A slick self-shifting diesel Qashqai is finally in the offering.
Nissan has announced a mechanical specification upgrade for its indomitable crossover. The company’s popular Qashqai has thus far only been marketed globally with either a six-speed manual or continuously variable transmission (CVT) option.
In the local product portfolio, Qashqai only offers the above-mentioned two transmissions options, between its blend of 1.2-litre turbopetrol and 1.5-litre turbodiesel engines. The diesel Qashqai is only available with a manual – which can be a touch inconvenient to drive in stop-start traffic.
The latest news from Nissan headquarters is that those interested in a diesel Qashqai with dual-pedal driving convenience in traffic, but who wish to do without the lack of responsiveness which often afflicts small capacity engines and CVTs, finally have a seven-speed option.
Late last year Nissan introduced a 1.3 DiG-T version of its Qashqai to select markets. This 118 kW engined crossover was the first Qashqai to benefit from a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission upgrade. Now, Nissan is expanding this option globally to its 1.5 dCi Qashqai – an engine derivative which is already available in South Africa.
Probability of this sharper-shifting diesel Qashqai becoming available to local buyers? Considering the 1.5 dCi engine has been on sale in South Africa for some time, unlike the 1.3 DiG-T (which is currently unavailable here), there is every likelihood that Nissan’s popular diesel crossover could soon be a lot more comfortable to drive in Sandton traffic.
In a crossover market where buyers are increasingly choosing self-shifting transmissions, instead of being burdened with swapping gears themselves, Nissan finally has a trump card of its own to play.