2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L Review

A spacious and feature-rich SUV with decent performance, fuel economy lags behind rivals though. Is it worth a comparison?

Jacob Brooke
Expert reviewer
Updated on
February 9, 2024
Saucey score


  • Enormous amounts of space
  • Nice interior quality
  • Handles like a much lighter car


  • Poor fuel economy
  • Some jitteriness on the back roads
  • Base model X-trail infotainment on an 80k car?
Car specs

202kW + 340Nm

$80,227 + On-roads


5-Star ANCAP

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The 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L is a pretty ambitious attempt to stay relevant in the bustling full-sized SUV segment. Retaining its traditional 'American SUV' identity while integrating modern stylistic and technological enhancements, the Pathfinder aims to cater to both the traditional and modern family consumer. Nissan has trimmed down its options, focusing on the upper-tier TI and TI-L to ensure premium offerings. However, the question remains - how does it stand out in a market saturated with competent rivals like the Hyundai Palisade and Toyota Kluder? Let's explore.

How much does the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L cost?

The 2023 Nissan Pathfinder range is available in the following specifications:

  • TI (4WD) - $70,030
  • TI-L (4WD) - $80,227

Previously, it was offered in 5 trim levels, however, Nissan has opted to slash 3 of those models, now only offering the two highest trim variants in Australia.

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What do we think of the exterior looks of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

The Pathfinder has always had a very “American SUV” look to it, both in terms of its sheer size and its boxy exterior. The latest update is no different in this respect, but it has had a pretty significant upgrade in terms of exterior styling.

First up we get some bright new LED headlights, though unfortunately, the presence of halogen turning signals on both the front and rear lights cheapens the overall look a bit. Chrome highlights adorn the front and side skirts, though Nissan hasn’t skipped a beat by including plastic skid plates to remind you that the Pathfinder is a “4WD”. That being said, a 170mm ground clearance will mean you should probably stick to gravel roads at worst.

We love the newly redesigned Nissan logo at the front and rear, and the TI-L trim comes with some snazzy-looking 20-inch alloys that are wrapped in some thick rubber which aims to improve ride quality, we’ll come back to that.

On the side, you’ll notice probably the darkest factory-tinted windows in existence for the rear occupants, which bleed nicely into the two-tone roof which is absolutely worth the extra $1400. Especially because Nissan doesn’t make you choose between the two-tone roof and a panoramic sunroof (looking at you Kia), in the Pathfinder TI-L you get both.

Coming to the back the first thing that will strike you is the enormous spaced-out font they’ve used to spell out “Pathfinder”, I would have loved to have seen the cost for that massive badging go towards some LED indicators.

Overall, the upgrades Nissan has made to the exterior of this car have gone a long way to improving its looks and bringing it more in line with the competition at this price point, though we are a little torn on whether it looks better than a Hyundai Palisade.

What’s the interior and connectivity like of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

If you covered up the Nissan badge and told someone to guess what brand of car they are sitting in just based on interior quality, they would probably say some European brand. It probably helps that Nissan is now a part of that Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance so the inspiration is clear.

It is now pretty safe to say that the Nissan Pathfinder is a luxurious family SUV with this latest update. Technology in the cabin is brand new for the Pathfinder, with a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster that has some customisation as well as plenty of menus to choose from to show all the information your heart could desire, as well as a 10.8-inch heads-up display.

The TOP SPEC Pathfinder (TI-L) only gets the BASE model infotainment from the Nissan X-Trail. We are happy to report that it works pretty well with wireless Apple Carplay and wired Android Auto, but the large piano black bezels definitely cheapen the look of it significantly.

Materials, on the other hand, are primarily positive, with soft leatherette around the cabin, and some nice aluminium touches that help brighten up an otherwise pretty black interior. The steering wheel is a beautiful leather-wrapped unit with buttons to control your media as well as your Nissan Pro Pilot Assist controls. Speaking of which, the semi-autonomous driving in the Pathfinder is excellent, and with Lane Centering it will practically drive itself on a highway, more on that in the Safety section.

A stand out for us are the seats, both front seats are full 10-way power adjustable with lumbar support and memory function. The soft two-tone leather is also very premium and we get both heating and cooling on both front seats.

Connectivity is excellent with a USB-A and USB-C port, a 12V socket and a wireless charger. Storage is plentiful with a massive glovebox, ample centre armrest, and large door bins and the downsizing of the transmission tunnel means you get heaps of extra storage beneath the centre console. In terms of cup storage, the Nissan Pathfinder is simply class-leading with a total of 16 cupholders throughout the interior. Clearly, Nissan has benchmarked their drink accessibility from the Hyundai Palisade which shares this fun little stat.

What about the Back seats of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

Unique to the Pathfinder TI-L this year, is the inclusion of 2nd row Captains seats. This means that 2nd-row passengers will enjoy the comfort and space of a front-row seat, so how is it back there? The good news is that the quality up front continues, with soft leather seats and soft-touch materials everywhere. You get some sun shades which are a nice inclusion, as well as the copious amounts of cupholders, you are looking at 6 cupholders just in the 2nd row.

Going back to the seats, you get fold-down-armrests on each, as well as a large centre console that contains some storage as well as - you guessed it - some cupholders, and it can be removed to create a walkway into the 3rd row. The seats can also be adjusted significantly forwards and backward, and can recline pretty far back which is perfect for long family road trips.

Back seat passengers also get their own zone of climate controls, with the captain's seats also including heating, just like the outboard seats on the TI spec. Connectivity is also good with another USB-C port and USB-A port.

What about the 3rd Row of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

Nissan has an ingenious way of accessing the 3rd row of seats; where other manufacturers just assume you are a very small human, the Pathfinder has a couple of easier access points.

Firstly, you can just use the aforementioned walkway to go straight to the third row, alternatively, you can press a button on one of the captains chairs and a mechanism will throw it violently forward, allowing heaps of space for even the most rotund of individuals to access the 3rd row.

As far as 3rd-row seating goes, the space back there is pretty good, though some compromises do need to be made for the seating position of the 2nd-row passengers.

In a move that should surprise absolutely no one, there are a couple of cupholders on either side back there, as well as a couple of USB-A ports.

How much can it fit in the boot of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

Unsurprisingly for a large SUV, boot space is a pretty good story, with a seriously ample 205L with all 3 rows of seats up, and additionally a very large under-floor storage bin.

With the 3rd row of seats folded, storage expands to over 550L with a very usable flat floor, and the 2nd-row captain's chairs can also be folded flat (minus the centre console) for a very impressive 782L of boot space.

What’s under the bonnet of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

Powering the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder range is a naturally-aspirate 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine, which produces 202kW of power and 340Nm of torque, which is exactly the same as the previous generation Pathfinder engine.

What’s new however is the replacement of the infamous old CVT with a new 9-speed torque-converter automatic transmission. The updated lineup now only includes 4WD variants 

in the Australian market.

Nissan claims a combined cycle of 10.5L/100km for this 4WD powertrain.

How does the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L drive?

Despite being a 2-tonne large SUV, the Nissan Pathfinder handles surprisingly well! It doesn’t feel anything like the Toyota Kluger we recently reviewed, which had very floaty suspension, but it didn’t feel harsh either. My only complaint would be that the ride felt a little jittery - especially at high speeds. The same can not be said for the road noise, the Pathfinder has improved NVH (Noise, Vibration, and Harshness) over the previous version and I can attest that it does feel quite refined.

No doubt the replacement of that old CVT helps with the refinement, the new 9-speed torque converter is a big improvement; it doesn’t search for gears or feel vague, and it is smooth and responsive in stop/start traffic. 

The 4WD system is similar to a “Haldex” system in that it primarily delivers power to the front wheels, but intelligently sends power to the rear wheels if it feels traction slipping, this gives the Pathfinder the driving characteristics of a front-wheel drive, with the inclusion of several off-road drive modes. This is not a bad setup for most use cases, as a permanent AWD system would most likely be less economical.

In terms of fuel consumption, our real-world testing revealed it to be around 13L/100km on a combination of highway and city driving, which is pretty far from class-leading. Frankly, a 202kW naturally aspirated V6 engine has to work pretty hard to shift such a heavy car.

With that said though, the engine does feel quite peppy, and our 0-100km/h launch clocked in at 7.85 seconds, which is surprisingly good! This was also our experience taking it on some back roads, the engine and new transmission working in tandem to deliver a silly amount of fun, with the mid-range torque providing plenty of pulling power out of corners. That stiffer suspension tune also allows for a “sportier” feel - if you can call it that. The engine also has a really satisfying exhaust note.

Driving assistance is excellent with Nissan’s ProPilot adaptive cruise control and lane-centering assist, so the Pathfinder will practically drive itself on the highway.

Is the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L Safe?

The 2023 Nissan Pathfinder received a 5-star ANCAP safety rating for it’s model year 2022 to current, scoring 86% for adult occupant protection, 93% for child occupant protection, and 85% for safety assist features. 

The range comes with the following suite of safety features as standard:

  • Autonomous Emergency Braking
  • With: pedestrian, and cyclist detection
  • Junction assist
  • Reverse AEB
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Lane-centering assist
  • Lane-departure warning
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • 360-surround parking camera
  • Traffic sign recognition
  • Rear cross-traffic alert

How much can the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L tow?

The 2023 Nissan Pathfinder has increased towing capacity; it now comes in at 2700kg braked and unbraked 750kg.

How much does the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L cost to service?

The 2023 Nissan Pathfinder is covered by Nissan’s 5-year, unlimited km warranty.

Also available is capped price servicing in intervals of 12 months/15,000km, the first 6 years will cost the following:

  • 12 months - $351
  • 24 months - $710
  • 36 months - $372
  • 48 months - $753
  • 60 months - $395
  • 72 months - $1625

Final thoughts - should you buy a 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L?

When it comes to the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L, it’s undeniable that it offers a well-rounded full-size SUV package. Yet, it's not totally devoid of flaws and could leave some potential buyers wanting more, especially when compared with rivals like the Hyundai Palisade and the Toyota Kluger.

The Pathfinder holds its own as a family-centric SUV, offering generous interior space and a variety of comfort features. Its performance, while not incredible, is sufficient for a vehicle of its size. However, its fuel economy lags behind its competitors, which could be a deal-breaker for some.

Compared to the Hyundai Palisade, the Pathfinder seems very close in interior quality and styling. However, the Palisade offers superior fuel economy and arguably more refined driving dynamics and technology. Against the Toyota Kluger, the Pathfinder has an advantage in terms of interior space and onboard technology, but the Kluger offers better ride comfort and is generally seen as more reliable (though this is contentious).

Overall, the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder TI-L is a commendable option if you're seeking a practical, spacious SUV that comes packed with a decent array of features. However, it's worth taking the time to compare it against its competition - notably the Hyundai Palisade and Toyota Kluger, to ensure that it truly fits your needs and wants.

Saucey score breakdown

Maintenance Costs and Warranty
Fuel (or EV) Efficiency
Interior Design and Features
Value for Money
Technology and Innovation
Is it fit-for-purpose?
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Jacob Brooke
Jacob Brooke, a respected voice in the world of automotive journalism, brings a wealth of knowledge and insights to his reviews at CarSauce. His keen eye for detail and passion for all things cars shine through in his in-depth analysis and honest evaluations of the latest models of cars. Join him as he guides readers through the car-buying process and explores the exciting world of motoring.
Car specs

202kW + 340Nm

$80,227 + On-roads


5-Star ANCAP

Buy a Car!
No Obligations, Hassle Free.

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