2016 Nissan X-Trail Hybrid: Quick Drive Review (India)

  • Feb 19, 2016
Nissan X-Trail India

Nissan had showcased the all-new X-Trail Hybrid at the Auto Expo (read article) and we managed to get our hands on it for just about twenty minutes a few days back. Here's our first impression of Nissan's next product for India. Interestingly, India will be the fourth market in the world after Japan, Thailand and Indonesia where Nissan will have introduced the X-Trail Hybrid.

India's most affordable hybrid SUV will come in the form of the upcoming Nissan X-Trail. This all-new version has no similarity to the one that was sold in India a few years back. The X-Trail now looks like a smart cross-over and premium as compared to the old boxy design of the older version. The X-Trail looks pleasing in white and we love the front end - LED DRLs, the angular design, thin grille and chromed V around the Nissan logo.

Nissan X-Trail India

The side profile is muscular and the curvy alloy wheel design looks nice. The rear is equally nice with sharp tail lamps and a clean cut design. Overall, the X-Trail looks modern and will feel at home in the company of other 30 lac rupee 5-seater SUVs.


Step inside and you immediately feel like sitting in an overgrown expensive sedan. You don't sit very high and yet visibility is excellent. The steering has minimal buttons but what catches your eye is the speedometer display that also shows you exactly what the hybrid system is doing at that particular time. We didnt get enough time to sample the cabin properly but found the seats to be comfortable with ample space for five.

Nissan Xtrail India

The X-Trail is a feature loaded car and you get a lot for your money - ventilated cup holders for example! There is also a dual zone climate control system, four cameras to give you a bird's eye view what's around the car and a host of safety aids including active trace control, active ride control, vehicle dynamic control etc. Boot space, inspite of the batteries, stands at a very respectable 400 litres.

Nissan Xtrail India

We drove the car just outside the Buddh International Circuit and the first thing that hit us was the refinement. You start off in electric mode and the X-Trail moves forward silently. If there is enough juice in the battery, the car will run on the motor alone for speeds of upto 30km/h beyond which the engine wakes up. Under 30, if you go down hard on the accelerator, the engine comes to life to aid acceleration. Likewise, if the battery is low, it gets charged by the engine while on the move. There is also efficient regeneration during deceleration.

Nissan Xtrail India

Talking of numbers, the X-Trail comes with a 1997cc petrol motor that puts out 144PS of power and 200Nm of torque. This is mated to a RM31 AC synchronous motor with a power rating of 41PS and torque rating of 160Nm. The engine is mated to a CVT transmission and India will only get the FWD version. Nissan's Intelligent Dual Clutch Control drives the front wheels and also regenerates electricity by using one motor. What is remarkable is that because one of the two clutches completely separates the motor from the engine, the system enables electric only mode even at high speeds along with highly efficient energy regeneration.

Nissan Xtrail India

Drive the car gently and the CVT will keep you happy - part throttle response is good and its only when you are in a hurry is when you realise the downfalls of a CVT and its rubber band effect. It isnt very bad but the X-Trail takes a while before waking up. Once on the move though and it turns out to be a quick SUV. Nissan claims an economy of over 20kmpl as per Japanese test cycle but a realistic figure would be around 12-13kmpl for Indian roads. The 60-litre tank should give it a range of over 800km on the highways.

Nissan Xtrail India

The X-trail is a very comfortable to be in. Though our drive was a quick one, the cement joints and hard rubber speed breakers around the inner lanes of BIC campus showcased how well tuned the suspension was. Add in the light steering and owners will love driving this SUV around town. And even then, throwing the X-Trail around a corner will make it respond well. There is a bit of body roll and the steering needs constant inputs, but the car remains very predictable.

Nissan Xtrail India

The X-Trail is India's first full hybrid SUV and should be on sale before the end of this calendar year. Being a CBU import, it will be safe to assume a sticker price of approximately Rs 35 lac which puts it in the company of a lot of German offerings. What the X-Trail offers you is something unique - the experience of owning and driving a hybrid vehicle. It looks nice too and offers excellent comfort and enough features to spoil consumers. While it won't be burning sales charts, it will surely sell in enough numbers to satisfy the company's global heads.

More images:

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