Nissan Australia says it has seven-seat and single-motor versions of the X-Trail e-Power hybrid SUV available to it should local buyers demand such options.
While the brand will launch with two high-spec, five-seat, all-wheel drive-only grades, Nissan’s manager for the X-Trail line, Aleksandar Pecanac, said more variants could be on the table if customer feedback indicates there’s a gap in the line-up.
“Bringing [the X-Trail e-Power] in the Ti and Ti-L grades, that’s where we’ve really seen the majority of ICE demand in pre-orders,” Mr Pecanac told CarExpert.
“We really wanted to couple the new e-Power with e-4orce technology [with the high-spec models] to really put our best foot forward. We’ve seen strong customer demand on their behalf.”
“It’s more of a premium offering, so I think it’s a bit of a test case for the moment,” he added.
When asked how the brand will gauge customer feedback with respect to expanding the range offering, Mr Pecanac said buyer surveys will play a big part into forming the business case for any future additions to the line-up.
“We’ll get [feedback] through the syndicated surveys that they do, and if we feel there’s a business case for lower grades or two-wheel drive e-Power, then we’ll present that to the global team and say ‘this is the car we need because the customers are asking for it.”
Mr. Pecanac again clarified that both single-motor front-wheel drive and seven-seat versions of the X-Trail e-Power are available to Australia from the Japanese factory.
A seven-seat option would make the X-Trail e-Power one of the few seven-seat hybrid SUVs on sale in Australia, and offer a key point of difference to the market-leading Toyota RAV4 Hybrid.
In the mainstream mid-sized SUV segment, the only rival to offer an electrified three-row option is the related Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid EV; though seven seats is restricted to pricey top-spec Exceed variants.
Meanwhile, the single-motor e-Power drivetrain would offer a more affordable entry point into the electrified X-Trail range, and going by global specifications could see a gain in fuel economy.
Australian-delivered X-Trail e-Power with e-4orce models quote 6.1L/100km combined cycle efficiency, which is a litre or so per 100km up on something like a RAV4 Hybrid.
Nissan UK quotes WLTP fuel figures of 45.6mpg (6.19L per 100km) versus 42.8mpg (6.6L per 100km) for the X-Trail e-Power 2WD and e-Power e-4orce respectively in the equivalent trim to our decked-out, five-seat Ti-L.
Go lower down in the range, and the most basic X-Trail e-Power 2WD quotes 48.2mpg (5.8L/100km) on the stricter WLTP regime. For reference, the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid quotes 47.9-50.4mpg (5.89-5.6L/100km) in the UK depending on variant and 4.7-4.8L/100km according to local ADR testing.
Given the local X-Trail e-Power with e-4orce claims combined efficiency of 6.1L/100km on both Ti and Ti-L grades, you could logically expect the 2WD single-motor version to achieve mid-fives in local testing.
The Nissan X-Trail e-Power with e-4orce is on sale now in Australia, available in high-spec Ti and Ti-L grades only at launch.
Pricing starts from $54,190 plus on-road costs for the Ti, and $57,190 for the flagship Ti-L. Both e-Power with e-4orce variants are $4200 dearer than the equivalent 2.5L 4WD petrol versions.
The top-spec Toyota RAV4 Edge AWD Hybrid bisects the two X-Trail e-Power variants, starting from $56,650 following a recent update.
Meanwhile, the Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid EV – based on the same Alliance CMF platform as the X-Trail – starts at $55,490 plus on-roads for the entry-level ES, with the mid-spec Aspire listing for $61,990.
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