2017 Nissan Qashqai N Sport Review

What is it?

It’s a limited-edition version of Nissan’s popular – but poorly spelled – Qashqai, an SUV that straddles somewhere between the city-sized and medium soft roaders.

The N-Sport isn’t any faster or feistier than a regular model but comes with a few sportier elements that Nissan claims equals $1800 worth of free upgrades.

How much does it cost and what do you get?

The Qashqai N-Sport is based on the entry-level ST model with a 2.0-litre petrol engine with a CVT automatic and front-drive configuration.

The ST already comes as standard with air conditioning, cloth interior trim, cruise control and a basic multi-media system with a 5.0-inch display that includes Bluetooth connectivity, a four-speaker audio system and reverse camera.

2017 Nissan Qashqai N-Sport Photo: supplied

The N-Sport pack brings larger 18-inch alloy wheels and a bunch of exterior highlights in what Nissan describes as Ice Chrome details.

It costs $26,990 driveaway, which is just $1000 more than the regular Qashqai ST.

What's under the bonnet?

The Qashqai N-Sport has a 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated four cylinder engine that, while not as modern as smaller turbo charged motors in rival SUVS, generates decent outputs of 106kW and 200Nm.

As mentioned, it drives the front wheels through a continuously variable transmission, which, considering the engine produces maximum torque at 4400rpm, ensures it taps into the sweet spot under acceleration and, alternatively, is relaxed and fuel efficient when cruising.

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What's it like to drive?

The Qashqai doesn’t set any class benchmarks for dynamics or character. Instead, it’s a humble and wholesome package that is well suited to urban families.

The suspension is compliant enough to be comfortable around town and the steering is light and easy to twirl in tight situations.

It will appeal to conservative consumers, as there are more charming cars in this class.

What's it like inside?

Similarly, the cabin is pretty basic and plain in its layout. But, as it sits between the classes, it has excellent space for its size with good headroom and more rear space than other city-sized SUVs.

The seats are comfortable, all the controls are logically placed, the instruments are simple and clear to read, and there’s decent vision all round.

Is it safe?

The Qashqai isn’t as up-to-date as newer rivals when it comes to the latest safety features with a basic suite of electronic driver aids and six airbags.

More features, like lane departure and blind spot warnings, semi-autonomous parking and a 360-degree camera, are offered on higher grade versions.

2017 Nissan Qashqai N-Sport Photo: supplied

If safety is a key priority, then an updated Qashqai is due to land later this year with even more semi-autonomous driving functions, including Nissan’s ProPilot cruise control and lane keeping system.

Would I buy it?

It depends… the N-Sport package offers great value in a car that has excellent space and drives reasonably well. But there are more exciting alternatives, both in design and driving character, for around the same money.

What else should I consider?

The Suzuki Vitara Turbo and Mazda CX-3 Maxx are our best picks for city-sized SUVs at the moment, but you could also opt for a Jeep Renegade for something with a bit more visual charm or a Subaru XV if you need some light-duty off-road abilities.

2017 Nissan Qashqai N Price and Specifications

Price: From $26,990 driveaway

Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol

Power: 106kW at 6000rpm

Torque: 200Nm at 4400rpm

Transmission:  CVT automatic, front-wheel drive

Fuel use:  6.9L/100km

>- For more information visit our Nissan showroom

Source : http://www.drive.com.au/new-car-reviews/quick-spin--nissan-qashqai-n-sport-65400.html

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