2021 Nissan Pathfinder

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2021 Nissan Pathfinder Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Updated on: October 31, 2020

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S. Kumar

Editor


The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder returns some minor changes including a refreshed list of significant features and technology across all its trims. The Nissan's three-row crossover SUV comes in four trim levels, the S, SV, SL, and Platinum, equipped with a sole 284 hp 3.5L V6 engine that comes in both 2WD and 4WD drivetrain setups along with an automatic transmission. The 2021 Pathfinder comes with a price tag of $31,680 and brings minor updates in the interior and transmission systems as well. The new-for-2020 Pathfinder, the Rock Creek Edition carries over to 2021MY and aims to add a rugged look to the SUV inside-out. Though limited to SV and SL trim levels, the Rock Creek Edition adds black accents on the outside while the interior gets two-tone color seats, contrast stitching, and more badges.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Review
2021 Pathfinder brings strong V6 performance and utmost reliability!

Since its inception, the Pathfinder has impressed us with its strong V6, good fuel-efficiency, and easy-access 3rd-row seats.  Among the Pathfinder’s highlights are a standard V6 and 6,000-pound towing capacity.  Despite several strong points, the 2021 Pathfinder hasn't kept up with fresher competitors including Kia Telluride or Hyundai Palisade. Though we're ready for a completely redesigned Pathfinder model, we hope the next-gen Pathfinder brings modernized equipment with the latest driver assistance and infotainment technologies found in Nissan's other premium vehicles.

See detailed review »

Pros

Good towing capacity

Easy to access third row seat

Automatic emergency braking system and rear parking sensors now standard

V6 engine is powerful and fuel efficient

Fuel Economy upto 27 mpg

Cons

Less cargo space than rivals

Not as many active safety systems as rivals

No Apple Car play and Android Auto

What's New?

Minor changes to 2021 Pathfinder adds more standard features


See all new Nissan Pathfinder cars for sale »

new Nissan Pathfinder For Sale

See all used Nissan Pathfinder cars for sale »

used Nissan Pathfinder For Sale

Features

vehicle bio

base price

$31680

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

7

drivetrain

AWD

engine type

displacement

213 cu. in.

horsepower

284 hp @ 6400 rpm

torque

259 lbs.-ft. @ 4800 rp

transmission

CVT

chassis

frame type

Ladder Frame

suspension front

Independent front strut suspension

suspension rear

Independent rear multi-link suspension

brake rotors (f/r)

12.6/12.6

dimensions

wheelbase

114.2 in.

length

198.5 in.

width

77.3 in.

height

70.49 in.

curb weight

4287 lbs.

ground clearance

7 in.

capacity

passenger volume

137.8 cu ft.

cargo volume

79.5 cu ft.

towing capacity

6000 lbs.

payload capacity

1699 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

7.4 sec.

standing ¼-mile

15.7 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

19/26/22 mpg mpg

highway range

507 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 yr./ 36000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr. /unlimited


Pictures & Videos

Videos
2021 Nissan Pathfinder Review video
2021 Nissan Pathfinder Interior video

Styles

2021 Nissan Pathfinder in Bright Silver Metallic color 2021 Nissan Pathfinder in Glacier White color 2021 Nissan Pathfinder in Magnetic Black Pearl color 2021 Nissan Pathfinder in Gun Metallic color 2021 Nissan Pathfinder in Pearl White TriCoat color
Bright Silver Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

7.0

Engine And Performance

7.0

Fuel Economy

7.1

Interior

6.5

Exterior

6.9

Safety

8.1

Competition

7.0

7.1

OVERALL RATING

Similar Cars

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


2021 Nissan Pathfinder S

S

power
284 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
22 combined

$31,680 - $33,370


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
S 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $31,680 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT front wheel drive 7
S 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $33,370 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7

2021 Nissan Pathfinder SV

SV

power
284 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
22 combined

$34,470 - $36,160


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SV 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $34,470 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT front wheel drive 7
SV 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $36,160 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7

2021 Nissan Pathfinder SV Rock Creek Edition

SV Rock Creek Edition

power
284 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
22 combined

$35,465 - $37,155


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SV Rock Creek Edition 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $35,465 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7
SV Rock Creek Edition 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $37,155 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7

2021 Nissan Pathfinder SL

SL

power
284 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
22 combined

$38,090 - $39,780


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SL 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $38,090 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT front wheel drive 7
SL 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $39,780 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7

2021 Nissan Pathfinder SL Rock Creek Edition

SL Rock Creek Edition

power
284 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
22 combined

$39,085 - $40,775


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SL Rock Creek Edition 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $39,085 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7
SL Rock Creek Edition 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $40,775 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum

Platinum

power
284 hp @ 6400 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
22 combined

$42,920 - $44,610


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Platinum 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $42,920 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT front wheel drive 7
Platinum 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT) Starting at $44,610 MSRP (19/22/26) 284 hp @ 6400 rpm, 3.5 L, V-6, Regular unleaded
1-speed CVT four wheel drive 7

Expert Review

7.1

Overall Rating


The Pathfinder has been on the streets for more than 30 years with the latest generation being the fourth, that was released in 2013. The last update was in 2017 and the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder will be revised slightly for better experiences. This new 2021 Pathfinder is slated to arrive at U.S dealerships by the end of this year with a base price tag of $31,680. 

The updates might include a 9-speed transmission and minor changes to the overall performance of the car. A revised infotainment system is also looked forward to. The Pathfinder faces competition from the likes of Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander, and Mazda CX-9 and it ranks among the best. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder front view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder rear view

7.0/10
Features

7.0/10
Engine and Performance

7.1/10
Fuel Economy

6.5/10
Interior

6.9/10
Exterior

8.1/10
Safety

7.0/10
Competition


2021 Nissan Pathfinder Features

7.0/10

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder will have four trims much like its outgoing model, all equipped with a V6 powertrain and updated standard equipment. Ranging from $30,000 to $45,000, the Pathfinder trim levels - S, SV, SL, and Platinum differ in creature comfort features. The Rock Creek Edition is available on two Pathfinder variants including the SL and the SV.

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder has a starting MSRP of $31,680 for a base S model. The more popular SV begins at $34,470, followed by the SL costing $38,090. The top-range Platinum trim starts at $42,920. All prices exclude the destination charge of $1,045. The front-wheel-drive comes standard and if you choose all-wheel drive it adds an extra $1,690.

Model

S

SV

SV Rock Creek Edition 

SL 

SL Rock Creek Edition 

Platinum 

MSRP (2WD)

$31,680 (est.)

$34,470

$35,465

$38,090

$39,085

$42,920

MSRP (4WD)

$33,370

$36,160

$37,155

$39,780

$40,775

$44,610

Key Features

18-inch aluminum alloy wheels

Auto-dimming rear view mirror

Adds to the SV features

Driver’s seat & outside mirrors position memory

Most of SL features, plus 

Dual panel panoramic moonroof

 

Advanced Drive-Assist Display

Blindspot warning

Black Front Grille 

Motion-activated liftgate

Black Front Grille 

Steering wheel position memory

 

Hill-start assist

Rear cross-traffic alert

Black outside mirror 

Ten-way power-adjustable driver’s seat w/ power lumbar support

Black outside mirror 

Telescoping steering column

 

Six-way adjustable driver’s seat with manual lumbar support

Leather-wrapped steering wheel & shift knob

 

Heated seats and Heated steering wheel

 

Bose premium audio system 

 

Illuminated steering wheel-mounted controls

Intelligent cruise control

Black door handles

Nissan navigation system

Black door handles

Perforated leather-appointed upholstery 

 

Tri-zone automatic temperature control

Three 12V power outlets

Leather-appointed seats with cloth inserts and Rock Creek Edition badging

Intelligent Around View monitor

Leather-appointed seats with cloth inserts and Rock Creek Edition badging

 

 

Two 12V power outlet

Fog lights

Premium Metallic Rock Creek Edition interior trim

120V power outlet

Premium Metallic Rock Creek Edition interior trim

 

 

Automatic emergency braking

Remote engine start

 

Welcome lighting

 

 

 

LATCH system

 

 

NissanConnectservices

 

 

 

NissanConnect 8-in. touchscreen display

 

 

 

 

 

The entry-level Pathfinder S trim starts at $31,680 for which it includes 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, Hill-start Assist, Hill descent assist, Six-way adjustable driver seat with lumbar support, Tri-zone automatic temperature control, and 2 12V Power outlet, and an 8-inch infotainment system with access to Bluetooth.

The SV trim is the next trim which costs $34,470 and adds to the S trim. Features include Blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, intelligent auto headlights, and fog lights, Nissan intelligent Key, HomeLink Universal Transceiver, and eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with manual lumbar. 

The SV Rock Creek Edition builds on SV trim and adds a Black Front Grille, Black mirrors outside and black door handles, leather-appointed deaths with cloth inserts, and Rock Creek Edition badging, and Premium Metallic Rock Creek Edition interior trim. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder rear third quarter view

The SL trim starts at $38,090 and has many features like Intelligent Around View Monitor, LED low-beam projector headlights, Dual power heated outside mirrors with LED turn signal indicators, reverse tilt-down feature, Motion activated liftgate, Welcome lighting, Ten-way power-adjustable driver’s seat including two-way power lumbar, Driver’s seat and outside mirrors position memory, NissanConnect Services powered by SiriusXM with trial access to three-year select and six-month Premium Plus packages

The SL Rock Creek Edition costs $39,085 and has most of the SL trim’s features and upgrades the exterior and interior with a Rock Creek package for a rugged look.

Platinum trim comes with a price tag of $42,920. The features equipped are Chrome body side moldings, Duel panel activated moonroof, Steering-wheel position memory, perforated leather-appointed seats, wood-tone interior trim, Bose Premium Audio System with 13 speakers, and Acoustics Waveguide technology.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Maintenance, Reliability and Warranty

Nissan cars are one of the most reliable in the market and the ratings prove it. Though it is not the best it still is decent among the other cars. The JD scores are also fairly good. The ownership costs are like any other car’s with 14% depreciation yearly which is quite good, but cannot beat Toyota Highlander.

What are the 2021 Nissan Pathinders's Reliability score and Ownership cost?

The reliability rating for the Nissan Pathfinder was 2.5 out of 5 in 2020 as quoted by JD power and the same scores will be maintained if not better. It was rated 81 out of 100 for the overall performance too by the same. The annual repair cost of this Nissan is around $550. It is known to have only some repairs yearly though they are not serious. It costs only $42,468 to own it for 5 years. Around $8000 is all you need to own it yearly on an average including the taxes. On average, the vehicle is priced at 27,700USD across the states. 

 

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Total

Tax Credit

$0

$0

$0

$0

$0

$0

Insurance

$716

$741

$767

$794

$822

$3,840

Maintenance

$241

$471

$335

$774

$1,513

$3,334

Repairs

$0

$0

$91

$220

$320

$631

Taxes & Fees

$2,538

$35

$35

$35

$35

$2,678

Financing

$1,833

$1,474

$1,091

$683

$247

$5,328

Depreciation

$9,069

$2,623

$2,481

$2,909

$2,756

$19,838

Fuel

$1,474

$1,518

$1,563

$1,610

$1,658

$7,823

Real Cost of Ownership

$15,871

$6,862

$6,363

$7,025

$7,351

$43,472

NHTSA ratings and the IIHS ratings of the 4th generation Pathfinder were last rated in 2018 and it received top scores for its safety. It also costs slightly less than its rivals. No recalls have been issued to its name making it a pretty reliable vehicle in its segment.

What is the Warranty Coverage with the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder?

In terms of the warranty, Nissan offers a 3 year or 36,000-mile bumper to bumper warranty, powertrain warranty for 5 years or 60,000 miles, and roadside assistance for 3 years or 36,000 miles whichever comes first. There are also many additional warranty packages and extended warranties available. 

Criteria

Period

Limited warranty

3-year/36,000-mile

Powertrain warranty

5-year/60,000-mile 

24-hour roadside assistance

3-year/36,000-mile

All of the rivals provide a similar warranty. The Mazda scored 5 for its reliability and Toyota Highlanders scored 4.5 which speaks for itself. The Ford’s reliability score is 3.5 which is similar to the Pathfinders.

What're the Miles Per Dollar cost of the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder?

With a dollar, one can go up to 15miles. The Nissan Pathfinder will drive for 526.5 miles on a full tank with a fuel capacity of 19.5 gallons. The miles per dollar cost for the Nissan Pathfinder turns out to be $8.62. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Buying Advice

The S model, that is the base has a lot to provide with just itself like the Drive Assist features and Hill climb assist. It includes a six-way adjustable driver’s seat for comfort and Tri-zone automatic temperature control. The same features are updated to provide more of it in the next few trims. In the SV trim, the safety kicks up a notch with Blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, and intelligent cruise control. 

The SL trim takes a turn to become modern with the navigation, motion-activated liftgate, and the Intelligent Around View monitor. The Platinum trim is luxury laden with the Bose audio system, perforated upholstery, and dual panoramic moonroof. The difference between each trim is approximately $4000. The increase in money will be well spent according to the features which are reasonable. The choice should be made according to the personal needs and budget available.

Is buying a used Nissan Pathfinder a good idea?

The Nissan Pathfinder will last long for 150,000 miles. It can live for more than ten years if it is well maintained. The Nissan holds up its value well with the depreciation of the 2020 model being 14% the first year which is 5000 dollars, Though it's not the most reliable it will continue to be in good shape for a long time. You can opt for a used Nissan Pathfinder to save some money. Currently, the models from 2017 will be the best choice with its good depreciation value. 

Nissan launched the current generation of the Pathfinder for the 2013 model year, and there have been a few important updates ever since. A hybrid model was limited to 2014MY only. Nissan offered the 2015 Pathfinder with an updated transmission software. The 2017 model arrived with revised styling along with a stronger V6 engine, an updated infotainment system, and available safety features like forwarding collision warning and adaptive cruise control. For 2018, this forward-collision warning system became standard equipment. The 2019 and 2020 models have seen relatively minor changes. You can also check out our Used Car inventory to get the best discounts and deals on Nissan Pathfinder.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Engine and Performance

7.0/10

All 2021 Nissan Pathfinder models use a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces a good 284hp power and 259lb-ft torque, though not class-leading. The 2021 Pathfinder is not the quickest but the V6 power is adequate. The only transmission is CVT that delivers power to the front-wheels but all-wheel-drive (AWD) is an available option across the lineup. For daily driving or the freeway journey, the Pathfinder's 284 hp V6 engine works smoothly with the Xtronic CVT. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder engine

This Nissan's three-row SUV has ample merging or passing power while one of the brightest spots of the Pathfinder's performance is its towing ability. The 2021 Pathfinder can tow up to 6000 pounds, which is almost 1000 pounds more than the rivals.

Models

2021 Nissan Pathfinder

2021 Ford Explorer 

2021 Toyota Highlander

2021 Mazda CX-9

MSRP

$33,500

$36,675

$34,600

$33,890

Engine

3.5L Naturally Aspirated V6

2.3L turbocharged Inline-4

3.5L Naturally Aspirated V6

2.5L turbocharged SKYACTIV-G Inline-4

Drivetrain

AWD

RWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

9- speed automatic

10-speed shiftable automatic

8-speed shiftable automatic

6-speed shiftable automatic

Power 

284 hp @ 6400 RPM

290 hp @ 6500 RPM

295 hp @ 6600 RPM

227 hp @ 5000 RPM

Torque 

259 lb-ft @4,800 RPM

310 lb-ft @ 2,500 RPM

263 lb-ft @ 4,700 RPM

310 lb-ft @ 2,000 RPM

The power on the Pathfinder SUV is impressive enough but it is the Highlander leading the group with 295hp power. The 2021 Explorer leads the torque numbers at 310lb-ft, thanks to its turbocharged engine. However, Pathfinder offers the most value for money here considering power and efficiency.

What's the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder's 0-60 MPH Acceleration And Braking Performance?

With 284 hp V6 engine under the hood, the 2021 Pathfinder sprints from 0-60 mph in 7 seconds, and reaches a top speed of 140 mph. The SUV weighs more than 4000 pounds and pairs with a CVT gearbox, considering this the acceleration is pretty good. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder accelerate 0-60 mph just in 7.o sec

Although its braking performance is not as impressive as its rivals. Under a panic situation, the Nissan Pathfinder takes 124ft to come to a halt from a speed of 60MPH. The Pathfinder can tow up to 6000 pounds which is very useful.  

Models

2021 Nissan Pathfinder

2021 Ford Explorer 

2021 Toyota Highlander

2021 Mazda CX-9

0-60 MPH 

7.0 secs

7.7 secs

7.2 secs

7.1 secs

Quarter Mile 

16 secs 

16.3 secs

15.5 secs

15.5 secs

Top Speed 

140 MPH

143 MPH

112 MPH

130 MPH

60-0 MPH

124ft

114ft

116ft 

123 ft

The Ford Explorer with a 10-speed transmission and a higher torque has the highest pick up speed in its class with 7.7 seconds 0-60 mph time. The  Ford Explorer has the highest torque and a 10-speed transmission which makes its speed stand out. The others have a similar 0-60mph with slight differences. The top speed in the Pathfinder is also noteworthy. 

How good is the Ride and Handling of the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder?

The 2021 Pathfinder has a decent driving impression but behind the steering wheel, it feels bigger than it is, mainly because of the body roll. Though the SUV remains stable around the turns, the steering feels light. The highlight is the comfortable ride with almost no road noise penetrating the spacious Pathfinder's cabin. The models with bigger 20-inch wheels offer a jittery ride so it's better to stick with 18-inch wheels.

The Nissan Pathfinder isn't an off-road vehicle and offers just a 7-inch ground clearance. Though most of Pathfinder's competitors claim better handling, the segment certainly has better off-road alternatives as well. Those looking for a daily-driving family SUV with comfort as the priority must consider the 2021 Pathfinder.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Fuel Economy

7.1/10

Since the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder carries forward the similar V6 powertrain as the 2020 model, it gets EPA fuel economy ratings of 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. That's a competitive gas mileage for the three-row SUV. With the new and improved transmission and updates, the fuel economy might improve but that's until the official MPG ratings arrive. The fuel capacity of 19.5 gallons in the Pathfinder allows it to travel almost 525 miles on the highway on a single fill. 

The 2021 updates to the Nissan Pathfinder include a direct fuel ignition and a mirror bore cylinder coating in order to streamline the combustion process which reduces the engine weight. With these advancements, the car will certainly result in an efficient fuel economy. 

Model

2021 Nissan Pathfinder

2021 Ford Explorer 

2021 Toyota Highlander

2021 Mazda CX-9

MPG (City)

20

21

21

22

MPG (Highway)

27

28

29

28

MPG (Combined)

24

24

24

24

Fuel Capacity 

19.5 gallons

19.2 gallons

17.9 gallons

19.0 gallons

Range (City/Hwy/Combined) 

390/525/487 miles

316/537/460 miles

358/519/429 miles

390/507/456 miles

The Pathfinder's mpg figures are similar to all its rivals in mixed driving conditions. The Pathfinder’s range is also more than its rivals, allowing you to enjoy the V6 performance at affordable prices.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Interior

6.5/10

For 2021, Nissan has replaced the otherwise bland interior of the Pathfinder with a more lively cabin and family-oriented amenities. Though the Pathfinder's interior has always been comfortable and spacious, it looked dated and lacked the luxury of rivals. With seating for seven, three-row Pathfinder's S and SV models come with cloth upholstery while the SL and the Platinum trim levels upgrade it to leather and perforated leather upholstery. The interior colors are limited to Charcoal, Almond, and Rock creek where only Charcoal is available in the base model. The driver's seat is six-way adjustable with manual lumbar support. This Nissan Pathfinder’s interior only gets better as the trims go higher. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder rear seats

The first two rows are very comfortable with a lot of legroom on offer. The third row is a bit cramped up and down to the floor. The second row can slide up to 5 inches making lives easier in the third row. It offers 16.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row and 47.4 cubic space with the third row folded. Overall the interior feels comfortable and there is a lot of room available. 

Model

2021 Nissan Pathfinder

2021 Ford Explorer 

2021 Toyota Highlander

2021 Mazda CX-9

Seating Capacity

7

6

8

7

Front Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

42.2/60.9/42.3

40.7/61.5/43.0

40.7/59.3/44.2

39.3/57.9/41.0

Second Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

39.4/60.4/41.7

38.9/57.6/31.9

35.9/55.0/27.7

35.4/53.1/29.7

Rear Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

37.8/57.1/30.7

38.9/57.6/31.9

35.9/55.0/27.7

35.4/53.1/29.7

The third-row seats of the Pathfinder are cramped up, but it is better than its rivals with 30.7inches of legroom on offer. The Head and shoulder room is also comparatively higher than the competitors. The interior looks and feels might be better in Ford.

What is the Cargo Capacity of the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder?

The 2021 Pathfinder has 16.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind its third-row seats which are just subpar from most of its rival. The second and third-row access is easy while folding is a simple process as well. With third-row seats stowed, the cargo area expands to 47.4 cubic feet and 79.5 cubic feet with the last two rows folded.

Models

2021 Nissan Pathfinder 

2021 Ford Explorer

2021 Toyota Highlander

2021 Mazda CX-9 

Cargo Capacity

16.2 cu. ft. 

18.2 cu. ft. 

13.8 cu. ft. 

14.4 cu. ft. 

The Nissan Pathfinders' low ground-clearance makes reduces the lift-over height, making it easy to load/unload the cargo. The 2021 Explorer has considerably more space. On the downside, the uneven load floor when all the seats down make the sliding in/out longer items a task, a tough one.

How’s the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder’s infotainment system?

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder features an 8.0-inch touchscreen powered by NissanConnect infotainment system across the range. The infotainment system is very easily accessible and is fun to use but the graphics look a decade behind the rivals. The most desired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability are still missing from Nissan's Pathfinder. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder infotainment system

The main infotainment feature of the Nissan Pathfinder would be its driver Assist display where tire pressure, blind-spot monitoring, and more can be seen and controlled. For connectivity, two 12 volt power outlets are also offered as standard. However, the rear-seat entertainment system is not an available option, unlike the more modern competitors. Onboard navigation and a 13-speaker Bose audio system are standard on the Platinum trim and optional on the SL grade as part of the SL Rock Creek Edition Premium package.

The list of infotainment and interior features that the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder will include:

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration
  • Push Button ignition
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Tilt/Telescopic steering column
  • Tri-zone automatic temperature control
  • Nissan navigation system
  • SiriusXM Satellite Radio
  • Wireless headphone streaming
  • Six USB ports
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV cockpit area
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV cockpit area
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV infotainment screen
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV rear foldable seats
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV infotainment screen
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV sunroof
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV seating layout
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV seating layout

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Exterior

6.9/10

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder’s exterior offers a similar soft styling as the outgoing model, though the spied model shows a more rugged design, apparently slated for 2022MY.  In pictures, the Pathfinder's styling remains handsome with a rounded shape unlike the tougher image of Ford Explorer or Highlander. In front, the V motion grille gives it a rugged look while the standard LED headlights provide great visibility. Higher trims have fog lights too. The roof rails allow you to carry large luggage safely. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder third-quarter view

The Pathfinder Rock Creek edition adds the ruggedness with a black grille, roof rails, door handles, and other aesthetics, plus a standard tow hitch and splash guards mostly covered in black accents. It is offered in a variety of exterior color options to choose from. Mocha Almond Pearl is available in all trims except the base trim. The Pathfinder is heavy with 4427 pounds of body weight. Its wheelbase is 114.2 inches providing a great grip. 

Model

2021 Nissan Pathfinder

2021 Ford Explorer 

2021 Toyota Highlander

2021 Mazda CX-9

Curb Weight 

4427 lbs

4345 lbs

4145 lbs

4225 lbs

Length 

198.5”

198.8”

194.9”

199.4”

Width 

77.3”

78.9”

75.8”

77.5”

Height 

70.6”

70.0”

68.1”

69.0”

Ground Clearance 

7.0”

7.9”

8.0”

8.8”

Wheelbase 

114.2”

119.1”

112.2”

115.3”

The ground clearance of the Pathfinder is low relative to its rivals where the Mazda CX-9 has 8.8 inches of ground clearance. The Ford Explorer has the highest wheelbase with 119.0 inches providing a greater balance and interior room. Compare the 2021 PAthfinder's dimension with mid-size SUV rivals here.

Notable exterior features of the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder include:

  • LED DRLs
  • Intelligent Auto Headlights
  • Fog Lamps
  • Roof Rails
  • Body-color rear spoiler
  • Gesture-control liftgate
  • Front UV-reducing solar glass and Rear privacy glass
  • Dual panel panoramic moonroof
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV front view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV front view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV three quarter view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV rear three quarter view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV left side view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV rear view
2021 Nissan Pathfinder basic SUV right

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Safety

8.1/10

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder has not been crash-tested by the NHTSA or IIHS. Since the 2021 Pathfinder is a carryover model, it has similar underpinnings as the outgoing model. For reference, the 2020 Nissan Pathfinder holds impressive safety scores to its credibility. The 2020 Nissan Pathfinder received five stars overall and four stars for side-impact and rollover from the NHTSA, which is still desirable. IIHS awarded the 2019 Pathfinder with its "Top Safety Pick" award.

The standard safety and driver assistance features across all Pathfinder trims include automatic emergency braking, tire pressure monitoring system, rear-view camera, parking sensors, airbags, LATCH, and front and rear crumple zones. The other advanced active safety features like blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and rear cross-traffic alerts come standard on SV and higher trims. While SL and Platinum exclusively feature surround-view camera system. In terms of safety features, the 2021 Pathfinder is expected to score better than the 2020 model. 

 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Competition

7.0/10

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Vs Ford Explorer

The Ford Explorer, even with an inline-4 turbo engine, makes more power than the Pathfinder’s V6. The Ford Explorer leads with a major difference in 0-60mph acceleration and top speed also.

2021 Ford Explorer

The mpg ratings are also better in Ford. The ground clearance is higher in the Explorer by 1 inch. Ford offers a better interior but it can accommodate only 6 people.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Vs Toyota Highlander

Both Nissan Pathfinder and the Toyota Highlander are leading in the SUV class. The Highlander has more value to offer with modern tech and features including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. It has a Hybrid variant that gives 36mpg combined.

2021 Toyota Highlander

The Highlander can provide in terms of performance too with more power and quicker 0-60 acceleration. Although this is true the Pathfinder comes with a towing capacity of 6000 pounds and has a longer wheelbase. 

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Final Verdict

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder will definitely be better than its predecessor. It is a perfect SUV for large families and holds the best towing capacity in class. It doesn't fail in its looks and interior equipment either. It might not be the best out there but it is reliable and good for the long run. So it is definitely worth your investment and time.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is similar to Nissan Pathfinder?

The mid-size crossover SUV segment is loaded with versatile options. The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder's competitors include Kia Telluride, Subaru Ascent, Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander, Buick Enclave, Mazda CX-9, and much more. Most of the rivals offer modern tech and features for a similar price point.

Do Nissan Pathfinders have transmission problems?

The current-gen Pathfinder has a good transmission setup but the 2005-2007 Pathfinder appears to have a defect where coolant leaks into the transmission, causing transmission problems such as failure around 90,000 miles. The Nissan Pathfinder's Repair costs are typically upwards of $3,500 for the said problem.

Does the Nissan Pathfinder's Rock Creek Edition add to the performance and Towing?

No, the Rock Creek Edition adds unique aesthetics inside-out. The 2020 Pathfinder with Rock Creek trim adds a black grille, roof rails, door handles and other aesthetics, plus a standard tow hitch and splash guards. 

How much can the 2021 Nissan Pathfinder tow?

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder is able to tow up to 6,000 lbs, which is a pretty respectable number and well within the segment average.

Can I lease the Nissan Pathfinder?

Yes, you can lease the 2020 Nissan Pathfinder for an affordable payment scheme of around $300 per month for a period of 36 months, which of course excludes the $1,000 downpayment.

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2021 Nissan Pathfinder Overall Reviews


LD

Leslie M. Davis

2020 Nissan Pathfinder

Platinum 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT)

8

User Overall Rating

Posted On: October 7, 2020

top spec Pathfinder

Pros - Hatch Tent, safety features, hill descent

Cons - Lot of buttons on the dash, accessories cost, LCD screen.

Overall Review

8 /10 Overall Rating

The gearbox in the pathfinder is a generation old CVT transmission which is a slow and does not help anywhere in gettnig better fuel economy. It creates a drone in the engine when it goes through gears. This car will not feel necessarly overpower as the response from the engine although being fast, this is a heavy SUV to get going.

6/10
Features
5/10
Interior
9/10
Design
8/10
Safety
9/10
Reliability
7/10
Deal Value
9/10
Dealer Review

WH

Walter F. Holliday

2020 Nissan Pathfinder

SL 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl CVT)

8

User Overall Rating

Posted On: October 7, 2020

Pathfinder 2020

Pros - Seating preset, Privacy rear windows, V motion front grill.

Cons - Firm ride quality, power adjustable steering column missing, apple carplay missing

Overall Review

8 /10 Overall Rating

The thing you going to hate the most while driving this SUV in city conditions is how heavy the steering wheel is, it feels really out of character. For vehicle like this, it is not a big problem when you are out on highway but it gets really annoying when you trying to manuover it around tight parking spaces. The driving experience is nice for road condtions and the suspension setup is pretty good to keep the whole family seated comfotably. As there is no big changes which took place inside the cabin in terms of infotainment features.

6/10
Features
5/10
Interior
9/10
Design
8/10
Safety
7/10
Reliability
7/10
Deal Value
9/10
Dealer Review

BB

Brandon A. Brewster

2020 Nissan Pathfinder

SL 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl CVT)

7

User Overall Rating

Posted On: October 7, 2020

2020 Nissan Pathfinder

Pros - Power, looks evil, drive quality

Cons - Fuel economy, no options for interior customisation, no android auto

Overall Review

7 /10 Overall Rating

Apart from being named pathfinder, there is nothing special in this car which will make you think that this is a path finding vehicle, Nissan has shifted it from a off road capable SUV to more of a mall crawler. But this thing still has the capability of towing 6000 pounds. The sound levels inside the cabin are good, not the best but relatively quiet. Does get a little bit noise when out on highway.

5/10
Features
4/10
Interior
8/10
Design
7/10
Safety
7/10
Reliability
8/10
Deal Value
10/10
Dealer Review

Read all Reviews

Used Nissan Pathfinder for Sale

Car Name Deals Starting Price Number of Listings
2020 Nissan Pathfinder 7 Great Deals Out of 1682 $19,997 1682 Listings
2019 Nissan Pathfinder 43 Great Deals Out of 951 $17,491 951 Listings
2018 Nissan Pathfinder 26 Great Deals Out of 284 $15,680 284 Listings
2017 Nissan Pathfinder 46 Great Deals Out of 651 $11,900 651 Listings
2016 Nissan Pathfinder 15 Great Deals Out of 157 $9,850 157 Listings
2015 Nissan Pathfinder 16 Great Deals Out of 199 $349 199 Listings

Top User Reviews

8

User Overall Rating

top spec Pathfinder

The gearbox in the pathfinder is a generation old CVT transmission which is a slow and does not help anywhere in gettnig better fuel economy. It creates a drone in the engine when it goes through gears. This car will not feel necessarly overpower as the response from the engine although being fast, this is a heavy SUV to get going.

by Leslie M. Davis

8

User Overall Rating

Pathfinder 2020

The thing you going to hate the most while driving this SUV in city conditions is how heavy the steering wheel is, it feels really out of character. For vehicle like this, it is not a big problem when you are out on highway but it gets really annoying when you trying to manuover it around tight parking spaces. The driving experience is nice for road condtions and the suspension setup is pretty goo...

by Walter F. Holliday

7

User Overall Rating

2020 Nissan Pathfinder

Apart from being named pathfinder, there is nothing special in this car which will make you think that this is a path finding vehicle, Nissan has shifted it from a off road capable SUV to more of a mall crawler. But this thing still has the capability of towing 6000 pounds. The sound levels inside the cabin are good, not the best but relatively quiet. Does get a little bit noise when out on highwa...

by Brandon A. Brewster

8

User Overall Rating

powerful pathfinder

yes the 3.5L engine sounds like a power pack unit but the problem is, Nissan is using the same unit from past few generations and now it doesnt have anything outright from the competition. nothign much have changes in the way this car drives as compared to last generation. Its still a daiily driven family hauler you can take to long drives with the comfort of a sedan. Yes the third row of seats ha...

by Douglas G. Moore

7

User Overall Rating

2020 PATHFINDER

one thing you have to expect with this SUV is no matter which drivetrain you choose, you still be getting a CVT unit for the transmission. There is no big problem with the slow shifting gearbox unit but i am pretty sure that you will start to hate the drone sound produced by this gear unit during high rpms. you will never going to feel the car being too power, although the responsiveness is pretty...

by Danny E. Parker

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