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Looking to buy Pathfinder as a first car

 
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ricouzuki



Joined: 09 Mar 2013
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sat Mar 09, 2013 10:42 pm    Post subject: Looking to buy Pathfinder as a first car Reply with quote

Hey there,

So I just finished college and got my first full time job. I have been saving up for a car after having taken the shitty train for 6 years and I am very interested in the Pathfinder. My budget is around 12-14k(I guess I can go about 2K higher).

I am really confused at the discrepancies I am seeing in regards to Pathfinder pricing.

I see people here buying 100K+ miles pathfinders and it seems like they are paying a lot of money(close to what I am seeing 50k pathfinders go for)

There are a bunch of 08,09,10 models (about 50K miles) for sale around 14-15K. I am sure I can negotiate it down a little bit but is there something shoddy about these deals? Many of these pathfinders look like they are good deals but what price range should a 09 pathfinder with 50K miles be? I am only looking at cars with a clean carfax but you never fully know with these carfax reports. Since this is my first car I don't know how reliable they buyback garuntee is so I would rather assume I can't use it.

Do you think the reason these cars are so cheap is because of the radiator issue?

What kind of typical mileage can I get out out these models? I need something that can hopefully last me until 100K miles with minimal maintenance.

I won't be purchasing for another 3 months at least so I am going to be doing as much research as possible into every possible aspect about this car. Can anyone suggest essentials things to read and/or study before looking to buy?

Thank You!
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skinny2
Sponsored Member


Joined: 26 Dec 2009
Posts: 1531
Location: BFE, Ohio

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 6:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you looking at 2wd models in that price range? That seems very cheap for a 4x4...in fact I was offered $14.5k on trade for my '08 4x4 about six months ago and I had 80k miles at that time.

I've also noticed a pretty big price spread between the S and SE or higher models. Almost all of the S models you see were rental vehicles and are very basic...16" tires, no running boards, etc. So the market gets flooded with the base models coming off the rental lot and you'll see those go for quite a bit less. I'm not a fan of buying a prior rental vehicle.

You also have to still look closely at the vehicle even if it has a clean car fax. It's far from fool-proof and I've seen plenty of (lousy) body work on vehicles with clean car faxes. In fact, the one's I've personally found were horrible repair jobs because they likely didn't use a reputable body shop...hence the reason it's not showing up on the car fax.

Good luck! Buying a used car can be a real hassle/headache but it's a great way to save some serious money. I picked up my PF with only 15k miles and saved over $8k from a new one.
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ricouzuki



Joined: 09 Mar 2013
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 7:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your reply!

Pretty much all of the models listed are 4WD.

The models I am looking at are a mix of S and SE.

Upon further investigation, I started googling the actual dealers and I started to come up with many dealers having yelp reviews ratings of 1 star so there probably is something dodgy about these cars at that price.

I tried using the KBB search instead of cars.com and it presents results in a much clearer way.

Seems like the less dodgy dealers have my price range but only in 07-08 models with 88K+ mileage.

Tell me about those years. I know Nissan "supposedly" put in a new kind of radiator starting with 08 but can you tell me about how these cars start to last when the get close to 100K miles? How about 150K? Do they start to fail in multiple areas? I really don't want to spend too much money having to fix things.

I really only intend to go up to 150K but I would like the thing to not blow up before I get to 150K. How long does Engine/Transmission last(assuming radiator issue is closely watched and fixed)
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BattleWagon



Joined: 27 Jun 2011
Posts: 116

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 8:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Get one with a conscientious owner (like somebody from this forum), have documented service with premium fluids, done the necessary fixes (ie bypass and timing chain tensioner) and it will go for a long time past 150k.

Find one with 100-110k on it, there's a mental block on that number causing depreciation and the 90 would be done already plus it should have new struts and brakes.
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'07 SE Off-Road, leather, bagged, 265/75/16 GoodYear Duratracs, Kenwood DVD, Bose sub pkg, Yakima Skybox, brushgaurd, pulled steps/building sliders.
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ricouzuki



Joined: 09 Mar 2013
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks BattleWagon!

Yes, I am looking closer to 80-90K mileage now. My first focus is on reviews I see regarding dealerships, and then from there I will go and start comparing vehicles.

This might be a dumb question but, what do you mean by "and the 90 would be done already"?

Is there a link to a PDF copy of the owners guide and service manual so I can read it and maybe find out what maintenance tasks need to be done at different points in the life of the vehicle? Since I have 3-4 months before actually seriously purchasing the car, I should focus my efforts on learning everything there is to know about this car from top to bottom so when I start walking into dealerships I will know exactly what to look for.
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skinny2
Sponsored Member


Joined: 26 Dec 2009
Posts: 1531
Location: BFE, Ohio

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The '08 models have some slight differences...updated interior bits and very mild exterior changes. They seems to be much less troublesome than the earlier models. I'm crossing 90k on my '08 and have had no real issues to speak of. The radiator issues extends all the way to the 2010 models and there have been several '08 failures showing up recently on these forums. I just changed out the radiator in mine as a precaution within the last month. It was completely worth the $$ for the piece of mind.

I'm planning to keep mine for quite awhile at this point as well. I historically buy myself a new daily driver every 3 years or so because I drive 25k miles a year and like to keep a newer vehicle. I've not found anything new that I really like better and this one is still performing as good as new. Plus the cost of new vehicles is really depressing....

Oh and before getting too tied to this vehicle....go take one for a long test drive and really make sure it's what you want. So many people get emotionally attached to a vehicle before driving and then are completely disappointed for whatever reason. No reason investing all this time and finding out you hate this or that....
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FreQ



Joined: 26 Feb 2013
Posts: 39

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I picked up my 05 SE 4wd for 12,9xx there are good deals out there just have to look.. try checking out your local Nissan dealer's used lot.. Ive noticed that Nissan owners tend to stay faithful to the brand (Ive been a Nissan owner/fan since I bought my 81 280zx back in the 90s
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DanJetta



Joined: 03 Oct 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2013 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was just talking to someone about the best and worst time to buy cars.

Cars usually have a period near the middle of a car's useful life where certain components start to fail and require replacement. For example, shocks/struts, fuel pumps, suspension bushings, exhaust components, sensors, switches, etc. The worst time to buy a used car is right before this mid-life period; the best time is right after.

For VWs this is around 175K miles; for Fords it's around 60K miles; On the Pathfinder this period seems to be between 80K-100K miles -- and I bought mine right before (sucks for me). I'm being nickle-and-dimed to death right now -- $100 here, $300 there. But when I fix these things, I should have another few good years left.

My point is that it may be a good decision to buy a Pathfinder with higher miles rather than in the 80-100K range with the hopes that these "midlife issues" have been fixed.
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disallow
Site Admin


Joined: 13 Aug 2008
Posts: 2759
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

DanJetta wrote:
For VWs this is around 175K miles


unless it burns down because of this! Smile

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/story/2013/03/15/bc-burning-seats.html
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Terry in Winnipeg

'05 Pathfinder SE Premium 4x4 - 343000kms (213000mi) - weekend warrior, Cortex Superchips on 87 Octane Tune, K&N filtercharger, Airlift 1000, Prodigy Brake controller, 7 pin trailer hookup, Prostart Remote Starter, Cooper Discoverer ATw P265/70/16
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DanJetta



Joined: 03 Oct 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ha! That's funny.

Yeah, after I wrote that, I realized I was referring to VW 10+ years ago. In 2005 they decided to lower the life span of the average VW by about half that number and that's what they've been producing since.
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