The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder is a worthy competitor to established SUV brands such as Land Cruiser and Jeep Cherokee. It's not quite there yet, but it's close. Nissan succeeds in creating very roomy SUVs that are comfortable to ride in. Unfortunately, it has a lot of shortcomings that drivers will quickly notice like the underpowered 3.3-liter V-6 engine, which is compared to the V-8 engines found in American SUVs.
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder has a lack of power that's made worse by the lack of engine choices. Pathfinder buyers do not have the option of upgrading to more power. Even people who pay extra for some of the fancier models do not get a choice of engines. This lack of variety spreads to transmissions; even though there are six models for 1999, buyers only get the choice of a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic transmission. Despite this shortcoming, Nissan gets some features right. It has a lot of passenger and cargo room inside, which should please the soccer moms. It also has some attractive features such as convenient cargo tie downs.
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder has narrow rear doors, a feature that consumers may dislike. These make loading and unloading much harder than it should be. This design flaw is made worse by a running board that looks like it was designed for passengers to trip over.
Body: midsize SUV
Engine: 3.3-liter V-6
Transmissions: five-speed manual, four-speed automatic
Models: Nissan Pathfinder XE, Nissan Pathfinder SE Limited, Nissan Pathfinder LE, Nissan Pathfinder SE
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder remains basically unchanged since its 1996 upgrade. Only the LE trim level has some cosmetic new touches, which include color fender flares, and alloy wheels. However, tubular step rails are a dubious addition as it reportedly makes it harder to get into the vehicle.
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder has a slick aerodynamic exterior that still somehow keeps that boxy SUV feel. A sunroof is available on some models. Many commentators have noted that the running boards actually hinder passengers trying to enter or exit. One feature that many drivers may appreciate is the tinted privacy glass windows and windshield.
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder has a very roomy and comfortable interior similar to larger SUVs. In addition to providing lots of space for people and cargo, it offers loads of comfort. Both driver and passengers will enjoy the comfortable seating and the top-of-the-line sound system.
Performance & Handling
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder vehicle offers a smooth, comfortable ride on the highway and city streets. It also has just enough power to tackle basic off-road work. It is a tad underpowered for an SUV; the 3.3-liter V-6 engine only generates 170 horsepower and 200 lb-ft of torque. Furthermore, it has a very limited towing capacity of 3500 pounds.
The 1999 Nissan Pathfinder stands out in safety. It features standard dual-front airbags and four-wheel ABS brakes. Side-curtain airbags and traction control is available as an option for the higher-end models.
EPA Fuel Economy
Nissan Pathfinder: 14/17 mpg city/highway
- Large amounts of passenger space in front and back
- Lots of cargo space
- Convenient tie-down hooks
- Great sound system
- Comfortable seats
You Won't Like
- Underpowered engine
- Lack of engine choice
- Narrow rear doors
- Poor design features
A family-oriented SUV.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Toyota Land Cruiser
- Jeep Cherokee
- Infiniti QX4