Quality issues can cost owners a great deal down the line. We look at the case of defects on two popular Nissan SUVs to track how they fared over the years and how a class action settlement didn't provide many owners much help.
Nissan and Infiniti are the latest automakers to issue recalls involving faulty airbag inflators from Takata. The Japanese automakers have announced campaigns covering about 226,326 units from seven models built in the early 2000s because they contain the bad part in the passenger-side, front airbag. The affected vehicles include the 2002-2004 Nissan Sentra, 2002-2003 Pathfinder and 2002-2003 Maxima, and it also covers the 2002-2003 Infiniti QX4, 2002-2003 I35, 2003 FX45 and 2003 FX35.
Among automotive enthusiasts, no one seems to hold a neutral opinion when it comes to continuously variable transmissions. CVTs are either praised for their ability to boost fuel economy or chided for their occasionally poor driving dynamics. Nissan is among the masters of these un-shifting gearboxes in the US, and it uses them in many vehicles in its lineup. However, for the 2015 model year, several models are getting a software update to make their CVTs a bit more like a conventional automatic
Despite our tendency as enthusiasts to clamor for things like wagons and hot hatchbacks, it's hard to argue with the buying public's increasing demand for functional crossovers. In fact, the great SUV craze of the late-1990s has all but faded in favor of the easier-driving, better-packaged, more-efficient crossover. That's even true at the larger end of the market – just look at what happened when Ford redesigned its body-on-frame Explorer into a stylish and well-equipped CUV. And now look
Nissan is recalling 3,065 units of the 2013 Pathfinder equipped with the CVT, due to a potential transmission fluid leak. On crossovers built from April 18, 2012 to October 3,2012 "inadequate clamping force" on the hose connected to the internal oil cooler can cause the hose to come loose and let fluid escape. A severe loss of fluid can cause the transmission to stop working properly.
Nissan and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have issued a recall for 989,701 vehicles in the US due to an issue with their passenger-side airbag systems. Affected Nissan models include the Altima, Leaf, Pathfinder and Sentra from the 2013 and 2014 model years, and 2013 NV200 taxis. Affected Infiniti models include the 2013 JX35 and 2014 Q50 and QX60 utility vehicles.
There's something about a road trip that invariably gets me excited. Maybe it's the cultural remains of Manifest Destiny or my own sense of adventure, but each year I, like millions of other Americans, pack my vehicle to the brim with enough supplies to survive a mild nuclear winter and head off across the continent.
If you've been keeping up with our long-term 2013 Nissan Pathfinder coverage, you already know that, generally speaking, we dig it. After racking up 21,000 miles (and climbing!) on our dear Sweet Brown, we've become very, very familiar with the Pathfinder package as a whole, and many of us actually prefer it over competitors like the Ford Explorer and Chevrolet Traverse.
Nissan has announced pricing for the 2014 Pathfinder Hybrid, which was revealed earlier this year at the 2013 New York Auto Show. Offering two- or all-wheel drive, the hybridized crossover sports a 2.5-liter four-cylinder and a 15-kilowatt electric motor, for a total of 250 system horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque. Those numbers match up well with the 260 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque put out by the V6-powered Pathfinder. Naturally, fuel economy sees a hefty boost, to 25 miles pe
Nissan will be recalling over 151,000 vehicles due to issues with the anti-lock braking systems. On rough roads, light braking in the Nissan Pathfinder, Infiniti JX35 and QX60 could trigger a problem in the brake pressure output software that might lead to longer stopping distances than expected relative to the brake inputs. Needless to say, unpredictable stopping distances on rough roads is not a desirable trait in a three-row, family friendly CUV.