Nissan’s treasure Trail
F you’re looking for motoring treasure then ‘X’ marks the spot when it comes to Nissan.
The latest X-Trail is the third generation of the Japanese motor giant’s flagship SUV model and easily the best – offering a stylish and practical family motor.
There are four trim grades – Visia, Acenta, N-Connecta or Tekna – with the flagship model getting an obscene amount of kit to help justify the near£36,000 price-tag.
The stylish and roomy cabin is a pleasant place to spend a journey with a powered panoramic roof featuring a one-touch shade as well as a dualzone air con system with pollen filter.
The leather heated seats are comfortable and supportive with a decent driving position easy to find behind a steering wheel festooned with controls. Front and rear armrests are also provided as are electric windows and auto-folding heated door mirrors.
The X-Trail is a big SUV but is easy to park thanks to the ‘Around View Monitor’ and front and rear parking sensors.
Other mod cons on the top-of-therange Tekna model include a CD/ radio with six speakers, a seven-inch colour touchscreen giving access to the entertainment toys, an efficient sat nav as well as access to social media accounts on the move.
Safer places on the planet than the Nissan X-Trail may exist – but they tend to be buried underground with the ability to house the human race after a nuclear blast.
Nissan’s SUV – the world’s best-seller according to its maker – underwent a revamp last year to improve a number of areas. These include the high tech safety systems to help keep you on the road and protect your family in the event of an accident.
The Nissan ‘Safety Shield’ includes clever ideas such as city emergency braking – overhauled to improve pedestrian detection – as well as blind spot and lane departure warnings.
The bells and whistles approach continues with six airbags, a tyre pressure monitoring system and a host of electronic gizmos to help grip and braking.
Pull away on a slope in the £35,960 Tekna model and a hill start assist feature ensures you’ll never experience the embarrassment of rolling backwards again.
The X-Trail comes with either five or, if you pay an extra £660, seven seats..
Luckily these seats nimbly fold flat into the floor revealing a spacious fiveseater with a decent amount of boot space.
Indeed, there is automatic everything on the X-Trail including lights and wipers as well as cruise control with speed limiter to ensure a relaxing drive on the motorway.
A push-button ignition and Nissan’s intelligent key mean the fob never has to come out of your pocket.
The X-Trail is an eye-catching beast with 19-inch alloy wheels, natty daytime running lights, lots of curves and a black honeycombe front grille setting the tone for a stylish exterior.
It’s altogether less rugged than X-Trails of old and so is more appealing to the family audience whose attention it is trying to capture.
The 2.0-litre oil burner assessed here is one of three engine options that also include 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol and diesel power units.
Mated to a slick six-speed manual transmission, the most powerful 175bhp engine is an impressive performer as even the four-wheel drive version achieves decent fuel economy figures – while pulling power for those with caravans is excellent.
Front-wheel drive models are expected to be responsible for the bulk of sales, but if you do go for the four-wheel drive system you’ll get a clever Hector that can switch between fuel-saving front-wheel drive, an automatic setting where power is only sent to the rear wheels when conditions are slippery or when you want to pull away quickly, and a 4x4 lock mode for the worst off-road and weather conditions.
TEST DRIVE NISSAN X-TRAIL
Model: Nissan X-Trail dCi 177 Tekna 4WD Price: £35,960 Mechanical: 175bhp, 1,995cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving four wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox Max speed: 126mph 0-62mph: 9.4 seconds Combined mpg: 48.7 Ins group: 23 CO2 emissions: 153g/km BiK rating: 32% Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles