You know the Nissan Pathfinder? Well, it used to be a Mazda… All the way back in the Sixties, the Hiroshima carmaker struck a deal with the Burmese government for a fleet of rugged off-roaders in the vein of the original Land Rover or Willys Jeep. The Mazda Jeep, the people simply called it, but the maker tagged it as the Mazda Pathfinder XV-1. Produced only in Burma in tiny numbers for official use, Mazda didn’t even make this vehicle at home in Japan, and perhaps in an effort to ditch the whole association with a difficult political situation in Burma, Mazda eventually decided to sort of bury the Pathfinder under the carpet and just forget about it.
The company happily allowed a rival carmaker to use the name without objection, when Nissan launched its own Pathfinder in 1985. And that’s how the Pathfinder became a Nissan, a SUV that’s now in its fourth-generation having just undergone a mid-life update before arriving in the UAE on sale this month.
With prices starting from Dh119,000 for base-spec two-wheel drive versions, there’s enough trim levels available in the new range for customers to spend up to Dh169,000 for top-spec versions of the all-wheel drive, facelifted, 2017 Pathfinder.
The redesign is quite major, with revised taillights and rear bumpers, new bonnet and front bumper with the latest grille design and LEDs, and updated details like new fog lights and mirrors with integrated indicators. Practical improvements include a motion-activated lift gate (with a wave of the foot under the bumper) and a standard 8.0in touchscreen display.
The Nissan Pathfinder houses a carried-over 3.5-litre V6 in the engine bay, but it’s been tuned to deliver seven per cent extra horsepower and a little more torque too. In fact Nissan says the parts are new, including things like pistons, and the numbers now sit at 284bhp and 350Nm of torque.
The available intelligent all-wheel drive system comes with selectable modes including 4WD lock mode, in addition to a hill-start assist and hill-descent control.
Options for the new Nissan Pathfinder include kit such as Intelligent Emergency Breaking, Intelligent Cruise Control, Blind Spot Warning, Forward Collision Warning and Rear Cross Traffic Alert which are all available on SV and SL grades, while the former also offers the option of an Intelligent Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection.
The car is available in showrooms across the region.