Nissan: 2014 Qashqai Ti review

Nissan: 2014 Qashqai Ti review

‘It’s OK’ and ‘I’m fine’ are the two most common lies spoken in the world, so if I say about this new Nissan Qashqai Ti ‘it’s OK’, am I lying? Let’s find out.

The Qashqai is Nissan’s fairly handsome crossover SUV. It’s not a plastic surgery failure like the smaller Juke, and it cuts a chiselled line that’s more in proportion than the bigger Murano SUV. The Ti is the top-of-the-line Qashqai, with the range starting at the $35,990 ST.

Nissan Qashqai Ti 2014 frontI gave the Qashqai a good trip from Auckland to the tip of the Awhitu Peninsula where the lighthouse stands watch over the bar at the mouth of the Manukau harbour. The roads are a mixture of narrow and twisting, with some additional twisting and narrow bits thrown in for fun. Ideally you want something like a 370Z or GT-R, but the Qashqai committed itself to the corners and pulled through very well.

There’s not a huge amount of power – only 106kW and 200Nm, and it’s through a CVT gearbox which tended to surge a bit on the undulating road. CVT is great for around town but when there’s not enough power it can be frustrating to keep a Nissan Qashqai Ti 2014 sidevehicle at a constant speed in hilly territory at open road speeds.

Expected fuel economy is 6.9l/100km; we achieved in the mid-8s. There is idle start/stop technology to help in the diesel version of the Qashqai, but not the petrol versions.

The goal for the day was to ‘do’ the whole of the peninsula: every village nestled in their little bays, the Awhitu Regional Park, and some kite flying on Kariotahi Beach. But not art and Nissan Qashqai Ti 2014 rear quartercraft shops or people selling jam from their garages. There was a good 3 hours’ worth of driving in total and all accomplished in comfort and confidence.

The Qashqai rides very well with quite neutral handling. The tyres wrapped around the 19-inch wheels created quite a bit of road noise on the coarse chip seal, and perhaps there is a better option when you need to replace them.

The Qashqai comes with a 5-star ANCAP crash test rating and has all the electronic aids you need: Vehicle Dynamics Control, Nissan Qashqai Ti 2014 camerasABS braking, Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Brake Assist, Hill Start Assist and the premium safety features on the Ti: blind spot monitoring, Lane Departure Warning, Around View Monitor and Moving Object Detection. Lane departure warning is best turned off around town and is more useful on the open road.

The Around View Monitor is a useful feature that uses fish-eye cameras under the wing mirrors and at the front to create what looks like a bird’s eye view of the vehicle when manoeuvring. It makes parallel parking much easier because you can see the kerb.

There are big pluses for passenger comfort, including the kind of heated seats that are so beautifully warm it’s like being in a nice bath. There’s a 7-inch display to control the media options, including Bluetooth streaming and phone integration. The sat nav (which has a bit of a fiddly interface) is displayed there, too.

Is it ‘OK’? Actually, it’s pretty good. It has its obvious bits that need refining – sat nav, gearbox, and maybe a better choice of tyre to get rid of some of the road noise – but for forty-four grand, can you complain? Not much. Visibility is good, there’s plenty of room in the back and I returned it with the distinct impression it’s a bit better than just OK.

Price: $43990

Pros:

  • Does everything you need
  • Excellent amount of safety features and equipment for the price

Cons:

  • Seemed a little noisy on the chip seal roads
  • CVT gearbox tended to ‘surge’ a bit


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