Nissan X-Trail

Acenta Premium

e-Power

Nissan X-Trail e-POWER, 2023, front
Nissan X-Trail, 2022, side
Nissan X-Trail e-POWER, 2023, rear
Nissan X-Trail e-POWER, 2023, interior
Nissan X-Trail e-POWER, 2023, rear seats
Nissan X-Trail e-POWER, 2023, boot, maximum

THE Nissan X-Trail started life as a boxy, functional family hold-all that could scramble up grassy slopes one moment and do the school run the next.

With a rubber mat in the luggage compartment and high ground clearance, it held definite appeal to small-holders and vets alike. More utilitarian than luxury, then.

That was a couple of decades ago. And look at it now - a stylish, grown-up SUV with rounded lines, luxury fitments and a level of refinement that was out of reach of the previous two versions.

Nissan's largest high-rider - bigger than both the Juke and big-selling Qashqai - it is available as a seven-seater thanks to a third row of seats. We drove the e-Power 204 version, which as the name suggests, gets electrical assistance, boosting economy and performance.

While it's a hybrid, there's no need to plug it in for charging. This is achieved through Nissan technology which allows the battery to be refreshed on the run. In other words, it drives much like an electric car without the problem of finding charging points or suffering dreaded ‘range anxiety'.

At the front, there's a 1.5-litre, three cylinder engine that pumps out a healthy 201 bhp. Together with electric assistance you get near instant response and acceleration to 60mph in under eight seconds - that's pretty sprightly for a large SUV.

Economy is good, if not exceptional. We averaged around the 42mpg mark taking in town pootling and fast cross country running.

For many potential owners who are used to old-school SUVs, the new X-Trail will be a revelation. Its quiet efficiency, immediacy of power and ride standard are more akin to a luxury saloon than an all-purpose family vehicle.

Suspension is on the soft side, but cornering roll remains well controlled and the usual ruts, bumps and pot-holes that litter our roads are largely suppressed giving a compliant and comfortable ride. High marks to Nissan design team.

All versions of the X-Trail come with an automatic gearbox. It's of the continuous variable variety which works well in this incarnation - much better than did earlier versions of the same system.

The cabin is smart and easily recognisable as the Qashqai's big brother. Plenty of soft touch materials, a large rectangular touch screen protruding from the dash and ample storage places including a central box and a sort of floating central console which allows items to be kept beneath.

Both the front seats and rear are comfortable and well shaped. Legroom in the second row of seats is particularly impressive. The final row is strictly for youngsters and could prove challenging for older adults to access.

Boot space with the two main rows of seats in position is acceptable but with a capacity of below 500 litres falls short of some rivals.

Reversing camera, dual zone air con, LED headlights, sat nav, privacy glass and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto are standard features on the Accenta Premium version we sampled.

FAST FACTS

Nissan X-Trail Acenta Premium e-Power

Price: £36,965

Mechanical: 1.5-litre, 3 cyl, 201bhp petrol hybrid engine driving front wheels via automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 105mph

0-62mph: 7.9sec

Combined MPG: 48.7

Insurance Group: 24

C02 emissions: 132g/km

Bik rating: 31%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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