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Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
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PROS

  • Easy to drive
  • Relatively cheap to run
  • Looks less utilitarian

CONS

  • Only one engine
  • Not as capable off-road as previous model
  • XTRONIC gearbox still not ideal

Verdict

This is the all-new Nissan X-Trail. It’s a large family 4x4 which has five seats and the option to upgrade to seven for larger families.

Perhaps the most obvious rival for the X-Trail would be the Honda CR-V, but that doesn’t have the option of seven seats. With that in mind it’s Hyundai’s Santa Fe that springs to mind along with the Kia Sorento.

What’s clear about this new model is that it’s a step towards the modern trend (admittedly started by Nissan) of softer, more family friendly motoring. It’s more of a bigger replacement for the Qashqai +2 than a bona fide ‘new X-Trail’ in the traditional sense – it’s far less utilitarian.

With that in mind we’re happy to report it drives very well indeed and doesn’t cost a huge amount to run either. It’s also seriously practical, with a big boot and some clever touches to make life easier for families.

One engine, two gearbox options

There’s just the one engine on offer – the 1.6-litre diesel generates enough power to get the X-Trail from 0-62mph in as little as 10.5 seconds in its fastest form.

Interestingly though, that very same model is the cheapest to run. It’s the two-wheel drive version with the six-speed manual gearbox version fitted. That’s also the one most likely to appeal to fleet managers and company car drivers, since it boasts the lowest CO2 emissions of 129g/km.

You’ve got the option of a permanent four-wheel drive system too, should you need the extra versatility and peace of mind afforded by the rear wheels also being driven. It’s capable over very light off-road conditions, but we’ve not tried it on more extreme terrain. Nissan expects almost half of buyers to choose this set-up.

For those who prefer an automatic, Nissan has also made a CVT gearbox available for two-wheel drive models only. Known as the XTRONIC, this ‘box only has one gear ratio but it’s been programmed to feature ‘steps’ like a conventional automatic. What this means is instead of pushing the throttle and the engine’s noise increasing without the associated speed, there are discernable steps up in power delivery just like a normal auto.

Decent level of equipment

There are four trim levels on offer here but even the lowest offers a good amount of standard equipment.

The entry level is the five-seat, two-wheel drive Visia model which gets 17-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, air conditioning, hill-start assist and cruise control with a speed limiter.

Right at the top end of the range you find Tekna trim, and that really does have all the bells and whistles. Highlights include heated leather seating, an automatic parking system and a host of safety systems such as blind spot warning, a fatigue detection system and Moving Object Detection – which provides a bird’s eye view of the car for parking and alerts the driver to moving objects via a warning tone. The images are displayed on a seven-inch colour screen.

On sale in July

The new X-Trail is set to hit showrooms on July 17 this year with prices starting at £22,995. To find out more, read on for our full Nissan X-Trail review.

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