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2019 Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek: First Look

  • The 2019 Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek Edition adds off-road styling to the crossover
  • Includes black exterior trim and black molded overfenders
  • MSRP $995

Most crossover SUVs might spend the vast majority of their time on the pavement, but for drivers who want a little off-road style with their practical crossover, a new option is now available. It’s the 2019 Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek edition (introduced at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show) which takes Nissan’s roomy, family-friendly, 3-row crossover and gives it an off-road makeover.

The Rock Creek edition adds exterior upgrades to the Pathfinder that include black exterior trim all around in the roof rails, badging, mirrors, 18-in wheels, door handles, and in the front and rear fascias. It also adds black molded overfenders along the bottom of the body.

This package is available on the mid-range SV and more luxurious SL trims of the Pathfinder. The upgrade has an MSRP of $995, which Nissan says reflects $1,315 in package savings compared to similar equipment priced separately. That means the price of a Pathfinder Rock Creek Edition ranges from the mid-$30k to low-$40k range depending on options.

Surprisingly, 4-wheel drive is not standard on the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek edition, this package can be had on either 2-wheel drive or 4WD variants of the Pathfinder. What does come standard on every Rock Creek model is a trailer hitch and harness, unique all-season tires and splash guards. The Nissan Pathfinder boasts a best-in-class 6,000-lb towing capacity on both 2WD and 4WD models.

On the inside, there’s Rock Creek badging on the floor mats and 2-tone seats and there’s high-contrast stitching all around the interior. This package also includes premium metallic interior trim.

If you want a few extra features in your Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek edition, there are a couple of other options available with the rugged appearance package. There’s the $980 SV Rock Creek Technology package, which adds NissanConnect services that includes navigation and SiriusXM, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel and heated mirrors. For the fancier SL, you can the $2,110 Rock Creek Premium Package, which throws in a Bose 13-speaker audio and a power panoramic sunroof.

The Nissan Pathfinder’s top competitors are the Honda Pilot and the Toyota Highlander, but neither of those SUVs has an off-road appearance package quite like this one. The Pathfinder Rock Creek edition’s closest competitor is perhaps the Subaru Ascent 3-row crossover, which is family friendly with a distinct off-road personality with each model coming standard with all-wheel drive and X-Mode.

The Rock Creek package brings back hints of the Pathfinder’s off-road heritage. Before it was a road-going crossover, the Pathfinder spent many years as a more rugged off-road SUV similar to the Toyota 4Runner. The Rock Creek edition might not add much mechanically to improve off-road performance, but it certainly gives this SUV an interesting new attitude that off-road enthusiasts might find attractive.

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