2023 Nissan X-Trail e-Power Review: Hybrid Theories for Seven

Lionel Kong
2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

Nissan’s new big SUV is a petrol-electric hybrid, 7-seater, and all-wheel driven, go-anywhere family lounge packed into one coherent unit

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-Power

Launched: May 2023 – Price S$255,800 with COE and VES (June 2023)
Five-door, large SUV, seven seats
201hp, hybrid, VES B, 6.7l/100km

Near luxury-level interior
Quiet and smooth
Room for seven

Does not take well to fast cornering
Third row has limited leg and headroom


Remember the days of having to squeeze a family of two or three adults plus three children into a little family sedan? That was a long time ago, and something that few people today would want to put up. Since early MPVs like the Renault Espace put the idea of “a seven-seat car is not a bus” into people’s heads in the early 1990s, times have moved and big MPVs like the luxurious Toyota Alphard and Nissan Serena have become the car of choice for luxurious big family motoring. 

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

But big SUVs have also made inroads in the ‘cars that seat more than five people’ segment. An early, hot-selling example was the Volvo XC90 from a decade ago. As for what’s current, a huge luxury example would be the BMW X7, and a more modest luxury seven-seater SUV being the Mercedes-Benz GLB. Now the Nissan X-Trail is continuing the trend with its new, next-gen seven-seater SUV. Actually it’s more of a five plus two, as the pair of seats in the third row, similar to that of the Mercedes-Benz GLB, is kind of cramped and only meant for occasional use. Still, one might argue that it’s better to have the option of seating seven people properly, rather than be restricted to a car with just two rows of seats.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

This is the fourth generation X-Trail, with the first one dating back to 2000, at the time when urban SUVs were just exploding as a big new genre of cars. The boxy shapes of SUVs have given way to rounder, more car-like silhouettes over the years. While petrol-powered X-Trails are still available in selected regions Singapore is only getting the all-wheel drive, e-Power petrol-electric hybrid.

Design and Interior

Singapore is actually a little late with the new X-Trail, as it was already launched in some other countries at the start of 2023. It’s a car with a lot of presence, and like its smaller sibling the Nissan Qashqai, there’s a definite sense of quality about the whole package. It’s round with still a sense of hard edges, which is similar to what the BMW X5’s design ethos seems to be.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

It’s a properly high riding SUV, with stacks of ground clearance and requiring passengers to step up into the car rather than just sideways into it. 

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

Nissan interiors are typically known to be a step up above its contemporaries, and the X-Trail doesn’t disappoint, The car we had was upholstered in light coloured leather, and while the standard specification gets synthetic leather, this one has the S$2,800 upgrade which covers the major seat contact points in genuine Nappa leather. You’ll need to take note that not all the surfaces get the Nappa bits though, and non-contact areas such as the seat backs still use the synthetic stuff. The colour match is great however, and it’ll take a trained hand and eye to really know what to look for in spotting the differences.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

Nissan advertises the X-Trail as having a triple screen setup, that is, if you count the driver’s heads-up display as a screen as well. The in-car, native GPS navigation system is decently accurate, plus there’s a wireless phone charging dock on the centre console.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

The centre screen measures 12.3-inches diagonal across, which isn’t big by the standards of Mercedes-EQ’s top-spec monster screens, but it’s large enough for everything to be clearly readable at a glance.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

This is paired with an instrument cluster that is an entirely digital screen as you would expect, customisable for what information you would like to see. A selector dial to choose between the range of all-wheel drive modes resides on the centre console, ahead of the drive selector switch that feels like a blocky computer mouse.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

Overhead, a full-length panoramic sunroof adds to the car’s excellent premium feel. 

The second row is expansive, with business-class level legroom. The trick here is because the car is actually driven by an electric motor at each end, there’s no propeller shaft running the length of the car like in other conventional 4WD drivetrains. This also means that there isn’t that big hump in the middle of the floor for the propeller shaft to run through, so the whole space is quite flat, almost like a typical electric car. 

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

The rear bench slides along a rail so that you can negotiate how much space to give to the people crammed into the third row. It’s all a game of compromises as when the seats are racked all the way back, there’s zero legroom in the third row.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

As you might have guessed, the default way the car is expected to be used is with the third row folded away for a proper boot, but don’t leave it too cluttered as that will impede the quick deployment of the third row when you need it.

2023 Nissan X-Trail e-power in Singapore

On the whole it’s a layout that’s got a great upmarket feel, befitting the price that the car is going for. 

To Page 2: Driving Experience

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7 Seater e-power Hybrid nissan SUV x-trail

About the Author

Lionel Kong

An old hand from the bad old days of crazy COEs, the straight-shooting, ex-CarBuyer editor is back in the four-wheeled world. Rumours that he went to another country to start a Judas Priest tribute band are unfounded.

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