Our cars: Used Nissan Qashqai - December
Week ending December 23
Driven this week: 541 miles
A 10am meeting in Skipton, Yorkshire on Monday demanded an early start and was easily the biggest test of the Qashqai’s flexibility to date.
Icy windscreen cleared, the Qashqai dealt with early morning central London extremely well. I’m really starting to appreciate how smoothly you’re able to move up and down the gears if driven carefully.
The next two and half hours were spent buzzing along the M1, where the 1.6-litre sat at 3800rpm at the legal limit. Surprisingly, engine noise wasn’t a problem, but the petrol engine could only muster an average of 37mpg.
Unfortunately, although the majority of the Qashqai’s interior feels very solid, I was disappointed to find one of the parcel shelf platform hooks had snapped off this week.
It looks as if it was glued back on as part of Nissan’s Cared 4 inspection before I picked it up, but must have come away when I removed the shelf to slide my bike in the back.
Week ending December 16
Driven this week: 570 miles
The more time you spend driving, the more you realise a few basic features is all you need to stay happy. My daily commute has highlighted those essentials on the Qashqai.
Firstly, it has extremely comfortable seats that adjust perfectly and give great lower-back support. When it takes between 45 minutes and an hour to cover just over nine miles of suburban London, this comes in very handy indeed.
I’m also pleased with how quickly the car heats up. After staggering outside to clear a frosted windscreen, to come back and be greeted with warm air in just a couple of minutes is fantastic.
Small things, maybe, but they make a real difference.
Week ending December 9
Driven this week: 95 miles
I travelled down to Bournemouth last week to collect our latest used long-term test car, an 08-plate Nissan Qashqai 1.6 Visia. It comes complete with 19,000 miles on the clock and having recently won our 2011 Used Car of the Year Award.
We’ll have a full page on the handover at Westover Nissan in an upcoming issue of the magazine, but a combination of suburban and motorway driving when returning to London left me very pleased indeed.
Around town, the 113bhp petrol engine offers more than enough poke. I was worried the motorway stretch would be a noisy experience, but despite it sitting at 3500rpm at the legal limit, both engine and road noise never became an issue.
Unfortunately, the entry-level Visia spec doesn’t come with aux-in or USB connection for your iPod, but represents the best value used-buy. That said, Bluetooth is a standard feature, and one of the easiest systems to use I’ve come across.