Off-Roading Capabilities of the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek

Off-Roading Capabilities of the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek

The first generation of the Nissan Pathfinder and the Rock Creek Edition, you’ll remember it was an appearance package. Things have changed for the latest model.

Nissan sees the massive push for off-road and overlanding fun out on the trails and wants to be part of this movement. Instead of a simple appearance package for the Pathfinder Rock Creek, this new version of the venerable three-row midsize SUV brings actual off-road capabilities to the market. Let’s dig in and see what the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek offers to make off-roading more fun.

Everything you need for some trail-riding fun

What does Nissan add to this SUV to make it great on the trails? The Rock Creek trim takes things to a whole new level with:

  • Toyo Open Country all-terrain tires
  • An improved suspension
  • 18-inch beadlock-style wheels
  • Thicker roof rack
  • Upgraded front fascia
  • Rock Creek badging

These items help give this version of the Pathfinder the equipment necessary to head into the wilderness for some fun. Of course, this new trim level also has more power than the standard Pathfinder, which ensures better low-end performance when digging through the mud and the muck.

Larger tires are a challenge on the road

If you’ve ever driven an off-road vehicle on the road, you’ve experienced the much louder and rougher ride of chunky tire tread and taller sidewalls. The larger tires of the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek make for a much louder and rougher ride on the roads than a traditional Pathfinder SUV.

This version feels more trucklike and responds slower, but that’s because the tires are made for fun on the trails, not your time on the pavement. Still, this is something to consider when looking at the Rock Creek model because you’ll spend a lot of time on the road.

Good power from a Nissan V6

The powertrain in this Pathfinder is the same used for other models of this Nissan SUV. This means you’ll find a naturally aspirated 3.5-liter V6 engine mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission. It’s important to note that the transmission is a huge upgrade over the CVT found in the first-generation model.

The power output is 295 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque, which is eleven more for both figures than what you’ll find in the regular Pathfinder. If you want more power in your Pathfinder, this is the only way to get it from the factory.

Are the off-road statistics better?

You expect the chunkier tires and larger wheels to translate to better off-road stats. That’s certainly the case, but the difference between the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek and other Pathfinder models isn’t nearly as dramatic as many other off-road vehicles.

The Rock Creek model sits 7.7 inches off the ground compared to 7.1 inches for the regular versions. The off-road angles are also improved to give you 18.8 degrees for the approach angle, 22.8 degrees for the departure angle, and 19.3 degrees for the breakover angle in the Rock Creek model.

The visual differences are easy to spot

When you see the Rock Creek model sitting next to a regular Pathfinder, you’ll immediately see the differences between these two Nissan SUVs. The Rick Creek model has a black V-motion grille, a tubular roof rack, and the Rock Creek badges. This off-road version also sits a little higher off the road than the regular model, which also presents a visual difference for you.

When you step inside the cabin of the Rock Creek model, you’ll find black leatherette upholstery and the Rock Creek name embroidered below the headrests. Contrasting orange stitching on the seats, steering wheel, instrument panel, and door panels offers another difference between the two versions of the Pathfinder.

More cool features to make this Pathfinder useful

The Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek has the specialized equipment listed above, but it also comes with some useful items for your time behind the wheel. This SUV has a tow hitch receiver and harness, LED fog lights, and second-row captain’s chairs. It also comes in six standard colors and four two-tone exterior combinations to give you the look you want during your drive.

Will you choose the off-road version of the Pathfinder? Although the trail-riding differences aren’t as dramatic as some other vehicles, you’ll be glad to take this SUV out on the trails to enjoy your time in the wilderness. The Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek can tackle the trails and take you where you want to go when it’s time to explore the wilderness and see things you can’t view from the paved roads.

This post may contain affiliate links. Meaning a commission is given should you decide to make a purchase through these links, at no cost to you. All products shown are researched and tested to give an accurate review for you.

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