on paper might not sound particularly quick, but in the real world it never felt lacking...
The new Nissan X-Trail was launched in May 2012, competing with the likes of the new Mazda CX-5, Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4.
The X-Trail is the bigger brother of the ever so popular Qashqai with the availability of seven seats as an £800 option on most models.
It competes against rivals such as the Mazda CX-5, Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 all of which have an excellent reputation but none of which can accommodate seven.
The Nissan X-Trail is available in four trim levels, Visia, Acenta, N-TEC, and Tekna with the choice of a 1.6-litre 163PS petrol (six-speed manual – 2wd) or a 1.6-litre 130PS diesel (six-speed manual – 2wd or six-speed automatic – 4wd or 2wd ).
Prices start at £21,995 for the entry level front wheel drive petrol Visia DIG-T 163 and rise to £32,780 for the diesel Tekna Style dCi 130 AWD.
What we tested
We tested the Nissan X-Trail dCi 130 n-tec with manual transmission, priced at the time of testing at £29,620. Our test car was priced at £30,970 including the following options Copper Blaze paint £550 and £800 for the two extra seats to turn it from a five to a seven seater.
Driving and Performance
The 1598cc diesel 130PS unit delivers 320Nm of torque from 1,750 rpm, which equates to a 0-62mph time of 11.0 seconds with a top speed of 116mph. Which on paper might not sound particularly quick, but in the real world it never felt lacking and it did not hamper progress. But if you are looking for performance and can make do with five seats the Mazda CX-5 might be worth a look.
Nissan’s official fuel economy figures indicate urban – 45.6 mpg, extra-urban – 58.9 mpg and a combined figure of 53.3 mpg with CO2 emissions of 139 g/km. Should you need to know the engine is Euro6 compliant, with service intervals of 18,000 miles or yearly whichever comes first.
The engine is willing with a useable amount of power on tap - on a 500 mile plus trip we were achieving 42 mpg whilst touring which increased to near 49 mpg on the motorway, which was not too bad. But sadly the engine seemed a little gruff at times and the X-Trail could do with better sound deadening.
Front wheel drive is standard across the range – you can opt for 4WD on diesel models, which our car was equipped with - you can lock the X-Trail’s transmission into 50:50 split four-wheel-drive, two-wheel-drive – or into an automatic mode which decides what is best depending on the road conditions.
The X-Trail supports stop / start technology which fortunately can be switched off if you find it as annoying as we do.
The ride quality verges on the soft side of hard, which means it, can feel a little un-composed over rough road surfaces and potholes but it does a good job at absorbing the impact and it is a comfortable place to be.
The steering as you would imagine is no match for an average hatchback as it is over assisted which is great when parking and manoeuvring around obstacles on the school run, it is less impressive when making progress out on country ‘B’ roads where the CX-5 is a better bet.