Nissan has introduced a new 1.3-litre DIG-T turbo petrol engine that replaces not one, but two outgoing motors: the 115hp 1.2-litre turbo and 163hp 1.6-litre turbo.
Offered in both 140hp and 160hp guises, the new engine represents a fair step up in power over the strong-selling 1.2-litre DIG-T. It’s also useful more economical, averaging up to 53.3mpg and emitting 121g/km CO2.
The previous lowest CO2 figure for a petrol-powered Qashqai was 129g/km.
Even better, the new 1.3 DIG-T engine has been tested to the stricter new WLTP fuel economy regulations, meaning that 53mpg should theoretically be more attainable in real-world driving.
It also has 36lb ft more pulling power and service intervals have been extended from 12,500 miles to 18,000 miles.
The engine is a Renault-Nissan Alliance motor, and is fitted with a gasoline particulate filter for reduced NOx emissions (downsized turbocharged direct injection petrol motors can produce surprisingly high levels during certain situations). Nissan says because it has more pulling power at lower revs, it’s quieter than the sometimes hard-worked 1.2. Acceleration and overtaking shove are better, too.
It follows Nissan’s recent upgrade of its 1.5 dCi turbodiesel, to which it’s added NOx-reducing exhast aftertreatment tech.
Alex Smith, MD of Nissan Motor GB Ltd, noted the importance of the new engine as buyers move away from diesel: “The launch of this all-new 1.3-litre unit is the right response to changing market conditions, meeting customer demand for a highly effective petrol engine that delivers outstanding driving performance and fuel efficiency.”
Prices start from £19,595 for a Qashqai Visia 1.3 DIG-T 140, up to £28,595 for the top-spec Qashqai Tekna 1.3 DIG-T 160. All cars get a six-speed manual gearbox, with a seven-speed DCT auto set to follow from November.
The launch of the new engine is also good news for Qashqai retained values. CAP HPI says a 1.3 DIG-T 140 Acenta Premium will be worth 50.1 percent of its list price after three years and 30,000 miles, which should be good news for competitive PCP payments.
The fact that even high-tech petrol engines are generally cheaper than their diesel equivalents should also help here. Nissan’s indicative pricing suggests the 1.3 DIG-T is around £1,500 cheaper than an equivalent-spec 1.5 dCi turbodiesel.