Nissan Qashqai II, that sort of person who comes up with a brilliant business idea but forgets it the next day. Nissan Qashqai II, the car of unfulfilled New Year’s resolutions.
The first generation practically brought the concept of the cross-over to the masses: a small car, based on an already existing compact, with an raised ground clearance and the appearance of an off-road car. With a low purchase price, people flocked towards the Nissan Qashqai, even though it was far from the most reliable car. Yes, of course, there is the Toyota Rav4, the car that practically invented the cross-over genre, but the first generation of Rav4 was aimed at off-road enthusiasts and the second generation was already up there with the 3 Series and Audi A4 in terms of price. Basically, the Nissan Qashqai has long been left alone in a growing world of car buyers.
And how did the Nissan Qashqai II fare?
The Nissan Qashqai II has been transformed from a below-average quality car but unique in concept, into a below-average quality car but average in concept. In the past you bought a Qashqai because you had no real alternative in this low-cost cross-over segment. Now the Nissan Qashqai II is neither alone nor cheap. And the Nissan-Renault-Mercedes alliance did not help them at all in this combination, but rather made them happy. Plus, in 2019, if you want a cheap and good-looking cross-over, you have competition right in the Renault yard, with Renault Captur or Dacia Duster. However, at least the Nissan Qashqai II looks great, which is good. You can admire its beauty from the outside, while it is loaded on the platform. Nissan Qashqai II – Axl Rose of the car world.
Nissan Qashqai II Engines
- 1.2 DIG-T of 116 horsepower – Also known as the 1.2 TCe on the Renault Clio or Megane, this engine was withdrawn in 2019 after a huge scandal. In essence, the engine is far too reliable nowadays and would have put the services in bankruptcy. Or maybe it was withdrawn due to excessive oil consumption and the fact that many engines did not get past 60,000 km.
- 1.6 DIG-T of 163 horsepower – The same 1.2 TCe, only taken up to 1.6 and you get 50 horsepower more so that you can get to the AA platform faster. It doesn’t suffer as badly from the same oily incontinence as the smaller engine, but it does suffer from clutch and dual mass flywheel issues, which wear out faster than you want.
- 2.0 MPI of 150 horsepower – The most reliable and basic engine on the Nissan Qashqai II. Somewhere later in life it also begins to suffer from oily incontinence, but overall it is a built-to-last engine for a built-to-last car.
- 1.5 dci K9K of 110 horsepower – The classic 1.5 dci, bolted on anything from the first generation of Logan to the current generation of Mercedes CLA. A kind of village bicycle, this engine has been constantly improved and now the only issue is the turbo that ocassionally fails, but overall nothing to be afraid of.
- 1.6 dci of 131 horsepower – As with the first generation, the Nissan Qashqai II 1.6 diesel has no notable issues except for the occasional timing chain premature wear. Moreover, it is the only engine that comes with a 4×4 system. Unfortunately, you have to buy the rest of the car along with it. Oh, and it has choctastic fuel economy.
Nissan Qashqai II General Issues
- In the true spirit of Nissan, the second generation comes with an improved CVT XTRONIC gearbox. It doesn’t break every 50,000 km, now it breaks every 60,000 km. If you don’t want to complicate your life and you don’t want to pay for your mechanic’s children’s college, stay away from the XTRONIC automatic transmission.
- One of the biggest complaints with the Nissan Qashqai II is the refrigerant. The Qashqai II air conditioning system was built to run on the older type refrigerant, the R134a. It’s just that the engineers, in their vast intelligence, switched to R1234yf refrigerant because they were forced to do so by the government. It’s like installing Android 8 Oreo on a Samsung Galaxy S3, even if it runs Android 4.4 KitKat from the factory. It works, but it will have constant issues. Plus the R1234yf refrigerant is still experimental technology, so there are issues everywhere with air conditioning, compressors, leaks and all the craziness. Ah yes, the R1234yf refrigerant is also 3 times more expensive than the old R1234.
- However the refrigerant is not the only component wrongly installed in the Nissan Qashqai II, the second being the battery. Renault sent the car’s battery and computer optimized for that battery, and Nissan engineers kept the battery but changed the charging cycle to one optimized for a bigger, more powerful battery. Thus, the Nissan Qashqai II will never have enough power to run everything at the same time. The real remedy here is to switch to a bigger battery.
- The Start / Stop system issue is still not solved, giving you another reason to go to Nissan service and stand in line.
- And you won’t even be able to tow another colleague-in-suffering with a Nissan Qashqai II, if you have diesel. Because new WITLP compliant models cannot have a towing hook due to the location of the AdBlue tank.
Nissan Qashqai II Verdict
So (you never start a sentence with So) – air conditioning issues, Start / Stop issues, battery issues and navigation or safety systems do not work, automatic transmission issues, petrol engines issues. And the world is still crowded with Nissan Qashqai II. The first generation, with its problems, had that charm and that simplicity. But who am I to judge? After all, there are people who paid actual money for Nickelback concerts. Or who paid to attend EuroVision.
What engines do I recommend? For petrol I recommend the 2.0 naturally aspirated antique, devoid of issues and without worries. But I think most of the world will opt for the most balanced choice, namely the 1.6 dci diesel + manual gearbox.