All-new Nissan Qashqai – First Visual Impression.

by Gazette Reporter

The original Nissan Qashqai was launched in 2007 and became an instant hit here in Ireland, and all across Europe, with more than 50,000 examples of the award-winning Qashqai finding homes in Ireland (and over 3 million throughout Europe).

Indeed, the first generation of the Nissan Qashqai is credited with creating the ‘crossover’ segment in the new car market, with virtually every car manufacturer following in Nissan’s footsteps ever since.

Another Motoring Milestone;

The all-new, 3rd generation Nissan Qashqai was unveiled to the Irish motoring press recently, and I went along to the Nissan Academy in Co. Kildare to witness another important milestone in Irish motoring history. Seeing the new Qashqai undisguised in the privacy of a discreet indoor viewing arena, my first impression was that Nissan have, without doubt, broadened the universal appeal of the Qashqai to an even bigger market segment than ever before. The Nissan Qashqai sits in what is known as the ‘C’ segment of the new car market, and it would seem to me that even customers trading down from the larger ‘D’ segment will find the new Qashqai appealing on many fronts. Visually, the new Qashqai’s enhanced body stance is more purposeful, with prominent shoulder lines, an extended wheelbase, and imposing 20-inch alloy wheels introduced to the Qashqai for the first time. The spacious cabin of the new Qashqai is adorned with high quality materials throughout, while further evidence of excellent build quality comes in the form of a reassuring solid clunk when any of the Qashqai’s doors are closed. Having been expertly introduced to the all-new Qashqai by Seamus, Jeanne and Jamie from Nissan Ireland, I can honestly say that I am really looking forward to driving and reviewing the new Qashqai in the coming weeks.

Key Nissan Strategy;

The new Qashqai has been electrified to help families to make the switch to hybrid and electric driving. The new Qashqai promises to be a game-changer for Irish families who to reduce their CO2 emissions, while enjoying the comforts and familiarity of Ireland’s best-selling crossover. Importantly, the all-new Qashqai is a key part of Nissan’s strategy to achieve 50% electrified sales in Europe by 2024.

“The new Nissan Qashqai combines the best of Nissan’s pioneering crossover and EV expertise. It allows new and existing Qashqai drivers to experience hybrid and electric driving without range or charging concerns in an unmistakably stylish crossover that continues to deliver everything they would expect from a family car,” said Seamus Morgan, Managing Director of Nissan Ireland.

Award-Winning Powertrain;

The new Nissan Qashqai will not only be available with a 1.3 DiG-T petrol engine equipped with mild hybrid technology, but it also represents the European debut of e-POWER, Nissan’s innovative and award winning powertrain, that draws technologies from the company’s 100% electric Nissan LEAF. The 12V mild hybrid system available on new Qashqai is a more affordable hybrid technology that provides torque assist, extended idle stop, quick restart and coasting stop [Xtronic only], with improvements to both fuel economy and CO2 output (-4g/km). It’s mated to the refined 1.3 Dig-T petrol engine that was introduced to Qashqai in 2018. The 1.3-petrol motor will be offered with two power outputs – 138hp and 156hp – with either a 6-speed manual transmission, or new Xtronic gearbox (156hp only). Max engine power arrives at 5500rpm, with maximum available torque of 270Nm at a convenient 1750rpm on 156hp Xtronic and high power MT variants. On manual versions the gearbox has been enhanced for a quicker, more direct and sportier shift feeling. The new generation Xtronic transmission offers better fuel economy and acceleration feel thanks to improvements including a twin oil pump system with new electrical oil pump.

2WD & 4WD on offer;

2WD is available on both 138hp and 156hp versions, whilst 4WD will only be available on 156hp Xtronic models. A new 4WD control system and driving selection mode is more intuitive and intelligent, adapting itself to external conditions with five driving modes – Standard, ECO, Sport, Snow and Off-Road. In case of any wheel slip, the time which the 4WD system acts has been reduced by a factor of five to around 0.2 seconds.

e-POWER;

The new Qashqai’s e-POWER system is a unique solution which provides the enjoyment of driving electric without having to worry about range or charging. The unique element of the e-POWER is that the petrol engine is used solely to generate electricity, while the wheels are completely driven by the electric motor. The new Qashqai’s e-POWER system is comprised of a high-output battery and powertrain integrated with a category-leading variable compression ratio 154hp petrol engine, power generator, inverter and 140kW electric motor of similar size and power output to that found in Nissan’s electric vehicles.

More Muscular, Sharp and Modern;

Although unmistakably Qashqai in its styling, the third generation is more muscular, sharp and modern. On the exterior, the Qashqai’s enhanced body stance is more purposeful, with prominent shoulder lines, an extended wheelbase and imposing 20-inch alloy wheels introduced to Qashqai for the first time. Refinements to the ergonomic design of the doorways means that it is also easier to step in and out of the car, particularly in restricted spaces such as a multi-storey car parks. Where space allows, parents will appreciate that the rear doors now open to 90 degrees, allowing easier access to babies and toddlers in child-seats. Similar to the LEAF, the new Qashqai e-POWER benefits from the entirely new ‘one-pedal’ driving experience called e-Pedal. Drivers can start, accelerate and decelerate using only the accelerator pedal.

Pricing Coming Soon;

The order books for the new Qashqai have already opened, with first customers being offered a special launch version called the Premiere Edition which will offer an extended palette of two-tone colour options and advanced technology convenience features. Pricing for the All-New Nissan Qashqai starts at just €30,500, with first deliveries set to take place in time for the crucial ‘212 registration plate change in July.

Read more in this weeks Dublin Gazette out in stores now

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