Nissan Qashqai 1.3

DIG-T N-CONNECTA

Nissan Qashqai, 2018, front
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, front
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, nose
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, side
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, rear
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, side, static
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, rear
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, interior
Nissan Qashqai, 2018, boot

THE success story of the Nissan Qashqai is pretty remarkable, launched more than 10 years ago, it became Europe's best selling crossover.

Totally left-field, it shook up the motors market big style with nearly every manufacturer subsequently queueing up to produce a crossover.

Some of these are excellent products, which always puts pressure on a market leader, so the Nissan has had to adapt and upgrade.

The latest model, revamped in 2017, did not disappoint fans, with latest upgrades including a super efficient new engine and a number of technological changes.

But the engine is perhaps the significant change for this year's model is a new engine, which again raises the bar for the crossover.

The 1.3 DIG-T petrol engine delivers more power, better economy and lower emissions than the 1.2 and 1.4-litre petrol engines it replaces.

Available as 160ps, or the the 140ps on this model, the turbo unit was developed in harness with the firm's Renault partner.

That it is a lively unit there is no doubt, hitting 60mph in a smidge over 10 seconds. It also has bags of torque with power always at hand, while economy is an official, if optimistic, 53.2mpg, with lowish emissions to 121g/km.

The car has gradually acquired a sexier look over the years, with sharp creases and sleek profile, with the silver colour with colour and colour coded bumpers, door mirrors and handles on this model somehow adding to the sleekness.

In addition there are integrated roof rails, rear privacy glass, smart light clusters with daytime-running LEDs and stunning-looking diamond cut 17-inch alloy wheels.

Not the range topper, this N-CONNECTA model is still packed with kit with the dash being dominated by the latest Connect touchscreen, which controls major functions like navigation, infotainment and connectivity via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto devices.

Sitting behind the flat-bottomed multi-function steering wheel is a five-inch TFT information screen, while the dash has a carbon effect finish.

This model, being mid-range will be one of the best sellers and at around £24,000 is not cheap, but it is literally packed with kit, with such goodies as six-speaker sound system, sports seats, 360 degree camera, parking camera, ambient lighting, auto lights and wipers plus ago dimming rear view mirror, heated, folding door mirrors and a host of others.

The interior feels high quality with soft touch trim and neat chrome insets and a neat and logical control set up.

It's high off the ground stance gives a commanding driving position with good all round vision and as a crossover is hugely practical with split folding rest seats offering 16 combinations to accommodate loads of all different shapes and sizes. There are also various other cubby holes, side pockets and cupholders for extra practicality.The boot opens up from 403 litres to 1,958 with all the seats folded.

On the road the engine is refined, gutsy and willing. Mated in this model to a slick six-speed gearbox, the acceleration feels quicker than the quoted figure and the car can reach a top speed of 120mph, where permitted. Otherwise, it is a smooth motorway cruiser, overtaking with ease are docile while pottering around town.

Handling and ride is excellent with the intelligent chassis control soaking up the worst lumps and bumps in the road, while keeping it well planted on bends and corners.

It is packed with safety kit including stability and traction control, full complement of airbags, and assisted braking systems.

FAST FACTS

Nissan Qashqai 1.3 DIG-T N-CONNECTA

Price: £24,575

Mechanical: 140ps, 1,332cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 120mph

0-62mph: 10.5 seconds

Combined MPG: 53.2

Insurance Group: 15

C02 emissions: 121g/km

Bik rating: 28%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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