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New Nissan Pathfinder 2021 spied! Toyota Kluger rival's major facelift goes public

The Pathfinder will adopt a new front fascia. (Image credit: Cars of Bodensee)

The heavily facelifted version of the fourth-generation Nissan Pathfinder large SUV has been spied for the first time, with a camouflaged development mule spotted in a carpark near Lake Constance in Germany.

The images posted by Instagram user Cars of Bodensee are consistent with an Automotive News report from earlier this month that quoted a Nissan USA insider saying “there’s not one bit of that car that would remind you of the current Pathfinder”.

Comparing the current and future models shows the Pathfinder will adopt a new front fascia, including Nissan’s V-Motion grille and boomerang-style headlights, with the look very similar to that of the recently revealed fourth-generation X-Trail mid-size SUV.

Even the Pathfinder’s door panels appear to be different, with a much stronger character line incorporated, while the design and placement of its side mirrors certainly are.

The rear fascia has also been redesigned, with the tail-lights and tailgate noticeably reshaped, the latter relocating its handle to a much lower position.

The Pathfinder's rear fascia has also been redesigned. (Image credit: Cars of Bodensee) The Pathfinder's rear fascia has also been redesigned. (Image credit: Cars of Bodensee)

While it may look like a next-generation model, the Automotive News report also claimed the new Pathfinder will be built on a revised version of the Renault-Nissan D platform, which will support a key drivetrain change.

The Pathfinder will remain available with a 3.5-litre naturally aspirated V6 petrol engine, but its continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) will be replaced by a new nine-speed torque-converter unit.

The Pathfinder will also get an overhauled interior, with AllCarNews previously reporting in-cabin technology will also be a focus of its major facelift. As such, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support is expected to be introduced.

With the Toyota Kluger rival reportedly set to be revealed early next year, it won’t be too long until we find out what else is in store, including the return of a hybrid powertrain option.