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2017 Nissan Pathfinder: on the right path!

Nueva Nissan Pathfinder 2017

Nissan invites us to find a new path with their revamped 2017 Pathfinder.  The Pathfinder’s bold new look starts with the new front end, which begs for adventure.  If you are in the Dallas area, and in the mood for an adventure,  Klyde Warren Park in the downtown arts district has a new maze that leads explorers to a Nissan Pathfinder.

Along with other car writers from Texas Auto Writers, my husband and I recently spent a few days at the Nissan Adventure Drive in Carmel, California.  To celebrate Nissan’s Year of the Truck, we were invited to test three new Nissan models.  Along with the Pathfinder, we also spent time in the new 2017 Nissan Armada.  This family-sized SUV offers advanced V8 performance, safety and security features.  We enjoyed a grueling off-road course in the powerful Armada, along with scenic drives to a nearby vineyard. 

We also went off-roading in the new Titan XD, which was introduced along with the Single Cab during the adventure program.  Both new members of the Titan family will join the XD and crew cab versions at Nissan dealers later this fall.  No doubt they will also make their presence know in October at the Texas Truck Rodeo, since the XD won that prestigious title last year.Sunset with Titans in organic garden

While their other adventure vehicles will be evaluated later, the focus of this review will be on Nissan’s Pathfinder.  The adventurous SUV recently earned a five-star vehicle safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  It has received the five-star rating every year since 2014.  The rating is probably helped by Pathfinder’s Nissan Safety Shield technology.  It includes advanced driver assistance with forward emergency braking, intelligent cruise control, moving object detection, blind spot warning and rear cross traffic alert.  The Pathfinder’s advanced air bag system extends to supplemental air bags, roof-mounted curtain air bags and rollover head protection for all three rows.

The Pathfinder’s striking new looks carry through to the SUV’s overall performance.  Thanks to its 3.5-liter V6 engine that operates on Direct Injection Gas, the Pathfinder has increased horsepower (284) and increased torque (259 lb.-ft.).  It also boasts class-leading towing of 6,000 lbs.  It also has vehicle dynamic control and traction control system.  One of my favorite features was the motion-activated lift gate available on the top two trims.

Nissan has added all the latest technology to help you find a new path. With Nissan executive Mike Gallagher as a tour guide, we took the Pathfinder on an exciting new (for us) path.  Driving slowly along the famous 17-Mile Drive at Pebble Beach, we stopped for photos several times. 

Durhl and Jo Ann on 17 Mile DriveThe Pathfinder fit in like it belonged by the 17th hole of the storied Pebble Beach Golf Links.  Or parked across from a mansion overlooking the ocean, on sale for only $13M.

While most of us can’t buy that mansion, the new Pathfinder is extremely affordable.  The Pathfinder S has an MSRP under $30,000.  Three other trims, the SL, SV and Platinum, plus a choice of FWD or AWD models are available.  The front wheel drive model gets 20 mpg in town, 27 on the highway.  The four wheel drive model gets 19 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the road. 

(Side Note:  The only thing marring the fun of driving new Nissans in California’s beautiful Monterey region was the fire raging through the Big Sur.  Several times the smoke from the too-close-for-comfort conflagration made our eyes water. One morning we watched ashes falling from the sky like snowflakes.  At that point the fire was only 5% contained, but today’s news says it is now close to 50% contained.  Some local vineyards were harmed by the smoke and many people saw their homes destroyed.  Over 57,500 acres have been lost to the fire.  Even more tragic, a firefighter was killed when his bulldozer overturned.)

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