Jul 30th, 2012 by Ross Edwards
The 2013 Nissan Pathfinder has been revealed on the company’s Facebook page. The new Pathfinder will return to a unibody construction, which was used in the second generation of the SUV, sold from 1996 to 2004. The unibody construction fits the 2013 Pathfinder into the crossover category, ditching the truck-like body-on-frame construction of the last generation that favors offroad driving and towing in favor of a better ride and handling on the road. Basically, Nissan is setting the Pathfinder as the Soccer-mom Utility Vehicle and letting the Xterra and Armada continue on as traditional SUVs.
If the 2013 Nissan Pathfinder matches the 2013 Infiniti JX35’s curb weight (and, to be fair, it may be lower thanks to less sound deadening and fewer features like electric seats, heaters for the seats and extra air bags that all add weight to the car) the new model will weigh 150 lbs less than the last generation.
The switch to unibody might put off some SUV purists, but in addition to the 150 lb weight savings, the more comfortable ride and the safer handling that come with the switch to unibody construction, Left Lane News points out that the 2013 Pathfinder will probably have more room in the second and third rows thanks to the unibody construction. Those SUV purists can still buy the no longer redundant Xterra and the Armada, both of which are body-on-frame.
Image via Left Lane News.