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Nissan Qashqai 1.6 dCi: Test Drive Review

Date: 30 November 2011   |   Author: Jack Carfrae

Category: Lower medium
P11D price: £24,290
Key rival: Peugeot 3008

Introduced in 2007, the Nissan Qashqai claimed to define the now fashionable crossover segment, mixing the best bits of a lower medium hatchback with the size, space and perceived safety of a 4x4.

Sales have now topped 140,000 in the UK and the Qashqai has long since secured its spot as one of the country's top 10 best sellers. To keep it up to speed with the competition, Nissan has now introduced a new 1.6-litre dCi turbodiesel engine to the line-up, replacing the larger and dirtier 2.0-litre units (only one 2.0-litre diesel remains with an automatic gearbox).

It promises headline figures of 130hp and 119g/km of CO2 when fitted with the optional stop/start system. This won't become available until January, so those who order early will have to make do with 129g/km, and it's worth noting that four-wheel drive and seven-seat +2 variants aren't quite as clean.

Get your head around the numbers and the new diesel Qashqai impresses on more than one level. Refinement is exceptional - there's never more than a faint rattle from the engine and a hint of wind buffeting around the A-pillars at speed. The ride is equally impressive and complements the car's comfortable, family-friendly nature. Its only noticeable failing was the stop/start system, which didn't cut out on cue every time.

There are no changes on the dimensions or styling front, so the Qashqai remains as practical and well-built as ever. Other than the engine and stop/start, the only noteworthy addition is the optional Around View Monitor (AVI). A first on a lower medium model according to Nissan, it encompasses a series of small cameras on the exterior, which create an all-round bird's-eye view of the car on the central screen, making it very easy to park.

High P11D costs make the Qashqai seem overpriced in some respects, but it redeems itself with competent all-round ability and a superb new engine.

Nissan Qashqai 1.6 dCi Pure Drive Tekna
P11D price£24,290
Model price range£16,495-£27,095
Fuel consumption62.8mpg
CO2 (tax) 119g/km (19%)
BIK 20/40%
per month
Service interval12,500 miles
Insurance (1-50)group 22
Warranty3yrs/60,000 mls
Boot space410 litres
Engine size/power1598cc/130hp
Top speed/0-62mph118mph/10.3secs
On sale Now
VerdictImproved refinement and
lower running costs add
to already strong appeal


Improved refinement and lower running costs add to already strong appeal