Nissan Qashqai Review< Back to blog
Nissan has refined its compact family SUV Qashqai with an all-new range. It’s bolder, sportier and more trendy than the predecessors. The Visia is the stock model, however it does come with a host of impressive car tech that this funky model has become renowned for.
Other than the addition of a roof rack on Tekna+ models, the exterior improvements are subtle on the Qashqai.
It’s what’s on the inside that matters. A cliché, but a relevant one when it comes to the new Qashqai.
The standard Visia trim comes with a new D-shaped steering wheel with cruise control functions. Its shape alone makes handling easy and comfortable on the roads, and a flat bottom design adds to the Qashqai’s sporty revamp.
You have the option of the standard graphite cloth or the premium Nappa leather for the inside. The latter is only available on the Tekna+ model, which is £10,000 more. Ridiculous, really, because the standard edition Visia will be comfortable enough for even long-distance motorway journeys.
Infotainment and tech
The car tech displayed in the Qashqai adds to the performance, mostly thanks to the Chassis Control System. Intelligent Trace Control forms part of this system, which allows braking to take place automatically on corners to keep line efficiency.
Intelligent Ride Control is the other feature contributing to Qashqai’s renowned modern driving experience. It allows the engine torque to be varied depending on the road surface. This is a handy feature when driving on UK roads, which are often laced with potholes, bumps and crevices.
Connectivity is optimised in the Qashqai with Bluetooth connectivity. Simply hook up your smartphone to the infotainment screen, which is a sizeable and crisp seven-inch touchscreen display. Through this you can manage your phone’s apps and music. A neat feature, albeit not adding much to the driving experience.
Given that it’s predominantly a family car, how does the Qashqai fare when it comes to space?
Surprisingly, this trendy SUV doesn’t have a great amount of space for passengers in the back. No doubt it’s suitable if you have two or three small children, and the Isofix points on the seats and wide-opening rear doors even make it easy to fit a child seat.
Adult passengers above average height won’t have a great amount of head or foot room, however. The panoramic roof, as pleasant as it is for rear-seat passengers to see outside, does eat into head space. If you’re carrying taller people in the back regularly then the more spacious and cheaper Renault Kadjar is probably a better option for you.
Boot space is a similar story to the interior. Nissan has introduced neat features to the Qashqai’s boot such as “divide-n-ride”. This lets you fold down rear seats individually to suit your loading preferences. Overall space, however, isn’t great when all seats are upright (430 litres, to be exact). Renault’s rival Kadjar leads the practicality category thanks to an extra 40 litres cargo space. A big difference for a cheaper, similar SUV.
On the road
Onto the driving experience, and the Qashqai comes in a variety of manual six-speed diesel and petrol options, as well as an Xtronic automatic.
There isn’t much to separate either of them. Overall, the Qashqai is impressively quiet (even with the 1.6 diesel) which is also more powerful and comes with better fuel economy (74.3 mpg compared to 50.4mpg).
The most notable part of the Qashqai’s drive is that it has super light handling in relation to its size.
Weighing in at just under 1.5 tonnes, this is a lightweight SUV, especially considering that it’s nearly 4.5-metres long. However, the Japanese manufacturer developed the vehicle with a heavier steering input which offers greater control to the driver at higher speeds and when cornering.
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