Since 1986, the Nissan Pathfinder has been a leader in the SUV category, blending style, utility and reasonable value that appealed to many consumers. Each generation of the Pathy has been a clear descendant of the previous model. Until now that is. The “concept” that Nissan is showing at Detroit is a drastic departure from the historic two box shape that has always defined the truck.
One of the keys to Pathfinder’s success has always been that it was, first and foremost, a truck. A body on frame constructed truck that was capable of doing real work while also being comfy and looking sharp. The new unit will be a unibody construction, essentially turning the Pathy into a very large crossover.
For some consumers, boxy may not be good, as Volvo learned by staying with the box for too many years before becoming sexy. The new Pathfinder is certainly sexy and may just draw a whole new segment of buyers into the showroom. Let’s just hope they don’t lose the ever important utility part of the equation by moving away from the tried and true truck platform.
Photo gallery and Nissan press release after the break.