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First drive: Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.

First drive: Nissan X-Trail
Nissan's facelifted X-Trail SUV driven.

 



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Nissan X-Trail

3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5


Test Car Specifications

Model tested: Nissan X-Trail
Price: from 23,385 on-the-road
Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel
Body style: five- or seven-seat SUV
CO2 emissions: 149g/km
Combined economy: 50.4mpg
Top speed: 126mph
0-62mph: 9.4 seconds
Power: 177hp at 3,750rpm
Torque: 380Nm at 2,000rpm

What's this?

The new Nissan X-Trail. At least that's what Nissan says. We're all familiar with the concept of mid-life facelifts, but Nissan has taken it literally, as the X-Trail's changes are all cosmetic. There's a slightly revised grille and lights, smoothing off some round edges, while the fog lights are now rectangular rather than circular. The car is a bit longer overall thanks to a re-profiled rear bumper while there's some new colour choices adding some polish to the exterior.

Inside you'll spot a flat-bottomed steering wheel, new instruments, slight revisions to the infotainment system and, if you're a material obsessive, some detail changes to the trim around the cabin. Nissan says it's more premium, although interior designers at rival firms aren't going to lose sleep. It's as spacious as ever, though, with a big boot that holds loads, including a pair of extra folding seats. Overall, the X-Trail is a useful, rugged choice.

How does it drive?

Exactly as it always did. Really. Nissan hasn't even tweaked a damper or spring rate, and the changes to the X-Trail are entirely visual. In fairness it was only last year that Nissan added the much-needed 2.0-litre turbodiesel to the line-up, its 177hp making a better job of hauling the big SUV around. It needs a fair few revs to do so, and it becomes a bit vocal, but the gearshift is sweet enough. However, the gears its selecting all seem biased towards economy over performance. That's understandable in the quest for low emissions, but rivals offer a better balance of performance and economy.

The same can be said of how the X-Trail drives. Yes, the Nissan is utterly competent on the road, but get out of something newer like a Skoda Kodiaq (which also betters the Nissan for interior space and quality, incidentally) and the X-Trail feels a bit remote and baggy. Take it off-road and it'll clamber and crawl decently, justifying Nissan's assertion that the X-Trail is bought with this versatility in mind. It's just that rival models manage to do everything it does with a little more polish.

Verdict

This is a mid-life refresh that only goes so far. Nissan promises more in 2018 when it will add a suite of autonomous driver aids to the X-Trail, but until then the changes don't amount to much. That's fine in isolation, as the X-Trail is a credible and able all-rounder. But there's some newer competition out there that makes the X-Trail's case that little bit harder to justify.

4 4 4 4 4 Exterior Design

3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 Interior Ambience

3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 Passenger Space

4 4 4 4 4 Luggage Space

4 4 4 4 4 Safety

4 4 4 4 4 Comfort

3 3 3 3 3 Driving Dynamics

2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 Powertrain


Kyle Fortune - 31 Jul 2017









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2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.

2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.2017 Nissan X-Trail. Image by Nissan.








 

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