The crossover SUV used to stand proud as a vehicle that sits between the sedan and an SUV. These days, there are more in-between categories, and even more crossover SUV types. Yet does that diminish the value of the original contenders in the segment? We look at one of the older contenders, the Nissan X-Trail 2.5 4×4 to see how it compares.
When crossovers first came out, they looked a lot like the cars with which they shared their underpinnings. These days, their styling makes them stand out more and more, making choosing one based on looks even more difficult.
In the case of the X-Trail, Nissan’s V-Motion Grille is from where all lines emanate. The new bumper design makes it look ever more aggressive than its first appearance. The bigger chrome ‘V,’ the bigger grille extending downwards, and LED headlights give it more character. The rear’s changes are a little more subtle, but a new bumper and taillights, update the look just right.
Inside, not much has changed. You get leather seats, and a sportier, racing-type leather wrapped steering wheel, which is also now easier to grip for those with smaller hands. The wheel is also tilt-telescopic adjustable. The seats remain comfortable and everything is ergonomically within reach. The second row seating has generous head and legroom and ingress and egress is easy. The third row can fit small adults if you need to bring some extra friends somewhere, but its cramped quarters make it better suited to small children. You can move the second row forward to create more legroom but it’s still a squeeze.
Tech and safety
The Nissan Intelligent Mobility suite in the X-Trail gives you the Around View Monitor, which grants a 360-Degree stitched view of the car’s surroundings, making maneuvering in tight spaces easier. This view also integrates with Moving Object Detection (MOD) which warns you if there are people or vehicles coming towards you by highlighting the side in yellow. Our only gripe is the low resolution five-inch screen, which was a tad small to see fine details when the Around View Monitor switches on. We wish this were bigger, but even so, it gets the job done.
The Forward Collision Warning system works with the Forward Emergency Braking System, to warn the driver of a collision in front, as well as brake at the last second if needed. Also included are Hill Descent Control, Hill Start Assist to manage steep slopes. Blind Spot Warning System, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert let you know of cars that you may not see. Standard safety equipment are the driver and front passenger airbags, Seatbelts for all, Child proof locks and Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA), and Vehicle Dynamics Control.
Under the hood, you get the same 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine as its predecessor, which puts out 171-Hp at 6,000 rpm with 233-Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm. It’s mated to a CVT, which makes it a little slow from a full stop. Once you get the revs up, it’s fun to drive on the open road.
This top-of-the-line variant also gives you Cruse Control and a panoramic sunroof. Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH) are properly dealt with and you’ll appreciate this when on our less-than-smooth roads. In addition, the way the suspension is set up returns a comfortable ride more than sporty handling.
While Nissan may only offer two trim levels of X-Trail, this 4×4 is cleverly priced against its competitors’ mid-level trim versions. Available at P1,820,000, the price makes it the right choice if you are in the market for a mid-trim Crossover SUV.
In conclusion, you’ll seat seven, you get features found in higher-end crossover SUV’s, but for a mid-tier price, giving you more for your peso.
Text and photos by Neil Pagulayan