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.