Qashqai Tekna+ 158PS Xtronic Auto
its evergreen appeal confirmed
by long-time sales successes,
comes with a new
that sees it remain true
its roots as the UKs
OFTEN WHEN YOU BUY something marked 'new improved recipe' it turns out to
be no way as good as the original. Not so Nissan's all-new Qashqai which, in
its latest third-generation incarnation, really does shine and satisfy. In a
sense cars are tools if so that makes the Qashqai a Swiss army knife
because it multi-tasks with ease. No surprise then that following its summer
launch, it's quickly regained the top sales slot as the UK's best-selling crossover.
So, how much is one Guv? Considering its swish looks and versatile range, not
as much as you might expect. Putting one on your drive could cost as little
as £23K (or as much as £37K for one of the range topping Tekna+ 4WD Xtronic
versions). Tested here is the top-trim Tekna+ 2WD model one of
these well-specced beauties comes in at £36K. Even before you step aboard it
looks worth every penny: Twenty-inch alloys wrapped in meaty rubber fit perfectly
inside the flawlessly geometric and profiled wheel arches, and the bold V-shaped
grille with futuristically slim LED headlight units nestling beneath the corners
of the clam-style bonnet grab your attention.
the skin there's more to be pleased about the bodyshell is now
fifty per cent stronger although it's really no heavier courtesy of a weight-saving
aluminium bonnet and doors along with a composite plastic tailgate. This sleek
new Qashqai is also slightly bigger (around an Imperial inch) all round: length,
width, and height (oh, and wheelbase, too). Again there's a silver lining: more
well-utilised space equals more cabin room, especially knee-room for back seat
speed, at 124mph,
is getting on for twice the
legal limit so cruising
motorways is a stroll in
the park, while the
figure comes in at a
lively 9.2 seconds.
The eye-opener was
officially 43.8mpg in the
combined cycle, but
we recorded an
during our weeks hard
testing over mixed roads.
Combined with a
12-gallon tank, that
means a safe (and
convenient) 500+ miles
Try doing that in an all-
Under the bonnet Nissan have kept things uncomplicated. A turboed, 1.3-litre
petrol-drinking engine which, by the way, incorporates a 12-volt mild-hybrid
system, occupies the engine bay. It comes in two states of tune: 138 and 156bhp.
Powertrains can be either a six-speed manual or a continuously variable transmission
'auto' which, courtesy of a new 'stepped' ratio arrangement, happily functions
much more like a traditional autobox. Completing the drivetrain choices are
both front- and four-wheel drive.
Qashqai trim levels are well structured. Starting with the entry-level Visia
(£23K) that, despite being the 'entry' model, is specced with a full suite of
safety kit including anti-collision tech with emergency braking, as well as
lane-keeping, blind-spot warning, and parking sensors. The next rung up the
spec ladder is Acenta Premium (from £26K). Above that sits the N-Connecta (£28K);
and above that the Tekna (£30K). Top of the range is the Tekna+ model we've
been driving this past week and which, with its cutting-edge looks boosted by
a two-tone Ceramic Grey pearlescent paint job topped-off by a Pearl Black roof,
attracted heaps of 'likes' everywhere it went.
Swing open a door and your first thought will be 'classy' the
shapely seats are faced with diamond-quilted premium black leather and once
you're seated you'll find them immediately comfortable and supportive; the bolstering
is minimal but perfectly effective with none of the problems getting in and
out you can get with the OTT 'trackday-style' bolstering some rival carmakers
mistakenly think is a good idea. Three-stage heated front seats are standard,
each also with 3-mode massage functions.
The Qashqai's 'pilot' is especially well looked after with 8-way power plus
4-way electric lumbar adjustment as well as a driver's seat 'assist' function
for effortless entry and exit. The leather-wrapped multifunction steering-wheel
has paddle-shifters with an always appreciated heated rim. Add in the smart
but nicely understated contemporary trim on the fascia, centre tunnel, and doors,
and ambient lighting, and you have what we'd call a very welcoming cabin!
the positive impressions don't stop there, because your second thought will
be 'roomy'. Helped by a new dash design that emphasises the ample interior space,
and the light flooding in through the panoramic glass roof (it comes with a
one-shot 'blackout' sunblind), the Qashqai's interior serves up a satisfying
home-from-home feel. Settled behind the helm, you'll like the lofty driving
position (and the handy two-setting seat and mirror memory recall).
fact, wherever you sit, you'll immediately feel at ease. And you don't just
get one screen, but two: a large centre-of-dash touchscreen infotainment display
plus a 12.3-inch crystal-clear digital instrument panel that offers easily personalised
data to suit your needs while always showing the most important stuff: the posted
speed limit and your road speed.
touchscreen sits nice
and high, top-dead-
centre of the fascia,
giving it a brilliant and
quality. And, like
everything else about
this latest Qashqai, its
simple to use with crisp
graphics for both the
as well as the SatNavs
You also get a proper
head-up display directly
ahead of the driver that
in addition to showing
current speed, the posted
speed limit, and cruise
control info on the
windscreen can also be
set to show navigation,
audio, and SMS info...
The main 'free-standing' nine-inch touchscreen sits nice and high, top-dead-centre
of the fascia, giving it a brilliant and easy-to-see 'head-up' quality. And,
like everything else about this latest Qashqai, it's simple to use with sharp
graphics for both the infotainment features as well as the excellent SatNav
with 3D mapping. Equally rewarding is the switchgear and controls
all straightforward and simple to use. Particularly useful are the stand-alone
controls for the media volume and for zooming in/out of the active mapping.
Plus, you also get a proper head-up display directly ahead of the driver. It's
a real boon with not just the current speed, posted speed limit, and cruise
control info projected onto the windscreen, but the option of easily resetting
it to show navigation, audio and SMS information.
Another big hit with drivers will be the logical heating and ventilation controls
sited immediately below the central touchscreen that are a cinch to operate
without distraction on the move. Interestingly, many drivers, even those who
recently passed their tests in 'everything-with-your-fingertip'-specced cars,
prefer their climate controls to be of the non-touchscreen kind. So, full marks
to Nissan for taking note and fitting what drivers really want!
Also easy to use is the good-to-grip steering wheel with its non-reflective
satin black finish; better still, all its multifunction controls are clearly
marked plus there's voice control too, for phone, nav, audio, and to request
information (ie; 'Go to 10 Downing Street', 'Find Starbucks', etc). The wheel-mounted
paddles are for overriding the Xtronic autobox's shifts should you want to,
say, when towing. Incidentally, using the D-Mode button (just aft of the stubby
selector knob on the transmission tunnel) allows you to switch between any of
the three driving modes: Eco; Standard; and Sport.
too, to find a new car that provides real-world in-cabin storage for all your
stuff the Qashqai does the job thoroughly with a large, deep glovebox
that's also lit (plenty aren't!), a pair of decent-sized dual-use cupholders,
spacious door pockets that really do hold a bottle, plus a big bin located between
the front seats under the central armrest along with a dual-use open tray that
serves as a bed for your smartphone when it's being wirelessly charged.
the range-topper, the Tekna+ comes fitted with plenty more than just the expected
one-shot up/down windows (satisfyingly quick-acting), auto-dimming rearview
mirror, heated powerfolding door mirrors (auto and on-demand), and automatic
dual-zone climate control with pollen filter.
also get a smart key, keyless entry, a Start/Stop engine button, WiFi smartphone
charging, powered tailgate with hands-free function, a reversing camera with
bird's-eye views (and with active forward and reverse grid lines), front and
rear parking sensors, electric park brake with a smooth-acting auto-hold function,
privacy glass, Connected Services for the infotainment system, a 10-speaker
BOSE sound system, wireless Apple CarPlay, DAB radio, Bluetooth with audio streaming,
and several Type A and Type C fast-charge USB jacks. Oh, and let's not forget
the rather swish set of 20-inch alloy wheels.
rear cabin is a
restful place to travel.
Your passengers (up to
three of them) will enjoy
plenty of personal space
with more-than adequate
head-, leg-, and foot-
room along with comfy
backrest angles plus
plenty of light streaming
in through the glass roof
and large side windows.
doors dont just make it
easy to get kids in and
out of child seats but
also provide hassle-free
entry and exit for
Safety, both passive and active, is comprehensive starting with a top five-star
safety rating from Euro NCAP and a long list of critical safety kit that includes
a full set of airbags, Intelligent Forward Collision Warning, Intelligent Forward
Brake with Pedestrian, Cyclist and Junction Assist, Around View Monitor with
Moving Object Detection, Intelligent Cruise Control, speed limiter, Lane Side
Support Systems: Lane Departure Warning, Lane Departure Prevention, Blind Spot
Warning, Blind Spot Intervention, Vehicle Dynamic Controls, Electronic Stability
Program (ESP), Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Rear Automatic Braking, traffic sign
recognition, Driver Attention Alert, hill start assist & auto hold, tyre pressure
monitoring, a heated windscreen, auto lights, rain-sensing wipers, high-beam
assist, LED headlamps (low and high beams), LED daytime running lights, LED
indicators, LED rear lights, and ProPILOT with NAVI-Link.
The rear cabin is also a restful place to travel. Your passengers (up to three
of them) will enjoy plenty of personal space with more-than adequate head-,
leg-, and foot-room along with comfy backrest angles. Also keeping them happy,
in addition to the light streaming in through the glass roof and large side
windows, is a central armrest with built-in cupholders, dedicated central air
vents, bottle-holding door bins, deep seatback pouches, and USB jacks. The very
wide-opening back doors don't just make it easy to get kids in and out of child
seats (ISOFIX child seat anchorage points are fitted to the rear outer seats)
but also enable hassle-free entry and exit for grown-ups too.
this latest Qashqai will tackle whatever roads you point its nose at, be they
arrow-straight motorways or convoluted country lanes, barrelling along with
a reassuring grip and self-confidence underpinned by the independent rear suspension,
accurate power steering, and strong, trustworthy brakes. All exactly what buyers
of mid-sized, family-friendly crossovers want. Rolling on twenty-inch alloy
wheels wrapped in 235/45 Michelin rubber that not only look the part but aid
the dynamics, the Qashqai also serves up a decent ride. The suspension set-up
is nicely fluent, and bumps are absorbed without impacting passenger comfort.
1.3-litre engine is a good fit with the Qashqai: its 156bhp and 199lb ft of
torque with a little help from its 12-volt mild-hybrid system
give it all the urge you'll need, and without disturbing those
in the cabin. Effective sound deadening in the front bulkhead and door panels,
and thicker windows in the rear doors, ensure the sound of the four cylinders
working doesn't intrude.
has two floor levels.
With both full-width, lift-
up and lift-out, wipe-
clean floor sections (or
their highest positions,
the Qashqai offers a 436-
litre boot with a large
storage area deep
enough to squirrel away
a lot of kit.
The floor sections can
also be used to divide the
(hence the luggage
moniker) into two
zones: a pair of roughly
in the boot proper;
or a smaller rearmost
with a significantly larger
forward section when the
rear seatbacks are
a well-judged pairing is the turboed engine with the CVT automatic transmission
they're well matched and together make intelligent use of the
power available in a pretty seamless way, even when running with a full load
or whenever you need to spurt past dawdlers.
speed, at 124mph, is getting on for twice the legal limit so cruising motorways
is a stroll in the park, while the benchmark 0-62mph figure comes in at a lively
9.2 seconds. The eye-opening surprise was the consumption officially
43.8mpg in the combined cycle but we recorded an impressive 52.5mpg during our
week's hard testing over mixed routes. Combined with a 12-gallon tank, that
means a safe (and convenient) 500+ miles between fill-ups. Try doing that in
an all-electric car!
The easy-to-load boot has two floor levels. With both full-width, lift-up and
lift-out, wipe-clean floor sections (or 'luggage boards') set at their highest
positions, the Qashqai offers a 436-litre boot with a large hidden underfloor
storage area deep enough to squirrel away a lot of of kit. Load cover duties
are provided by a large rear parcel shelf that lifts with the high-rising tailgate
as it is opens (it's electric and operated helpfully via an in-cabin button,
key fob, or controls on the tailgate itself).
The lift-out floor sections can also be used to divide the boot/loadbay horizontally
(hence the 'luggage board' moniker) into two strongly defined zones: a pair
of roughly equal-sized holding 'pens' in the boot proper; or a smaller rearmost
with a significantly larger forward section when the rear seatbacks are folded
down in loadbay mode.
The 60:40-split rear seatbacks fold down totally flat on to their bases, creating
a seamless and level-floored cargo bay good of 1,379 litres. You'll be pleased
to find a power socket, two boot lights, sturdy tie-down eyelets, and bag holders
all present and correct. All-in-all, the Qashqai's boot/loadbay options provide
a broad spread of carrying solutions. Externally, roof rails further extend
your options. And if you're planning on hitching something up to the Qashqai's
towbar, you'll be glad to hear it can haul a braked 1,800kg.
This is a hard-fought class with plenty of competent players jostling to be
top dog but this new Qashqai sits head and shoulders above most
of its peers. A fine all-rounder that underpins its swish looks with a well-built
robustness, Nissan's family holdall delivers in all areas from equipment and
simple-to-use tech features, to comfort, versatility, and economy. The fact
that it's made here in Great Britain is also wonderful news; and the affordable
pricing the icing on the cake. ~ MotorBar
Nissan Qashqai Tekna+ 158PS Xtronic Auto
Maximum speed: 124mph | 0-62mph: 9.2 seconds | Test Average: 52.5mpg
Power: 156bhp | Torque: 199lb ft | CO2: 146g/km