December 9, 2016

2016 Nissan X Trail ST AWD Review

2016-nissan-x-trail-st-awd-review

Family SUVs are a thing in Australia these days, as well as most parts of the globe. In terms of Year-to-Date, this model is ranked fourth in the medium-SUV sales, leaving behind Hyundai Tucson, Mazda CX-5, and the Toyota RAV-4. Nissan remains consistent in selling over 1000 X-Trail units a month, meaning it is still quite popular. This article will review the cheapest variant of the model, the 2016 All Wheel Drive (AWD) ST. Read on.

About the X-Trail

The Nissan X-Trail was first introduced to the industry 15 years ago. This first generation model was joined by the likes of the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV-4, and the Subaru Forester in the crossover segment. The X-Trail offers compact dimensions, decent off-road capability, and an affordable price tag. It became a hit among people who wanted an adventurous-looking car, but not as demanding as other SUVs like the Toyota Land Cruiser.

Fast forward to over a decade, the third-generation Nissan X-Trail has bid goodbye to its predecessor’s boxy look. The latest model now sports a European-inspired aesthetic that is curvaceous and more modern to win over the style-focused city dweller.

Features

The X-Trail ST AWD is currently priced at $33,980, plus on-road costs. You can avail the Tempest Blue version for an additional $495. Considering this is a base model, you will get along with its affordable price tag – definitely a bang for your buck.

The features include:

  • keyless entry
  • push-button start rear-view camera (no sensors)
  • automatic headlights
  • CD player
  • five-inch coloured infotainment central display
  • Bluetooth audio and phone streaming
  • cruise control
  • USB input
  • TFT driver’s information
  • telescopic and tilt adjustable steering wheel
  • two child seat (ISOFIX) anchor points (in the second row)
  • manual air-conditioning

You will also find rear air-vents, a roof-mounted eyewear holder, cooled front cup-holders, and a boot floor that can be configured in 18 ways (to adjust floor height, make shelves, and keep items). This entry-level variant will make it slightly difficult for you to tell between this base model and the mid-range ST-L. The biggest difference would be the lack of roof rails and front fog lights. Other than that, the two look almost identical.

The 17-inch alloy wheels come standard in the entry-level ST, which are far better than the ones you might find on many other models. You will also be impressed by the LED daytime lights. The spare wheel under the boot floor is definitely a space-saver.

Interior

The X-Trail has a 550-litre boot. This luggage area betters the likes of the Hyundai Tucson (488 litres) and the Mazda CX-5 (403 litres), but falls short of the Honda CR-V (556 litres). Other things to note about its interior include comfort, cleanliness, and the functionality. Its lack of a leather steering wheel and gear-shifter will remind you that it is a base model, but this is something minor.

The seats are cloth-trimmed. They are soft, supportive, and will feel like you are sitting on a couch. The driver’s seat, however, may feel like it is tilted forward a bit, even if you adjust it in its lowest setting. You will notice that most parts of the cabin are made of soft-touch plastic, which may not look as pleasant as you expect. Despite the hard plastics used around the cabin, the X-Trail is done solid, without the squeaks and rattles you usually hear.

The doors have padded arm-rests, but you can also rest your elbow in the small centre storage in the front. The second-row passengers will enjoy plenty of leg- and headroom, especially the taller passengers. The seat belt buckles seemed to be awkwardly placed because the person in the middle seat should have a skinny bum to avoid sitting on one. The good news is that the seats are split into 40/20/40, and are served by rear air-vents, so great job for Nissan.

The middle seat can serve as an armrest with cup-holders, while you can find large bottle holders in the doors. All AWD models do not have a third-row option. This means you are not capable of carrying two more passengers.

Engine

The X-Trail AWD ST features a four-cylinder, 2.5-litre petrol engine that produces 126kW of power, running at 6000rpm. It also releases 226Nm of torque, at 4000rpm. It does not take much effort to push it to your desired speed, but it will not happen quickly. The engine works with a continuously variable transmission or CVT. The ST AWD consumes around 5 litres per 100kms when running on the freeway, but runs at 8.6 litres per 100kms on mixed driving conditions.

Maintenance

Nissan offers a 100,000km or three-year warranty on the X-Trail, whichever comes first, along with road-side assistance and capped-priced servicing. The maintenance is required every 12 months or 10,000kms, and will cost you somewhere around $312. The servicing can last between three and six years, depending on your driving habits.

Verdict

The Nissan X-Trail is a winner with its seven-seat option and cabin space. However, the AWD ST only accommodates five passengers due to the lack of a third-row option. This variant is not at all bad, but will have a slightly difficult time competing with its rivals. It does have a comfortable interior with armrests and cup/bottle holders for passengers to enjoy. It also offers a stylish design and a smooth driving experience that still make it value for money.

Also read: 2016 Mazda BT50 Review

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