THIS year will have so many exciting products coming through to the AMTEC Motors showrooms. The two big highlights will include the facelifts of the Nissan Xtrail and the Nissan Qashqai.
The Nissan X-Trail is a mid-sized SUV, Launched in 2001 to compete with the successful RAV4 and Captiva SUVs, the X-Trail follows much the same principles as the RAV, such as a choice of two and four-wheel drive, petrol and diesel engines and manual and automatic transmissions. Growing over successive generations, the X-Trail remains popular thanks to its range of configurations, versatile capabilities and decent value. The new X-Trail is a good-looking SUV and comes with a more aggressive-looking, new V-shaped grille – which we find quite agreeable – new integrated foglamps, a shark-fin antennae positioned high on the roof and a new squared-off (D-shaped) steering wheel. There are also new colour options and the choice of 17- or 19-inch alloys and new ‘LED boomerang taillights.’ This spacious and competitively priced C-Segment SUV that allows you the option of four-wheel drive and a choice of five or seven seats ticks all the boxes as a good value for money buy and comes highly recommended as a good value for money buy.
Now in its second incarnation, Nissan has literally chosen their sacred cash cow as their platform to introduce the new modern day Nissan corporate styling, which has subsequently rolled through to the new Juke and X-Trail. The latter effectively is an enlarged Qashqai from a design perspective. It is one of the best-looking vehicles on the road today, not just within the Crossover segment in which it competes. From the curvaceous clamshell bonnet, striking new front end (now incorporating requisite LED running lights) and taught side panels, the Qashqai is a design triumph.
Chromed grille and fog lamp accents, window surrounds and roof rails, combine with just enough black plastic cladding to hint at the Qashqai’s SUV pretensions, without straying into the gaudy. As is the case, the bigger wheels the better the look, and in the Qashqai’s case, the optional 19-inchers definitely look the part.
However, even in relative base Acenta specification, and riding on standard 17-inch alloy wheels, the Qashqai is strikingly handsome proposition.
The big news is that for the second generation of Qashqai, all engines are now turbocharged. Gone are the asthmatic 1.6 and 2.0-litre naturally aspirated petrol engines, replaced by a smaller and more efficient 1.2-litre turbocharged unit. It is the sole petrol engine in the range and produces 85kW and 190Nm of torque.
For those who prefer the torque characteristics of diesel power, you have two options available, a 1.5 DCi capable of 81kW and 260Nm or a more powerful 1.6DCi which produces an impressive 96kW and 320Nm of torque. The latter also doing duty in the new X-Trail SUV.
The new Qashqai has managed to take what was a very successful first-go and make it that much better in every regard, cementing its reputation as the crossover you will ever need.
With stunning looks, great dynamics on the road, plenty of interior space without suffering from the awkward bulk of larger SUVs, this is a clean winner.
Contact the sales team at AMTEC