2017 Nissan Qashqai review | What Car? first drive

2017 Nissan Qashqai review | What Car? first drive

Do you remember when the humble five-door
hatchback was all the the rage amongst families, it seems a long time ago, doesn’t it? Now, small SUVs are very much the order of
the day. Arguably, the Qashqai kicked off the crossover craze, but back when it was
launched it didn’t really have much competition. Now it has far more rivals, and it has drifted
from its class-leading position. In order to get back there, it’s now had a
facelift for 2017. It gets a new look on the outside, an upgraded interior and infotainment
system and retuned suspension for a keener drive. So, is this facelifted Nissan Qashqai now
a class-leading car to drive? Well, the short answer is no, but it isn’t all bad news. You
see Nissan has made changes to the steering and the suspension, namely with its springs
and dampers, but you’d be hard pushed to tell any difference. As I say, it isn’t all bad news, this is still
one of the most comfortable cars in the class. This model we’re driving here has slightly
larger alloy wheels, so it picks up more lumps and bumps in town, but largely, particularly
at high speed, it’s very comfortable indeed. Also, in terms of refinement. Petrol and diesel
engines we’ve tried on this launch have been hushed, even when pushed hard. Trouble is,
even though they’ve made changes to the steering, it still isn’t as agile as a Seat Ateca. The
steering just feels quite heavy, artificially sluggish. And ultimately the Seat just feels
more eager to change direction. There have been no interior dimension changes
with this facelift so the Qashqai still provides some of the best space for four adults in
the class. Nissan has also treated the Qashqai to a new flat-bottom steering wheel and it’s
a genuine improvement both in terms of quality and functionality. However, its efforts to lift overall interior
quality with upgraded materials is less obvious, a Seat Ateca and Peugeot 3008 still feel classier.
And the same goes for these rivals’ infotainment. Unfortunately Nissan’s Connect system is starting
to feel dated both to look at and use despite its upgrade for 2017. So, the big question is: Has the Nissan Qashqai
reclaimed its position at the top of the small SUV class? Well, as always, we’d like a UK
drive and our full review process before making a firm decision. But as things stand, it still
rides very comfortably, has some of the best refinement in the class, and its diesel engines
are both strong and economical. However, a Seat Ateca probably handles a little
bit more keenly, and has similar space, better quality and infotainment inside. As I say, a UK drive and the full review will
be coming shortly, but for now if you want more information just search Qashqai at whatcar.com

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. Well I've been driving cheap 1000 quid second hand cars like MGs and Fords all my life. Leasing one of these and I doubt I'll be anything other than overjoyed as it's going to be a big step up. Then I can be smug and go for a fancier one during the following lease.

  2. The BMW mini 1266GT is a joke of a car!
    The new NIssan Qashqai is also a joke of a car which is aimed at those with disability benifits.

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