for whatever reason?

  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 168
    Can I ask you to be more specific on the 4Runner vs. PF? You say more pickup. Are you comparing V6 versions or did you drive the V8 4Runner?
  • mpapimpapi Posts: 3
    Both were 6cyl. SR5 4runner vs. SE Pathfinder. I know the pathy has more hp and I believe more torque. Just wondering about overall build quality since everyone I've talked to says toyota is the best. I don't think nissan is far behind but want some opinions first before making a purchase.

  • jiaminjiamin Posts: 556
    My limited experience tells me that overall Toyota is better than Nissan especially in terms of attention in details, quietness. Lexus is better than Infiniti in terms of the same. Reliability wise they are about the same. I had two new Nissans, one new Infiniti, one new Lexus and they never had any fsilure whatsoever...
  • I find this amazing -- Nissan has come out with a brand new fully redesigned mid-size SUV that cannot vary torque between the front and rear wheels when set in 4WD mode unless you buy the leather trim?! What were they thinking? Variable torque is a pretty basic SUV feature nowadays (let alone having the option of leaving it in 4WD in dry pavement conditions). Guess I won't be getting the Pathfinder.

      That's crzy

    be set in an has to be manually shifted in cannot be set in an does not have an all the time , when set can only be shi
  • stove1stove1 Posts: 53
    I just don't see what difference it makes in what little off road any of us do. You put too much torque on one wheel it actualy might damage something.
  • smokey75smokey75 Posts: 434
    Keep in mind 4wd isn't just for off roading. There is a reason the 911 Turbo is AWD & it's not to go off-road. 4wd makes a tremendous difference in day-to-day driving, even on dry roads. Also, I don't think you would have to worry about damaging something by putting too much torque on one wheel just because you have a variable torque set-up.
  • Maybe I'm misunderstanding this, but I thought when you have an AWD or 4WD vehicle that has a center differential that allows for the torque to be varied between the front and the rear, and the vehicle detects wheel slippage and moves power to the non-slipping wheels. So, for example, when you start from a stop sign in the rain and the front wheels start to spin, the system shifts power to the rear wheels and you have improved traction. Some such systems also ordinarily also operate in 2WD except when the need for 4WD/AWD is detected. This is a significant advantage of modern 4WD/AWD systems when driving in the rain or snow (or in relatively dry winter conditions with the occasional ice patch) that is entirely unrelated to getting stuck in the mud while off roading and flipping on the 4WD to get unstuck. I'm surprised that Nissan would come out with a brand new SUV in 2004 that is being marketed to families (3rd row seat) but has a primitive 4WD system. I guess its just a way of making people buy the high profit top trim line, but I personally don't like leather seats.
  • pathstar1pathstar1 Posts: 1,015
    There are many designs for this, some I don't understand at this time. If a centre diff. is used it will impart a fixed torque percentage front/rear (set by the mechanism in the diff. centre). The multiclutch plate used in the previous model Pathfinder (my 2001 LE for example), will impart a variable torque to the front wheels. The effect here is a bit different than a centre diff. though - because once fully engaged it in effect locks the front and rear together, whereas a centre diff. keeps the front/rear "decoupled" - when one end is in the air it spins freely with reduced torque available and the other still gets only a percentage of the torque. The clutch system would lock them together so they would both spin at the same rate but if the rear is in the air the front will get full torque (less that required to spin the rear). This will be made more complex with limited slip rear and front diffs.

    There are advantages and disadvanges to both systems. The clutch system will wear out faster (though it appears this doesn't happen during the expected life of the vehicle). Compared to a torsen centre diff. - if a clutch plate centre diff. is used it will probably wear about the same as a centre multiplate clutch. The system in the previous models is essentially a multiplate clutch similar to what you find in a motorcycle or automatic transmission, hydraulicly actuated. A clutch centre diff. uses a clutch pack to transfer torque between the two output shafts. A torsen diff. uses mechanical pressure to transfer the torque.

    Both AWD systems drop your fuel economy. My vehicle looses about 10% when in "auto" mode (clutch system active). It's nice to be able to turn it off - something you can't do with a centre diff. unless they provide a "centre diff. lock" function or allow you to shift out of AWD. The vehicles I've seen with centre diff. lock only use it for extreme traction, whereas on my Pathfinder I turn off the centre clutch system for non-traction limited situations (driving on dry pavement for example). This is a plus for the clutch system.
  • I agree with jiamin; if build quality is a major concern, go with Toyota. I own a Maxima and I can say Nissan has their share of problems. Furthermore, Nissan customer service is terrible (probably not that important during procurement, but it will be when you have a problem). I have two friends that have Nissan products and they each have had problems also. A close friend of mine has a 4Runner which has been to the shop for regular maintenance and that's it.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    Over the years I've owned virtually all types of 4WD/AWD: 3 part-time units ('84 Trooper, '87 F-150 & '91 Explorer); 1 on-demand full-time unit ('98 Explorer with Control Trac—which is similar in operation to the '05 Pathfinder LE's All-Mode unit); and 2 full-time AWD Subarus.

    My preference is for the Subaru's "proactive" (always driving all wheels, all the time) AWD, to that of the "reactive" on-demand system on my '98 Explorer and Pathfinder LE. I just wished Subaru offered the dual-range transfer case found in other markets, here.

    Speaking of Subarus: They are about to launch the B9X, which will be the largest vehicle they have yet offered. It will have seating for 5-7 passengers, and designed to go against the MDX and BMW X5. Being a Subaru it will have full-time AWD with stability control on all models. As to whether it will offer a dual-range tranny—don't know yet. Here's a preliminary teaser link: - - - ml

    The car will be introduced at the Detroit car show, and will be on sale next summer. It will also be the first Subaru to introduce their new corporate "face" to the American public.

  • sivisivi Posts: 20
    there iis a fuse on trailer cable . it is not mentioned in manuel
  • I just purchased a granite SE with cloth interior, comfort package, sunroof and dvd system. I also had a remote start installed from the dealer. Remote start is a wonderful feature for the winter but motor really races when first activated.

    Does anyone else have problems with the seating controls on the drivers side. Do you find they get in the way when getting in and out of the vehicle? I am tall and my legs always hit the controls on driver side of the seat and I have to continue to adjust the seat when I get in and out. Placement of controls should have been lower.

    Also, in the comfort package description it read 'Dual illuminated visor vanity mirrors'. Are your mirrors illuminated and if so could you describe? It's not a big deal but sometimes it's the little things that count.

    I love the vehicle, I am a previous PF owner,and a nissan lover but it seems the older models had a little more thought to them. For instance The front passenger seat does not have a storage pocket on the back? The driver side does, but not the passenger? Why is that?
    The back window doesn't release from the inside anymore like the older models did and the lift gate doesn't release automatically from the outside. Not sure if the auto release feature was ever a part of Nissan but it would have been a nice feature. Most SUV's have it now.

    Also, did anyone get the dvd package? The dvd is in an awkward spot, it's between the driver and front passenger seat. When you open the console the lid flips up and the passengers in the back can't load a dvd. (unless they have extremely long arms that can reach over the lid and down into the dvd compartment) they can only control the dvd player with the remote. If no one is in the passenger seat that means the driver has to unload and reload the dvd player when ever it needs to be changed. Bad placement. If the dvd player is located between the driver and passenger seat at least place it in a position that is accessible to the back seat, or maybe if the lid flipped toward the front of the car instead of the back the passengers in the back could reach it easier. I can't tell you about the quality of the picture because mine has not worked from the time I picked it up, and I've had the car for a month. Still waiting for parts that are "on back order".

    I think Nissan should have given more thought to the little things.

    One the positive side, it's a Nissan. I love nissan products. Purchased several used Nissans for my kids as first cars and they are great cars.

    As a previous Pathfinder owner I waited for the New 05 models to be released before purchasing a new suv. The 05 PF has excellent acceleration, is comfortable to drive and handles well.
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