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Qashqai downsizes with 1.6 dCi

2011-09-05 09:35
Nissan’s boundlessly popular Qashqai crossover is seeing its two-litre turbodiesel powertrain replaced by a new 1.6 dCi - in a very clever instance of downsizing.

With Qashqai an unqualified sales success (Nissan builds around 1200 a day at its plant in Sunderland, north-east England), engineers were asked to react to consumer demand for an equally torquey but more frugal turbodiesel option. The solution: the new 1.6 turbodiesel toreplace the range-topping two-litre dCi.


Although the new (smaller) engine produces 15kW less peak power (95kW versus the two-litre’s 110kW), its torque peak is similar (320Nm) and comes into play at 1750rpm, 250rpm sooner than the engine its replaces. Day-to-day driving performance should (essentially) be comparable.

The fundamental marketing drive to produce a smaller engine for the Qashqai was due to customers' concerns about risng fuel prices. To this end the new 1.6 consumes only 4.9 litres/100km (tested on the combined cycle), 31% less than the two-litre.

Paul Willcox, senior vice-president of Nissan Europe, is thrilled by the newcomer. "This is a remarkable engine, best in class in so many respects. It provides the dynamic driving performance to match that of the outgoing two-litre dCi yet produces fuel consumption and emission figures equal to or better than our existing 1.5 dCi."

The Qashqai 1.6 dCi will be available at South African dealers in October, 2011.

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