Nissan Qashqai vs Vauxhall Grandland X vs Skoda Karoq
Regardless of a facelift in 2017, the Qashqai has lagged behind newer opponents, which have gained floor. And because the market strikes again in direction of petrol that has turn out to be very true, as a result of the Qashqai’s older, downsized turbocharged choices have been lacklustre. To be aggressive on this class you want a robust, punchy however frugal engine, which is why Nissan is hoping that this new 1.Three DIG-T 140 unit will proper the wrongs of its petrol predecessor.
To check its credentials, we’re pitting the Qashqai with this contemporary engine in opposition to its hardest rivals within the form of the Vauxhall Grandland X and our present favorite, the Skoda Karoq.
Each petrol SUVs pack a punch and blend it with the effectivity and value that household consumers crave. So can the Nissan form up due to some new tech beneath the bonnet? Learn on to seek out out.
|Mannequin:||Nissan Qashqai 1.Three GIG-T 140 N-Connecta|
|Engine:||1.3-litre 4cyl turbo, 138bhp|
|Take a look at financial system:||38.0mpg/8.4mpl|
|Annual highway tax:||£140|
The pre-facelift Mk2 Nissan Qashqai was a stable Auto Categorical favorite, so the crossover sits on a agency basis. However is the up to date engine sufficient to raise it in direction of the highest of its class? We check the £24,595 1.Three DIG-T 140 N-Connecta to seek out out.
Design & engineering
This new 1.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine is huge information. It’s sourced from Mercedes (the place it’s fitted to the A-Class hatch) and stems from the Renault-Nissan Alliance’s business tie-up with that model’s dad or mum firm, Daimler. The unit produces 138bhp and 240Nm of torque – aggressive figures in contrast with a lot of its crossover rivals that occupy this area. It’s extra refined than the model within the Mercedes hatch, too, as we’ll see.
The engine sends energy to the entrance wheels via a six-speed guide gearbox, whereas the Qashqai’s chassis set-up is similar because the facelifted automobile’s, based mostly on the Alliance’s CMF-C/D platform and utilizing strut-type entrance suspension and a torsion-beam again axle. There’s no enchancment to the packaging.
Neither is something totally different inside. N-Connecta trim is effectively outfitted and treads the road properly between value and equipment. Sat-nav, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are fitted, as is a few further security tech together with blind spot help, autonomous braking, parking sensors and a rear digital camera, local weather and cruise management.
There aren’t many complaints right here; the difficulty we’ve is how the options are built-in into the cabin and the standard of the end. In a category that’s nonetheless rising extremely quickly, with an increasing number of fashions launching, the Nissan’s low-rent plastics and dated design aren’t as interesting because the Vauxhall’s inside, not to mention the Skoda’s superior cabin.
Whereas the Qashqai is comparatively effectively priced, at £24,595, splitting its two rivals right here and providing the same degree of tech, it doesn’t really feel as good. PCP offers additionally imply listing value isn’t the be all and finish all.
The engine is an enormous enchancment over the previous 1.2 DIG-T, although. It feels way more gutsy, revs extra easily and is comparatively refined.
As our observe checks present, the motor is a keen performer and delivers first rate tempo. The Qashqai outsprinted the Grandland X from 0-60mph, taking 9.Zero seconds to the Vauxhall’s 9.6 seconds, whereas it additionally had the sting in gear. It was round a second quicker between 30 and 50mph in fourth, in addition to from 50 to 70mph in fifth and sixth.
This degree of flexibility is welcome, as a result of the sunshine, springy clutch motion and imprecise gearshift detract from the powertrain’s different deserves. The field nonetheless isn’t the nicest, and though it’s match for objective, the Karoq has a way more rewarding and reassuring motion even in case you’re not a eager driver.
Equally, the trip is hampered by traits Nissan’s engineers haven’t managed to iron out. The entrance suspension is smooth and ensures there’s sufficient journey and a comparatively unfastened really feel to the damping. Whereas this implies bumps are absorbed acceptably, it could possibly typically trigger a nodding movement on the entrance – the signs are sometimes highlighted by having so as to add extra steering in a nook, simply once you suppose it’s set proper.
The rear suspension nonetheless bounces aggressively in response to ridges that run transversely throughout the highway. The quicker you go the extra noticeable that is, because the rear suspension struggles to comprise the power concerned. It creates an apparent imbalance between back and front which means the Qashqai’s chassis by no means fairly settles down at velocity, eroding consolation and the engine’s new-found refinement.
Nonetheless, this isn’t a driver’s automobile, however each the Vauxhall and Skoda mix extra rewarding set-ups with larger ranges of consolation and refinement as effectively.
Packaging and practicality spotlight the Qashqai’s older underpinnings. Boot capability is 430 litres with the rear seats in place, which is a way behind the Grandland X’s 514 litres and the Skoda’s versatile providing of between 479 litres and 588 litres relying on the seating configuration.
There’s sufficient room within the rear – particularly for a household automobile the place youngsters will most frequently sit within the again – but it surely’s nonetheless not as roomy as both competitor.
Neither is the driving place as snug, even when visibility is nice. At the very least getting in is simple, so when you have younger youngsters that you simply may be strapping in, the raised trip top will save contorting your again.
Nissan completed strongest of those manufacturers in our Driver Energy 2018 satisfaction survey, taking fourth place within the makers’ chart. Homeowners additionally voted the second-generation Qashqai the 22nd finest automobile to stay with.
Security equipment was up to date within the 2017 facelift and N-Connecta spec options six airbags, autonomous braking and blind spot help. A number of the tech out there optionally elsewhere isn’t supplied on this trim degree, but it nonetheless has a five-star Euro NCAP score.
Should you’re a money purchaser our consultants predict the Nissan will lose essentially the most cash over three years/36,000 miles, regardless of updates together with this new engine.
The Qashqai is predicted to shed £13,569 (a residual worth of 44.Eight per cent), whereas the Vauxhall drops by £11,888, which equates to a residual worth of 49.2 per cent. The Skoda bucks depreciation one of the best, with an estimated residual worth of 50.9 per cent. Regardless that it’s the costliest automobile to purchase, it’s set to lose £12,599 and thus be value essentially the most, at £13,061.
“The engine is similar unit because the 1.3-litre turbo petrol present in Mercedes’ A-Class hatch. It delivers much less energy right here (though there’s additionally a DIG-T 160 out there), however is extra refined within the Qashqai.”
Vauxhall Grandland X
|Mannequin:||Vauxhall Grandland X 1.2 Turbo Tech Line Nav|
|Engine:||1.2-litre 3cyl turbo, 128bhp|
|Take a look at financial system:||38.9mpg/8.6mpl|
|Annual highway tax:||£140|
Vauxhall gained a head begin with its Grandland X SUV – we’ll see why in a second – however this Tech Line Nav mannequin (our photos present a Sport Nav) fitted with the 1.2 Turbo 130 petrol engine has tons going for it – not least the value, at £23,410. The query is whether or not it’s sufficient to beat the Qashqai?
Design & engineering
That head begin got here from Peugeot/Citroen’s buyout of Vauxhall/Opel, giving the British model entry to the PSA Group’s tech. Because of this, the Grandland X relies on Peugeot’s EMP2 modular platform that additionally underpins the French agency’s 3008 SUV. That automobile is a earlier class favorite of ours, which was solely knocked off the highest spot by the Skoda Karoq, so the underpinnings are a recognized amount.
The chassis is on the softer aspect and arrange for consolation, which is what most consumers on this class need. Strut suspension and a torsion-beam again axle are on the menu right here to match the Qashqai, whereas the engine and transmission are taken from the Peugeot line-up and are aggressive.
There’s a 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbocharged motor that produces 128bhp and 230Nm of torque. These figures are 10bhp and 10Nm down on the Qashqai’s, whereas the Grandland X is 50kg heavier, too, but it surely’s nonetheless a punchy unit. That’s helped by the gearing of the six-speed guide transmission.
The inside isn’t fairly as funky because the 3008’s, although. High quality is okay – higher than within the Qashqai – with a clearer eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system, higher plastics and a nicer driving place, with a fresher-feeling cabin. However neither competitor can match the Karoq for high quality or ergonomics.
You get a comparable degree of apparatus to each rivals, although, regardless of the value benefit. This consists of entrance and rear parking sensors, extra security tech than both the Qashqai or Karoq, cruise management, sat-nav, CarPlay, Android Auto and 18-inch alloys.
Its opponents on this check each have reversing cameras as normal, however that could be a £550 possibility on the Vauxhall. In any other case the spec is comparable; £180 for wi-fi charging is an inexpensive further, too.
None of those vehicles goes to be exceptional to drive, so the Grandland X’s concentrate on consolation not less than implies that, more often than not, it must be simple to stay with. Just like the 3008, it principally floats over roads the place the Qashqai lumbers. Nonetheless, it’s not excellent. The straightforward suspension structure means greater bumps nonetheless upset the chassis, knocking the automobile off line.
It’s all too simple to upset the chassis your self as effectively, as a result of the sunshine steering takes some getting used to. Flip too aggressively and also you’ll really feel the Vauxhall roll, however so long as you retain a lid in your enthusiasm and drive to the Grandland X’s strengths then it’s okay.
One other of these benefits is the engine’s torque. Regardless that the output is down on the Qashqai, it provides sufficient flexibility. It virtually matched the stronger Nissan within the decrease gears, whereas it was persistently round a second slower from 50 to 70mph in fifth and sixth. Nonetheless, the gearchange can also be sweeter and, though it’s not fairly as grunty, it’s clean sufficient and serves up an ample degree of pull. The field’s shift motion nonetheless can’t rival the Skoda’s, although, and the automobile’s chassis additionally isn’t as composed at greater speeds. At the very least it’s refined.
This is among the actual areas of separation between the Nissan and Vauxhall, together with the Grandland X’s much less bouncy nature over bumps and ruts.
It additionally shades the Qashqai for boot area with the seats up, providing 514 litres. Fold the rear bench and there’s 1,652 litres, which is a equally massive benefit over the Nissan in its most configuration, at 1,598 litres. However each are overwhelmed by the 1,810-litre Skoda.
You’ll be able to inform that the Vauxhall is a next-generation SUV in contrast with the Nissan, as a result of it’s roomier within the entrance, with a cabin structure that’s higher thought out, whereas there’s extra space within the rear. It’s not night time and day, however this benefit will make it a extra versatile and simpler automobile to stay with, particularly with youngsters.
Storage is ok, however one other space the place the Vauxhall scores marks for practicality over the Nissan is with its infotainment.
The Grandland X’s further security tech consists of lane-keep help and blind spot monitoring as normal, whereas autonomous braking, collision warning and 6 airbags characteristic as effectively, as a part of a security pack. This implies the Vauxhall gained a full five-star Euro NCAP security score, with robust scores throughout the board.
The model’s efficiency in our Driver Energy 2018 ballot was much less spectacular, although, with Vauxhall coming 22nd out of 26 manufacturers within the makers’ chart.
Whereas the Grandland X didn’t characteristic in our listing of one of the best vehicles to stay with, the 3008 topped the desk. A lot of the Vauxhall’s mechanical make-up relies on the Peugeot, so it ought to show simply as rewarding.
Not solely is the Vauxhall cheaper to purchase than its rivals, but it surely must also value much less to run. That listing value dictates what you’ll pay in firm automobile tax, so as a result of it’s cheaper than the Nissan however emits the identical 121g/km of CO2, placing each within the 25 per cent Profit in Type tax bracket, lower-rate taxpayers can pay £1,160 to run the Grandland X – £59 much less per yr than for the Qashqai.
The Skoda emits extra CO2, at 124g/km, but it surely’s nonetheless within the 25 per cent BiK band. Its greater listing value makes the Karoq costlier as an organization automobile, at £1,272 a yr, but it surely’s value this further outlay given its expertise.
“There’s no four-wheel drive right here; as an alternative, rough-road progress is aided by a £200 off-road pack that features a intelligent ESP adjustment program, referred to as IntelliGrip. There are snow, mud and sand modes.”
|Mannequin:||Skoda Karoq 1.5 TSI 150 SE L|
|Engine:||1.5-litre 4cyl turbo, 148bhp|
|Take a look at financial system:||38.9mpg/8.6mpl|
|Annual highway tax:||£140|
The Skoda Karoq is our favorite household SUV, so is the automobile the Qashqai wants to beat. And the Nissan’s chances are high higher than ever, with a brand new engine to match as much as the Skoda’s 1.5 TSI 150 – which prices from £25,660 in SE L trim. Let’s see the way it fares.
Design & engineering
The Karoq is yet one more automobile to be spun off Skoda proprietor the VW Group’s MQB platform. As with the Qashqai’s CMF-C/D structure and the Grandland X’s EMP2 underpinnings, MQB is scalable to permit for flexibility in fashions, with many alternative engines and transmissions capable of slot in to broaden your selection. It’s the best way vehicles are going.
The motor is a 148bhp 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol, which boasts 10bhp greater than the Nissan’s and 20bhp over the Vauxhall’s. It additionally has essentially the most torque, at 250Nm, and though it’s a bit heavier, at 1,373kg, the automobile ought to nonetheless be a robust performer.
Suspension structure is frequent to many MQB-based vehicles and matches its rivals right here with MacPherson struts on the entrance and a torsion beam on the rear – though Skoda does provide four-wheel drive and people Karoqs get a multi-link again axle. Adaptive dampers are £1,000; these aren’t out there on the opposite vehicles, however are an expensive further that’s not important.
The Skoda is a costlier automobile than its rivals, too – £2,250 pricier than the Vauxhall and £1,065 greater than the Nissan. Nonetheless, you may really feel the place this further money goes when you’re inside. The cabin high quality is definitely one of the best right here. The supplies are softer and the design is extra attention-grabbing, however you don’t lose out with regards to ergonomics, both.
Tools can also be nice. Skoda’s eight-inch infotainment system has sat-nav, CarPlay and Android Auto, and is one of the best of the bunch, as we’ll see. You additionally get parking sensors and a reversing digital camera, autonomous braking, heated seats, adaptive cruise, keyless operation and LED headlights.
Regardless of the Karoq’s stronger energy determine, it wasn’t fairly as fast from 0-60mph because the Nissan. Nonetheless, it’s extra gratifying getting there, primarily as a result of sweeter clutch motion and reassuringly optimistic however gentle and easy-to-change gearshift.
It matched the Grandland X’s occasions from 50 to 70mph in fifth and sixth gears, taking 8.7 and 11.Zero seconds respectively, whereas this was a second behind the Qashqai. Nonetheless, just like the Vauxhall, the Skoda’s efficiency is shut sufficient to the Nissan’s that this isn’t an excessive amount of of an obstacle.
The small deficit in efficiency is greater than offset by the advantages of the Skoda’s trip and dealing with. Its set-up is undoubtedly firmer than the Nissan’s, as a result of there’s much less roll in corners, however regardless of this, it’s additionally a extra forgiving automobile regardless of the place you’re sitting; in contrast with the Qashqai, which feels harsher within the rear, the Karoq is significantly better balanced.
The steering is extra direct and a sweeter weight, which makes the Skoda a sharper automobile to drive than its rivals, but it’s simply as snug, if no more so.
Refinement is one of the best of those three fashions as effectively. Whereas wind noise within the Grandland X is stored to a minimal, the engine thrums like triples are likely to, whereas the Skoda’s four-cylinder unit is extra hushed. Each are quieter than the Qashqai’s motor.
In SE L trim the Karoq will get versatile rear seating, which implies the 60:40-split bench slides to both prioritise load area or passenger room. With the boot at its smallest there’s nonetheless 479 litres, which is much better than the Qashqai’s providing. Legroom is sensible and it’s by far the largest and most sensible mannequin right here, with sufficient area that even tall individuals gained’t really feel cramped.
Passenger room clearly drops in case you slide the seats ahead, however there’s nonetheless an ample degree of area that’s on par with the Qashqai. On this set-up the Skoda provides an unparalleled 588-litre boot capability, making it as huge as vehicles from the category above.
The model’s typical Merely Intelligent touches are current, too, so there are sensible options corresponding to an umbrella beneath the passenger seat and an ice scraper within the gasoline filler door – small issues that make a distinction.
Cabin storage is nice, making this simply essentially the most sensible mannequin of the three crossovers on check.
Skoda is a historically robust performer in our Driver Energy survey, and its 2018 outcome was no totally different, even when it trailed Nissan’s inserting by two spots, rating sixth general. The Czech model’s seller community simply surpassed its rivals’ right here, although. Skoda practically matched its efficiency on this part, coming eighth, whereas the Nissan and Vauxhall garages completed poorly, in 25th and 21st locations respectively. Security makes it a hat-trick for Skoda. A five-star Euro NCAP score for the Karoq comes courtesy of seven airbags, autonomous braking, pedestrian detection and adaptive cruise. Upgrading with blind spot monitoring and lane-keep help prices £860.
Our trio all returned robust gasoline financial system on check, with little or no to separate them. The Grandland X and Karoq each recorded 38.9mpg, which implies an annual petrol value (based mostly on 12,000 miles per yr) of £1,680. The Qashqai trailed them by 0.9mpg, so that you’ll solely pay an additional £40 a yr. Driving type may see this modification barely, so funds across the identical for all three.
Servicing will subsequently be a comparatively vital issue. A £342 pack for 2 providers makes the Skoda an economical possibility, whereas the Vauxhall and Nissan will value £408 and £468 respectively.
“New £450 Digital Cockpit digital sprint possibility additional enhances Skoda’s already spectacular infotainment system, placing clear floor between the Karoq and its two opponents on this space.”
First place: Skoda Karoq
In 1.5 TSI kind, the Karoq remains to be the category chief. Easy, easy efficiency combines with first rate effectivity and refinement right here. The chassis serves up a equally interesting mix of flexibility and sportiness for an SUV, whereas the infotainment system is definitely one of the best on this check and places clear room between it and its two opponents’ set-ups.
Second place: Vauxhall Grandland X
Because of its Peugeot underpinnings, the Grandland X inherits lots of what makes the French model’s 3008 such a terrific SUV. The Vauxhall provides sufficient efficiency, practicality, consolation and effectivity, with a robust engine, too. However it doesn’t outdo the Skoda in lots of of those classes, whereas the Karoq’s know-how and flexibility outshine the Grandland’s.
Third place: Nissan Qashqai
The Qashqai’s new engine is undoubtedly an enchancment and pushes the automobile nearer to one of the best fashions within the class. However it’s nonetheless held again by its trip, packaging constraints and poor infotainment system. So whereas the Nissan has moved nearer to rivals and might be cheaper to run and extra versatile to stay with, it nonetheless lacks the spark of one of the best household SUVs.