Hello, Bob Aldons, The Car Guy, reporting in on the Nissan X-Trail 4WD Auto Diesel SUV. For your interest, my motoring reviews are my opinion of the vehicle I’m testing. The manufacturer, in this case, Nissan Australia, don’t tell me what to write or ask for a ‘nice’ review. Nor am I paid for these reviews – I simply call it as I see it.
And this review is a little awkward!! I’ve given Nissan a few high fives lately. Their Infiniti Q50 S and Nissan Qashqai were both cars that I’d recommend to my readers, friends and business colleagues. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for today’s review. Enter Nissan X-Trail TL diesel. And to add insult to Injury, Remember the surprise and delight item regards the auto up and down windows controlled by the key fob? Nissan X-Trail doesn’t have this feature. The Diesel engine is….well it’s noisy and I’m really unsure about the transmission noise I got when slowing down to a complete stop.
“Nissan X-Trail is perfectly styled for everyday family adventures” – Nissan Australia
What is it: The most competitive segment in the Australian motor industry would have to be the small and medium SUV market. The hot-selling hatches of the past have fallen in volume (read popularity). As I’ve said previously, there’s still a market for these passenger cars, at least for a while, but the era of the small and medium SUV is upon us. Nissan threw the keys to this Nissan X-Trail TL 4WD Auto to me for my review.
Key Competitors: Here are the brands and models that Nissan X-Trail is up against. Arguably the most competitive segment in the Australian car market, the medium SUV market is crowded with excellent vehicles.
Even the Chinese brands Haval and MG are producing very good cars. It’s almost impossible for anyone to assess these brands and all the models within each model range, so affordability and brand reputation will undoubtedly come into play. Of course, there are a few brands that exclude themselves due to historic service and warranty concerns – Ford, Holden, Jeep, and Volkswagen may be suspect, but the others are all worthy of your consideration.
Ford Escape, Haval H6, Holden Equinox, Honda CR-V, Hyundai Tucson, Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Compass, Kia Sportage, Land Rover Discovery, Mahindra XUV, Mazda CX-5Mitsubishi Outlander, Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, MG GS, Renault Koleos, Skoda Octavia, Subaru Forester, Suzuki Grand Vitara, Toyota RAV4, Volkswagen Tiguan and Volvo XC60.
Base Price: $47,990 which equates to around $52,200 drive away in Queensland. On road costs will vary depending on the state you’re in
Nissan is offering drive away deals on 2018 vehicles and ‘even better’ prices on 2017 plate vehicles.
X-Trail ST 2WD Manual $28,990
X-Trail ST 2WD Auto $31,990
X-Trail TL 4WD Auto $51,192
Check the end piece for a list of Nissan dealers that meet my ‘buy from’ excellence standard
Nissan X-Trail TL has the familiar front including the grille typical throughout the Nissan family SUV range. Led daytime running lights are standard throughout the range. LED automatic headlights with auto leveling and an adaptive front lighting system are standard on the TL model. It’s a design that most of the population buying into this category won’t be too alarmed with.
2003 Nissan X-Trail (pictured) is the earliest I can find that gave rise to the current grill design. So 2018 Nissan X-Trail design is hereditary rather than all new and in my opinion, that’s solidifies the design, rather than rapidly changing from one to another
Under the bonnet
This Nissan X-Trail TL 4WD comes standard with the 2.0 litre 4 cylinder engine diesel engine, producing 130kw of power and 380 Nm of torque. The base model ST 2WD is the only model in the X-Trail range with a 6-speed manual transmission. What does that mean? The engine is more than sufficient for the typical 4WD user – around the city and suburbs mid-week commuter vehicle – still providing excellent off-road credentials. The CVT transmission which I drove is generally smooth and reliable but has a noise when coming back down the gears. Light on the fuel, the X-Trail achieves around 6.1 litres per 100 kilometres in combined figures.
Down the side
Nissan X-Trail comes with a suite of active and passive safety systems, including but not limited to the following
- Driver and front passenger SRS Air Bags
- Driver and front passenger Side Air Bags
- Curtain SRS Air Bags
- Anti-Locking Brakes
- Electronic Brake-force Distribution
- Dynamic Control with Active Traction Control
- Hill Start Assist
- Forward collision warning
- Blind Spot Warning
- Rear Cross Traffic Alert
- Lane Departure Warning
- Intelligent Emergency Braking
Nissan X-Trail TL has exterior rearview mirrors that fold in at the touch of a button. Very useful for those who live in units and townhouses and have narrow car parks. Would have been nice to have them fold in automatically when the ignition is switched off.
At the back
Reverse Sensors and a Reverse Camera with predictive path display are standard features adding to the overall safety package.
This Nissan X-Trail TL is a five-seater and has a massive boot area – Golf clubs, pram, shopping, market-day purchases – if you can’t fit everything into the space, you need a bigger vehicle. Capacity with the second-row seats up is 565 litres, with the second row down, 945 litres.
If you want to tow with the Nissan X-Trail 4WD, your load with electric brakes fitted runs to 1650kg which is sufficient for a medium sized boat, or even a medium size caravan or larger trailer. Without electric brakes, your capacity drops to 750kg but even that is more than capable of towing the weekend box trailer.
Comfort and quality sit side by side – Nissan X-Trail Brochure
Attention to detail is a hallmark of the Nissan X-TRAIL interior design. The quality is instantly apparent, from the plush double-stitched leather-accented seats^, to the piano black and metallic trim, and the sporty flat-bottom steering wheel. The seats have been designed for optimum comfort with Quick Comfort heated seats and steering wheel* ideal for frosty mornings. And it’s not just about the driver. Passengers enjoy theatre-style seating, tilt and slide panoramic sunroof* and EZ Flex™ second-row seats that slide and recline to allow for more legroom or increased cargo space.
In the Nissan X-Trail TL model, the following features ups the luxury of the vehicle
8- speaker Bose premium audio system
Leather steering wheel and gear shift knob
Leather faced front and rear seats
Heated Front Seats
Tilt and Telescopic steering wheel
Central Door Locking
Push Button Start
Folding door mirrors
Automatic Rain-Sensing Wipers
Intelligent Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection
Illuminated Glove Box, Illuminated Sun Visors, and map lights
19” Alloy wheels with all-season tyres
Life comes in different shapes and sizes – Nissan Australia
“Whatever kind of life you live, the Nissan X-TRAIL can accommodate it. Within its ample interior space, a series of clever innovations offer impressive versatility while maintaining superior passenger comfort. The second-row seating sports individual air vents, as well as a split-folding system that lets you open up a whopping 945L^ of boot space. The rear doors open wide to 80° giving you easy access, and the optional 50:50 split folding third-row* is perfect if you’ve got a large family – or a small team.”
On the road
I’m offered the use of a number of SUV’s in my role as The Car Guy. Rarely have I driven a bad vehicle in either the small or medium SUV segment. The Nissan X-Trail TL 4WD provides a comfortable ride for the driver and front seat passenger, as well as good room for anyone in the back. On the road, X-Trail is smooth. Little or no body roll at highway speeds, good brakes, and excellent steering. Whilst its 35 degrees in southern Queensland, the air conditioning works a treat – the climate control air system with dual zones is fantastic. For winter or colder times, the front seats are heated and that’s a nice thing.
The parking brake is electric, whilst auto hold for hills is standard. One good thing about this aspect for the Nissan X-Trail is that the parking brake will automatically let itself off when you move forward, even if you’ve forgotten to press the button.
Green Vehicle Guide
The Federal Government’s Green Vehicle Guide website uses politically correct terminology to determine fuel economy. Urban, extra urban and combined. I’ll call it the way it is – City and suburbs, Highway and still use combined.
You might recall that these tests are conducted in a laboratory to Australian Standards so don’t expect to achieve City and Suburb results the same as these. In my experience, I’ve found that the highway test is closest to the actual economy you’ll get, but the city results can be undercooked by about 20%. Hopefully, real-world tests and results will be provided this year.
Combined Cycles (Highway and City) 6.1 litres per 100klm
City Cycle 6.9 litres per 100klm
Highway Cycle 5.7 litres per 100klm
Air Pollution Standard Euro 5
Tail Pipe Co2 162 Grams per kilometre – combined
These ANCAP safety tests were conducted in December 2017, so just before the new standards were introduced. I’d be comfortable in saying that if tested under the new regime, it would still achieve 5 stars.
I’ve stated before in these articles, that there really isn’t a bad car being sold in Australia. That being said, if the vehicle you’re looking at doesn’t have a 5-star ANCAP rating, move on to something else.
If you’d like to download the complete technical report, click on this link ANCAP X-Trail
Where to buy:
Vehicle provided by Nissan Australia. If you’re in the market to buy an X-Trail, pick your dealer carefully. When I want to check out the ‘worthiness’ of a dealer, I Google ‘Nissan Dealers Brisbane” where the city is the one that you live in or around.
From a South East Queensland perspective here’s the dealers I’d visit
Northside Aspley Nissan 4.8 Stars
Eastside Cleveland Nissan 4.5 Stars
Southside Springwood Nissan 4.1 Stars
Westside None to recommend
Sunshine Coast Cricks Nambour Nissan 5.0 Stars
Gold Coast von Bibra Nissan 4.7 Stars
Surprise and Delight
Pro’s and Con’s
I like: Cabin Room
Drivers Seating Position
I don’t like: Noisy Diesel Engine
Indifferent Transmission Noises
No Fob Controlled Auto Windows
Bad buffeting when Panoramic Roof open at 80kph
Bob Aldons is the owner and founder of The Car Guy, reviewing cars, reporting on Car Industry Matters, Car Tech and the world at large. He’s spent the last forty years immersed in the automotive industry from salesman to the owner of a 7 brand multi-franchise dealership and now as a New Car Broker. Bob knows cars.
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