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2009 Nissan Pathfinder

Overview
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2009 Nissan Pathfinder Review

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Nissan's 2009 Pathfinder mid-sized SUV offers room for five, plenty of power for towing and hauling and a progressive design that is both stylish and rugged. While car-based crossover SUVs are growing in popularity, there is still a large segment of the population that wants a sturdy body-on-frame design, which provides a more capable off-road platform and the ability to tow heavy loads. Until recently, Nissan buyers who required the pulling power of a V8 had to move up to the full-size Armada, but the addition of an available V8 engine to the Pathfinder powertrain choices means owners can stick with a modest-sized SUV and still tow up to 7,000 pounds.

You'll Like This Car If...

Even if you seldom go off-road, you might still appreciate the Pathfinder's ability to give the most accomplished nameplates a mud-run for their money. And if you're looking for a people-mover that comes across as more mountain man and less soccer mom, the Pathfinder should more than suffice.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The 2009 Nissan Pathfinder makes no attempt to mask its rugged capabilities behind a soft exterior, and its ride and handling are far from car-like. Although a welcome addition, the big V8 engine is not particularly fuel-efficient, making this Pathfinder option costly in the long-term.

What's New for 2009

All models receive front side and side-curtain supplemental airbags, as well as an auto door lock feature and two new exterior colors. 18-inch alloy wheels previously available only on V8 models are now standard on LE V6 models.

Driving the Pathfinder

Driving Impressions We spent time in both two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive Pathfinders, including the SE Off-Road model, and came away impressed by both our off-road and on-road experiences. In particular, the SE Off-Road...

model's sophisticated hill descent control and hill start assist features were appreciated during our steeper, more strenuous off-road exploits. Back on the streets, where even major off-road enthusiasts will log most of their miles, the vehicles shifted smoothly, turned confidently and delivered a ride that seemed pleasant enough for even longer road trips.

Folding Three-Row Seating
The Pathfinder converts quickly and easily from seven-passenger troop transport to cavernous cargo hauler.

SE Off-Road Model
Distinguished by its purposeful collection of features and technologies, the specialized SE Off-Road model is certainly Nissan's most sophisticated off-roader to date.

2009 Nissan Pathfinder Details
2009 Nissan Pathfinder photo Interior

The big story for the 2009 Pathfinder continues to be its roomy interior, especially as third-row seating has become a requirement of the mid-size category. Like most SUVs in this class, the Pathfinder's third-row seat is better suited to small children or, for adults, quick jaunts across town. Unlike many, the Pathfinder's third-row folds completely into the floor, and center and third-row seats fold flat without requiring removal of the head restraints. Combined with the folding front passenger seat, the cabin is able to swallow lengthy cargo, but the Pathfinder's interior is just as well suited to everyday commutes, and delivers a roomy, comfortable environment.

Exterior

The Pathfinder's design features mesh easily with Nissan's current philosophy in creating a rugged, purposeful exterior befitting the vehicle's lineage and ability. The bold front end mimics other Nissan models such as the Armada and Frontier, tying in a familial theme. The Pathfinder has grown larger over the years – the latest growth spurt necessary to accommodate its optional V8 engine – but overhangs both front and rear remain appropriately short. The factory roof rack looks rugged, but it might not match the weight ratings or versatility of some aftermarket units.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Noteworthy as standard on all four trim levels are the impressive V6, fold-flat third-row seating, five-speed automatic transmission, Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) system, front side and side curtain airbags and a tire pressure monitoring system. SE and LE trims add a RearView monitor with seven-inch LCD screen, power-adjustable foot pedals and dual-zone climate controls. The SE Off-Road model adds hill descent control and hill start assist and 16-inch alloy wheels with P265/75R16 tires.

Optional Equipment

Options available on select models include a 310-horsepower V8 engine (SE and LE only), powerful Bose sound system, XM Satellite Radio, leather seating, navigation system with 9.3-gigabyte hard drive, DVD entertainment system, Bilstein off-road shocks (SE Off Road only) and moonroof. Also, every trim level is available in either two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.

Under the Hood

The Pathfinder's standard 4.0-liter V6, which is a Nissan workhorse, is a powerful and torque-happy engine that's well-suited to the needs of the average SUV owner. For those who need extra horsepower and towing ability, the optional 5.6-liter V8 is the obvious answer, adding an additional 100 foot-pounds of torque and 44 more horsepower.

4.0-liter V6
266 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
288 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/22 (2WD), 14/20 (4WD)

5.6-liter V8
310 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
388 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/19 (2WD), 13/18 (4WD)

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2009 Nissan Pathfinder Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.2
Out of 10

Based on 460 Ratings for the 2005 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.3/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    8.6/10
    Performance
    8.7/10
  • Comfort
    8.4/10
    Styling
    8.7/10

Don't buy Nissan

By on Saturday, May 23, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 123,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
2/10

Pros: "Poor quality"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I bout the car new November 2006, It has served my family well until recently. The radiator is leaking fluid into the transmission and like so many, I have found out there is no recall. I am stuck with the decision to place $6K to repair or get rid of it. The vehicle was serviced during the regular cycle and has turned out to be a piece of trash. Will never suggest anyone buy Nissan."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

have had my pathfinder for four years and love it

By on Monday, May 11, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 62,282

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "comfortable and smooth to drive in"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"have had my truck since brand new had one flat tire my fault and had fast easy response would recommend to anyone"

Greatest Investment

By on Friday, May 01, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 139,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I purchased this truck as a Lease return. I has been the best vehicle to own. I have only had normal wear and tear items to attend to. I does great both on pavement and on off-road (running Grapplers). I have taken this vehicle cross country and have many compliments on the comfort of the leather seats and lumbar support. Running Premium gas I actually average close to 28 miles to the gallon highway (not kidding!). My mechanic shop is always impressed with the quality of the parts used on this vehicle, they say it is heavy built and designed to last. The third room is roomy compared to the other comps I looked at and has reasonable access. I love that when I do not have my trailer I can still load 20 bags of mulch thanks to the fact the back two rows lay completely flat. I would love to get a newer version, but can't part with this truck (thanks for all the offers I get to buy it from me though ) :). Love that this is on the truck frame and not the uni-body like so many now have. Sadly this wonderful design was only produced until 2012 or I would have considered another one. But If you are looking at a 2007 they are great! However,they often rare to find, as most owners keep them, like me."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Good SUV

By on Tuesday, March 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 41,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I like the looks, the power and just everything about it. I wish the gas mileage was better but I knew that going into my purchase."

7 people out of 12 found this review helpful

I love this car. No problems in the last 10 years

By on Tuesday, January 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 74,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Exceptional value and fun to drive."

Cons: "Non that I can think of"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have had no problems with this car since I purchased it new in 2004. It has been the most reliable car that I have ever owned. We have taken it on trips in the mountains and the snow and has never let me down. It starts every time, the first time. All the equipment continues to work whenever called upon. I would not hesitate to take this car anywhere including across the country. I could not say enough about this wonderful car. Nissan really designed the perfect SUV."

14 people out of 20 found this review helpful

Excellent vehicle for the True Sportsman

By on Friday, January 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 44,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Everything is well made"

Cons: "Fuel consumption"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"This is one of the last true trucks (4x4) that Nissan has made. All new suv's are crossover. The only trucks are the Titan and suv's the Armada. Very nice but the fuel economy is why Energy Extremists go crazy. The fuel mileage is well below the manufacturer sticker estimate. That includes the Pathfinder up until 2013 when Nissan changed the Pathfinder to a crossover. They have the technology. Why don't they make trucks (4x4) that get good gas mileage? All the American Companies are doing it. It is making me decide either to go to American made trucks or stay loyal to Nissan and pay through my nose for fuel? Maybe KBB can change Nissan's mind? I need a new vehicle. It doesn't look like it's going to be a Nissan after 10 Nissan's in the last 14 years. I have to go back to American made."

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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