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Nissan Qashqai+2 review

Impressive Improvements On Successful Design
Nissan Qashqai+2 review 2010
Nissan Qashqai+2 now more an SUV than a “crossover”

As “crossover” is a totally meaningless concept, that must be good
**** out of 5

For – handsome, rugged, well sorted, utilitarian.
Against – tad pricey compared to Koreans 

You only have to look around your local streets to see that the Qashqai has been phenomenally successful for Nissan, underlining the fact that a weird name makes no difference if the product is top class.

Nissan was very brave to dump the solid but dull family-sized Primera hatchback, which was a Ford Mondeo competitor and slow seller, and replace it with what at the time looked to be a massive gamble. The Qashqai was a bit higher than a Mondeo-class car, and was designed to be more practical and rugged looking. Because it fell between the two stools of family car and SUV, Nissan called it a “crossover”, (usually an opaque word invented to allow car companies to disassociate themselves from the hated SUV, without actually doing so). For the Qashqai, maybe “crossover” has some merit, even though the public will still have no idea what it means.

Nissan Qashqai+2 review 2010Since its European launch in 2007, the Qashqai has exceeded all sales ambitions, with about 500,000 deliveries. All Qashqais are built at Nissan’s Sunderland plant in Britain. Prices start at £15,395, rising to £26,635 for version I’ve just been driving, the Qashqai+2 Tekna. The +2 has a third row of (two) seats, is a bit higher than the standard version, and has four-wheel drive. The “crossover” has become SUV, you might say.

Mighty impressive it is too. The looks have been improved with a redesigned bonnet, front bumper, wings, grille and headlamps. At the rear, the overall shape of the lights remains unchanged, but they now include an aerodynamic feature to reduce drag. The brake and tail lights operate using 12 LEDs for maximum clarity. As well as the changes to the front of the Qashqai, a series of other modifications around the car have had the effect of improving its aerodynamic efficiency, with the coefficient of drag dropping from 0.34 to 0.33.

Nissan Qashqai+2 review 2010Inside, the Qashqai features a new design which give added clarity and legibility. A redesigned drive computer is positioned between the two dials. Its white LCD screen shows instantaneous and average fuel consumption, mileage, time, cruise control and speed limiter settings among others. During my week with the car, the average fuel consumption readout moved from 38.8 to 41.8 mpg, and slid back down to 40.2 when I gave it back. Meanwhile, my actual fuel consumption was 38.2 mpg on one long run mainly cruising at around 80 mph on motorways. The second tank notched up 37.0 mpg, mainly on 60 mph rural roads. Pretty good I’d say for such a big car, although Nissan claims an average 41.5 mpg. The dials all look very impressive, so it’s a pity that the SatNav seems distinctly down-market and ordinary, sat right in the middle of the dash. The SatNav itself works a treat. It is even easy to turn off, which similar systems seem unable to do, and which can drive you insane very quickly.

Intuitive? If only
The Tekna option is top of the range, and includes stuff like cruise control, speed limiter, Xenon headlights, leather seats, dual zone climate control air conditioning, a panoramic glass roof, rear privacy glass, Bose speaker system, and remote central locking with “Superlocking”. This “Superlocking” was super aggravating, and was part of an irritating cacophony of buzzing which starts as soon as you try and leave the car, none of which meant anything sensible to me. Sometimes, if I pushed the little locking button between the seats, when I got outside and pressed the remote locking blipper, the car locked. Sometimes it didn’t. I refused to look at the car’s manual because of any system offered by a car; this one should be the most intuitive. I did have to consult the handbook when trying to flatten the middle row of seats to load my mountain bike. The left and right seats folded simply enough, but not the centre one. After much bad language and study of diagrams, I finally managed to fold the centre one flat. This top of the range model had a reversing camera, but didn’t beep when you got too close to other parked cars. Perhaps Nissan could spare a beep or two from the “Superlocking” scenario and make reversing a bit safer.

Nissan Qashqai+2 review 2010

The Qashqai drives very well, with a very solid feel. It goes where it’s pointed and holds flat through the corners. The 2.0 litre diesel engine was on the noisy side without being annoyingly so. Unlike the diesel engine in the Hyundai ix35 (recently reviewed), the Qashqai didn’t start to bump and grind in top gear when you dropped the speed below 40 mph. The suspension sounded a bit crashy and bumpy over bad surfaces. The 6-speed manual gear box was excellent. The huge glass roof was neat.

The Qashqai is an excellent machine with a range of options from two-wheel to four-wheel drive with an added row of seats. I’ve just driven the new Kia Sportage, (review upcoming) and with its stunning looks, high specification, massive guarantee, and cheaper price, this must be the leading contender amongst these so-called compact SUVs.

Nissan Qashqai+2 review 2010

Neil Winton – August 10, 2010

 Nissan Qashqai+2 Tekna 2.0
Engine:1,995 cc diesel 4-cylinder
148 bhp @ 4,000
320 Nm @ 2,000
6-speed manual
Acceleration:0-62 mph-100 km/h 10.5 seconds
Top Speed:119 mph-190 km/h
Fuel Consumption:
claimed combined – 41.5 mpg-6.8 l/km WintonsWorld test - 37.6 mpg-7.5 l/km
CO2:179 g/km
Emissions class:
Euro 5
Length:4,451 mm
1,696 kg
Service Intervals:2,765
Insurance Group:
12 months/12,500 miles
Competition:Toyota RAV4, Ford Kuga, VW Tiguan, BMW X1, Kia Sportage
For:handsome, rugged, well sorted, utilitarian
Against:tad pricey compared to Koreans
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One Response to Nissan Qashqai+2 review

  1. wayne March 7, 2014 at 4:44 pm #

    for me i just sold my 2012 N TEC,

    Terrible ride quality, it pitches and dips and if you go round bend and you happne to over a bump whilst in the bend, the suspention is so soft it scuttles to one side before coming back into contact with the road, telling me the shocks are not good at all.

    Its also badly under powered, i fell for its nice looks and thoughts i bet that motors and a great ride, how wrong i was. I think the only reason they have sold so well is the over top advertising and i bet they have pumped millions into it.

    The car just does,nt drive well at all, in the time i owned it. I just never got that yeh this is a great car feeling, i was always dissapointed in driving it. Its very jerky and bumpy on the road, your always being thrown about in your seat. It dips very badly when you pull off, does not like hill climbs at all.

    Overtaking well you have the thrash the pickles the off it, to do it. And when you have a full car its terrible and very embarresing all that market hype i can now see was over rated, for me has put me fight of modern day cars.

    Ill stick to german made cars, i sold my qashqai so so so happy i did it was really that bad for me, i purchased my 2nd used c class mercedes never looked back, i can,t believe i made such a bad mistake on the nissan, but i am very happy that i do not own one anymore.

    To me its just a shiny pebble nothing more, over rated.

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