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First Drive

First Drive: Nissan X-Trail

Nissan X-Trail 1.7 dCi 150 Tekna manual 4WD
The story: Nissan has streamlined its X-Trail engine range, with just new 1.7 150hp diesel or 1.3 160hp petrol options.
Category:Small 4x4
Key rival:Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace
Efficiency:39.8 mpg
On sale:Now

Nissan has revamped the engine line-up for its X-Trail off-roader, chopping it back to just the one petrol and one diesel, both of which are new.

The 1.3-litre petrol is the easier to explain, with the 160hp unit offered only in two-wheel-drive, seven-speed DCT auto form, while the 150hp 1.7 diesel comes in manual or CVT auto, and front- or four-wheel drive. That compares with the outgoing 163hp 1.6 petrol and 130hp 1.6 and 177hp 2.0 diesels.

First Drive-August 2019-Nissan X-Trail-Image 2We’ve tested it in 4×4 manual diesel seven-seat form, which means 151g/km of emissions, 7g/km less than the auto but well up on the front-wheel-drive manual’s 137g/km (or 150g/km with the auto). The petrol auto is actually more efficient than the equivalent diesel by a clear 5g/km, which says a lot about the diesel’s CVT gearbox.

The new diesel is slightly boomy but offers decent performance and a slick gearshift, while ride quality is also good enough for a car angled more at comfort than sportiness.

The problem for the X-Trail comes when you compare it with rivals. Although the Seat Tarraco matches up to within £80 of the Nissan, despite being an automatic, the Spanish car has a better emissions figure and much higher residual value, which means whole-life costs are much lower.

But the X-Trail is more than £2000 cheaper than a VW Tiguan Allspace, another logical rival, which translates to a cheaper running cost.

One final thing to note is that while the Drive Assist safety system is available on the X-Trail, the full Propilot system already available on Leaf and Qashqai will be added to the off-roader this autumn.


Paul Barker

The verdict

A perfectly decent car in isolation but more recent arrivals, most notably the Seat Tarraco, are a better all-round bet.