New Nissan X-Trail vs Hyundai Santa Fe: costs

With hybrid power and seating for seven, these family-friendly SUVs both marry practicality and efficiency. But which of them does it better?...

Nissan X-Trail side with boot open

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

Each of our contenders can be bagged at a healthy discount through our free New Car Buying service, or if you’re prepared to haggle with the dealer yourself. However, before and after discounts, the Nissan X-Trail is the cheaper of the pair to buy outright, by around £2000.

On top of that, the X-Trail will be around £3000 cheaper to run over three years, largely because it’s predicted to shed value at a slower rate, and due to better fuel economy – more on which later.

That slower depreciation also means the X-Trail is much cheaper on PCP finance. On a three-year deal with a £4500 deposit and a 10,000-mile annual limit, you’ll pay £637 per month, compared with a hefty £813 for the Hyundai Santa Fe.

Hyundai Santa Fe side with boot open

The difference in cost for company car drivers isn’t quite as stark; the X-Trail falls into the 34% benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax bracket and will cost 40% taxpayers £512 per month, while  the Santa Fe occupies the top 37% bracket, costing drivers an extra £69 each month.

Both cars are generously equipped, with the Santa Fe’s  Ultimate trim topping the range and the X-Trail’s Tekna trim being just one rung from the top of the ladder. Each car gives you adaptive cruise control, a sunroof (panoramic on the Santa Fe), an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, wireless phone charging, rear privacy glass, heated front and outer second-row seats and a heated steering wheel. The Santa Fe adds ventilated front seats.

Oddly, while the X-Trail’s three-zone climate control allows the  temperature in the second row to differ from that in the front, the Santa Fe instead provides separate air conditioning controls for those in the third row.

Nissan X-Trail vs Hyundai Santa Fe costs

There aren’t many optional extras available on either car. The Santa Fe offers a £2000 Luxury Pack for extra interior plushness; it adds Nappa leather upholstery, a suede rooflining, leather on the dashboard and aluminium trim finishers. The X-Trail, meanwhile, offers the Bose sound system we mentioned earlier.

When it comes to fuel economy, the X-Trail was more frugal on our test route, which simulates a blend of country road, motorway and stop-start city driving. That said, considering the supposed efficiency benefits of its unusual hybrid system, our test figure of 36.7mpg seems a little disappointing. Even so, the Santa Fe’s more conventional set-up yielded an even lower 32.9mpg.

Neither the Santa Fe nor the X-Trail featured in the most recent What Car? Reliability Survey. However, Hyundai finished a commendable fifth out of 32 manufacturers in the overall brand league table, while Nissan was closer to the bottom in 25th place. On top of that, the Santa Fe’s five-year/unlimited-mileage warranty trumps the X-Trail’s three-year/60,000-mile cover.

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