2012 Nissan Pathfinder vs. Its Competition

2011 Nissan Pathfinder 2WD 4-door V6 SV Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

The Pathfinder is looking like more of a niche vehicle with each passing year.

More carlike choices such as the Ford Edge, Honda Pilot, Chevrolet Traverse, or Nissan's own Murano are simply better choices if you plan to carry passengers more often than serious towing or off-roading.

But among tough truck-based alternatives, the Toyota 4Runner was redesigned just two years ago, and it's better appointed inside and offers a bit more comfort.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee has smooth, responsive powertrains, a well-tuned chassis, and top-notch safety, and it's quite possibly the best vehicle in this class for those who need to tow but don't want to give up luxury.

The Dodge Durango is closely related to the Grand Cherokee and is another good alternative for those who need solid towing ability but plan to keep it mostly to streets and highways.

2011 Nissan Pathfinder 2WD 4-door V6 SV Angular Front Exterior View2012 Nissan PathfinderBrowse Used Listings2012 Ford Explorer2012 Ford ExplorerBrowse Used Listings2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT82012 Jeep Grand CherokeeBrowse Used Listings2011 Toyota 4Runner 4WD 4-door V6 SR5 (GS) Angular Front Exterior View2012 Toyota 4RunnerBrowse Used Listings
Quick Specs
6.2
The 2012 Nissan Pathfinder appeals to those who need tow or off-road, yet occasionally carry passengers; if it's the other way around, you can do better.
8.6
It's a rifle shot at the heart of the crossover market: the 2012 Ford Explorer gives any SUV loyalist a reason to leap off their very high horse.
8.6
The 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee only gets better this year with the addition of the SRT8's thundering HEMI V-8.
8.2
The brawny 2012 Toyota 4Runner targets off-road purists who sometimes need to haul the family—and it's better on the highway than you might think.
MSRP From   
$29,290$28,280$27,195$31,090
Gas Mileage   
13 MPG City / 22 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy12 MPG City / 23 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 23 MPG Hwy
Engine   
Gas V6Gas V6Gas/Ethanol V6Gas V6
EPA Class   
2WD Sport UtilitySport Utility Vehicle - 2WD2WD Sport Utility VehicleSport Utility Vehicle 2WD
Style Name   
2WD 4-Door V6 SFWD 4-Door BaseRWD 4-Door Laredo AltitudeRWD 4-Door V6 SR5 (GS)
Drivetrain   
Rear Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity   
7755
Passenger Doors   
N/AN/A4N/A
Body Style   
Sport UtilitySport Utility VehicleSport Utility VehicleSport Utility Vehicle
Transmission   
AutomaticAutomatic w/manual shiftAutomaticAutomatic w/Manual Shift