This is the new Nissan X-Trail, the Japanese manufacturer’s 4x4 — well, not totally new, it’s actually a facelift of a generation introduced in 2014.
Since then though, it’s become the world’s most popular SUV with 766,000 units shifted, so there’s no need for a completely fresh car just yet.
It sits alongside the Qashqai in Nissan’s SUV line-up, offering a go-anywhere option.
Three engines are on offer for the new X-Trail — a 1.6-litre petrol, a 1.6-litre diesel and a 2.0-litre diesel.
We spent most of our time with the 1.6-litre petrol. This develops 161bhp and 240Nm of torque, taking the car 4x4 from 0-60mph in 9.5 seconds and up to a top speed of 124mph. Nissan claim that it’s capable of 46mpg while producing CO2 emissions of 145g/km.
The Japanese manufacturer also expects the most popular engine to be the 1.6-litre diesel. It produces 126bhp and 320Nm of torque, resulting in a 0-60mph time of 10.8 seconds and a top speed of 116mph. Fuel economy is a claimed 53.3mpg with CO2 emissions of 139g/km.
Ride & Handling
On the road, the X-Trail surprisingly feels like a much smaller car to drive — more akin to a Micra than a fully-fledged 4x4.
The 1.6-litre petrol combined with the six-speed manual proved responsive and versatile, requiring few changes and allowing for a dynamic drive.
Our only real problem with the driving experience was the sometimes overly-intrusive Stand Still assist — it can hold on too long on lower inclines, leading to frustration at junctions.
A brief stint with a four-wheel drive diesel model off-road really showcased the X-Trail’s ability to go anywhere.
Thanks to a high torque output, it was able to comfortably tread through the dirty stuff with almost no throttle input whatsoever, and at no point felt out of its depth.
Interior & Equipment
Sitting in the X-Trail is a pleasant experience. High quality materials feature throughout the cabin, with no hard-touch plastics in sight.
Seating is comfortable with plenty of space for both the driver and front passenger, while three adults can comfortably sit in the middle row. An extra two rear seats are optionally available, but the Bose audio system is not available with this — worth bearing in mind if good audio equipment is important to you.
A few niggly problems did arise, though. Using the infotainment display in bright sunlight on the move was near-impossible due to high amounts of glare and in the diesel models, the engine sound is a little over-intrusive.
For the £30k the car we drove cost, you’re getting about as much kit as you should expect at this price point and perhaps just as much as you’ll need for a family hauler.
More expensive offerings such as the Range Rover Evoque may offer more in terms of a premium feel, but you’re unlikely to feel short-changed regardless of which spec X-Trail you opt for — even with the £23k base models.
Insurance groups range from 15 to 23, meaning reasonable premiums should be on offer for the X-Trail. Fuel economy on our test car came in at 46mpg, which is not exceptional, but not bad either.
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The facelifted Nissan X-Trail is almost all the car you’d ever need if you want a family hauler.
It’s extremely spacious, practical, easy to drive and rather well-equipped. It does have its niggling issues, but ultimately there’s nothing majorly wrong with the car. It even makes for a great casual off-roader.
Although the top-end models can be pricey, — especially compared to the likes of the Skoda Kodiaq — mid-range versions provide more than enough for most needs at a decent value.