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New Nissan Qashqai 2024 (2021 - )

Nissan’s Qashqai continues to be popular – and it’s easy to see why

Starting price:
from £30,135 (Tekna from £34,845, Tekna+ from £38,875)

Why we love it:
  • Good looking exterior/interior
  • Comfortable, especially with smaller wheels
  • Google-derived infotainment (excluding entry-level)
Where it could be better:
  • Engine note
  • Some rivals are more practical
  • Uninspired handling
Secure your test drive today
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Introduction

New Nissan Qashqai

The Nissan Qashqai, a trendsetter in the small SUV market, has a unique charm that sets it apart from traditional family hatchbacks. Since its launch, it’s consistently been amongst the UK’s best-selling cars – and now the latest model’s had an update.

 

The Nissan Qashqai, a popular choice among car buyers, has been updated to maintain its competitive edge in the market. The latest version features enhanced interior and exterior designs. The entry-level Visia trim has been replaced by the Acenta Premium, which offers a range of features including 17-inch alloys, a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen with SatNav, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, a seven-inch instrument display, digital radio, dual-zone climate control, and automatic headlights. N-Connecta trim gets 18-inch alloys, Google-derived infotainment, a wireless phone charger, a 12.3-inch instrument display and rain-sensing wipers. N-Design trim boasts 20-inch alloys, a black roof, LED sequential turn signals, an Alcantara interior, and body-coloured lower bumpers.

 

The Tekna trim has 19-inch alloys, a 10.8-inch head-up display, a powered tailgate, heated front seats and a heated steering wheel, and an electrically adjustable driver's seat with a memory function. Tekna+ returns to 20-inch alloys, and vaunts a Bose premium sound system, plus quilted premium leather front seats with massage function.

Power comes in varying forms, with the 1.3-litre petrol mild hybrids, called DIG-T, offering 140PS and 158PS. The 140PS variant has a six-speed manual or a CVT transmission. Then there’s the 158PS model, which gets the option of four-wheel drive except on Acenta Premium and N-Design models, and is only offered with the CVT.

 

The other option is the e-POWER - a full-hybrid with a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine acting as a generator, powering a 190PS electric motor that drives the front wheels.
 

New Nissan Qashqai

When the third-generation Qashqai was introduced in 2021, its front end was redesigned to match the Ariya, Nissan’s electric SUV. Now, Nissan has decided to take the Qashqai in its own direction. It is more imposing and angular at the front and extends the grille’s new stylish pattern out wider, filling the blank panels underneath the headlights, which are now thinner.

 

The bodywork has indentations around the sides, and a lengthy crease runs around the entire car, adding definition to the rear and linking the taillights together. The Qashqai has always had divisive looks, and although the new styling won’t win universal approval, it’s the most fashionable model yet in our view. The interior is similar to before but looks refreshed and updated with modest tweaks, including a more rounded dashboard on the passenger side. The most significant difference is the infotainment system, which is larger, angled towards the driver, and has a sharper picture. It is also far more responsive than before.

 

All but the entry-level Acenta Premium trim have a Google-native system, which means the car can now run on Google Maps and use Google Assistant for voice control without needing to worry about pairing a phone with it. You can still do so, although the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are wired-only on the entry-level model, requiring N-Connecta trim or above to use it wirelessly. The Google Assistant works well, and unlike traditional smartphone mirroring, it controls far more features because it's built into the car itself. It is a big step forward – yet notably, Nissan has retained physical controls for the air conditioning, making it easy to operate on the move. All but the entry-level model gets a wireless phone charger, too.

 

The build quality seems decent, with cheaper plastics mostly out of sight, and this is undoubtedly the best interior on the Qashqai to date.

Choosing the N-Design trim gets you Alcantara upholstery, which is lovely. But we’d like to have seen it offered on the Tekna and Tekna+ models that we’re testing, especially given that Tekna+ is the top-of-the-range trim.

On The Road

New Nissan Qashqai

Handling & Performance

Most of our tests were carried out in the Tekna and Tekna+ trims. The mild hybrids offer reasonable if unspectacular performance, with 0-62mph taking 9.2 seconds in the DIG-T 158 and 10.2 seconds in the DIG-T 140 (the former is a little slower if you opt for the manual transmission or four-wheel drive).

 

The e-POWER is the one to go for, though. With 190PS, it doesn’t need to be worked hard to make progress, and it can go from zero to 62mph in 7.9 seconds, which is reasonably pacey. It is smooth and refined, however, although Nissan’s worked to keep the engine’s note in tune with what you're doing with the accelerator pedal, it doesn't always do so. As a result, it can sound like you’re working it hard when you’re not, which takes some getting used to.

 

The e-POWER is capable of engineless driving, although the range didn’t get us three miles. It will, however, suffice if you’re driving through town centres and want to minimise emissions. As for handling, the Qashqai is at the soft, comfort-focused end of the scale, but this means it isn’t much fun to drive. It reaches its limits in corners quite easily, and there's body roll through the bends. This is not helped by the steering wheel, which, despite weighting up into faster corners, lacks the feedback you need to have confidence in the car’s grip levels.

 

The Tekna and Tekna+ models we tested have Nissan's largest alloys, too, at 19 and 20 inches, respectively, whereas models at the bottom end have more comfort-inducing 17- and 18-inch wheels. As a result, in a car built for comfiness, there’s little point in having larger wheels.
 

New Nissan Qashqai

Space & Practicality

All models have electrically adjustable driver lumbar support, which helps with contentment, and the Tekna and Tekna+ models have the same for the other front seat. Those top two trims also get electric seats, which make it easier to find a suitable driving position - and that can be saved using the memory function, too.

 

The pillars at the front are reasonably thin and swept back, improving front visibility. However, rearward visibility is a total contrast, with the back side windows offering barely any visibility when viewed over the shoulder, not helped by thicker pillars. We are grateful for the surround-view camera, which is standard on all trims (except for Acenta Premium, which gets a rear-view camera). There is a bountiful amount of headroom and legroom up front, and the cabin feels wide. Rear-seat passengers also have a good helping of space unless everyone in the car, front and back, is very tall.

 

Headroom shouldn’t be an issue, even with the sunroof in place, despite it costing an inch or two. It comes standard on the two trims we're testing, although it's available as an option on all other grades (it's a no-cost extra on N-Design).

Boot space measures 479 litres (504 litres on the entry-level Acenta Premium) and expands to 910 litres (935 litres on the entry-level trim) with the seats folded in a 60:40 split. The boot floor can be adjusted to reduce the boot lip. In terms of cabin storage, the door bins aren't particularly big, but there's a cubby beneath the central armrest, and the glovebox is a decent size. You will also find cupholders and several USB-C charging ports for your devices.

 

Ownership

New Nissan Qashqai

Running Costs

The DIG-T 140 and 158 mild-hybrids manage 44mpg, emitting 142g/km of CO2, while the 158’s figures marginally improve with the CVT transmission. These numbers are for lower trims, though – higher trims don’t perform quite as well. The 190 e-POWER returns 54mpg and 117g/km of CO2, making it £50 cheaper at today’s prices for the first year’s road tax. Benefit In Kind tax for company car drivers greatly favours plug-in hybrids and electric cars, so the Qashqai is unlikely to appeal. A three-year, 60,000-mile warranty is offered, although the guarantee period can be extended. It is several hundred pounds per year to do this, mind.
 

Verdict

New Nissan Qashqai

Nissan’s Qashqai continues to be popular – and it’s easy to see why. It is practical, comfortable (especially if you stick to smaller wheels), and has a great interior and fashionable exterior looks – even more so following these latest facelifted revisions. The Google-derived infotainment is excellent, and the Qashqai boasts a level of safety equipment which dwarfs many others.

 

The Tekna+ trim is more expensive than the next one down, Tekna – even then, you could argue the latter is still overkill. The second-from-bottom N-Connecta trim has smaller wheels for increased ride comfort - it'll likely suffice and save you money, too. But when it comes to powertrains, we would recommend the pricier 190 e-POWER. While some of its rivals outsmart the Qashqai, it remains a good all-rounder worth shortlisting.
 

Secure your test drive today
Request a Nissan Qashqai test drive
By Tim Barnes-Clay
Jun 13, 2024

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