SUVs are among the most popular types of cars with modern buyers. Their combination of roomy cabins, a high driving position and chunky looks are certainly a winning combination.
Unfortunately for some, they tend to be a little too large for everyday driving. To that end, it’s important to be aware of exactly how large each car you’re considering is, and therefore how easy it is to drive.
We’ve had a look at the Nissan X-Trail – which potentially offers a seven-seat SUV experience – to see how it measures up.
Despite its exterior appearance, the Nissan X-Trail isn’t quite as large as you might expect. Indeed, it is both 17cm shorter and 2cm narrower than a Ford Mondeo, although it is taller. That means that from behind the wheel it is a surprisingly easy car to place on the road, particularly when compared to some other seven seat SUVs.
The overall width and height in the table below takes into account the inclusion of both 19-inch alloy wheels and roof rack. On smaller wheels and without the roof rack, those measurements drop by 10 and 5mm respectively.
Nissan don’t state official figures for head and legroom for driver and passengers, though during our week with an X-Trail we discovered that space in the front two rows is more than adequate for five adults. The same can’t be said of the optional sixth and seventh seats though, which are strictly for small children. The middle row of seats can slide fore and aft depending on whether boot space or passenger accommodation is a priority.
As you’d hope in a car of this size, boot space is more than generous enough in most circumstances. Of course, ticking the option for the rear row of seats sacrifices some boot space even when they’re folded away. With all seven in place, there is a nominal 135 litres of space – that’s just over half the size of the tiny Volkswagen Up – but folding away the five rear passenger seats liberates a volume up to 1,982 litres.
|Seats up||550 litres|
|Seats down||1,982 litres|
|Seven seats up||135 litres|
|Five seats up||445 litres|
|All seats down||1,982 litres|
Turning circle and fuel tank capacity
The X-Trail is a surprisingly manoeuvrable car for its size. In fact, the turning circle of 11.2 metres is marginally better than an Audi A4′s. A 60-litre fuel tank combined with a frugal 1.6-litre diesel engine means that a range of 760 miles is theoretically possible, as long as you can match the front-wheel drive model’s claimed 57.6mpg.
|Turning circle||11.2 metres|
|Fuel tank||60 litres|
Weight and towing weights
The X-Trail has been improved in many areas over the version that preceded it, and one of the things it has benefited from most is a modest diet. The latest version weighs 90 kilos less than the old model, which in turn benefits performance and efficiency. In fact, at just over one-and-a-half tonnes, the X-Trail is fairly lightweight for a car of its type, which explains why the fairly modest 130hp diesel is more than adequate to move it down the road.
For those looking to hitch a trailer to their X-Trail, the best bet would be to avoid the automatic – manual models are able to tow a braked trailer 500kg heavier than the auto versions.
|1,500kg (2WD 5-seat)||1,610kg (4WD 7-seat)|
|Braked trailer||Unbraked trailer|
Find out more
If the Nissan X-Trail seems to be a neat fit in your life (and on your driveway) then you can find out more with our full review. Then head over to our car configurator to find the best deal on brand new X-Trails in the UK.