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Nissan X-Trail ST-L 2011 review

The affordable, well equipped and family friendly X-Trail.
EXPERT RATING
6

WE turn the spotlight on automotive's newest and brightest stars, as we ask the questions to which you want the answers. Ultimately, however, there is only one question that really needs answering would you buy one?

WHAT IS IT?

This is the recently introduced X-Trail ST-L front wheel drive for people who don't want or need all wheel drive. It uses a Nissan Dualis engine and transmission. You can get a lower spec' manual version called the ST for under $30K

HOW MUCH?

$34,990 plus on roads.

WHAT ARE THE COMPETITORS?

Mitsubishi Outlander fronty, RAV4 fronty, Mazda CX7, Kia Sportage, Hyundai iX35 and plenty more.

WHAT'S UNDER THE BONNET?

Gets a twin cam, petrol 2.0-litre, four cylinder with 102kW/198Nm output drinking regular unleaded. Drive goes through a Constantly Variable Transmission (CVT).

HOW DOES IT GO?

OK but sometimes feels as it there's a sock in the exhaust until you floor the accelerator. Alternatively you can use a button on the gear selector to slip down a ratio for better acceleration. Gets off the line OK, not too noisy, willing once you get going. OK an around town practical wagon

IS IT ECONOMICAL?

Not particularly. Nissan says 8.4 litres/100km for the CVT ST-L. We got 10.1 in mostly highway driving and some inter-urban commuting — the same as a much bigger Ford Territory petrol rear wheel drive we we had at the same time.

IS IT `GREEN?'

Rates 6.5 in the Green Car Guide.

IS IT SAFE?

Will rate four ANCAP stars.

IS IT COMFORTABLE?

Yes, but the seat backs need more support even with the lumbar adjustment wound right up. The boxy body translates into plenty of room for five adults if necessary. ST-L grade scores plenty of kit like remote central locking, climate control, drive computer, leather upholstery, electric adjust and heated front seats, multi function wheel, 17-inch alloys, Bluetooth phone and privacy glass.

WHAT'S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?

Not too bad actually — bit tardy to respond to throttle input on the highway especially uphill but then it does weigh 1444kg and runs a 2.0-litre petrol engine. Wouldn't like to be in it with five adults and luggage with the air on. Ride is comfy and relatively well controlled, has strong brakes, minimal noise intrusion and high driving position.

IS IT VALUE FOR MONEY?

About on the money but we'd push for a sharper price given the competition.

WOULD WE BUY ONE?

Probably not, we'd go for the diesel auto first — a much better proposition but only available in 4x4 so you pay more.

Pricing guides

$11,990
Based on 161 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$5,550
Highest Price
$16,988

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
ST (4X4) 2.5L, ULP, CVT AUTO $7,900 – 12,210 2011 Nissan X-Trail 2011 ST (4X4) Pricing and Specs
ST (fwd) 2.0L, ULP, CVT AUTO $6,500 – 10,010 2011 Nissan X-Trail 2011 ST (fwd) Pricing and Specs
ST-L (4X4) 2.5L, ULP, CVT AUTO $9,100 – 13,640 2011 Nissan X-Trail 2011 ST-L (4X4) Pricing and Specs
ST-L (fwd) 2.0L, ULP, CVT AUTO $7,200 – 11,220 2011 Nissan X-Trail 2011 ST-L (fwd) Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
6