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2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4WD Test Drive Review

Nissan’s newly redesigned Pathfinder makes its return for the 2018 model year with two new colors—Scarlet Ember and Midnight Pine— along with a selection of thoughtful innovations and technologies. More importantly, this popular SUV proves that utility doesn’t have to be dull, as it punches above its class with premium amenities and luxury appointments. So imagine a life of comfort and adventure while we take a closer look at our 2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4×4 test model.

2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum Exterior

The 2018 Pathfinder continues to deliver confidence and a manageable package after last year’s major redesign, featuring improved aerodynamic efficiency and refreshed character lines that provide a more adventurous look overall.

At the front of our Pathfinder Platinum test model, Nissan’s signature “V-Motion” grille is flanked by boomerang-shaped LED headlights and LED daytime running lights. The lines of the front fascia flow seamlessly into the commanding hood, and then morph into strong fenders which house the 20-inch aluminum alloy wheels that are exclusive to the Platinum trim.

Standard on the 2018 Pathfinder Platinum is a dual panorama moonroof that features a sliding front panel along with a large fixed rear glass panel for the second and third rows. Our test model came in the new Scarlet Ember exterior paint, and was accented with chrome on the grille, door handles, and body-side molding. Other exterior highlights include a motion-activated rear liftgate—wave your foot under the rear bumper to activate it—along with roof rails, fog lights, and heated outside mirrors with LED turn signals.

Overall, the 2018 Pathfinder’s design language exudes confidence and maturity, and it’s accented with exciting and dynamic cues. It’s a perfect balance for those who need a vehicle for both work and play.

2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum Interior

Once inside the almond-colored interior, you’re met with comfort and convenience from the spacious cabin, complete with standard three-row leather-appointed seating.

The front seats feature power adjustment as well as heating and cooling, and the second row includes heated seats. Our test model also came equipped with the optional Nissan Mobile Entertainment System Package, which adds dual eight-inch screens, a DVD player, two wireless headphones, and a wireless remote control. One feature that’s sure to come in handy for drivers who carry lots of passengers is the EZ Flex seating system. It allows for effortless movement and transformation of the second row, rolling forward to provide easy entry to the third row of seating, or folding flat for expanded cargo capacity.

All of your infotainment needs are handled by the intuitive eight-inch NissanConnect system with navigation and online services (standard for the Platinum trim). HD radio, SiriusXM satellite radio, Bluetooth connectivity, and smartphone-powered apps are at your fingertips thanks to a combination of touchscreen icons and shortcut buttons on the center dashboard and steering wheel. You can also use intuitive voice commands to control your favorite apps, like Pandora, iHeartRadio, and more.

One of our favorite new standard features for the 2018 Pathfinder is Rear Door Alert, an innovative system that reminds you to check the rear seat for anything left behind. If the vehicle senses that the rear door was opened prior to a trip, but not re-opened once parked, Rear Door Alert will notify the departing driver with visual cues, and eventually, a unique sounding of the horn. This is a great feature for on-the-go drivers who tend to be a bit forgetful. Additional interior features of note include a BOSE premium audio system with 13 speakers, six USB ports, a heated steering wheel, and tri-zone automatic temperature control.

With seating for seven passengers and the versatility to accept a bunch of cargo, the 2018 Pathfinder is a one-stop solution for your transportation needs.

2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum Performance

Every 2018 Pathfinder is powered by an advanced 3.5-liter V-6 engine that produces 284 horsepower and 259 pound-feet of torque. And together with the XTRONIC CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), the Pathfinder can tow up to 6,000 pounds.

For the extra-adventurous types, an Intelligent 4×4 4WD system will give you the confidence to take the path less traveled, automatically switching from 2WD to 4WD on low traction surfaces. Hill start assist and hill descent control are also standard on all 2018 4WD Pathfinders. For those with specific needs, the Intelligent 4×4 system can be manually locked to 2WD or 4WD with the turn of a knob.

Despite the Pathfinder’s large stature, it remains nimble and easy to drive thanks to an expertly tuned four-wheel independent suspension that offers improved body control and a refined ride quality. The vehicle’s driving dynamics more closely resemble that of a sedan, with minimal lateral roll and precise body control.

During our time with the 2018 Pathfinder Platinum, we were thoroughly impressed with how quickly this SUV accelerated, and loved its high-positioned visibility and car-like handling—a feat that many SUVs can’t easily accomplish.

Fuel economy for the 2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum is an EPA estimated 19 mpg city and 26 mpg highway**.

2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum Safety

The 2018 Pathfinder Platinum is packed with advanced safety features usually reserved for luxury-class vehicles.

Our test model came standard with automatic emergency braking, Intelligent Around View Monitor (360-degree exterior camera), adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, electronic brake force distribution, vehicle dynamic control, and traction control.

A collection of front, side-impact, and curtain air bags help minimize injury in the event of an accident, while individual tire pressure monitoring ensures you have proper contact with the road for optimal braking capability.

Other standard safety features on the 2018 Pathfinder Platinum include a rear sonar system, LED daytime running lights, and NissanConnect services with automatic collision notification and emergency calling.

2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum Overall

For those who want more than a utilitarian vehicle, the 2018 Pathfinder delivers adventurous style and luxury amenities in addition to its enhanced capability and versatility.

Starting MSRP for the 2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4WD is $44,010, and our test model came nicely equipped for $47,840*.

See how the Pathfinder can suit your needs by visiting your local AutoNation-affiliated Nissan dealership.

*MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.
**Based on 2018 EPA mileage ratings. Your mileage will vary depending specific vehicle trim, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.

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