Our Nissan Qashqai fits into my hectic lifestyle, which includes criss-crossing the country on road tests during the week and taking care of two young grandchildren at weekends. Therefore, I need a car that’s as hard-working as I am. Happily then, our new Nissan Qashqai is so capable I already feel like it’s creating extra time for me to enjoy some relaxation.
Nissan coined the term ‘crossover’ when it launched the Qashqai in 2006, and its mix of family car running costs and SUV looks made it an instant sales hit. There’s no doubt this new version will be even more popular, thanks to its sleek styling, bigger cabin and impressive refinement.
Our Nissan Qashqai is the two-wheel-drive 1.5-litre diesel dCi model, and should be cheap to run, too, thanks to its 99g/km CO2 emissions and claimed 60mpg fuel economy.
However, this is no bargain basement special - our Nissan Qashqai is the top-of-the-range Tekna model, and it comes with with plenty of standard goodies such as cruise control with a speed limiter, intelligent park assist bi-LED headlights. Nissan has also fitted further standard kit to our Qashqai such as dual-zone climate control, a seven-inch touchscreen sat-nav and heated seats. In fact, the only option we’ve added is the distinctive £525 Ink Blue metallic paint.
And while the 1.5-litre diesel in the Nissan Qashqai is frugal, it was smooth and punchy enough to make light work of a recent marathon trip to Porthmadog in mid-Wales – gateway to the Snowdonia National Park. As you can see, I made it to the stunning Welsh beach feeling relaxed and ready for a spot of reading.
The seats in the Nissan Qashqai are very comfortable, while the high-riding stance and huge glass area mean both driver and rear passengers are able to see their surroundings more clearly. Plus, the steering is light and precise, making it a doddle to drive, and the standard blind spot mirrors aid safe overtaking.
The boot is a decent size, at 430 litres, and happily swallows all the gear that comes with my five-month-old grandson Oscar, while the wide-opening doors and high-set seat make it a doddle to load him into his car seat. Over the following months I plan to fully test the Nissan’s family-friendly credentials, but in the meantime I’ll enjoy the chance to put my feet up for a bit.