2021 Nissan Qashqai: engines, specification and release date

Nissan has revealed the first details of the next version of its super-popular Qashqai, ahead of the family SUV’s launch in 2021

James Allen
Dec 7, 2020

It’s safe to say that the upcoming new version of the Nissan Qashqai has some very big boots to fill. After all, the last two generations of the family SUV have been one of the most popular crossovers with drivers in the UK.

How the latest one compares with its predecessors isn’t entirely clear yet, as the new Qashqai is still a short way from going on sale. Nevertheless, Nissan has confirmed that you’ll be very well catered for if you’re interested in a hybrid Qashqai; as well as a more conventional mild hybrid petrol engine, there’ll also be a range-extender hybrid version that uses a combustion engine as a generator to charge up a battery that powers an electric motor.

This range extender format means that you'll be able to charge the batteries up themselves or fill the petrol tank to keep travelling. Even if the batteries run out of charge, you can keep filling up the petrol tank, with the engine keeping the electric motor running. This can be handy if you find yourself in the middle of nowhere with nowhere to plug in the car, but you still have petrol, or can top up the tank.

Nissan also promises that the car will be available with an array of safety assist systems, including ones that can help keep the car in its lane on the motorway and alert the driver if there’s another vehicle in one of the car’s blind spots. Exact technical specifications across the entire range of the next generation Qashqai won’t be revealed until closer to the car’s launch date.

Likewise, there aren’t any details on prices for the new Nissan Qashqai. They should be disclosed sooner rather than later, though, as the new Qashqai is on track to go on sale at some point in 2021. Expect it to cost a little more than the outgoing model, though, which is available from £23,550.

Quick facts

  • New Nissan Qashqai shown in camouflage
  • Mild hybrid and range-extender engines
  • Choice of manual or automatic gearboxes
  • Array of driver safety tech
  • Prices yet to be confirmed
  • On sale in 2021

2021 Nissan Qashqai engines

The big change to this latest version of the Nissan Qashqai over its predecessor is in terms of its engine range: for the first time in a Qashqai, it will be available with an ‘e-Power’ range-extender hybrid option. While this will still have a conventional combustion engine, this engine is not used to power the car - instead, the engine is there to act as an on-board generator for the car’s battery, which in turn powers an electric motor that drives the Qashqai’s wheels.

According to Nissan, the range-extender set-up means the Qashqai can achieve good fuel economy, while also eliminating the so-called ‘range anxiety’ concerns of running out of battery charge. That's because you can simply keep topping up the petrol tank to keep moving, even if you have no electric charge left. We’ll have to wait until closer to the car’s launch before we find out just how frugal the e-Power Qashqai is, and how far it can go on a full battery charge and a topped-up tank of petrol.

An updated, mild hybrid version of the current car’s 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol engine will also be available on the new Qashqai. Nissan has confirmed it will be available in two power outputs (likely 130hp and 160hp), and it’s expected the current Qashqai’s six-speed manual and seven-speed automatic gearboxes will also be carried over. Because it’s a mild hybrid engine, it also has a small motor generator unit that’s there to give the engine a bit of extra assistance under acceleration - which helps to reduce the car’s fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

2021 Nissan Qashqai technology

Nissan is keeping a lot of the next Qashqai’s technical details under wraps for the moment. Even the number of trim levels for the car are currently a closely-guarded secret - though, as Nissan has confirmed it will re-use the current Qashqai’s ‘N-Connecta’ mid-range spec name, it’s highly likely there will also be entry-level ‘Visia’ and top-of-the-range ‘N-Motion’ versions of the new one.

It’s also said the mid-range and higher-spec Qashqais will come as standard with an array of safety assists, which will include driver aids such as adaptive cruise control and a warning system that can alert the driver if there’s a vehicle obscured by one of the car’s blind spots.

You can also expect digital dials as shown in the interior image above, plus a large dashtop touchscreen media system. This means that there are likely to be few buttons scattered around the dashboard - barring those for the air-conditioning system - with most car functions controlled through the media system.

2021 Nissan Qashqai design

Even with all the camouflage on the test cars, it’s clear the new Nissan Qashqai won’t be a huge departure design-wise from the car it will replace. In fact, Nissan claims it worked very hard to ensure the proportions of the current Qashqai were carried over as faithfully as possible onto its successor.

That’s not to say the new car’s design is a copy-paste job, though. While the camo does obscure some of the finer details, more prominent items like the narrow headlights and the large front foglights can be clearly seen. There’s also more than a hint of the new Qashqai’s fully-electric cousin, the upcoming Nissan Ariya SUV, in its angular tail lights and bluff rear end.

2021 Nissan Qashqai prices and release date

Nissan has confirmed that the new Qashqai will go on sale in the UK at some point in 2021, though when exactly won’t be confirmed until a later date. Likewise, prices are still some way from being announced, though they likely won’t be drastically different to the current car - expect the new Nissan Qashqai to start at somewhere around the £23,000 mark.


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