Auto Review: 2020 Nissan X-Trail ST-L N-TREK

NISSAN are no strangers to the family SUV, from the Patrol and Pathfinder to the 2020 Nissan X-Trail. But if you want your X-Trail to stand out from the crowd, there’s now a limited edition N-TREK edition of the ST-L.

Descended from the ever-popular first and second generations of X-Trail, which began production in 2000 and 2007 respectively, the third generation’s design and inspiration came from the Nissan Hi-Cross concept, unveiled at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show.

Having shed its boxy look and dated design, and drawing inspiration from its siblings, the modernised X-Trail looks good. The N-TREK variant is limited to 500, and carries special badging 19-inch alloy wheels, a bonnet protector and window visors.

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It also grabs an 8-speaker Bose sound system, scuff plates and floor mats. All that for $38,700 before on-road costs is not a bad deal, especially when you consider the standard ST-L (2WD) is $37,700 before on-roads.

If you’re specifically in the market for an X-Trail, then the N-TREK is definitely worth adding to the shopping list. It’s a great multipurpose SUV that’s more than capable when you’re out getting the groceries or picking up the kids.

That explains why it’s so popular with drivers who work for a certain ride sharing company. Sure it won’t win a sprint up and down a mountain pass on the weekend, but how many of us do that in our spare time.

The X-Trail ST-L N-TREK features smooth body lines and a sharp front end. Its side profile reveals it’s a little longer than the Qashqai, but not by much, and it’s still shorter than a lot of the mid to large sedans you’ll often see on our roads.

We put our X-Trail side by side with an ST-L spec Qashqai and they looked almost identical, but we were left with a few concerns after comparing the two. Externally, they were very similar, but the larger X-Trail’s lighting feels a bit dated and less luminous.

Inside, the X-Trail is certainly roomier, but they’re very similar in terms of look and feel. Nissan have perfected the interior, none of it looks or feels cheap, and their signature leather D-shaped steering wheel looks nice and feels good too.

The seats are finished in a decent quality black leather and although it does have a 7-inch media unit, there are still a multitude of buttons on the dash that you’ll be required to fiddle with for the climate control and audio.

There’s plenty of legroom even for taller or larger people, with electronic adjustment available for the front row of seats and manual adjustment for the second row. Storage is plentiful with 565-litres of boot space, and a total of four cup holders.

These sit in pairs in the front and rear seats, and there are large door trays for bottles, and a few trays in the centre console.

The 2020 Nissan X-Trail ST-L N-TREK is powered by a 2.5-litre inline 4-cylinder engine. The naturally aspirated QR25DE makes 126kW of power and 226Nm of torque, meaning you won’t be keeping up with beefier turbocharged 4 or 6-cylinder vehicles, off the line.

The CVT (continuously variable transmission) surprisingly doesn’t ruin the power delivery to the wheels, but it doesn’t improve it either. Nissan claims the N-TREK edition of the X-Trail gets around 7.9-litres/100km but we could only manage a 9.6 average.

The limited edition X-Trail is a pleasurable drive though, and visibility is excellent all around, no matter where you are seated, thanks to its SUV ride height and a cloud-like suspension package.

Available as a 2WD petrol offering the 2020 Nissan X-Trail ST-L N-TREK comes with a 5-star ANCAP safety rating, and features blind spot warning, intelligent emergency braking, rear cross-traffic alerts and hill-start assist.

There are also two ISOFIX anchor points for baby/child seats if you want to take the family for a drive. All Nissan models come with a 5-year unlimited kilometre warranty and 5-years of 24-hour roadside assistance.

It’s perfect for families and lugging things around town or as a ride share vehicle, but the CVT and sub-par power figures don’t make for a driver’s car. That said, it’s an altogether worthy successor to the first and second gen X-Trail.

Our 2020 Nissan X-Trail ST-L N-TREK (2WD Petrol) was supplied by Nissan Australia. To find out more, contact your local Nissan dealer. Images courtesy of J_Hui Design/Photography.


Driving experience
Exterior styling
Interior look and feel
Technology and connectivity
Family friendliness
Value for money


Pros - spacious and practical; premium interior feel, excellent Bose sound system; 360 degree camera view.
Cons - poor fuel economy; CVT is a major let down; under powered; fair value for money.
Paul Pascual
Paul Pascual
Paul Pascual is an avid enthusiast of all things JDM, from the legendary powerhouses to the old school kei cars. He has a passion for modification and making his cars look like they belong on the track. But they never actually make it there.


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<strong>Pros -</strong> spacious and practical; premium interior feel, excellent Bose sound system; 360 degree camera view.<br> <strong>Cons -</strong> poor fuel economy; CVT is a major let down; under powered; fair value for money.Auto Review: 2020 Nissan X-Trail ST-L N-TREK