Pathfinder: Right air pressure? Just listen

By Alastair Sloane

The new Nissan Pathfinder is still a four-wheel drive, but design changes mean it is less of a workhorse than its predecessor. Photo / Supplied
The new Nissan Pathfinder is still a four-wheel drive, but design changes mean it is less of a workhorse than its predecessor. Photo / Supplied

New Pathfinder isn't as rugged, but it's got all the trimmings

The new Nissan Pathfinder will have tyre pressure sensors that monitor inflation and sound the horn when the correct pressure is reached.

It will also have a 360-degree camera system, aerodynamics that are "among the best in class" and a braked towing capacity of 2268kg.

The carmaker has issued the first official pictures of the fourth-generation Pathfinder, which goes on sale in the United States in October and in Australia and New Zealand next year.

"When Australia gets it, we get it," said Nissan NZ managing director John Manley. "We are closely aligned with Australia when it comes to new vehicles."

The Pathfinder will be built in the US instead of Spain, and will move to a car-like monocoque build, sharing its platform with the Murano crossover.

The current Pathfinder sits on the same truck-like chassis as the Navara ute. Other 4WDs with such chassis include the Toyota Prado and Mitsubishi Challenger.

The structural change means the new Pathfinder will have more space in the second and third rows than its predecessor, which was restricted by its traditional body-on-frame construction.

It will be more of a family style crossover, around 240kg lighter, with seven roomier seats, better road manners, and improved fuel economy by up to 25 per cent.

That's what Nissan in the US is claiming for a Pathfinder with a 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine mated to a continuously variable transmission driving the front wheels only.

A front-drive Pathfinder is expected to be the entry-level model in some markets, while Nissan will still offer its selectable 2WD, Auto, 4WD system in others.

The monocoque build means the Pathfinder will lose some of the off-road ruggedness of ladder-chassis vehicles, and benefits such as longer wheel travel.

Gone is the current Pathfinder's workhorse-type cabin. In its place, says Nissan, is a family-friendly interior with an optional panoramic glass roof and an entertainment system catering to all three rows of seats.

There is a "child seat mode" that enables easy access to the third row of seats when a child seat is fitted to the 60/40 split second row bench.

The centre bench can also slide fore and aft to provide various ratios of space for passengers and luggage.

Nissan describes the Pathfinder's styling as "adventure-ready with wheel-oriented muscular fenders and a strong, stable stance".

- NZ Herald

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