We’ve known an all-new Nissan X-Trail was in the pipeline when images of a Brazilian patent filing surfaced earlier this month, but now, thanks to leaked promotional (or brochure) images we can see what the newcomer will look like in the metal.
The facelift to the X-Trail – a former finalist in the 2015/16 as well as 2016/17 iterations of the #CarsAwards (in the guise of the 2.5 SE CVT AWD) – was introduced in South Africa towards the end of 2017. Then, in 2018, Nissan’s family car was updated with a host of Intelligent Mobility active safety technologies (on Tekna-spec derivatives), including intelligent blind-spot warning and intervention, -lane intervention, -forward collision warning and emergency braking, as well as an –around-view monitor.
In the climates with harsher winters than ours, AWD is virtually a prerequisite on family cars, such as on this Platinum-spec derivative.
But, considering that the current-generation car was launched in South Africa in the first half of the previous decade (in 2014, to be precise), it stands to reason that a new model of the X-Trail (or Rogue, as it is known in North America) will be coming out soon. The Brazilian patent images gave us an inkling of the newcomer’s overall shape and major design cues, but now, these grainy images have appeared on the Worldscoop forum…
These images confirm that although Nissan has suitably contemporised and smartened up the look of its family car, the newcomer still has chunky proportions and “squared-off” edges to underline the off-road pretensions of the range-topping AWD derivatives.
Nissan has resisted the temptation to give its X-Trail a cutesy and overly curvy softroader look.
The front-end treatment is characterised by an expansive V-Motion grille replete with a wide chrome look-insert, the latter of which is complemented by the shiny lip spoiler below the large air-intake in the bumper. The LED lighting elements have been split; we assume the daytime running lights are housed in the slit-eyed top clusters and the main beams in the lower ones, which are mounted in front of sculpted side air intakes.
At the rear, the X-Trail’s wraparound tail-lights are mounted high up on the bodywork, while the tailgate features a subtle roof spoiler and the now ubiquitous raised band that facilitates a reduced rake to the screen and emphasises the SUV’s “square shoulders”. The sculpted rear bumper, meanwhile, features a large aluminium-look kick plate.
The new X-Trail's interior would not look out of place on an executive SUV, although, to be fair, this is probably a top-spec example.
The upmarket dual-tone interior, with its swooping tiered dashboard and quilt-pattern black leather trim, however, marks a major departure from the current model’s neatly-finished – but rather conventional – fascia. It features a digital (and, ostensibly, customisable) instrument cluster flanked by an enlarged infotainment touchscreen.
The fascia features a dual-climate control console below a pair of slim air vents and the centrol console, trimmed in piano-black, of course, features a recess for a wireless charging pad, a stubby transmission lever and a rotary off-road drive mode selector.
The Platinum spec (probably unique to the US market) includes a panoramic sunroof and electrically-adjustable front seats.
The 2021 X-Trail is expected to be unveiled in North America (badged as the Rogue) in coming months, ahead of a confirmed launch in the ‘States later this year. It’s our educated guess that the model will arrive in South Africa at some point during 2022…
We expect the new X-Trail will again be available in 5- and 7-seater configurations, but the current engine line-up of a 1.6-litre turbodiesel and 2.0-litre and 2.5-litre 4-cylinder petrol motors (mated with either manual or continuously variable automatic transmissions) may change. Some reports suggest the 2.5-litre will be carried over, but a variable-compression 2.0-litre turbopetrol (from the Infiniti QX50) is also a possibility. We'll update this story as soon as more details become available...