AFTER the Nissan Qashqai — the car with a plainly weird name — was launched upon an unsuspecting world in 2007, it became in car sales’ terms a smash hit for the Japanese carmaker.
The name that might have proved an obstacle for buyers was soon in common usage — as in “mine’s a Qashqai, what’s yours called?” Owners were proud of the car because it was a good car that fulfilled many of their requirements and became Nissan’s worldwide best-seller, so far topping one million sales.
Seven years on, a new generation Qashqai is on sale and it does not disappoint: it is a more sophisticated, smarter, better looking version of its former self — and there are not many of us who can say that as the years pass.But then Nissan knows that there is a lot invested in the success of this new generation Qashqai: it has a certain Britishness about it that would make any true Brit proud (apart from the fact it’s Japanese).
However, the car was designed in London, mostly engineered at Cranfield, Bedfordshire and of course built at the highly successful Nissan plant in Sunderland. The test car, a Qashqai Tekna 1.6dCi (diesel engined) looked especially smart in Ink Blue. With an on-the-road price of just over £26,000 this is not a cheap car but you get a lot for your money.
The Qashqai was not the first of its type: it is termed a compact crossover. This as I understand it crosses a smaller version people carrier with a smaller version four-by-four. The resulting family-oriented vehicle has the attributes and the advantages of both styles of car and has proved to be a great success with the buying public. You can see why because it appeals not only to families but also to those that want some zest, with comfort and space in their daily motoring.