The below editorial is an excerpt from our full review.
To access the full content library please contact us on 0330 0020 227 or click here

Nissan Qashqai 1.3 DIG-T

NO NEED TO DIG DEEP (some text hidden)

By Jonathan Crouch

Is Nissan's Qashqai one of those cars that gets better the less you spend upfront? Jonathan Crouch takes a look at the improved entry-level petrol version.

Ten Second Reviewword count: 67

Can you really put a 1.3-litre petrol engine in a vehicle as big as a Nissan Qashqai and expect it to be any good? Well, yes, you can. The latest Qashqai has established its bona fides and the turbocharged 1.3-litre engine can manage a respectable 140PS or even 160PS, which will be more than enough for many customers. The affordable opening price isn't going to hurt either.

Backgroundword count: 171

What do you think of when we mention a 1.3-litre engine? Chances are that you'll form a mental picture of an underpowered city car; something joyless and cramped that will instantly have you pigeonholed as the worst sort of penny-pincher. If, on the other hand, we were to mention a new Nissan Qashqai, the image would be altogether happier. That would be about having a sleek-looking crossover parked outside your house, filled with clever tech that would probably make you a rather cool mum or dad. Believe it or not, these two sections of the Venn diagram do intersect in the shape of the Qashqai 1.3 DIG-T model. Car manufacturers have become a whole lot better at engine downsizing in recent years, understanding how to utilise turbochargers not only to add power but also to attain decent fuel economy and emissions figures. If you thought this Qashqai 1.3 DIG-T was merely in the range to give Nissan a low price to trumpet in their promotions, think again. It's here on merit.

Driving Experienceword count: 340

As you might well expect at this price point, you don't get yourself an SUV with all-wheel drive, but then neither do most customers in this segment. All Qashqais are these days sold running a front-wheel drive chassis and it makes sense. It's more efficient, more cost-effective, easier to package and most target customers don't need all-wheel drive anyway. As for the changes made to this model in recent years, well on the face of things, not much has altered in terms of drive dynamics, though Nissan insists that under the skin, modifications to the suspension, damping and steering systems have resulted in a more refined on-the-road experience, plus refinement's better too. The 140PS engine has a bit to it and thus equipped, this Qashqai will skip to 62mph in 10.5 seconds and run onto a top speed of 120mph, so it's unlikely you'll feel embarrassed in the outside lane. With the 160PS unit (which comes with the option of DCT auto transmission), the figures are 8.9s and 124mph. Either way, peak torque is made between 2,000 and 4,000rpm thanks to the turbocharger, so it's not as if you need to rev it like crazy to make respectable progress. That always used to be the recipe if you fitted a small engine in a big car but things have changed for the better. Okay, so this is never going to be a vehicle where you overtake just for the fun of it, but motorway cruising is relaxed and refined and handling is assured thanks to the standard Chassis Control system. This uses Active Trace Control to improve stability through bends by braking the inside wheel while Active Ride Control also stabilises the car this time over bumps that could cause the car's body to pitch slightly forward and backwards. The ingenious double-piston dampers already put the Qashqai a step ahead of its key rivals in terms of ride quality. There's also a dual mode steering system which changes the weighting of the electrically-assisted rack when you select the Sport setting.

To see the full road test text contact us on 0330 0020 227

Pictures (high res disabled)

Statistics (subset of data only)

Min

Max

Combined mpg:

50.4

CO2 (g/km):

129

Price:

17595

23145

Scoring (subset of scores)

Category: Crossover or SUV 4x4s

Performance
70%
Handling
60%
Comfort
70%
Space
60%
Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

This is an excerpt from our full review.
To access the full content library please contact us on 0330 0020 227 or click here

Subscriber? Login here

Mobile
Narrow
Narrower
Normal
Wide