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Pretty much everything but the Nissan Pathfinder name is new for 2013. That includes a transverse-mounted 3.5-liter V6, Xtronic continuously variable transmission (CVT), unitized body, front-wheel-drive version, All-Mode 4x4 all-wheel drive system, EZ Flex seating, available panoramic sunroof, and many other new enhancements.
Nissan reinvented the Pathfinder last year, transforming it from a rugged body-on-frame SUV into a more car-like unibody crossover SUV. The result was a vehicle whose priorities changed from towing heavy loads and finding precarious paths to meeting the demands of a wider audience seeking a comfortable, fuel-efficient SUV that can stylishly schlep the kids to soccer practice and still have room for groceries. Not surprisingly, the latest Pathfinder has been a hit. As a softened crossover SUV, the 7-passenger Pathfinder is one of the most competent models in a segment that includes the Ford Explorer, Chevrolet Traverse, Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot and Mazda CX-9. The Pathfinder's 26-mpg highway rating is among the segment's best, and a new hybrid model promises still-higher returns.