2021 Nissan X-Trail: prices, specification and on-sale date

Nissan Rogue revealed for the US set to be sold in the UK as the new X-Trail; plug-in hybrid power a possibility

Nissan North America has revealed its new Rogue SUV in official pictures, giving us our first official look at what the next Nissan X-Trail will look like when it arrives in European markets in 2021. The car will be rebadged for this side of the Atlantic, and be offered with an adjusted trim line-up and engine range.

The car looks familiar from the rear, but its front end takes inspiration from its more modern Juke sibling. It inherits that car's V-shaped grille and sharp daytime running lights, switching the round headlamps for more conventional units. The X-Trail will be smaller – about 39mm shorter – and lower than before, too. The Rogue has been revealed as a five-seater in America, but may well gain another row of seats for Europe.

Inside, the changes are even more stark. The X-Trail gets a set of completely new 12.3-inch digital dials, plus wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, dual-zone climate control and a central touchscreen. A head-up display is also set to be included in the options list.

The Rogue also gets a range of active safety and driver-assistance features, most of which should make it to European cars; these include automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning and the latest iteration of Nissan's ProPILOT semi-autonomous technology.

Engine line-up and plug-in technology

The Rogue has been announced in the US with just one engine option: a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol. It's likely that when badged as an X-Trail for the UK market, the car will use a range of smaller petrols and diesels – and, possibly, a plug-in hybrid using technology from Nissan's alliance partner Mitsubishi.

News of Nissan's plans to shy away from plug-in hybrid technology in favour of conventional hybrid and pure-electric powertrains was reported by our sister title Auto Express last year.

The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance has a long history of hybrid powertrains. However, much of its focus has been on plug-ins; the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV had a hugely positive impact on the company’s fortunes when it launched back in 2013, while Renault has recently revealed plug-in hybrid versions of its Megane and Captur small family cars.

It’s not clear which setup the Nissan would use, but it's likely to stem from the company's e-Power range, which isn't currently sold in the UK. Mitsubishi is in the process of developing an improved plug-in hybrid system for use in its Outlander replacement, but it's not thought the Nissan will make use of this.

If Nissan was to go down the e-Power route, it's likely the X-Trail would offer only a very short electric range – perhaps as little as one or two miles – instead choosing to focus on lowering engine load for more efficient driving around town. This shouldn't affect Nissan's ability to offer front and four-wheel-drive options of the new X-Trail SUV.

With the current X-Trail approaching six years old, a new version is likely to be revealed later this year, with a European launch in 2022. Given the increased pressure on manufacturers to lower overall CO2 emissions, Nissan isn’t expected to delay the launch of its hybrid model – meaning an electrified e-Power version could appear alongside the standard model from the off.