What should I look for in a used Nissan Qashqai hatchback?
The Qashqai is a very popular choice with families, so look out for scratches and scrapes where bulky items such as bikes and baby buggies have been lifted in and out of the boot, as well as general wear to the rear seats.
Bear in mind that the 1.5 diesel models will need a new cambelt every five years or 75,000 miles, at a cost of about £500; so if the car you are looking at is approaching this age and/or mileage, make sure it’s been done or factor the equivalent discount into the asking price. All other engines use a timing chain.
While the second-generation Qashqai is not widely known to suffer from diesel particulate filter problems, if choosing a diesel example it’s still worth taking it on a long run once a week in order to minimise the chance of any issues arising.
What are the most common problems with a used Nissan Qashqai hatchback?
Tow bar might detach
There’s a risk that the bolted joints fixing the tow bar to the chassis can loosen and in extreme circumstances detach from the car. This issue applies to cars built up until October 2014 that are fitted with the towbar kit.
Exhaust oxygen sensor failure
The rear oxygen sensor can fail due to an electrical short on cars built between 10 April 2014 and 7 May 2016. Also, the ECU might not warn the driver of this failure, so Nissan dealers should reprogram the system to fix this and display a warning symbol.
Brake hose wear
The right rear wheel arch protector on vehicles made up to 23 September 2016 might deform and rub against the right rear brake hose, damaging it in the process and potentially causing a brake fluid leak. Affected vehicles are to have a modified liner fitted.
The indicator in the door mirror might not operate when the heated rear screen is switched on. This recall applies to Qashqais made between 12 June 2017 and 28 June 2017 and requires the indicator connections to be inspected by a dealer and potentially reworked.
Incorrect VIN plate
VIN plates fitted to some Qashqais were labelled with incorrect gross combination weight (GCW) numbers. This recall affects cars with both the manual and CVT gearboxes and requires Nissan dealers to fit new VIN plates with the correct information printed on them.
Excessive oil consumption
Some owners of the 1.2 petrol have found that this engine consumes an excessive amount of oil, so check the dipstick level to make sure it isn’t low. If it is, that could indicate high oil use and potential neglect from the previous owner.
Timing chain rattling
There have been reported problems with rattling timing chains on 1.2-litre petrol models under acceleration. Pay close attention to this on your test drive. We’ve also heard some concerns with the stop/start system not working as it should.
The parking sensors can stop working or sound when you’re not close to anything as a result of water ingress.
The air conditioning can need regular regassing, so check that it works when you look at the car. A regas isn’t cheap, because Nissan uses a more environmentally friendly refrigerant. Compressors can also fail, in which case you’re looking at about £300 for a new one.
Some four-wheel-drive models can slip out of reverse gear, so check this as part of your test drive.
Is a used Nissan Qashqai hatchback reliable?
Unfortunately, this generation Nissan Qashqai didn't fare all that well in our most recent reliability survey. In petrol form, it placed 19th out of 34 cars in the family SUVs class, while diesel counterparts ranked 31st. These are rather disappointing results. See the full list here.
Reliability rating 83.2%
What went wrong? Non-engine electrics 20%, brakes 15%, battery 10%, engine 5%, fuel system 5%, gearbox/clutch 5%
Owners of diesel versions of the 2014-2021 Nissan Qashqai are far more likely to be acquainted with their local dealer than petrol Qashqai owners because 35% of diesel models went wrong, compared with 18% of petrols. A third of cars were out of action for more than a week, and although Nissan covered the cost of 72% of repairs, that left some owners with bills of up to £500.
Nissan as a brand did better than it has in the past. With its reliability rating of 90.7%, it came 19th out of 32 manufacturers featured. That put it above Audi, Mercedes and Volkswagen, but below BMW, Dacia and Skoda.
Check out the full list of manufacturers here.
Used Nissan Qashqai reliability: the owners' view
Readers who told us about their experiences with the Nissan Qashqai for our annual Reliability Survey found most of their cars reliable.
However, reliability issues which were highlighted included outdated sat-nav systems – which may require a trip to a dealer to update – air conditioning which needed frequent regassing, and one instance of the car’s alternator failing after 30,000 miles. Other issues included recurring tyre pressure warning messages.
Issues with Nissan’s dealer network were also highlighted by our readers, with some noting that dealers found addressing repairs a challenge.
If you would like to see the full reliability list for small SUVs, head to the What Car? reliability survey pages for more information.
To take part in our annual reliability survey with your car, please follow the link here