Update: ‘2022 Nissan Qashqai e-Power Review’ section added and ‘Specifications’ section updated.
The third-gen Qashqai that went on sale in 2021 comes with mild-hybrid hybrid technology as standard. In late summer this year, the first-ever Nissan Qashqai e-Power (hybrid) with an advanced, series-hybrid technology will follow.
The Qashqai is Nissan’s pioneering compact SUV that has registered over 5 million units in sales since its introduction in 2007. The full model change brought forth this year comes with a bolder and sharper design, a more appealing interior, and two levels of electrification with mild-hybrid and e-Power series-hybrid technologies. Take a look at the various aspects of the new Qashqai:
Design & Features
At the front, the 2022 Nissan Qashqai features striking boomerang-shaped LED headlights that are reminiscent of the brand’s SUV flagship Nissan Patrol. A more prominent radiator grille and the cleaner hood with an increased dipped portion make the next-gen model seem wider. The sharply-cut bumper, like the grille, is inspired by the Nissan Ariya electric SUV.
While a lot is different from the Mk2 Nissan Qashqai at the front, the rear-end is familiar. The tailgate, back glass, bumper, and tail lamps are very close to the old design. The tail lamps are edgier and look squinty, adding to the SUV’s sporty character. Full LED advanced matrix headlamps with boomerang signature DRLs, 20-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, LED tail lights with ‘raindrop’ grain optic, and LED rear turn indicators (first for a European Nissan model) are some of the main exterior features. Eleven body color options and five two-tone combinations are available, and the new Qashqai presents customers with 16 variations.
Exterior changes specific to the Nissan Qashqai e-Power
The e-Power variant of the Qashqai doesn’t look all that different from the mild-hybrid variant. The radiator grille features a dark applique on the top, a design cue seen on the Note e-Power, Note Aura, and Ariya. The shiny inserts in the radiator grille are on the same horizontal axis. The third visual difference is the new darker Nissan logo on the radiator grille. Then there are customary e-Power badges on the front doors and the tailgate.
The Nissan hybrid car’s interior has not been revealed, but it’s safe to assume that there won’t be major differences in the cabin either. That said, the interior of the 2022 Nissan Qashqai has significant changes compared to the previous generation model. The new horizontal dashboard, repositioned central AC vents, 9-inch NissanConnect floating touchscreen infotainment system, 12.3-inch virtual instrument cluster, and a new 10.8-inch head-up display make the cabin of the all-new Qashqai feel much younger.
Underpinned by an improved CMF-C platform, the Mk3 Qashqai is the first-ever electrified Qashqai. Customers can select between a 12-volt mild hybrid system and the brand’s trademarked e-Power series-hybrid system.
The Qashqai e-Power will offer a different driving experience, as it is the first e-Power model worldwide to feature a 1.5-liter gasoline engine.
The 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder unit produces 115 kW or 154 horsepower. The series-hybrid system’s electrified components include a traction battery pack, an alternator, an inverter, and a 140 kW/188 hp electric motor. The engine’s sole job is to generate electricity, which depending on the driving situation, flows via the inverter to the traction battery pack, the e-motor, or both. The system recovers the kinetic energy generated under deceleration and braking and stores it in the traction battery pack.
|Aspect||Nissan Qashqai e-Power Specification|
|Engine Power||115 kW (154 hp)|
|Hybrid System Power||140 kW (188 hp)|
|Hybrid System Torque||330 Nm (243 Lb.-Ft.)|
|Fuel Consumption||53.3 mpg|
|CO2 Emissions||119 g/km|
Nissan wanted to see to it that driving experience gives a “connected sensation,” meaning the gasoline engine’s operating speed remains relative to the vehicle’s road speed. The company strove to eliminate the “disconnected” feel or the so-called “lag.” so, it developed a new “Linear Tune” feature that keeps the gasoline engine speed at an optimum level and increases the same as required by the e-motor, which would depend on the vehicle’s acceleration.
One pedal driving
The Qashqai e-Power allows one-pedal driving with an e-Pedal Step accelerator pedal that doubles the role of a brake pedal. There’s a switch on the center console to activate e-Pedal Step. Once activated, the e-Pedal Step will brake the vehicle at 0.2g on taking the foot off it. That’s a small level of force that reduces the vehicle’s speed to a “creeping” speed instead of bringing it to a complete stop. e-Pedal Step will be particularly useful in parking the Qashqai e-Power in and out parking lots and garages.
Electrification isn’t the only trick that makes the Qashqai fuel-efficient. The company has made significant use of aluminum panels to reduce the weight of the compact SUV. The front fenders, hood, and doors are all made of aluminum, and the body-in-white of the third-gen Qashqai is 21 kg lighter than that of the second-gen Qashqai. Unlike that of the old model, the trunk door is made of composite material, providing a further weight-saving of 2.6 kg. The third-gen Qashqai is 60 kg lighter and 41% stiffer than that of the second-gen model. On paper, it offers a better driving response, improved ride comfort, and a more refined experience overall.
Variable compression ratio
While regular ICE-powered cars have a fixed compression ratio, the 2022 Nissan Qashqai e-Power uses the more advanced variable compression ratio technology. The compression ratio ranges between 8:1 and 14:1, where an actuator alters the length of the piston stroke depending on power demand.
In low power scenarios, like driving through traffic or past regular city roads, the powertrain runs a high compression ratio where there’s high level of charge in the battery and emissions are optimised. When power demand is higher (highway drives, overtakes), the engine runs on a lower ratio and can supply power directly to the motors.
2022 Nissan Qashqai e-Power driving impressions
The British press has driven the 2022 Nissan Qashqai e-Power, and their initial impressions of the SUV are positive. Autocar has reported that the Qashqai e-Power operates like a well-engineered hybrid. The infographics on the infotainment keep the driver and the passengers informed about when the 1.5-liter, three-cylinder turbocharged engine is charging the 2.1 kWh battery, which feeds energy to the 188 hp front-axle-mounted electric motor.
Even though Nissan claims that the SUV drives like a BEV, Autocar’s review states that the 3-pot rumble is audible when you floor the throttle. However, sound insulation is excellent compared to regular ICE-powered vehicles.
Remember that the 2022 Nissan Qashqai e-Power is a series hybrid, which means that the internal combustion engine is not powering the wheels. Instead, it is used to charge the battery, and the wheels are driven solely by the 188 hp electric motor. Autocar’s road tester has added that the Nissan has the manners of a Toyota hybrid, which is praiseworthy because Toyota’s hybrid systems are among the finest in the world.
Deliveries of the all-new Nissan Qashqai commenced in 2021. The mild-hybrid variant costs GBP 24,555 onwards in the UK and EUR 27,235 onwards in Germany. The e-Power variant will follow in late summer this year. In Canada, the third-gen model may arrive as the 2023 Nissan Qashqai later this year.
Featured Image Source: Nissan