Interior Insight: Nissan X-Trail

Technology Trends

Inside story on Nissan X-Trail

Source: Nissan

Nissan’s fourth-generation X-Trail is offered in both five and seven-seat configurations. We take a closer look inside.

Inside story

The cabin is cloaked with some premium materials and smart features, with special attention being paid to the ergonomic and tactile quality of the switchgear and buttons to give them a high-quality feel. Nissan’s research shows customers’ preference for easy-to-use core functions, so the X-Trail has simple, intuitive heating/air-conditioning controls, as well as buttons that govern the central screen functions, such as audio and navigation.

The front storage console incorporates a 15-W wireless phone charger. There are front-compartment USB charging ports and rear-seat charging-only ports (both Type-A and Type-C).

There is a combined elbow rest for front-seat occupants, which has a “butterfly” opening, to reveal storage space for valuables. The side opening elements allow access to the storage area for rear-seat passengers, unlike a rear-hinged lid. Underneath the upper tier of the floating console is storage for items such as a wallet or tablet.

To make it easier to load items, install a children’s seat, or get comfortably into the car, access to second-row seats has been made easier due to the rear passenger doors opening to nearly 90 degrees.


The second row of seats splits in a 60:40 configuration, plus there is a central hatch so long items can be transported without the need to drop either section of the second row of seats. Second-row passengers have separate controls for the heating and air-conditioning system. The rear passenger doors incorporate sun blinds, too.

The second row of seats can also slide forward to maximize the trunk space and allow access to the third row on the 7-seat configuration. The third-row individual seats can fold into the floor when not required.

Overall, the X-Trail model, sharing platforms with the Qashqai, is slightly shorter (4680mm), but wider (+20mm to 1840mm), taller (+15mm to 1725mm), offering increased rear legroom, larger rear door openings, with unchanged wheelbase of 2705mm. It offers a 585-liter (20.6-cubic feet) trunk in five-seat mode and a 485-liter (17.1-cubic feet) trunk in seven-seat configuration. Folding all rows expands it to 1,298 liters (45.8-cubic feet), 1,424 liters (50.2-cubic feet) in five-seat mode. The trunk shape is practical, but the lack of a cover for the folding mechanism poses a potential issue. The 60/40 split allows flexible seat folding, revealing rear cupholders during loading.


The 12.3-inch display screen provides access to satellite navigation, entertainment and vehicle settings, and is compatible with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Multiple user profiles with memory settings allow navigation, music, and system preferences to be tailored to each driver. The Bose Premium sound system incorporates 10 speakers located around the cabin.

The reconfigurable 12.3-inch thin-film-transistor instrumentation cluster displays navigation, entertainment, traffic, or vehicle information, controlled by a tactile-dial switch on the steering wheel. A 10.8-inch head-up display projects navigation, driver assistance, and road information onto the windscreen.


Home-to-Car features are compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa devices. The system supports various commands, including the ability for drivers to send destinations to the car's navigation by talking to their smart device.

Through the NissanConnect Services smartphone app, vehicle control functions are available such as remote horn and lights, as well as remote door lock and unlock. Smart alerts, including speed, time and zone, can be set with app notifications should the vehicle exceed the set parameters. Vehicle Health reports are also available via the app, which keeps the owner informed if their vehicle requires maintenance. Driving history and analysis is also available through the app.

Drivers can access 3D Maps and Live Traffic, including advanced navigation features such as over-the-air map updates, real-time traffic conditions, Google Street View and fuel prices. Door-to-door navigation is also available through the app including a My Car Finder function.

An in-car button, accessed via the NissanConnect display screen, allows customers to be in contact with the nearest breakdown and towing services. Unlike eCall, the system is not automatically triggered by an accident.

Advanced driver assistance systems

The X-Trail incorporates ProPilot with Navi-link. This updated system can adapt the car's speed according to additional external circumstances: when the car enters a lower speed-limit zone on the highway, the system can read road signs and consider the navigation system’s speed-limit data to slow the car to the appropriate speed. It can also use data from the navigation system to adjust the speed for approaching curves or exit ramps that have a tighter radius. It also communicates with blind spot radars to help intervene with a steering-input correction to help prevent a lane-change maneuver if there is a vehicle in the blind spot zone.

Other upgrades to ProPilot include a “flank protection” warning for urban situations, which alerts the driver of the risk of contact with an object on the side of the vehicle, typically when turning into a supermarket parking space. The new system can also intervene to prevent a collision upon reversing from the space thanks to an upgrade on the existing Moving Object Detection alert, applying the brakes to stop the car if a moving obstacle is detected nearby. ProPilot with Navi-link is available from the mid-level N-Connecta grade.


The headlight beam's direction is controlled by a series of matrix LED units, which turn off individual matrix LED lights when they detect oncoming traffic. This approach effectively illuminates the rest of the road while preventing the oncoming driver from being dazzled. The interior features a new white ambient lighting that enhances the cabin's atmosphere.

On balance, the Nissan X-Trail offers easy adjustment for a comfortable driving position, and higher-spec versions feature a full-length sunroof, enhancing the cabin's brightness. It stands out for its second and third row seat options, but the rear doesn't have the luxurious feel of the front. However, the addition of large rear door bins and a foldable central hatch cover equipped with a phone slot and cup holders increases convenience for families on extended journeys. Although the infotainment system is not top-tier, it operates smoothly and is user-friendly, supplemented by a sizable adjustable driver's screen and a head-up display on select models. The new X-Trail is a notable upgrade from its predecessor, boasting an improved interior with more soft-touch materials, crisper digital displays, and a generally more sophisticated ambiance. The dashboard design, while not cutting-edge, is modern, and the climate control panel incorporates large physical buttons, reducing the use of glossy black plastic and thus the attraction of fingerprints.

S&P Global Mobility’s latest report, titled Supplying automotive seats — Supplier strategy provides an overview of the strategies implemented by key seating suppliers.

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