Sue Cooke tests out the Nissan Qashqai

My jury is still debating on whether I would embrace Nissan’s latest research.

In our connective world, Nissan says it is researching using brain decoding technology in vehicles which will interpret signals from the driver’s brain and anticipate the next action seconds before the driver carries it out. Nissan says by anticipating intended movement, the systems can take actions – such as turning the steering wheel or slowing the car – 0.2 to 0.5 seconds faster than the driver and by detecting driver discomfort the technology could create a more relaxing environment!

I’m not a fan of the current technology in cars which anticipates and selects the media as my finger hovers over the touch screen, while I’m still thinking about what I want to listen to!  However, I appreciate that the majority of technology which the Qashqai is loaded with does make driving easier and safer. What I appreciated most about this SUV which I road tested, is its CD player which many new cars just don’t have any more. So, I spent a week being able to listen to my old CDs.  Fantastic.

You only have to look at what drives on British roads to realise that this SUV is the UK’s favourite crossover and it was named Best Small SUV in the What Car? Used Car Awards 2018.  It’s certainly the car I would prefer to be in when roads turn wet, slippery or covered in snow.  There is a choice of two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.

QashqaiThe airy and spacious interior on my road test car has a panoramic sunroof which rear passengers really appreciate as it’s not so claustrophobic.  I like the high driving position which gives a commanding view of the road ahead.  Seats have side supports and long seat squabs and I found them really comfortable for long drives, particularly because on cold mornings, they can be heated.

My long-legged friends reported that rear passengers have plenty of rear leg space and there is also a huge boot which holds 430 litres.  Storage in the cabin is well catered for and includes a very deep centre load space which will comfortably hide away larger items like cameras.

My road test car was powered by a 1.4 litre diesel engine. I found I needed to work the six-speed manual gearbox a lot but once it had found its comfort zone it is a powerful engine.  For the eco conscious and those wanting to save money on road tax, this engine, in an SUV, has amazing CO2 emissions of 99g/km and equally amazing combined fuel consumption figures of 74.3mpg.

There is a long list of practical and safety technology available in the Nissan Qashqai but for me, one of its biggest attractions is that it is built in Britain. Made round the clock in Sunderland, the Qashqai is exported to around 100 European and global markets and represents almost one in five of all British-made cars.

Whatever futuristic plans that Nissan has in store for the Qashqai in terms of measuring brain wave activity, I hope they keep the CD player!

Facts at a Glance

Model: Nissan QASHQAI N-Connecta

Price: £27,020 on the road

Engine: 1.4 dCi 110 PS

Performance: 0-62mph in 11.9 seconds and on to a top speed of 113 mph

CO2 emissions: 99 g/km

Combined fuel consumption: 74.3mpg