Dubicars Car Spotlight — Nissan Pathfinder

The Nissan Pathfinder is a mid-size SUV with a rich history dating back to 1985. It has carved its niche in the automotive landscape, evolving from a rugged, truck-based behemoth to a refined, family-friendly adventurer.


Before the Pathfinder, there was the Nissan Bushmaster, an aftermarket conversion of the Datsun Truck. Its optional 4WD system, which could be engaged electronically while the vehicle was in motion, was unique at the time.

1st Generation (YD21/WD21) | 1986

nissan pathfinder history

The original Pathfinder burst onto the scene in 1986, a compact SUV built on the Nissan Navara pick-up truck platform. Think boxy lines, solid axles, and a no-nonsense attitude.

This first generation, known as the YD21/WD21, set the tone with its body-on-frame construction, establishing itself as a genuine off-road companion.

  • Off-road prowess, popular with enthusiasts
  • Available in 2-door and 4-door versions
  • Introduced V6 engine option in later years

Available engine options

  • 2.4L I4 Petrol (106hp, 182 Nm)
  • 3.0L V6 Petrol (140hp, 244 Nm)
  • 3.0L V6 Petrol (153hp, 244 Nm)
  • 2.7L I4 Diesel (120hp, 245Nm)

2nd Generation (R50) | 1995

nissan pathfinder history

The second-gen Nissan Pathfinder saw a significant shift in 1995, growing in size and comfort. It traded its utilitarian roots for a smoother, more rounded appearance, offering improved on-road manners and family-friendly practicality. While still capable off-road, the Pathfinder became more of a versatile all-rounder.

  • Improved on-road manners and practicality
  • Still capable off-road, but more versatile
  • Birthed the luxurious Infiniti QX4 twin
  • Known as “Terrano Regulus” in some markets

Available engine options

  • 3.3L I4 Petrol (106hp, 182 Nm)
  • 3.5L V6 Petrol (140hp, 244 Nm)
  • 3.0L V6 Diesel (148hp, 343Nm)
  • 2.7L I4 Diesel (120hp, 245Nm)

Infiniti QX4/Terrano Regulus

nissan pathfinder history

The luxurious Infiniti QX4 was a premium version of the Pathfinder aimed at the upscale market. Meanwhile, in international markets, the Pathfinder donned the “Terrano Regulus” moniker, further expanding its reach.

3rd Generation (R51) | 2005

The 2005 Nissan Pathfinder marked another leap forward. It adopted a unibody construction, shedding its truck-based underpinnings for a more car-like ride. This improved fuel efficiency and on-road handling, but came at the cost of reduced off-road prowess.

The interior, however, grew even more spacious and comfortable, solidifying the Pathfinder’s appeal to families.

nissan pathfinder history
  • Reduced off-road capabilities
  • Spacious and comfortable interior, ideal for families
  • Available in 7-passenger configuration
  • Facelifted in 2008 and 2010 with updated styling and features

Available engine options

  • 4.0L V6 Petrol (106hp, 182 Nm)
  • 5.6L V8 Petrol (320hp, 533Nm)
  • 2.5L I4 Diesel (169hp, 403Nm)
  • 3.0L V6 Diesel (228hp, 550Nm)

4th Generation (R52) | 2013

The fourth-gen Nissan Pathfinder in 2013 upped the ante on boldness. Its dramatic exterior styling and powerful V6 engine made a head-turning statement. Technology took centre stage too, with features like a panoramic sunroof and Nissan’s advanced all-wheel-drive system bolstering its appeal.

nissan pathfinder history

Nissan introduced a hybrid version of the Pathfinder in 2015. Combining a V6 engine with an electric motor, it offered improved fuel economy without sacrificing performance.

Available engine options

  • 3.5L V6 Petrol (260hp, 324Nm)
  • 2.5L I4 Petrol Hybrid (250hp, 330Nm)
  • 2.5L I4 Diesel (169hp, 403Nm)

5th Generation (R53) | 2022

The fifth-gen model retains the rugged good looks of its predecessor but dials up the refinement. A plush interior, upgraded tech features, and a potent V6 engine. The fifth-generation Pathfinder comes standard as an 8-seater, with second-row bucket seats.

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The fifth iteration of the Nissan Pathfinder introduces the Intelligent 4×4 terrain-management system, boasting seven settings for enhanced control. Standard features now include trailer sway control, along with Safety Shield 360, Nissan’s comprehensive active safety suite.

Available engine options

  • 3.5L V6 Petrol (284 hp, 351Nm)

Notable Features:

  • 9-inch Touchscreen Infotainment 
  • 12.3-inch Instrument Cluster 
  • 10.8-inch Heads-up Display
  • Apple CarPlay & Android Auto 
  • Automatic Climate Control
  • Panoramic Sunroof
  • Wireless Charger
  • Powered Seats
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The 5th-gen Nissan Pathfinder now has a different Chinese version revealed last year. It is also sold as the Infiniti QX60. It is powered by a 2L petrol engine producing 252hp and 376Nm paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission.

Most Popular Nissan Pathfinder Generations In The UAE

The Nissan Pathfinder, like its SUV counterparts, has garnered significant popularity among buyers in the UAE. The 4th and 5th generation models, in particular, stand out, appreciated for their distinctive combination of practicality as everyday family cars and their versatility as vehicles for weekend getaways. The Pathfinder is especially appealing to buyers looking for a budget Nissan Patrol.

Find used Pathfinder for sale in the UAE and new Pathfinder for sale in the UAE.

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