The Nissan Qashqai e-Power is a much-needed electrified entrant into the mainstream small SUV segment, but it appears the Japanese brand has had to delay its Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid rival.

    Nissan Australia managing director Adam Paterson told media at the local launch of the new third-generation Qashqai that the e-Power hybrid variant has been pushed back to “sometime in 2023”, with more definitive timing to be announce in due course.

    Originally earmarked for a late-2022 or early-2023 arrival in Australia, the Qashqai e-Power has received “strong interest” from local customers, Mr Paterson said, and is the missing piece in the brand’s two-powertrain strategy for the Qashqai nameplate.

    Local pricing hasn’t been announced as yet, but we do know the Qashqai e-Power will be available in up-spec ST-L and Ti trim levels in Australia, likely carrying a price premium of around $3000-$4000.

    Currently, the petrol-powered Qashqai ST-L is priced from $42,190 before on-road costs, while the flagship Ti starts at $47,390 plus on-roads.

    A circa-$45,000 entry point positions the hybrid Qashqai as a more premium proposition in the VFACTS small SUV segment, in the same ballpark as high-spec versions of the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid (Atmos 2WD from $46,050) as well as the entry-level Lexus UX250h (from $53,820) and mild-hybrid Volvo XC40 (from $53,490) at the higher end.

    Power in the series hybrid version of the Nissan Qashqai comes from a front-mounted electric motor developing a healthy 140kW and 330Nm, fed by a 2.3kWh lithium-ion battery pack.

    The hybrid part? There’s a 116kW 1.5-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine that has no connection to the wheels, but instead serves as an on-board generator – it’s a hybrid but drives more like an EV.

    European versions of the Qashqai e-Power claim to use 5.3L/100km on the combined WLTP test cycle, meaning that while the petrol engine isn’t driving the wheels, it’s still not quite as efficient as something like a Toyota RAV4 Hybrid in official lab testing.

    By comparison, the 1.3-litre turbo petrol in regular Qashqai models makes 110kW (5500rpm) and 250Nm (1600-3750rpm), and claims to use 6.1 litres per 100km on the combined cycle.

    According to Nissan’s Australia website, the Qashqai e-Power will have the company’s e-Pedal (for one-pedal driving), regenerative braking, vehicle sound for pedestrians, and Active Noise Cancellation technology over the equivalent petrol model.

    If you’re itching to get into a Nissan e-Power product, the larger X-Trail e-Power is launching next month with e-4orce dual-motor all-wheel drive – there’s a 150kW motor at the front, and a 100kW one at the rear. Pricing starts at $54,190 for the Ti, and $57,190 for the Ti-L – $4200 dearer than the equivalent 2.5-litre petrol model.

    Read our international launch review of the Qashqai e-Power here, and you can watch Paul Maric’s video review of the X-Trail e-Power here. Our Australian launch review of the petrol Qashqai will be live at 3:00PM AEDT on Thursday, 12 January.

    Stay tuned to CarExpert for all the latest.

    MORE: 2023 Nissan Qashqai e-Power review
    MORE: Everything Nissan Qashqai

    James Wong

    James Wong is the Production Editor at CarExpert based in Melbourne, Australia. With experience on both media and manufacturer sides of the industry, James has a specialty for product knowledge which stems from a life-long obsession with cars. James is a Monash University journalism graduate, an avid tennis player, and the proud charity ambassador for Drive Against Depression – an organisation that supports mental wellness through the freedom of driving and the love of cars. He's also the proud father of Freddy, a 2019 Volkswagen Golf GTI .

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