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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am in the market for a new vehicle and small travel trailer. I'm curious to see if anyone has experience towing with the new pathfinder.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How small is this travel trailer.
Here are measurements of one that we are looking at:

WEIGHTSGross Vehicle Wt Rating (GVWR)3,500 lbs.Axle Weight2,575 lbs.Unloaded Vehicle Wt (UVW)2,915 lbs.Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC)585 lbs.Hitch Weight340 lbs.MEASUREMENTSLength Feet22.12Overall Length22 ft. 1.5 in.Exterior Height101 in. Exterior Width90 in.Interior Height75 in.Wheels/Tires14 in.


Thanks.
 

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2013 Pathfinder SL 4WD
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I bought my PF to tow my current small travel trailer (only about 3200 Lbs) and a boat (about 2500 Lbs). I plan to buy a bigger trailer next year and bought the PF to tow it. Weather has been bad so haven't towed yet (and may not have enough break in miles yet?). I may pull the trailer this weekend, I'll let you know. My PF has the tow package. I still have to figure out where to mount the electric trailer brake controller for the camper. The boat has surge brakes.
 

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2013 Pathfinder SL 4WD
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First towing experience with 2013 Pathfinder

Finally hooked up my brake controller and camper for my towing test drive. (See my Brake Controller thread in the How To forum.) I was pleasantly surprised. First the downward angling mirrors and backup camera were great for backing up to the camper without help. First time I backed up about two inches too far while I was getting used to the wide field of view back up lens. When I put it in drive to pull up, you guessed it, back up camera turned off! So I had to pull up about 12 inches then back up again. Second time I got it perfect. Note to Nissan: When the Tow button is ON, delay the switch off of the back up camera by about 20 seconds.

The seven pin connector on the Pathfinder and on the camper were a perfect match, the lights worked the first time, and the brake controller immediately identified that the trailer was connected. I found the receiver on the Pathfinder to be a little oversize (at least larger inside dimensions than my Explorer). There is slight play between the receiver and tow bar which causes a 'slight' rattle when going over bumps, etc. I may wrap the tow bar with some tape to increase it's size and see if that stops the rattle. I will also have to get a tow bar with a little less drop. The PF bumper is about 2-3" below what the Explorer was.

Acceleration and towing stability were both quite good. I believe the camper was about 2800 Lbs with gear etc. (I stopped by the public scale, but they had just closed. Note to myself: I do need to get the camper weighed all up with propane, water, gear because I probably have it closer to 3200 Lbs during hunting season and the max axle weight is 3500.) The PF felt like it had slightly better power than my V6 Explorer. It was hard to tell what the Tow switch on the PF was doing. At highway speeds turning the Tow switch ON/OFF on the PF had no effect. On the Explorer the Tow switch prevents the torque converter from locking which resulted in several hundred more engine RPM. This also caused the Explorer transmission to run MUCH cooler. When I get more PF seat time in regular driving and towing I may be able to tell better what the Tow switch does.

Braking was excellent both with and without the brake controller on, but definitely a brake controller or surge brakes are the way to go.

When stopped pointing uphill the PF wants to roll backwards when you take your foot off the brake. Be ready for it and you may even want to put your left foot on the brake and right foot on the gas to modulate your take off.

Gas mileage was excellent also and about 4-5 miles better MPG than the Explorer. The trip was too short (60 miles) to make a precise measurement, but I'll do that on one of the longer trips.

Backing up was kind of annoying. I have a curvy drive and park the camper next to the house. The sonar goes beep beep beep beep beep (you can turn it off with one button on the steering wheel, but every time you put it in drive then back up again it resets and you get beep beep beep beep beep again.) Note to Nissan: When the Tow button is ON, turn the Sonar OFF.

We bought the PF to carry up to 7 around town and also to tow our camper and boat. So far it has been a great choice!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Many thanks for the detailed response and the sense of humor. I'm glad that it's working out for you. We are still indecisive about what we want to do but this information was very helpful. Ill post once we make a decision. Thanks again!
 

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Thanks for the detailed report. I am always happy to see that the Pathfinder is capable. 3000lbs is not bad. I'd be interested in mileage reports once you drive it over longer distances.
 

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We have a 2wd Platinum PF. Moved from a Pro4X Xterra. Primarily for the better gas mileage and mileage range. Very pleased with the car overall, gas mileage has been great, getting 25mpg on the first road trip over 200 miles hwy. We did buy this to tow a boat, boat weighs approximately 2500 lbs.
I agree with the previous post, the PF towed the boat well, no issues at all, seemed smooth with plenty of power. The only issue was something we didnt think about when buying the car. We wanted 4wd, but the dealer talked us into 2wd, because they couldnt find us one quickly with 4wd/Platinum trim. The only issue was when pulling boat out of the water, it did slip a bit. I applied a bit more gas and it pulled it out fine, but never had this issue with a RWD vehicle. Just something to consider, but to be fair, pulling boat out of water on a muddy, slippery ramp.
 

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I should try my first boat tow with the new Pathfinder next weekend. Trying to get the recommended 500 mile pre-towing break-in done first, per the owner's manual. Boat on trailer combo is 3800 lbs. I have towed this boat with a '98 Explorer (OK but definitely a load back there), an '05 Pathfinder (plenty of power, noticeable load but not bad) and an '08 Tahoe (hardly know anything is back there). I'm quite curious to see how the new Pathfinder does.
 

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Thanks for the review. I will never have that opportunity to tow since I live in the city, but I am very satisfied after reading your review knowing that I am driving the same capable PF. :cool:
 

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Thank everyone for great reviews and feedback on Towing Capabilities. The extent of my towing needs are just bike racks and a wave runner trailer but good to know it can handle much larger jobs if the opportunity ever arises.
 

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I should try my first boat tow with the new Pathfinder next weekend. Trying to get the recommended 500 mile pre-towing break-in done first, per the owner's manual. Boat on trailer combo is 3800 lbs. I have towed this boat with a '98 Explorer (OK but definitely a load back there), an '05 Pathfinder (plenty of power, noticeable load but not bad) and an '08 Tahoe (hardly know anything is back there). I'm quite curious to see how the new Pathfinder does.
Make you you get a photo of that. A boat in the back of a 13 Pathfinder. That will show the naysayers how it is done.
 

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redfish11, the ramps by my house are kind of steep. I did have a problem once pulling my boat out with my RWD exploder. I have also seen FWD cars have problems whereby some have had to be hooked up and pulled out with help. I'm looking forward to towing the boat the first time and pulling it out with AWD.
 

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Had another shot at towing the boat this last weekend. I think the problem last time with pulling the boat out of the water was the "angle of approach". This time I had the front wheels further down the ramp, and not over the crest of the ramp. (if that makes sense) The PF pulled it out just fine. No issues, I was pretty happy with this.
 

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Towed the Boat for the First Time

I towed the boat home from storage over the weekend. Got the 500 mile pre-towing break-in accomplished first. It was only about a 20 mile trip, but I was pleasantly surprised. There were no issues with the 3800 lb boat/trailer rig - hook-up was easy, 7-pin light connection worked fine. My trailer has surge brakes so no issues there. Towing was easy with plenty of power, although I took it easy since I'm still under 1200 miles. I agree with everything "justchecking" said a few weeks back. Towing seemed smoother than with my previous three vehicles ('98 Explorer, '05 Pathfinder, '08 Tahoe) which may be a benefit of the CVT - no "jolt" at each gear change. I also noticed the "rattle" from the hitch receiver and will wrap my hitch bar with duct tape to try to quiet it down some. It was pretty loud. Backing up seemed smoother as well - didn't have to give it as much gas to get rolling and then have to get out of it - again, may be a CVT benefit. The only issue I noticed, different than my other vehicles, is that I no longer have partial rearview vision directly behind the boat from the rearview mirror. It seems to be because of the downward slope of the roof to the rear means a smaller rear window that blocks the view I had with my other vehicles. Not a biggie, but something I was used to. I may look into some side tow mirrors for a little more rear vision.
 

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I towed the boat home from storage over the weekend. Got the 500 mile pre-towing break-in accomplished first. It was only about a 20 mile trip, but I was pleasantly surprised. There were no issues with the 3800 lb boat/trailer rig - hook-up was easy, 7-pin light connection worked fine. My trailer has surge brakes so no issues there. Towing was easy with plenty of power, although I took it easy since I'm still under 1200 miles. I agree with everything "justchecking" said a few weeks back. Towing seemed smoother than with my previous three vehicles ('98 Explorer, '05 Pathfinder, '08 Tahoe) which may be a benefit of the CVT - no "jolt" at each gear change. I also noticed the "rattle" from the hitch receiver and will wrap my hitch bar with duct tape to try to quiet it down some. It was pretty loud. Backing up seemed smoother as well - didn't have to give it as much gas to get rolling and then have to get out of it - again, may be a CVT benefit. The only issue I noticed, different than my other vehicles, is that I no longer have partial rearview vision directly behind the boat from the rearview mirror. It seems to be because of the downward slope of the roof to the rear means a smaller rear window that blocks the view I had with my other vehicles. Not a biggie, but something I was used to. I may look into some side tow mirrors for a little more rear vision.
I am also finding really nice towing performance as you described. In regards to visibility it would be great to have a camera extension device we can clip on the back of the trailers and see on our dash monitors when backing up. maybe something similar for side views. I wonder if there is anything like that out there.
 

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I read that the towing capacity was either 3000lbs or 5000lbs. Which one is it? Can this pull a camper?
towing capacity is 5000 pounds. trust me I have tested it having towed near the limit and no problems a all. the hybrid version will only tow 3500.
 
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