New Nissan Qashqai
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The Nissan Qashqai started the whole family-sized crossover/SUV thing, and it sold far better than anyone ever expected. The result was a rash of competitors, which the new Qashqai has to take on

Nissan Qashqai 1.5 dCi Acenta Premium Manual

What is it?

The family hatch sized crossover didn’t exist until Nissan turned up with the Qashqai, the Japanese firm expecting to sell around 600,000 or so during its lifetime.

That didn’t happen, as Nissan has shifted more than three times that expectation.

That spectacular success has created huge expectations for the new model, but Nissan has chosen the route of evolution rather than revolution, intent on not alienating existing customers – many company car drivers – while also trying to entice new buyers to the brand.

The Qashqai’s success has also brought competitors to the market, with 14 similar crossovers now available. The new Nissan Qashqai therefore needs to be very good.

New_Nissan_Qashqai
Engines start at 1.2 litre turbocharged petrol, but we’ve driven the 1.5 diesel company car favourite

Gone is the curvy exterior of the old model, replaced by a body with sharper lines and edges, starting with a bold ‘V’ grille surrounded by distinctive headlights and LED running lights. 

There’s a choice of three engines, a 1.2 litre turbocharged petrol (115PS), a revised 115PS 1.5 litre diesel and a 1.6 diesel putting out 130PS. A 163PS petrol engine will join the range later in the year.

Business buyers will be keen to find how the 1.5 diesel performs so that’s the one I drove.

Available in four trim levels, from the £19,290 Visia to the range-topping Tekna at £24,840, all are well equipped with Bluetooth connectivity, cruise control and air conditioning appearing on even the base model.

My test car, the Acenta Premium model at £22,690, adds auto wipers and lights, alloy wheels, panoramic roof, lane departure warning and Connect – an infotainment system that brings the phone, DAB radio and sat nav together on a seven inch touch screen.

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