Nissan e-power e-4orce hybrid X-Trail 2023 Review

e-power e-4orce hybrid – Nissan released its new X-Trail in November 2022 but has now added another variant:  the e-power e-4orce hybrid

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid At the launch we drove from Noosa to Brisbane via secondary roads and even some unsealed sections one of which was called the “Goat Track”. It is a versatile vehicle but Nissan admits that it will be mostly driven in urban areas.

Hybrids are typically seen as an internal combustion engine (ICE) driving the wheels, helped by an electric motor. A plug-in hybrid gives more emphasis to the electric motor, but the ICE is always there to take over when your charge runs out.

This Nissan hybrid is different. The all-wheel drive system is only driven by the electric motor and the only role of the internal combustion engine is to charge the battery.

This is a similar concept to a diesel-electric locomotive or a large mining truck but using a petrol engine rather than a diesel.

The theory is that you can tune the ICE to run as efficiently as possible without having to cope with such a wide range of situations that are part of driving.

The hybrid model is only available on the top two specification models.


There are a few outward features to the new hybrid model including a unique grille treatment applies and some badging on the back of the vehicle and 20 inch wheels.

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid


The rear cargo area in the back of the vehicle has to accommodate an electric motor and is rated at 575 litres with rear seats in an upright position. This is, however, only 10 litres less than the standard model.

The digital screen in front of the driver and for in the centre of the dash for infotainment control, offer some different information related to the drivetrain and battery charging but the best feature, in my opinion, is that all e-power models get a head-up display.

Nissan says the 10.8-inch (windscreen type) Head-Up Display (HUD) provides the biggest-in-segment image size. Key navigation, driver assistance and road information are projected onto the windscreen within the driver’s line of vision.

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid

Drive Train

The internal combustion engine that generates power for the battery is a 1.5L turbo-petrol 3cylinder motor.

It aims to be more efficient by having a variable compression ratio system which means that when you need a lot of power quickly it moves to a low compression ration and when you are drawing moderate power it moves to a higher compression ratio. It can choose any ratio between the limits to suit the conditions.

The vehicle has two electric motors, one for the front wheels one for the back. The combined available power from the twin motors is 157kW. The battery is rated at a relatively small 2.1 kilowatt hours. Full electric vehicles currently on the market have a kilowatt hour battery ranging between 40 to 100+ kWh batteries.

The e-power battery only needs to be big enough as a reserve to cope in heavy situations when the ICE cannot generate power to cope with heavy load situation such as full acceleration and steep hills. Nissan says they have done extensive testing even when towing a trailer up to the vehicles 1650 kg maximum towing capacity, and found that the car did not run out of charge.

A new all-wheel-drive system has been designed to work exclusively with Nissan’s electrified powertrains. For the X-Trail, two-wheel-drive versions are available overseas, but Australia will only market the e-4ORCE twin-motor all-wheel-drive variants.

For all the technology, the e-power e-4force X-Trail’s fuel consumption is rated at 6.1 l/100km combined which is significantly above the RAV 4 hybrid at 4.8 l/100 km.

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid

e-power e-4orce hybrid Driving Impression

Many people who have tried a full electric vehicle have said that they like the “feel” of the vehicle, and the e-power X-Trail suits these needs well.

It does not have the super-fast electric vehicle acceleration that some EVs do nor sports car handing but it is very fit-for-purpose as a comfortable yet competent medium size SUV.

Like all electric cars, it has precise and quick acceleration performance.  Nissan says its a rear torque response is up to 10,000 times faster than a mechanical 4WD system.

Another potential advantage of electric vehicles is to be able to assess and adjust the power and regenerative braking many times a second. If you have to brake hard in this X-Trail, the vehicle pitch and dive are reduced by adding regenerative braking via the rear motor.

Potential limitation

One potential limitation of any engine setup that is only used to generate power, is that its requirements are not related to the speed of the vehicle. This means the engine could reach near peak revs as you just start out or start to overtake from a low speed. You can be deceived or just feel unnatural when the car is screaming yet you have not gained the speed that you might expect. This is similar to a continually variable transmission in a standard ICE car.

Nissan has adapted the speed of the engine with linear engine tuning that matches acceleration with revs per minute, eliminating the rubber-band feeling. So if you are accelerating firmly from a stationary position the engine will not initially hit peak revs and the battery will have to discharge energy at a higher rate than it is receiving.  But as you reach a more steady speed, the generation of power will be more than the vehicle needs and so the battery will be charged.

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid


A seventh far-side airbag, protecting the space between the front seat passengers, has been added to the X-Trail six-airbag passive safety system.

The X-Trail has been awarded a 5 star ANCAP safety rating.

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid


The standard X-Trail top spec models have a good range of modern features but there are a several extra features on the hybrid models that are important.

  • Active noise cancelling to help reduce constant road and engine noises
  • Intelligent Rear View Mirror which uses a camera generated vision in the centre rear vision mirror taken from the back of the roof of the car. It gives a more panoramic vision and is not blocked by passengers or items in the back seat of the car.
  • Adaptive matrix LED headlight system.
  • An Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System, which lets other road users know an electrified vehicle is approaching when the X-Trail is operating in near-silent EV Mode.
  • E-pedal drive mode. Allows the driver to only use the accelerator in most driving situations. Heavy regenerative braking slows the car when you reduce the pressure on the accelerator.

Other hybrid vehicles to consider

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid


Nissan e-power e-4orce hybrid X-Trail

Model Price$57,190 MSRP Current drive away price $61,771
EngineElectric motor to drive the wheels, 1.5L turbo-petrol 3cyl engine ICE to generate power for the battery
DrivetrainAll wheel drive with single gearing ratio
Battery Capacity / type2.1kWh
TorqueEach electric motor has its own torque capability by the combined available effect is less than the sum of the parts and in the case of torque, Nissan says it is hard to give a representative figure.
Fuel ADR6.1 l/100 km
Fuel on TestN/A
Fuel capacity55 litres
Range (WLTP) / efficiencyN/A
Fast Charge / Home (240V)N/A
Safety5 Star ANCAP (Tested Jan 2017)
CO2 Emissions139g/km
0-100kmh7.0 seconds
ServicingEvery 10,000
WarrantyFive years
Roadside AssistFive years

*MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options. RDAP means Recommended Drive Away Price (without options but including all other charges)

Nissan X-TRAIL Ti-L e-POWER with e-4ORCE Hybrid

Overall Rating    


Behind the Wheel8
Ride and Handling7
Fit for Purpose9
Style / appeal7
Technology / connectivity8
Value for Money8
About David Brown 604 Articles
David’s boyhood passion for motor cars did not immediately lead to a professional role in the motor industry. A qualified Civil Engineer he specialised in traffic engineering and transport planning. What followed were various positions including being seconded to a government think-tank for the planning of transport firstly in Sydney and then for the whole of NSW. After working with the NRMA and as a consultant he moved to being an independent writer and commentator on the broader areas of transport and the more specific areas of the cars we drive. His half hour motoring program “Overdrive” has been described as an “informed, humorous and irreverent look at motoring and transport from Australia and overseas”. It is heard on 22 stations across Australia. He does weekly interviews with several ABC radio stations and is also heard on commercial radio in Sydney. David has written for metropolitan and regional newspapers and has presented regular segments on metropolitan and regional television stations. David is also a contributor for AnyAuto