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Nissan Qashqai 2022: Australian release date announced for new small SUV


Early 2022 release date fixed for Nissan’s third-generation Qashqai, but no prices, engines or other specifications have been confirmed.

The third-generation Nissan Qashqai small SUV will arrive in Australia in “early 2022”, its maker announced today, a year after the crossover was unveiled globally.

Designed in London and to be built for Australia at Nissan’s Sunderland, England facility, the third-generation Qashqai will continue to compete with rivals like the Kia Seltos, Mazda CX-30, Hyundai Kona, Toyota C-HR, and newcomers like the MG ZS and Haval Jolion.

Nissan Australia issued a short press release this morning confirming the early 2022 release date, but prices, specifications and critically, the engine lineup – including the question of whether the Qashqai e-Power hybrid will come to Australia – is yet to be addressed.

Nissan Qashqai 2022-8
The interior of the new Qashqai has received a major update.

Alongside the launch date for the new Qashqai, Nissan confirmed that eight colours will be available to Australian customers, along with five two-tone options – with the option of a contrast black or ceramic grey roof paired with some tones.

Longer, higher and wider, the Qashqai grows in every dimension over the previous-gen iteration. The 2022 Qashqai stretches a further 31mm to 4,425mm in length – and it’s also 29mm broader while height increases by 30mm.

The outgoing Qashqai lineup is six-strong, with a two-litre naturally aspirated petrol four-cylinder engine producing 106kW/200Nm servicing the entire lineup.

Nissan Qashqai 2022-2
Larger in every dimension, the new Qashqai will go head to head with the Kia Seltos.

That range stretches from the $28,590 base-model ST with a manual gearbox through to the $39,090 top-shelf Ti, which like all automatic Qashqais uses a CVT transmission.

In the European market, the new Qashqai uses a 1.3-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder engine shared with a number of Renault and Mercedes-Benz products – though in this new SUV, it is paired with a mild-hybrid system.

However, the most interesting Qashqai engine is the new e-Power hybrid, which uses a 115kW 1.5-litre petrol four-cylinder not to drive the car, but solely to generate electricity for a 140kW/330Nm electric motor.

Nissan Qashqai 2022-7
Nissan are yet to confirm engines, including the availability of the e-Power hybrid.

The Qashqai e-Power hybrid always drives on electric power, but that electricity is generated by a petrol engine that is allowed to operate always at its ideal revs for maximum efficiency.

Fuel economy figures for the e-Power system have not been released.

With many competing small SUVs introducing lower-emission engines into their Australian lineups, from the Toyota C-HR Hybrid to the MG ZS EV, the e-Power unit is no doubt under consideration for an Australian entry.

However, as it isn’t strictly an electric vehicle, the e-Power would not be eligible for the kind of financial incentives recently announced in New South Wales for EV buyers.

An all-electric Qashqai has not yet been discussed, though Nissan did confirm recently that the Sunderland plant – where the new Qashqai is built – will produce a dedicated EV in future. That could be an all-electric Qashqai.