Nissan Qashqai 2014-1Nissan has revealed the second-generation of its family crossover, the Qashqai. Entering UK showrooms in February, the new range will start marginally above the £16,895 of today’s base model. The range-topper is expected to be closer to £27,000.

Designed in London, engineered in Cranfield and Barcelona, and built in Sunderland, the new Qashqai boasts a much higher quality, premium interior, combined with more fuel-efficient engines and a bold new exterior look.

The first-generation Qashqai — also built in Sunderland — has been the most successful model in Nissan Europe’s history. To date, around 1.5m units have been sold in Europe since 2007, and 2m units worldwide.

Nissan has concentrated on a series of improvements across a wide range of areas of the original car. Key areas identified were enhancing the level of technology and design; improving the dynamic performance; and crucially, maintaining the package, price and size of the current car.

Nissan Qashqai 2014-4The new car is 49mm longer and 20mm wider than the outgoing model, and also just 15mm lower. The result is a car which look more squat, sportier and purposeful. Significantly though, there’s also more useable space inside.

In addition to more sculpted body sides, the new Qashqai benefits from a more distinctive front and rear end. While the rear gets an evolved version of Nissan’s ‘Boomerang’ rear lights, the front includes Nissan’s latest V-shaped grille, wraparound front headlights and a clamshell bonnet.

Inside the new car’s cabin, more premium materials have been used in what is a completely new-look interior. Among the standard specification is expected to be air-conditioning, 16in alloy wheels — there will be the option of 19in alloys — Bluetooth connectivity, and stop-start on all the engines.

Nissan Qashqai 2014-5And while there’s a greater use of soft-touch materials right down to the bottom of the range, the new model also has more boot storage, up 20 litres from the outgoing model to 430 litres with the rear seats in place.

At launch, the range will include a base 113bhp 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol with 50.4mpg economy and CO2 emissions of 129g/km. There will also be a 108bhp 1.5-litre dCi turbodiesel returning 74.3mpg and 99g/km, and a 128bhp 1.6-litre dCi turbodiesel rated at 64.2mpg and 115g/km.

Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive offered on the 1.6 dCi. A six-speed manual gearbox is standard on all engines, with a CVT auto’ offered on the 1.6 dCi. Nissan is calling this CVT Xtronic.

The new Qashqai also debuts Nissan’s Active Grille Shutter system. This intelligent technology maximises the Qashqai’s aerodynamic efficiency by closing off airflow through the radiator when not needed.

Nissan Qashqai 2014-9bThe grille shutter automatically shuts at speeds over 30kph and only opens if sensors detect that the engine needs cooling. The system will be fitted as standard on diesel-engined models with manual transmissions.

Nissan has also upped the stakes in the equipment and technology departments. The Qashqai gets Connect 2 infotainment system is offered, which includes sat-nav and a full suite of connectivity options.

Safety too has been highlighted, with traffic sign recognition, automatic braking, moving object detection for parking, and park assist all available under the Nissan Safety Shield banner.

Nissan will confirm prices and trim levels closer to the car going on sale in the UK in February.

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