2007-2008 Nissan X-Trail compact SUV wagon.
2007-2008 Nissan X-Trail compact SUV wagon.

Nissan X-Trail SUV used: X marks the sweet spot 2007-2013

NISSAN has been one of the leaders among SUV makers, which shouldn't be a surprise given its long history of 4WDs.

The X-Trail compact SUV arrived in 2001 and was soon competing with the market-leading Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester.

2007-2008 Nissan X-Trail compact SUV wagon.
2007-2008 Nissan X-Trail compact SUV wagon.

The series that arrived in 2007 surpassed its predecessor in most aspects. It was 170mm longer and as a result more spacious. Its heavier, more rigid body made it more capable off-road.

At launch, the engine was a 2.5-litre four-cylinder that did its best work at lower engine speeds in combination with the constantly variable transmission. There was a six-speed manual option.

No matter which gearbox you chose you got the All-Mode 4x4 drive, which allowed you to select 2WD or 4WD, or Auto when you could leave it do its own thing as an on-demand AWD. Selecting Lock maintained the torque split at 50-50 up to 40km/h for off-roading.

A 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine was added to the range in 2008 in answer to the growing call for increased fuel efficiency. It came with a six-speed manual gearbox or a conventional six-speed automatic.

In 2011, recognising the changing use of SUVs, Nissan added front-wheel drive versions with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine and manual or CVT.

The range consisted of (in ascending order of trim level) the petrol powered ST, ST-L and Ti and the diesel TS and TL. The ST and ST-L had the front-drive option.

Interior of Nissan X-Trail 2008.
Interior of Nissan X-Trail 2008.

Inside, the X-Trail had plenty of standard features, the seats were comfortable, there was ample room for all passengers and the generous load space swallowed most of the things needed on a trip.


Owners we surveyed were generally content with their cars. A couple of the complaints reflected what mechanics also reported.

One complained of it being difficult to select first gear in the manual, suggesting a clutch that's needing to be replaced, an expensive process.

Most manual owners find they need to replace the dual-mass flywheel at the same time to get better life from the replacement clutch. Cost is $2500-$3000.

The CVTs fitted to the majority of X-Trails present problems of their own. They're an odd transmission to drive, so take the time to familiarise yourself with the operation before buying one.

When test-driving a CVT, pay attention to any hesitation or shuddering at takeoff or under acceleration. It's best to walk away if anything seems untoward.

Diesel models that are only driven on short trips are prone to blocking of the particulate filter, which can be expensive to have cleaned.

If you're looking for a car to drop the kids off at school and run to the shops, it's probably better to opt for a petrol model. If you regularly drive the diesel on the open road, it's not a problem as the filter will automatically clean itself.

The earliest examples will be closing in on 250,000km on average, the latest less than 100,000km.

Nissan X-Trail.
Nissan X-Trail.

If you're checking an early car, look for the telltale signs of wear and tear, oil leaks, smoke from the tailpipe, odd mechanical noises, clunks and bangs from the suspension etc.

Check for a creditable service record showing a pattern of regular maintenance, and inspect carefully for evidence of crash repairs and off-road use.


Barry Smith My 2010 X-Trail has done 137,000km and hasn't missed a beat. My only complaint is that around town it is worse than a V8 on fuel and Nissan's upholstery leaves a lot to be desired when trying to keep clean.

Frank Meek My 2008 X-Trail has done 140,000km. It has been a comfortable, reliable and very useful family car.

Lorenc Olli I bought a 2008 X-Trail diesel manual three years ago and overall I am happy with it. The manual isn't good for urban driving and it's sometimes very hard to use first gear. The diesel particulate filter got blocked last year and cost $1600 to fix.

David and Ruth Clark We owned a 2007 X-Trail that covered 115,000km. We used it daily around the suburbs and towed a 1200kg caravan. It was very comfortable and practical and gave us excellent service. We usually got a return of about 9-10L/100km and 12-13L when towing.


A generally sound SUV with variants that are at home in town and off-road.







ST $7000-$18,500,

ST-L $8000-$20,500,

Ti $9000-$24,000,

TS $9000-$20,500,

TL $10,000-$24,500


ENGINES 2.5-litre 4-cyl, 125kW/226Nm; 2.0-litre 4-cyl, 102kW/198Nm; 2.0-litre 4-cyl turbo diesel, 127kW/360Nm

TRANSMISSION 6-speed man, CVT, 6-speed auto; FWD/AWD

THIRST 7.4L-9.5L/100km

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