2020 Nissan Qashqai review – still the best family SUV? | What Car?

2020 Nissan Qashqai review – still the best family SUV? | What Car?


This is the Nissan Qashqai. You may already
know, but if you don’t, it’s the car that single handedly started an enormous SUV boom
in the UK back in 2007. Things are very different now, and there are
a lot more cars battling it for sales like the Skoda Karoq and Seat Ateca. This is the
second-generation Qashqai, and it already had a facelift in 2017, but it’s just had another
refresh before it’s replaced entirely in 2020, and these are the new changes. And remember if you want to buy a Qashqai
or any other new car then hopefully we can save you some money in the process, so go
to whatcar.com and look at the new car buying section while you are there, and to keep up
to speed with the latest new car reviews please subscribe to our channel. The latest Qashqai gets a brand new 1.3-litre
petrol engine available in two states of tune – and that means the 1.2-litre and 1.6-litre
options have been ditched. For the first time in a Qashqai you can now
also get a seven-speed dual clutch gearbox, as you can see this is a manual. And inside, there’s a new infotainment system
running Nissan’s latest Nissan Connect technology. The infotainment system has never been the
Qashqai’s strong point, and right now its competition is strong in this area. This is an area where the Qashqai has been
improved, although not by much. So every model apart from entry level Visia gets this 7.0in
touchscreen, but you can see just by scrolling through the options on the homepage it’s
quite slow and laggy, And if we go into the map you wouldn’t exactly call it 4K definition.
All the pinch and zoom functions are just a bit slow to respond to touch and it’s
generally just nowhere near as slick, precise, and reactive as a smart phone screen or a
tablet. However there are other infotainment systems that do feel much crisper than this,
and certainly the graphics are something that really lets the side down here a bit. But
it’s good that you have these shortcut buttons on the side of the Qashqai’s screen because
lots of competitors have a purely touch screen solution for their infotainment. As we
know they are a bit difficult to operate on the move. So It’s helpful that you’ve
got these buttons on the side. But another good thing with this infotainment system is
that if you have this touch screen then you get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard.
And another great thing about it is that it can update its software and it’s maps over
the air wirelessly, so you don’t have to visit a dealer to update your infotainment
system. Elsewhere inside the quality is actually pretty
impressive. There are plenty of soft dense materials especially on the dashboard. But you don’t have to look very hard to find some cheaper stuff, there are some scratchy plastics
down here on the drivers door. But the buttons all feel reasonable quality and the dials
too are all ok. So overall the quality in the Qashqai is about the same as what you
get in the Ateca, but it’s still the Karoq that leads the way for quality in this class
at this price point anyway, but which do you think looks best? Well click on the banner
in the top right hand corner of your screen and let us know which interior looks best, the Qashqai, Seat Ateca, or Skoda Karoq The front seats are comfy, although they could
hold you in place better through corners, and the driving position generally is very
good, there is loads of adjustment in the steering wheel and in the seat as well. But
what’s especially good about the seats is the adjustable lumbar support comes as standard
from everything above entry level Visia trim. Front space is good, but be careful if you
get a panoramic sunroof then it significantly cuts into headroom, it’s still ok but if
you’re especially tall then it could be a problem. Likewise legroom is good but other cars offer
a bit more. But where the Qashqai is good in
the front is the number of storage options that you have. The door pockets are a bit
on the small side, and you have got loads of different compartments to choose from. You’ve
got a couple of cup holders here, you’ve got this kind of phone and wallet thing in front
of the centre console right here, and just underneath the dashboard you’ve got another
storage compartment, but this one is a bit of a pain because it’s got a twelve volt
socket and if you’re using it, it cuts into the space quite a lot, so that’s not hugely
practical. But what is very good is this storage compartment in the centre console is absolutely
massive, I can basically fit my whole arm down there. You have got another twelve volt
socket as well as a USB input and an aux input as well. The back of the Qashqai is reasonably roomy
by family SUV standards with lots of headroom except for models with panoramic sunroofs,
making it a lot more restricted but just about manageable for an adult. There is lots of
knee and leg room as well, it’s about on par with a Skoda Karoq. The seats aren’t particularly clever though.
They fold down, but they don’t slide forwards or backwards, and they don’t recline either.
They fold in a 60/40 configuration, rather than the more versatile 40/20/40 which some
rivals get. You don’t even get ‘remote’ handles in the boot to lower the seat backs.
Plus, the Karoq even lets you remove the rear seats completely. The boot has more than enough room for a weekly
shop, or a couple of sets of golf clubs. But a Karoq’s is much bigger. What is good about
the Qashqai is that it gets a false boot floor, and that’s as standard on all trims apart
apart from entry-level Visia. That means, you can lift up the front
half and put it down so it acts as a divider which means if you put all your shopping bags
in the back and drive around a corner particularly quickly it won’t all go flying all over
the place. It gives you the added flexibility of being able to change the floor to make
it even deeper… Like that. But how does the Qashqai stack up financially?
These are the key things you need to know about buying and owning a Nissan Qashqai. If you’re buying with cash, the Qashqai
is cheaper to buy outright than an the Ateca and Karoq. The Qashqai is also really cheap for companies
choosing to lease, but it loses its value quite quickly – quicker than an Ateca and
Karoq. In fact – the Qashqai’s depreciation means
that it’s more expensive to run over three years than those rivals. Reliability also isn’t great for the Qashqai.
In our latest reliability survey, it finished second bottom in the family SUV class. Acenta Premium is our recommended trim, because
it adds 17in alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, automatic lights and wipers, and touchscreen
infotainment. Entry level Visia trim is cheap – but it misses out on lots of kit. We can certainly see why you’d be tempted
by N-Connecta – which is the trim we’ve got here – and adds privacy glass, bigger
wheels and keyless entry. You get more safety kit, too. The quality of the reversing camera is particularly
poor as well, it looks like i am in a health and safety video from 1994. Six airbags come as standard as well as a system called emergency brake assist, what that does if
in an emergency you put the brakes on but the car thinks you haven’t put them
on quite hard enough, it will put them on extremely hard for you. But while there are
lots of active safety systems available, they’re only optional on lower trims. But, what’s
the facelifted Qashqai like to drive? Let’s cut to the chase. This 138bhp 1.3-litre
petrol engine is the best choice in the lineup. Why? Well It’s brisk enough, but actually
the most impressive thing about it is how easily it builds speed from low revs, so it
just gives you really flexible performance in any gear really. It’s very impressive
when you think of the previous 1.2 litre petrol engine which was really gutless. There’s also a 158bhp version of the same
engine, but really the difference in pace isn’t hugely noticeable in day-to-day use,
so we’d still recommend the lower powered version. Unless, you plan on using the Qashqai
to tow, or if you want the new automatic gearbox – which is smooth and impressive. This manual
has quite a long throw and doesn’t feel as slick as an Ateca’s. High-mileage drivers have a choice of two
diesels – a 1.5-litre and 1.7-litre. But we’d stick with the petrols. The Qashqai is generally not quite as agile
as an Ateca and Karoq, and they are both more fun to drive, too. The handling of the Qashqai
is safe and secure along a twisting country road, and it’s easy to manage in town. But just how comfortable the Qashqai is depends
pretty much entirely on what size wheel you go for, this is very important if you go for
the 17in alloys then this is one of the most comfortable cars in the class but if you go
for the bigger 18in alloys, which you might think look more flash and interesting, the
ride starts to deteriorate and just feel quite a lot firmer. And then if you go up for the
blingest 19in alloys then the ride really becomes too firm to recommend. So we would
definitely say clear from those bigger alloys and even if they might not look quite so swish,
we stick with the smaller ones instead. So the Nissan Qashqai might not be the champion
of family SUVs that it once was, but it remains a very good proposition. On the right wheels
it’s one of the most comfortable cars in the class, and the new lineup of engines impress.
If you want a family SUV, it should definitely be on your shortlist and if you want to buy
a Qashqai or any other new car – go to whatcar.com and head to the new car buying section where
you can find out how much money we can save you on your new next car and while you on
whatcar.com check out the full extended written review of the Qashqai and all of its key rivals
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