NISSAN has whipped the covers off its freshly updated Qashqai, showcasing new driver assistance technology and revised styling to keep the small SUV competitive against fierce rivals like the Mazda CX-3, Mitsubishi ASX and Honda HR-V.
The enhanced Qashqai revealed at the Geneva motor show aims to add appeal via a more premium appearance and better on-road performance.
Its front end is the most obviously new, with reshaped, adaptive LED headlights flanking a larger version of Nissan’s signature V-shape grille above a redesigned front bumper.
There’s a new bumper at the back end as well, accompanied by reworked taillights. Alloy wheel designs are also new, and available in sizes from 17- to 19-inches.
Changes inside the Qashqai bring new materials and trim styling for the dash, and put a sporty, flat-based steering wheel in the driver’s hands.
Buyers in Europe will have the option of a new range-topping model grade called Tekna+ that adds high quality leather upholstery and a Bose stereo system.
Nissan has made strides toward improving cabin comfort by reducing noise coming in from outside using thicker window glass and more effective sound-deadening.
Safety has also been elevated with a pedestrian detection function added to Qashqai’s autonomous emergency braking system.
Software upgrades go from improving the user interface of the standard NissanConnect infotainment system, through to adding convenience in the form of Nissan’s ProPILOT autonomous drive technology, which allows the Qashqai to effectively drive itself on the highway.
European models will feature this new drive assistance technology later in the year, with news of an Australian roll-out yet to be advised. The system is already available and in use on the road in the Japanese-market Nissan Serena people mover.
Drivetrains are expected to carry over unchanged from the current model, which is available with the choice of a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol or 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine, with prices starting from $25,990.