A Buyer's Guide to the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder | YourMechanic Advice

A Buyer's Guide to the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder

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Whether you have plans to go off-road or just want a vehicle that’s nice and roomy, the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder is definitely worth a closer look.

Key Features

As a dual-purpose vehicle, Nissan made the 2012 Pathfinder with three-rows of seating, something it’s become known for. However, it can also convert from a seven-passenger transporter to a cargo hauler by flipping the back seats down. Nissan has outfitted the 2012 Pathfinder with front-side and side-curtain airbags. You’ll also feel safer thanks to its Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) system and a tire-pressure monitoring system.

Changes for 2012

The main change to the 2012 model is on the LE and Silver models where you’ll find a very sophisticated, yet easy to use navigation system. A DVD entertainment system and moonroof are also available on the two trims. What We Like No matter which model you choose, you’ll enjoy an impressive 4.0-liter V6 engine controlled by an automatic five-speed transmission. This will put 266 horsepower at your disposal. Also, its 10-speaker Bose sound system is amazing. Much of that is owed to the two huge subwoofers Nissan included.

What Concerns Us

The third row of the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder is not especially roomy. In fact, most adults will not find it very comfortable. You’re better off folding it down and using it for storage and treating the Pathfinder as a five-passenger vehicle. Also, the door handle is a bit high on the doorframe, so if you have smaller children, expect that they’ll need help getting in.

Available Model Types

There are three different trims to choose from. The Pathfinder LE adds a DVD entertainment system to the basic model, complete with a seven-inch color monitor. Rear-seat wireless headphones are also available. A moonroof is optional as well. To that, the Silver trim adds leather upholstery, heated front seats, heated outside mirrors, remote keyless entry and ignition, a six-CD changer and Bluetooth capabilities.

Major Recalls

This model has only been recalled once. In September of 2012, Nissan learned that some of their Pathfinders had been manufactured with front-wheel hubs that didn’t meet hardness standards. As such, they would wear prematurely, with many of them eventually cracking.

Common Issues

The interior often gets brought up as something that disappoints owners. Aside from lacking a true third row, the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder also has plastic surfaces and furnishings. Some have felt that the upholstery wasn’t especially comfortable either.

Nissan Pathfinder 2012 Interior


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Jason

14 years of experience
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Jason
14 years of experience
Chrysler 300 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - New York, New York
Very calm, understanding told me the true price flog the vehicle and also helped me negotiate saving me $$$ great mechanic and did the pre purchase inspection good
Honda CR-V - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Flushing, New York
Jason was great, prompt, and extremely helpful! He explained every aspect of his concerns with the car and answered all our questions in detail. Since I don't know much about cars, it was amazing to have someone who explained how things work in a simple but well rounded way. We are so appreciative of his help!

Chris

21 years of experience
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Chris
21 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz SLK280 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Laguna Hills, California
I hired Chris to inspect a car I wanted to purchase. He arrived on time and gave me a very detailed report, took the time to call me after to review details, and share his impression of the car. He was great and very knowledgeable, I would highly recommend him!
Lexus IS250 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Irvine, California
Smooth experience, was able to communicate succinctly and arrived early to the appointment. Thoroughly completed the 50-point check and gave me his professional opinion. His report on the vehicle reflected knowledge on the vehicle, along with giving me his own estimate on the pricing. Definitely helped me with my purchase.

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24 years of experience
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Peter
24 years of experience
BMW X5 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Burbank, California
Peter saved me from buying a lemon. He was extremely knowledgeable, professional and easy to work with. He is extremely through more than the standard and so he would be your go to guy for any picky buyer like I am. THANK YOU PETER!

Jimmi

25 years of experience
69 reviews
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25 years of experience
BMW 750Li - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Sanford, Florida
Jimmi is thorough! As I am buying the car unseen, he gave me a very good idea of the overall state of the vehicle. I am very impressed!!! He called me and discussed everything with me. Gold star!

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