Nissan is highly popular with the crossover public, not at least because of its very successful Qashqai. Now it has made a very charming facelift on its Juke and has redesigned completely the X-trail, even replacing the Qashqai+2 with a seven seater version.
Nissan Belgium presented last week the new cars to us, in a delightful setting near Feluy, plotting out also a very interesting and varied test circuit. Read further for our findings...
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The new Juke: an interesting facelift
Nissan has reinvented the B crossover segment with its Juke, with not less than 500.000 units sold since its introduction in 2010. About 15.000 Jukes have been sold in Belgium so far. Noteworthy is also that about 85 % of the Juke customers until now are first-time Nissan buyers, as was pointed out by Carl Naessens, Juke Product Manager of Nissan Belux,.
But in the UK alone, more than 100,000 Nissan Juke's have been sold since sales began in 2010. We also mention here that all Juke models sold in Europe are built in Europe, at Nissan’s plant in Sunderland.
The new Juke benefits from a series of design enhancements, new engines and technologies and a personalisation programme.
The revised Juke At the front, the upper lamps have been redesigned to adopt the Nissan's signature ‘boomerang' shape - as seen on 370Z, new Qashqai and new Murano - and now too incorporate bi-intensity LED daytime running lamps. (see photo above)
The headlights are now available with Xenon bulbs for better visibility and new lens covers. The nose incorporates a new, more powerful V-shaped grille, while the lower elements have been toughened with new trim beneath the bumper.
Door mirrors have been revised to include LED side turn strip repeaters and, where fitted, cameras for the Around View Monitor.
At the rear, the bumper has a more aggressive shape to match new revised boomerang tail lamps with LED light guide technology, giving the new Juke a more distinctive appearance at night.
The new colour palette now extends to ten colours and includes three new shades: Sunlight Yellow metallic, Ink Blue metallic and solid Red.
A wide range of alloy wheels completes the exterior revisions, with 16-inch steels available on entry-level Visia models and different styles of 17 or 18-inch alloys on Acenta, Acenta Premium and Tekna variants. A new 18-inch alloy wheel with coloured inserts will also be available, allowing drivers to add their personal touch.
Personalize your Juke with the “Nissan Design Studio” programme…
The all new Nissan Design Studio interior personalisation pack allows for brightly coloured inserts to be added. With a choice of black, red, white or even bright yellow - you can change the centre console, door finishers, air vent rings, and even the stitching of the gear knob, steering wheel, seats and meter hood lid leather cover. Depending on the model, there are two styles of fabric for the seat upholstery - Premium cloth on Acenta Premium and leather trim on Tekna.
The exterior pack also comes equipped with the choice of new colours (red, white, blue, black and yellow) with customisation options available for the mirror cap covers, headlamp finishers right through to the front and rear bumper finishers.
Improved trunk space…
The new Juke is also more practical than its predecessor. Changes have also been made to the shape of the trunk area in two-wheel drive models to boost luggage space by 40 per cent, taking the overall capacity to 354 litres.
Versatility is further enhanced with flat folding rear seat, while the inclusion of a two-stage floor in the luggage area makes the space even more flexible.
A large optional open-air panoramic glass roof is also added. When opened, the panel sits on top of the rear portion of the roof so as not to steal interior headroom. The glass panel measures 964mm wide by 837mm long and covers two thirds of the roof area. This is matched by an opening width of 693mm and an opening length of 301mm to add to the feeling of airiness in the cockpit
Nissan Belux Managing Director Stephane Chauville opened the press presentation at the Manoir du Capitaine in Feluy...
Advanced technology with new 1,2 litre petrol engine…
The Alliance-developed 1,2 litre four cylinder DIG-T 115 petrol engine, which comes as an option to replace the outgoing 117PS 1.6-litre unit, is an advanced turbocharged direct injection engine delivering 115PS (85kW) and generating some 190Nm of torque, which makes it very lively indeed, as we drove the Juke over the test circuit with this engine. It is a very smooth and flexible unit, and suited the Juke very well on first impression.
The DIG-T 115 engine emits 129g/km of CO2 and has a fuel consumption figure of 51.4mpg (combined cycle).
In keeping with the trend of downsizing engines, the existing DIG-T 190 petrol unit has been further improved to deliver more low-end torque below 2,000rpm. Producing 190PS (140kW), it is already Euro6 compliant with target emissions of 139g/km of CO2 for the 2WD versions. Among its new features are a higher combustion ratio (increased from 9.5 to 10.5:1), improved low friction technologies and cooled Exhaust Gas Recirculation.
Juke Product Manager Carl Naessens (right) and Thibaut Nguyen, Product Manager X-Trail (left) , highlighted the properties of the two renewed Nissan models...
The new Juke DIG-T 190 is available with a new X-Tronic transmission gearbox mated to an advanced four-wheel-drive system.
The highly acclaimed dCi 110 remains in the programme with 6 speed manual transmission and 2 Wheel Drive layout.
State-of-the-art driving aids with Nissan Safety Shield …
New to the Juke is the adoption of the Nissan Safety Shield System. Nissan Safety Shield combines the vehicles Around View Monitor cameras with advanced electronics and software to provide a comprehensive suite of safety features, and indeed it must be experienced in a test drive to see what you have missed so far…
Included in the Juke's Nissan Safety Shield are:
Lane Departure Warning
This system alerts the driver if the new Juke starts to drift out of lane. Lane Departure Warning uses sophisticated image-reading software to detect road markings, allowing the system to determine if the car is moving out of position. If it does and the driver has not operated the indicators, a warning is given.
Blind Spot Warning
Using the Around View Monitor to detect vehicles in the hidden blind spot areas, Blind Spot Warning triggers the illumination of a discreet warning light positioned in the door mirrors. If the driver indicates to change lanes and the system detects a vehicle in the danger area (on either side), the light flashes and an audible warning is given.
Moving Object Detection
The new Juke's Moving Object Detection system combines the vehicle's front and rear parking sensors with Nissan's Around View Monitor ‘bird's eye view' parking aid to deliver an extra level of protection.
If, when stationary, something moves into the area covered by the four cameras, the system will give an audible warning and highlight the area in which the moving object is detected. Mounted on the tailgate and having a fish-eye lens, the rear wide view AVM camera has a sweep of vision in excess of 180 degrees, giving it an unparalleled field of vision at the back of the car. Images from the camera are displayed on the NissanConnect screen on the centre console.
To keep this essential camera clean, the car's computer senses when there is dirt on the lens and uses a ‘wash and blow dry' system to automatically rinse and then dry the surface.
In Belgium, the so-called “Connect Edition” will be the most attractive version in terms of equipment and value for money, which has an equipment level above the Acenta level, and for fleet owners there is also a very attractive “Business Edition. ”
The all-new X Trail
X-Trail Product Manager Thibaut Nguyen explained us the merits of the latest edition of the X-Trail. The car remains a bestseller in the crossover segment. Presently, the third generation X-trails sells at more than 500.000 units per year.
First seen at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2013, the car is now on-sale across Europe since July, and now also in Belgium.
The X-Trail combines Nissan's acclaimed 4x4 heritage with fresh ideas and technologies inspired by the brand's crossover models, like the Qashqai of course. The X Trail is built on the new, jointly-developed Renault-Nissan Alliance Common Module Family (CMF) platform, and adds crossover style and efficiency, design, innovative technology, crossover segment comfort and practicality.
Fitting into the brand's vision of modern crossover SUV styling, the new X-Trail features a new look that defines Nissan's latest design language. the X-Trail now combines strength and the spirit of adventure with more organic, flowing lines. The car has new headlamps - available with LED as standard on high-grade models - and a distinctive new LED signature strip that makes the car more recognisable at night. Other details include a powered tailgate and a power opening panoramic roof.
Inside, the X-Trail offers a completely new environment for occupants. Designed from the very outset to include an optional seven seat format, the cabin features a raked theatre seating layout that ensures every passenger has a good view out. Featuring premium materials and intelligent design throughout, the X-Trail sets new standards for rear seat access, space for optional third-row passengers and in-car technology. The X-Trail also showcases the latest-generation NissanConnect system that offers smartphone integration and a host of innovations including several in-built Apps to enhance the connected driving experience.
Powering the all-new X-Trail is a powerful yet frugal dCi 130 engine that delivers the optimum balance of fuel economy with refinement. Available in two and four-wheel-drive forms, the latter features Nissan's latest-generation ALL MODE 4x4-i transmission. Coupled with Nissan's new Chassis Control system and Nissan Safety Shield, the X-Trail is a safe drivers’ car.
We drove the Tekna version I n Diamond black with black leather interior, and were impressed by the “feel” of the used materials, build quality and finish. The X-Trail was also quite comfortable, with the 130 Hp Diesel engine refined, and the 6 speed gearbox smooth and precise.
We also liked the overall design of our 7-seater, the airiness of the interior thanks to the glass panoramic sunroof and the comfortable seats. To further enhance comfort for occupants, Nissan examined every surface where the driver or passenger comes into contact with the car. As a result, the door armrest pads and centre console pad is eight times thicker than sector rivals offer. Other touches include a large between-the-seats storage box big enough to take an iPad or 10-inch tablet.
The overall ride impression was similar to the Qashqai, which is not surprising after all.
In terms of size, the all new X-Trail is 17mm longer (4,643mm) than the previous generation model, and has a 76mm longer wheelbase that helps deliver more space inside. The new model is also 30mm wider and 5mm lower than the previous car and the ground clearance is maintained at 210mm.
The new model is also 90kg lighter than the model it replaces. Ultra high strength steel now accounts for 49 per cent of the X-Trail's body construction, making the structure lighter and stronger than before.
Innovative storage and practicality
The X-Trail offers a sliding and reclining function of the second row seats that allows owners to adapt the luggage space and comfort to their needs. The optional third row seats have a double fold function that allows them to be folded completely flat, while headroom and heel gap also provide ample seating space.
Second row passengers enjoy best-in-sector legroom thanks to the extended wheelbase and a new design of front seats that features deeply sculpted backs.
X-Trail thanks to a smart and innovative double load floor providing flexible storage options (up to nine configurations). The cargo area can be positioned into upper and lower areas in a simple single-handed move.
The NissanConnect system has evolved to offer smartphone connectivity, to keep owners connected to the outside world wherever their journey takes them. With access to a range of apps covering music, social networking, entertainment and travel through a large, 7-inch colour touch screen, the new NissanConnect is very useful indeed.
The latest generation satellite navigation integrates Google® features. The Send-to-Car function also allows drivers to plan a trip at home and send it to their in-car NissanConnect system at the click of a button. The system includes Bluetooth audio streaming and mobile phone integration as well as Aux-in and USB slots.
The driver also benefits from a 5 inch TFT colour display incorporating 12 graphic displays accessible on rotation, offering advice and warnings covering average and actual speeds, navigation turn-by-turn instructions, audio content, traffic sign recognition, eco driving advice and torque distribution settings in 4WD mode and more.
The X-Trail of course can be had with Around View Monitor with Intelligent Park Assist, LED Headlamps and the abovementioned Nissan safety Shield.
High tech chassis controls…
4x4 versions of the all-new X-Trail adopt an electronic four-wheel drive system, ALL MODE 4x4-i. Controlled via a rotary switch on the centre console, it offers a choice between two-wheel drive, Auto mode or Lock offering permanent four-wheel drive.
In the ‘default' Auto mode, the system constantly monitors throttle opening, engine speed and torque to anticipate wheel spin and to distribute torque between front and rear axles as needed, at speeds of up to 80 km/h.
Above that speed, the system reacts to wheel spin, again shifting drive rearwards to restore traction as required. For tricky conditions and at low speeds, Lock mode gives new X-Trail permanent four-wheel drive.
The power of the alliance…
The all-new X-Trail launches with an advanced dCi 130 turbodiesel powertrain with a choice of two and four-wheel drive and the availability of an XTronic automatic gearbox for the former. A 1.6-litre DIG-T turbocharged petrol engine with 163PS will be added to the range later in 2015.
With the 130 HP engine, performance is lively to say the least. The X-Trail can accelerate from standstill to 62mph in just 10.5 seconds (2WD MT), and has a top speed of 117 mph. Equally impressive is the X-Trail's in-gear flexibility.
With 320Nm of torque available from just 1750 rpm, the X-Trail delivers strong acceleration across the rev range.
Offered with the option of two- or four-wheel-drive, two-wheel drive models enjoy CO2 emissions of only 129g/km in manual form, while versions equipped with Nissan's advanced XTronic automatic gearbox emit 135g/km. All-wheel drive models equipped with Nissan's ALL MODE 4x4-i transmission emit 139g/km - a significant 18 per cent less than the outgoing model.
The press team had prepared an interesting and varied test circuit...
From launch, the new X-Trail is offered with a choice of two gearboxes; a six-speed manual and a new XTronic automatic (two-wheel-drive versions only). Unlike conventional variable transmissions, the new X-Trail's XTronic gearbox mimics the behaviour of traditional, multi-ratio automatic gearboxes during hard acceleration, with stepped changes. In more gentle driving, the ratios are subtly adjusted to give ultimate smoothness. This is the version we also booked for a longer test of the X-Trail, so stay posted here…
All equipment grades feature air-conditioning, alloy wheels and six airbags, LED daytime running lights, five-inch colour combimeter display, Bluetooth with microphone, cruise control and speed limiter. Hill start assist, sliding and reclining rear seats and a luggage board system are also among the features fitted as standard.
The presentation and test drive was followed by an excellent lunch...
Nissan Belux has also the Acenta+ level Connect Edition available, and also an attractive Business Edition for fleet owners/users.
And we enjoyed the contents of the Nissan boxes on our plate!
We will drive both cars soon for a further test, so stay posted!
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