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Nissan Pathfinder 2022: Australian launch approaching for new Toyota Kluger, Mazda CX-9 and Hyundai Palisade rival

The new Nissan Pathfinder first broke cover in February, and will arrive Down Under next year.

Nissan Australia is set for a very busy 2022, confirming the new Pathfinder large SUV will hit local showrooms next year with an eight-seat layout.

Likely arriving in the second-half of next year following the release of the new-generation Qashqai in early 2022 and the hotly-anticipated Z sports car in the middle of the year, the Pathfinder could even arrive before the X-Trail mid-size SUV that is also slated for a launch in around 12 months.

Australian-spec vehicles will allow for up to eight passengers, matching the seating arrangement of the Hyundai Palisade SUV, Staria people mover and Kia Carnival mini-van, while also offering one more seat than the Toyota Kluger and Mazda CX-9.

Accessing the third row is also made easier thanks to second-row seats that pitch farther forward, according to Nissan, while seats six and seven are split-folding 60:40 for those that want to maximise boot space.

However, for those that want a more premium experience, the 2022 Pathfinder can also be optioned with second-row captain’s chairs with a removable centre console, giving passengers a little more room to stretch out.

Powering the 2022 Nissan Pathfinder is a carryover 3.5-litre petrol V6 engine, but with an extra 10kW/11Nm squeezed out of it for a 212kW/351Nm output.

However, instead of the much-maligned continuously variable transmission (CVT) that was offered in the outgoing model, the 2022 Pathfinder will instead score a nine-speed torque convertor automatic, which can send drive to the front or all wheels.

The all-wheel-drive models will also receive a ‘Drive and Terrain Mode Selector’ with seven settings (Standard, Sport, Eco, Snow, Sand, Mud/Rut and Tow) for when the road gets rough, although the new Pathfinder will once-again be based on a monoque platform.

The last time a Pathfinder used a ladder-frame chassis was back in 2004 with the third-generation model.

In fact, the 2022 Pathfinder rides on the same Nissan D platform as the outgoing model, with changes to the exterior sheet metal to keep it fresh in 2022.

First revealed back in February, the new-look Pathfinder adopts a sleeker aesthetic than its predecessor and is easily distinguished by its enlarged V-motion front grille, slim headlights and model name-stamped rear tailgate.

Standard equipment in the new Kluger rival will include LED head and tail-lights, while Nissan is also touting an Apple CarPlay/Android Auto-compatible multimedia system.

In overseas markets, the multimedia screen comes in two sizes – 8.0 and 9.0 inches – depending on grade, while equipment such as a wireless smartphone charger, 13-speaker Bose sound system, surround-view monitor, 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.8-inch head-up display are also on offer.

Local pricing and specifications are yet to be locked in, but Nissan Australia has confirmed 11 exterior colour choices – four of which will be a two-tone look with a contrasting black roof.

For reference, the current Pathfinder starts at $44,240 before on-road costs for the base ST 2WD, and extends to $70,140 for the hybrid Ti AWD.