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Nissan Qashqai ST 2014 Review

EXPERT RATING
8
Peter Barnwell road tests and reviews the 2014 Nissan Qashqai ST with specs, fuel consumption and verdict.

Nissan's new SUV corporate styling gets better the smaller it goes. The Patrol is downright offensive to look at, Pathfinder's a bit better, X-Trail is good and the Qashqai is quite appealing - easily the best looker in the stable.

In terms of drive feel the baby is arguably the best too, though it only comes in front wheel drive.

LINEUP

Four models comprise the Qashqai lineup - ST and Ti in 2.0-litre petrol with six-speed manual or CVT Xtronic auto and TS and TL in 1.6-litre turbo diesel with the same transmissions. Prices start at $25,850.

We got hold of the base ST with Xtronic auto at $28,490 and for all intents and purposes, this is all you need in a small SUV.

Yes. We were impressed on a number of fronts.

ECONOMY

Fuel economy is always going to be an issue for buyers in this segment, and the test vehicle chalked up 6.9L/100km in mixed driving and was even better on a freeway run. You don't really need diesel except for the added grunt and even better fuel economy.

The ST petrol had plenty of get-go off the mark and through the entire engine rev range, aided by the impressive Xtronic which acts like a sports shift with perhaps seven cogs.

Earlier Xtronics were awful, not so the new generation unit now being used in many Nissans.

We'd certainly have one over the manual, which actually uses more fuel.

TECHNOLOGY

UK built Qashqai features a flood of new technology including the powertrains, shared platform with numerous other Renault/Nissan vehicles and the latest in connectivity.

The base model, however, doesn't get any of the sexy driver assist stuff you find on higher grade models.

What you do get is a reversing camera, cruise control, multifunction wheel, electric park brake, hill hold, rake and reach steering adjust, auto wipers and headlights and plenty of other kit.

You don't get satnav or lumbar support. That comes with the next model up.

Bluetooth audio and phone is contained within the impressive NissanConnect system with a trip computer and 5-inch read-out screen. Phone syncing can be challenging at times and it disconnects every time you switch off.

ENGINE

Power comes from a new direct injection 2.0-litre petrol four cylinder with 106kW/200Nm - sufficient to propel the 1400kg Qashqai with verve.

The engine runs smoothly and quietly and is a vast improvement over the previous unit in Dualis.

It's happy on regular 91RON fuel; more savings there.

Qashqai is a five seater offering plenty of room inside and a reasonable amount of luggage space.

The dash is functional and looks pretty good. We were also happy to sit in the cloth upholstered interior.

It has a comfortable, slightly sporty drive feel thanks to clever suspension dampers and other tweaks to help ride/handling.You won't need any more performance for everyday driving.

Safety is rated at five stars from ANCAP.

COMPETITION

Qashqai is in against a rash of other worthy compact SUVs, some of which are really good lookers and some as ugly as a sin.

Qashqai buyers need feel no cringe in this area and also should be happy with the impressive build quality of their vehicle as it's a step of the other, poorer, Thai-built offerings. You can feel and see the difference.

Pricing Guides

$18,888
Based on 166 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$12,888
Highest Price
$23,000

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
ST (4x2) 2.0L, ULP, 6 SP MAN $13,888 – 15,989 2014 Nissan Qashqai 2014 ST (4x2) Pricing and Specs
Ti (4x2) 2.0L, ULP, 6 SP MAN $16,950 – 20,990 2014 Nissan Qashqai 2014 Ti (4x2) Pricing and Specs
TL 1.6L, Diesel, CVT AUTO $19,980 – 22,990 2014 Nissan Qashqai 2014 TL Pricing and Specs
TS 1.6L, Diesel, CVT AUTO $12,990 – 22,990 2014 Nissan Qashqai 2014 TS Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
8