Shopping for a large premium SUV? You may want to consider shopping for a Nissan, as the Japanese automaker has launched a proper assault on the premium SUV segment with their latest X-Trail.
Those seeking an upmarket Nissan product no longer need to mourn the loss of the Infiniti brand in Singapore. The status and intent of the all-new X-Trail is very clear, with it comfortably sitting atop the Nissan SUV foodchain.
Whilst older X-Trail models have always felt like enlarged Qashqais, the current generation car has been designed and built to clearly be a class above its smaller SUV counterpart. Well, for the most part anyways.
Posh Exterior Styling
The car has certainly matured on a design front, especially on the outside. Its predecessor shares most of its styling with the contemporary Qashqai, albeit with slightly stretched dimensions all over.
That is certainly not the approach that Nissan has taken with this T33-generation car. It may share the basic overall design language that is also present on its lesser stablemate, but it certainly has a subtle, but still noticeable, leg up in the design department on all fronts.
Up front, a large grille dominates much of the front fascia. It works well with the general boxy design, and has been further accentuated by a chrome strip that runs the lower border of the grille. This helps to tie in the two DRL clusters visually. The illuminatory heavy lifting is done by the main light clusters situated on the bumper, which do double duty to draw attention to the grilles on either side.
Round the back, equally bold lines are present. Muscular undercut lines help to add depth to the rear end styling, and does so without being over the top. On the sides, there’s a clear-cut separation line between the colour-contrast roof panel and the rest of the body, demarcated by a piece of silver trim that runs the length of the roof pillars.
A Pleasant Cockpit
The biggest improvement from any prior Nissan product has to be its cabin. Thanks to its boxy form factor, headroom is generous even in the middle row. As you’d expect, being the local SUV flagship for Nissan, legroom is excellent too.
You may have noticed that there are three rows of seats. However, it’d be misleading to call this a seven seater, as the last row can really only be used either for children, or in a pinch for really short distances. As such, it’d be accurate to classify this as a 5+2.
A premium car isn’t strictly only about having copious amounts of room - the interior has to be up to snuff too. The car doesn’t disappoint on this front, with soft-touch materials absolutely everywhere. A bold choice of interior colour (tanned leather in this case) really helps to cement its premium status too.
There’s more. The X-Trail comes with potentially the best infotainment screen ever to have come out of Japan. This 12.3 inch tablet-style touch screen sits atop the centre stack, and has crisp modern graphics and is lag-free, making it a joy to use.
Surprisingly Agile on the Move
It may look bulbous and large, but there’s a surprisingly element of athleticism built into the vehicle. Steering feedback is a little lacking, though this is partially due to the heavily-assisted rack. This is no bad thing, as you’d want a premium family vehicle to be easy to use.
And it continues to impress on the ride quality front. The suspension is compliant enough that it soaks up most of the imperfections on our roads, but does a good enough job in resisting excessive amounts of body roll.
The two factors combined contribute to the car’s overall agility. But credit should also be given to its powertrain. Driving the X-Trail are two electric motors that output a combined 211 bhp. There appears to be very little drop-off in its torque output till around the posted expressway speed limit, making overtaking a doddle in this two-ton SUV.
These motors draw their power from a battery pack that is charged with a 1.5 litre turbocharged three cylinder engine. And that’s the beauty of the e-Power configuration. In essence, you are getting the performance equivalent to a 2.0 litre engine, but with the fuel economy of a 1.5 litre lump.
An eXcellent SUV Option
Buyers shopping for a premium SUV now have an additional option to choose from. Whilst it may be an unconventional marque for car buyers to consider, the all-new X-Trail is a properly solid choice that’d comfortably go toe-to-toe with any of the established nameplates.
It is spacious and well-made, and is highly competitive even amidst a sea of models with storied histories. So unless you really need the ruggard, go-anywhere nature that a Range Rover or a Jeep affords you, there’s no reason to not shortlist the X-Trail as a contender!
|Nissan X-Trail e-POWER e-4ORCE Hybrid Specifications|
||VES Band: B|
Turbocharged Inline-3 (Generator)
Dual Electric Motors (Traction)
211 bhp, 330 Nm
Fuel Tank Capacity:
4,680 mm x 1,840 mm x 1,725 mm
Photo Credits: ACube Creative (@weareacube)
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