Speculation

Here are the 12 products Nissan is introducing in the next 18 months

Nissan is introducing a long list of new models in the coming year.

Photo courtesy of Nissan Motors

As part of its plan to grow business, on Thursday Nissan (the global overlord that has Nissan, Infiniti, and Datsun as its brands) released information regarding its business objectives. While there is plenty notable in the release, one particular item stands out: 12 new products will be released in the coming 18 months.

Though lips are sealed at the Japan-based automaker, there are a few clues as to what is coming for the U.S. market, including a video released today by the company. Scroll down to see AutomotiveMap's thoughts on each teased model and be sure to check out the insight into the Infiniti models shown in the video at the end of the article.

NISSAN NEXT: From A to Z www.youtube.com

2021 Nissan Rogue

We know that a redesigned Nissan Rogue was supposed to debut at the New York International Auto Show (originally slated for April, then pushed to August, then cancelled). Now, it's set to likely have a virtual reveal this summer.

Leaked photos of the SUV reveal a model that is thoroughly updated from top to bottom but still recognizable for Rogue enthusiasts. Reporting by CarsDirect tells that the Rogue will get a power bump for 2021 achieving 180 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque (current numbers are 170 and 175, respectively). Fuel economy numbers also go up. That brings the SUV more in line with its competition.

Additional photos show that the SUV has wireless charging, a new shifter, all-digital instrument cluster, and a variety of available drive modes (all-wheel drive is a likely option). Expect a library-level quiet cabin filled with near-premium materials as those traits have become Nissan hallmarks as of late.

2021 Nissan Frontier

Nissan has not played coy about the 2021 Frontier making its debut later this year. The automaker officially spilled the beans when they told the world that the 2020 Frontier was going to have a new V6 engine, which will power the new Frontier next year.

What can you expect? The new Frontier is likely to be a bigger, more commanding version of the current model that takes much of its design cues from Titan. It has undergone a top to bottom redesign for the first time in over a decade so it will likely have all the latest technology and design language that can be found in Nissan vehicles. Some of the tech that's currently exclusive to Titan, like accelerometer technology, which replaces the truck's gyroscope for what the company says are more accurate degree of pitch and roll angles.

There's also been a series of leaked photos featuring what insiders are calling the Frontier NISMO for the last year. The real question isn't what it will look like - think 2021 Frontier with more accentuated features, but instead what it will be capable of. Will the Frontier NISMO be a Ford Ranger Raptor fighter or just be faster with a stronger face? Many are hoping that Nissan goes the route of the former.

2021 Nissan Ariya

The teaser video showed what is likely a version of what publicly started as the Nissan Ariya Concept. The model, an all-electric crossover designed to have over 300 miles of range, shows off fresh design language and powertrain possibilities. Since its debut, Nissan has made no secret of the fact that plans for an electrified SUV are in the making and we may finally see those go into production.

2021 Nissan Navara

Like the Frontier, the Nissan Navara is also set for a redesign. However, it looks like they won't be the same truck, nor will they be produced on the same platform. it will have familiar characteristics including roof rails and a beefy exterior. The midsize truck, which has nearly the same dimensions as the Frontier is sold in Asia, Europe, South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia.

2022 Nissan 400Z

Passionate brand followers likely file this one under, "It's about damn time." A redesigned Nissan Z is on its way, and confirmed in a new video released by the company that shows its retro-inspired styling. The car is slated to have a twin-turbo V6 under its hood (that's what powers the Infiniti Q50 and Q6 400 Red Sport today. In those cars it gets 400 horsepower and that's a figure that likely plays into the car's fresh name. Look for a NISMO-tuned edition of the model to push 500 horsepower.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder

From the looks of the teaser video, the Nissan Pathfinder is getting a nose that looks like the one on the Ariya Concept and will retain its three-row seating configuration. While the Pathfinder sells well in the U.S. as a lifestyle-focused SUV, many enthusiasts were hoping to see it return to its roots with a more rugged body style as part of a redesign. That does not look like it will be so.

However, Nissan could be building in more off-roading capability with the new Pathfinder. It will likely have a variety of drive modes (if the Rogue redesign is a clue) and could prove to be at least as capable as the Honda Pilot and Subaru Ascent when equipped with all-wheel drive.

Look for the Pathfinder to debut later this year.

2021 Nissan Kicks

2021 Nissan Kicks

Photo courtesy of Nissan Motors

A refreshed Kicks has already debuted in Thailand and its fresh face is likely to make its way to the U.S. soon. Does its product run seem quick? Remember, the model went on sale globally years before it ever came to North America.

The 2021 model sports a new grille design, slimmed headlights, more exaggerated rooflines, and fresh front and rear bumpers. Nissan has also given the car a new available powertrain variant that utilizes the company's e-Power technology to combine a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine, a 1.57 kilowatt-hour battery, and an electric motor. However, experts believe that this version of the SUV isn't expected to make it stateside.

2022 Nissan Armada

Will it be a Patrol? Armada? The jury may still be deciding. Either way, Nissan is well down the path of a redesign of the three-row SUV. The model could get the twin-turbo V6 that is poised to go in the 400Z, which could make it more fuel efficient and lighter, while also being just as capable. Expect a new Armada/Patrol to be off-road ready, just as it currently is.

2021 Nissan Micra

The Micra isn't sold in the U.S. but those living abroad in need of a small car should get ready to check out the forthcoming version of the small hatchback. The model is due for a sold refresh rather than a complete makeover, with its last version arriving for the 2017 model year.

2021 Nissan Qashqai

The Nissan Qashqai is sold in the U.S. as the Rogue Sport. Like with the Kicks, the U.S. was late to the ballgame so the Qashqai is already up for a redesign. The Qasqai is built on the same platform as the Nissan Rogue so it makes sense that it would be getting a redo around the same time as the Rogue. Look for the two models to share similar interior and exterior features though the Qashqai is likely to have a less powerful engine.

2021 Nissan Terra

North America doesn't have the Terra and it's likely that it won't in the refreshed version of the SUV either. It is designed and marketed for Asia as an off-road capable near-premium SUV. Think of it as a hardier version of the Murano that is based on the Navara.

2022 Nissan Note

This model is the wildcard in Nissan's promo video. Some speculation by experts says that the automaker is bringing back the Note name not as a Versa hatchback but as its own Honda Fit competitor.

If you closely watch the video at the top of this article, you'll see the 2020 Infiniti QX55 and the 2021 Infiniti QX60 break cover. We've already seen both (one up close) despite the fact they haven't officially been revealed. Learn more about the QX55 here and the QX60 here.

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The Nissan Pathfinder is just at home on the trial as it is on the road.

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

One of my favorite poems is Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken". The message is about making choices and, how the road taken made all the difference. Often in life and on the road, we have to make one choice. Take one road. No turning back. I thought of this poem on my recent test drive in the 2022 Nissan Pathfinder in the hinterlands of Montana, when I could take two different roads—paved and dirt—and that made all the difference!

Nissan has redesigned and retooled its fifth-generation Pathfinder instilling greater latitude for buyers who want to travel both types of roads and expand their adventure footprint. After seven decades of off-road development, 35 years in the business of selling Pathfinders, and with more than 1.8 million sold in the U.S., this Japanese automaker has moved the needle with a ground-up revision of the previous-gen model.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder is a capable off-roader.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The full-sized sport utility is available in four trims (S, SV, SL and Platinum) and two- and four-wheel drive versions; Nissan expects that nearly 60 percent of buyers will choose four-wheel drive. The Pathfinder is in a segment that has grown larger each year as more families want a vehicle for around-town, school and playdate runs and for weekend getaways with traction technology that allows travel in the backcountry and good towing capability. Direct competitors are the Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot, and Ford Explorer.

A day-long drive of approximately 150 miles on tarmac and over a variety of dirt roads and tracks provided the opportunity to assess the Pathfinder's updates. A late-spring snowstorm added slickness to all the road surfaces in the region and allowed the Pathfinder to show off its traction capabilities at both slow and higher speeds and with lane change and emergency-braking maneuvers, when towing. I concentrated my evaluation on the augmented hardware and software designed to enhance the crossover's capabilities for backcountry travel and towing.

What I found most notable over every road surface was the comfortable ride and responsive handling that come from a collection of upgrades—and, in particular, as a result of the following: the gearing on the new nine-speed transmission, with paddle shifters for personal and more precise shifting for sport driving and slowing over rough terrain; the new terrain mode system that's engineered for different driving conditions; the four-wheel drive system that moves torque more quickly to avoid wheel slip; the improved suspension system; and new tires with a larger contact patch and more aggressive tread pattern, among other changes.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder Pathfinder's drive modes are designed to inspire confidence. Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The Pathfinder provided sure-footed motoring and comfort over uneven surfaces. Its 7.1 inches of ground clearance easily maneuvered over the small obstacles on the trail and hill descent control took the reigns without hesitation for steeper and longer downhills on traction-compromised surfaces.

I was also impressed with the Pathfinder's towing competence and appreciated the standard trailer sway control onboard all trims. It offered notably strong, mannered acceleration from a standing start and excellent straight-line braking without porpoising for either exercise.

The new 2022 Pathfinder brings off-road and towing attributes that are important to families who are seeking to spend time in the backcountry for days trips and longer and for overlanding in terrain that doesn't require a true off-road vehicle with a low range. It's will appeal to buyers who want don't want to have to choose only one road.

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The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder arrives on dealer lots this summer.

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder doesn't have to be capable of rock crawling or deep water fording. What it has to do is service the needs of families in their daily life and give them the opportunity to competently go off-roading on rocky trails should they desire. The new, fifth-generation models does just that and adds in enough nifty features to make it among the most compelling choices for three-row SUV buyers.

The 2022 Pathfinder is thoroughly modern though not the boxy off-roader it once was. The SUV's styling harkens back to that time with a tilted, darkened C-pillar and a return to a more muscular body style. That styling makes straightforward visibility good but for shorter drivers seeing what is immediately in front of the grille is a challenge that necessitates using surround view camera technology (available only in upper trim levels) when navigating challenging terrain.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder The Pathfinder can easily handle the roads less traveled.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Under the hood is a 3.5-liter V6 that offers up 291 horsepower and torque - plenty to do the job without complaint. The SUV's nine-speed automatic transmission replaces the continuously variable transmission (CVT) from the previous generation and delivers smooth shifts. Though low-end torque isn't as robust as I like it to be, once up over 35 mph, the Pathfinder's powertrain delivers smooth, powerful sailing.

The redesigned architecture and components underpinning the Pathfinder make it stable on the road and don't allow it to wallow on winding roads. Even off-road, the suspension provides the right blend of stability while the drive dynamics allowing the driver to feel engaged with their surroundings whether on freshly paved roads, city streets, or muddy trails.

Nissan has given the Pathfinder a 6,000-pound towing capacity and even when maxed out the engine's functionality is strong as ever. The transmission can get held up in a gear mid-range when performing this function, however, with 5,000-6,000 rpms registering on the tachometer but a quick release of the gas pedal recalibrates the offering bringing it down to a more traditional 2,000 rpm range.

The eight-seater Pathfinder clearly has the Toyota Highlander in its sights, with good reason. It's the top-selling three-row SUV in the country. Nissan boasts that three adults can fit across the rear bench seat of the Pathfinder and, as long as they're average size or smaller, the marketing talking point holds up. There is gobs more room back there than there is in the Highlander.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder Nissan has given the Pathfinder ample cargo space.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Getting in and out of the third row is easy thanks to one-touch buttons on the outboard side of the second-row chairs that move the SUV's captain's seats forward creating enough room to get through to the back. Smartly, Nissan's engineers have put duplicates of these buttons on the back side of the same seats allowing third-row passengers to simply press the button to move the seat up.

The third row can also be accessed via a split between the captain's chairs as well, a space traditionally occupied by a center stowage bin/cup holders/arm rest. Owners can quickly remove the center console by opening a panel on the front and pulling the release mechanism. The one-handed operation takes seconds and the console can be easily stored in the under-floor trunk space behind the third row seat for ease.

Speaking of cargo space... The Pathfinder is one of the most spacious midsize SUVs on the market today for both passengers and cargo. There is a substantial amount of room behind the third-row seat and the under-floor storage area is nearly twice the size of the one in the Highlander. Plus, it has a feature that allows the area cover to be automatically propped up when pushed up by a user. This is especially help when carrying groceries or plants home and keeps them from being crushed.

The first- and second-row seats are suitably comfortable, even for extended periods of time and standard trig-zone climate control makes finding the right in-cabin mix easy. Bottle holders in the pockets of the front doors are exceptionally large, fitting even bulky water bottles.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder The Pathfinder's front row seats are comfortable.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

In front of the driver is a standard tachometer, speedometer, and 7.0-inch driver information display. Buyers can upgrade to a fully digital 12.3-inch instrument cluster and head-up display but they're not reason enough to upgrade to the top-tier Pathfinder Platinum on their own.

Nissan packs the new Pathfinder with a host of desirable features that make living with the Pathfinder easier including one-touch auto up/down windows, a wireless phone charger, grocery hooks in the rear cargo area, USB ports in all three rows, second-row sunshades, rear door keyless entry, wireless Apple CarPlay, and a motion-activated lift gate.

The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder is priced to start at $33,410 for the two-wheel drive S base model and $35,310 for the four-wheel drive S base model. The model tops out around $50,000 with destination and delivery included, which seems fair when comparing the Pathfinder to other vehicles in the market.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder The Pathfinder can tow up to 6,000 pounds.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

If you're thinking of purchasing a Ford Explorer, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Hyundai Palisade, Kia Telluride, Honda Pilot, or Highlander, do yourself a favor and schedule a test drive of the new Pathfinder when it arrives at a dealer lot near you. You may just be surprised how seamlessly it fits into your daily life compared to the competition.

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