Friday, May 8, 2015

Nissan X-TRAIL Hybrid

The Nissan X-TRAIL T32 is now becoming a car that really grinds my gears because since its launch two years ago, there have been more and more people, mostly Europeans, are becoming interested in the latest-generation crossover which combines its so-called toughness that its predecessors got with science that makes it well ahead of the curve. Just when I thought that this crossover had enough making too much exposure, well, it's not over yet because there's a first-ever X-TRAIL Hybrid appeared and this time, it's going to grind my gears even more, or is it?

2016 Nissan X-TRAIL Hybrid

Here it is, then. At first glance, it looks exactly the same as the new model but what's on its heart counts because I'm going to dig deep through its core, evaluating how would the hybrid powerplant became an instrument for added fuel consumption than the base gasoline model.

First and foremost, it's still the same 2,0L direct injection engine that you get from the Serena but now, it comes with the Intelligent Dual Clutch Control system, which is a 1-motor 2-clutch parallel setup, where the engine is mated with a 30kW electric motor, double clutches, and a Li-ion battery. It's capable of delivering up to 20.6km/L of fuel economy based on JC08 Mode standards.

Like the normal gasoline model, the X-TRAIL Hybrid still features the world's first Active Ride Control, which autonomously adopting the brakes and adjusting the engine's torque to help smooth the impact, as well as the world's first Active Engine Braking, which adjusts the engine's torque to slow down while enhancing control and stopping confidence. All seems fine for a family car but these features still grind my gears and I'm seeing too much exposure from this ride, which ironically, is good and comfortable.

For 4WD models, it comes with ALL MODE 4x4-i, which constantly optimizes torque to all four wheels for stability on snowy and other slippery surfaces.

While the normal X-Trail is offered in either a 5-seater or a 7-seater (which I don't like it because of my strong dislikes for crampy third-row seatings), the Hybrid model is available only in 5-seater, which is good news for picky passengers like me, bad news for baby boomers. Well, if you have a baby and if you're planning to occupy the 2nd row seat with some crappy child seats, you're out of luck and you'd better off with the petrol version instead but as for me, I can seat wherever I want and avoiding the fear of getting myself sandwiched by my siblings. It's better and it's more spacious at the back despite the added load due to the battery. You can fit most of your thrift shop hauls and you're not afraid of being a hoarder.

2016 Nissan X-TRAIL Hybrid

The new X-TRAIL Hybrid starts at 2,804,760 Yen for the 2WD model up to 3,011,040 Yen for the 4WD, which is somewhat much more expensive than the petrol variant but not too costly to own than the Toyota Harrier. Although, this isn't one of the most exciting crossovers to drive on your next day-off, this can make a great road-trip crossover fit for your friends and some members of your family. Hopefully, you don't get a baby or else, you'll be better off with a normal, 7-seater, petrol variant instead because the hybrid version is available only with 5-seats,.

Photo: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

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