DESPITE its global success the Nissan X-Trail has, in Britain at least, always lived in the shadow of the company's ubiquitous Sunderland-built Qashqai.
You only have to take note of the number of the two models you see on UK roads to get the picture.
Yet in many ways the X-Trail feels like the more up-market, bigger brother of the Qashqai with the two sharing similar design traits.
And there's no getting away from the fact that the X-Trail - particularly in top spec Tekna trim - is a class act in every respect.
It's stylish, it's spacious, it's comfortable and it's definitely packed with a whole load of creature comforts which make it very easy to live with.
Available with both petrol and diesel engines not to mention two and four-wheel-drive the X-Trail offers the choice of a six-speed manual gearbox or an all-new seven-speed, dual clutch transmission (DCT) automatic.
In many ways it's one of those cars that's easy to overlook which is a shame because once you get behind the wheel and discover its many attributes you soon realise just how rewarding it is to drive.
It's a car which is big, bold and muscular with high wheel arches and its size means there's an abundance of interior leg room, allowing rear seat passengers to really stretch out and take advantage of the leather seats which are electrically adjustable in the front.
Chrome door handles, window surrounds and side mouldings give it an up-market look aided by the satin finish roof rails.
And in Tekna trim you get everything you would expect on a flagship model from keyless opening and locking, heated seats in both the front and the rear, a heated steering wheel, a satellite navigation system and an opening panoramic glass sun roof with a one touch electrically operated shade.
There's plenty of space for the family's luggage beneath the powered tailgate which reaches right down to the rear bumper for easy loading. And with the rear seatbacks lowered the X-Trail can accommodate 1,996 litres of luggage and 565 litres with all the seats in use.
But perhaps the most surprising is how this large car performs with just a 1.3-litre petrol engine under the bonnet. Developing 160bhp it pushes the X-Trail to 62 miles per hour in a very creditable 11.5 seconds on its way to a top speed of 123mph.
Mated to the seamless seven-speed DCT gearbox it's sharp, responsive and pleasantly quiet although with an average of around 35 miles per gallon it's not the best when it comes to economy.
I found the suspension a little on the soft side but the ride is very good and there's no lack of grip on fast corners even with the two-wheel car tested here.
On the safety front, however, it's up there with the best thanks in part to its Smart Vision pack which includes traffic sign recognition, lane departure warning, emergency braking with pedestrian recognition, rear cross traffic alert and blind spot warning.
And when it comes to reversing the X-Trail makes it easy thanks to a reversing camera which gives a split picture on the dashboard touch screen, one showing a view to the rear and the other a 360 degree view from above.