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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

Nissan divulges electrically assisted new Qashqai’s powerunits

The e-Power unit sees the 1.5-litre petrol engine being reduced to generator duty for the electric motor.

On course to debut in April, Nissan, after divulging select technical details and teasing the interior of the all-new Qashqai, has confirmed the outputs and engines that will power the all-new third generation model.

Confirmed to move to the CMF-C platform and tip the scales at 60 kg less than the outgoing model, the 4 425 mm long Qashqai will have a choice of two engines; the Daimler co-developed 1.3-litre turbo-petrol combined with a mild-hybrid system and, for the first time outside of Japan, the innovative 1.5-litre e-Power normally aspirated petrol.

It’s inclusion adding 22 kg to the drivetrain, the 1.3 will be offered in two states of tune; 103kW/240Nm and 117kW/260Nm with the former being offered solely with a six-speed manual gearbox, front-wheel-drive and an overboost function of six newton metres for 20 seconds. On the latter, the same configuration applies, but buyers will have the option of a CVT which adds an additional 10 Nm, plus the availability of a revised four-wheel-drive system with five modes; Eco, Standard, Sport, Snow and Off-Road.

As well as the retention of the manual ‘box Nissan claims has been improved “for a quicker, more direct and sportier shift feeling”, the CVT is brand-new with the added inclusion of a twin oil pump system and an electric oil pump, with Yokohama claiming smoother shift plus a “DCT-like d-step behaviour during hard acceleration”.

A staple in Japan, the e-Power unit produces 140kW/330Nm and works by swapping out the smaller 1.2-litre unit in the Note e-Power for a 1.5, whose sole function is to charge the electric motor connected to the front wheels. A configuration that is said to offer an “EV-like response” without the delay of conventional hybrids, the e-Power comes with a choice of three driving modes; Eco, Standard and Sport as well as the so-called e-Pedal which allows the driver to accelerate and brake only with the accelerator as stopping power occurs instantly the moment the driver’s foot is taken off the throttle. According to Nissan, the e-Pedal produces a deceleration force of 0.2G in order to make “driving simpler and more relaxing”. Unlike the 1.3, the e-Power will only be offered on the Old Continent next year.

As with the first two Qashqais, production will once take place alongside the Juke at Nissan’s Sunderland Plant in the United Kingdom with sales in South Africa expected to start either this year or in early 2022.

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