Tag: Nissan Qashqai review

Nissan’s new Qashqai has big shoes to fill!

It is hard to believe that the most popular segment in South Africa’s automotive market (and many other countries for that matter) is only 14 years old. With abundant offerings in luxurious and affordable packages, the compact crossover SUV market is a booming industry that all brands want a piece of. However, it wouldn’t be in its existing form if it wasn’t for the pioneering first generation Nissan Qashqai, credited to have created this segment when its blueprint was originally drawn up in 2006. 

Now, Nissan has unveiled the third iteration of the original trendsetter to a global audience. The new generation is claimed to be an evolution of both of its predecessors, building on what Nissan’s customers claimed they loved most about the popular SUV. 

Its exterior is bold with a visually striking front grille tying in the ‘boomerang headlamps’ which wrap slightly around the top corners of the bonnet to create an illusion of added width. Its prominent shoulder lines conjoin the front to the rear, while the rear retains a familiar Qashqai design language. It is also now available in 20” alloy wheels while the bodywork can be finished-off in a selection of two tone colour combinations. 

The interior appears to be a massive improvement over its predecessor, through the simplification of tools and a particular emphasis placed on the drivers ease of use. The clean, minimal interior has focused on presenting a driver with the least distraction during driving as possible. Filled with other tech, the Qashqai features a modifiable 10.8” adaptive display (HUD), 12” configurable drivers screen and 9” infotainment display in the center console. In car wifi, multi-USB charging and wireless charging are other available options.

One of the key features Nissan has incorporated into the new Qashqai is spaciousness, and while the boot will have a volumetric capacity of 504 liters, they claim that there is more head, knee and shoulder space available for occupants. This may be due to the fact that all overall dimensions of this car have increased, with an extended wheelbase of 20mm and a 25mm height raise. 

Nissans newly developed e-Power powertrain system will feature in the Qashqai – which incorporates constant electric motor drive for instantaneous acceleration while being connected to an evolved 1.3 liter turbo-petrol motor offering 103kW and 240Nm mated to a 6-speed manual transmission. There is also another option with increased power ratings at 116kW and 260Nm which is coupled to Nissan’s Xtronic CVT gearbox.

While the order books for the new Qashqai have opened across Europe, South Africa can anticipate the arrival of the trailblazing SUV towards the final quarter of 2021, with the local specification and pricing to follow in due course. With 3 million car sales since its inception in Europe alone, it is likely the new Qashqai will follow suit!

Nissan Qashqai Driven Review in South Africa

We test drive the Nissan Qashqai

Once upon a time, a manufacturer decided to make a 4×4 that wasn’t actually a 4×4 and the rest became history. Few people could have predicted the success of the crossover when the Nissan Qashqai supposedly invented the segment in 2006. Well over a million Qashqai’s and a bajillion other crossovers later, the second generation Nissan Qashqai takes over from where the benchmark in its segment left off, building on its many strengths.

When replacing the original Qashqai, Nissan certainly had their work cut out for them but thanks to much improved build quality and styling, the Qashqai now gives off a much more premium feel than its predecessor. Good quality materials and very few rattles make the cabin a very nice place to be and while you won’t be writing abstract poems professing the innate beauty of its swooping plastic features or nice-to-push buttons, everything works just as it should, all while giving a pleasing tactile feeling.

Power comes from an array of motors, ranging from 1.2-litre turbo-petrols to 1.6-litre turbo-petrols and diesels. The model we had on test was the mid-range 1.5dCi Acenta Manual with 81 kW and 260 N.m although the laggy torque delivery and gear lever’s long throws came nowhere close to mirroring the vehicle’s sporty and dynamic looks. Frightfully economical, though, we averaged around 5.0 l/100 km over the period of a week which in the real world isn’t too far off the manufacturer’s claim of 4.2 l/100km.

Spec wise, the Acenta model we had comes standard with Bluetooth connectivity, cruise control, a trip computer, xenon headlights, 6 airbags, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, auto-lights and windscreen wipers and the usual electronic aids.

A 6 year/150 000km warranty comes standard across the range, as does a 3 year/90 000km service plan.

Nissan Qashqai pricing in South Africa

Pricing starts at R354 900 for the 1.2T Acenta and rises to R454 900 for the top-spec 1.6dCi Acenta Auto. The model we tested is priced at R382 900 and is definitely the sweet spot in the range.

While the second-generation Nissan Qashqai has been on sale in South Africa for roughly 3 years now, it is still a very relevant product, more than capable of competing with some of its newer competitors. Despite the fact that its sporty looks are a bit deceiving, the Qashqai as a whole is a good quality product that reminds us of why the world fell in love with the original in the first place.

Nissan, good job.