The Qashqai feels fairly solid inside but alternatives have plusher materials and less cluttered infotainment systems
Besides a few subtle tweaks, the Nissan Qashqai’s interior looks almost identical to when this version was launched in 2014. The most noticeable changes are the sporty steering wheel (that gives you a slightly better view of the instruments) and the larger infotainment screen fitted to mid-specification models and above.
Sadly, it is nowhere near as modern as the Peugeot 3008’s slick minimalist interior but at least the surfaces you’ll regularly touch feel soft and yielding.
While every Nissan Qashqai comes with a 5.0-inch colour display nestled neatly between the analogue dials, all Qashqais bar entry-level Visia cars also get a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment while Tekna cars get an upgraded Bose stereo system and heated front seats.
Rather frustratingly, seats with electrical adjustment and memory functions (especially useful if you regularly lend your car to someone else) are reserved for range-topping Tekna+ models.
The Nissan Qashqai’s cabin was updated in 2017 but the differences are harder to spot than Where’s Wally in an American flag factory
Nissan Qashqai Visia cars come with a CD player, DAB digital radio and Bluetooth phone connectivity as standard but, lack any kind of central infotainment screen or satellite navigation system.
Pay a little extra for an Acenta or above and you’ll get a 7.0-inch touchscreen display with sat nav as standard, but it is not quite the best on the market. It’s a bit overcrowded on the Qashqai’s screen and a Hyundai Tiguan’s system does a better job of showing you the information that matters on a larger, 8.0-inch screen that’s easier to read in direct sunlight.
On the plus side, the Qashqai’s system responds quickly when you touch the screen and it’s easy to punch in a postcode and it understands two-finger smartphone gestures such as pinch to zoom. The system’s menus are logically laid out too, and inputting a postcode is easy. Following the sat-nav’s directions on the five-inch driver’s display is simple but they tend to appear a tad late. In some cases, by the time they appear, it’s too late to make a lane-change if traffic is particularly heavy.
Going for the Connect infotainment system also adds Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone screen mirroring functionality, which allows you to hook your phone up to the car’s infotainment system and use its larger screen for phone-based apps such as Spotify and Waze.
Affordable Visia cars have to make do with a fairly weedy four-speaker stereo system while Acenta and N-Connecta versions get an improved six-speaker unit. More expensive Tekna and Tekna+ versions get a much better Bose stereo as standard with eight speakers and a bass-boosting subwoofer. Unfortunately, you can’t get it as an optional extra on cheaper models.