News : Qashqai takes UK record for Nissan

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

NIssan Qashqai now Nissan's most successful UK-built car

Nissan has now built more Qashqais than any other car in its three decades of manufacturing in Europe. Production at Washington has recently surpassed the previous highest single-name manufacturing total. That record was 2,368,704 units, previously held by the Micra.

The Qashqai reached 2,368,705 units to overtake the Micra in less than ten years. Nissan’s Washington plant continues to produce around 1200 Qashqais every day and, by the end of February 2016, the total stood at 2,398,134 units. No other car in the history of the UK car industry has gone beyond two million units in such a short period of time.

Styled and engineered for European customers in Nissan’s UK-based design and technical centres, the Qashqai is Nissan’s top-selling car in Europe. It’s also the best-selling crossover in Europe, requiring round-the-clock production since 2010. Today, a new Qashqai is built every 62 seconds – or 58 per hour.

Colin Lawther, Nissan’s Senior Vice President for Manufacturing, Purchasing and Supply Chain Management in Europe, said: ‘The Qashqai created an entirely new segment when it was first launched and continues to set the standard in crossovers, supporting a record period of growth for Nissan in Europe.’

Later in 2016, Nissan will be celebrating the 30th anniversary its Washington facility, the UK’s most industrious car factory. It now manufactures the Qashqai and Juke, the LEAF, the Note hatchback and the new Infiniti Q30 there.

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

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18 Comments

  1. Probably the biggest overlooked success story in the recent history of UK automotive manufacturing. Having such a rubbish name (Nissan) really can’t help.

    I hope, for all their livlihoods’ sakes that the outcome of the Euro referendum means that continued mass exports to the EU can remain viable.

  2. Great news for Sunderland and the rest of the north east, Nissans never been my cars but I hope we still have the factory still turning out cars for the next thirty years or so. Well done.

  3. Consistent UK Top 10 seller since it was launched a decade ago, and yet some people still look upon it as a weirdo niche car, and find it hilarious to misspell or mispronounce the name.

    Whether or not you approve, this is what modern family transport looks like in this country. It is the Cortina or Sierra of the current era.

    • As one of those who usually scoffs at the vehicle, and is guilty as charged (Cashcow, Kumquat etc.) you’re absolutely right.

      It is a success for the Washington Nissan plant, a consistent top 10 seller, and looking at my millenial “family man” peers it really is a modern day “dad car”. The kind of thing that kids in 30 years time will get misty eyed about, the same way as we remember Cortinas, Cavaliers, BXs and Princesses.

      The crossover is mainstream now, a decade ago it seemed like a strange choice from Nissan. Dropping the sensible (yet allegedly reliability-challenged) D segment Primera for an SUV, just a few years after there had been massive protests against SUVs?

      Yet Volvo had shown the world that SUVs don’t have to be evil, they can be sensible family cars with sensible engines, from probably the most sensible marque in the business. Nissan used the Megane platform and some Renault diesel engines and introduced the crossover – a tall hatchback that looks like a go-anywhere SUV but which doesn’t weigh, nor have the fuel consumption of, nor drive like a full size SUV.

      Now every manufacturer is following the lead and clamouring to make, and sell, crossovers, usually getting rid of low selling models such as D segment saloons to make space.

      I’ve mentioned them being badly driven, and badly parked, but then they’re so ubiquitous in popularity that these noticable bad examples are a small cross-section of ownership, in the same way as when the 3 series and A4 became popular, the stereotypes of the minority seem to define the entire ownership group.

  4. BTW the bubble shape K11 Micra in that photo also looks great. Fantastic tough and reliable cars, and one which many drivers in their 30s will have taken their driving lessons in.

    • I’m 37 and I took my lessons in that shape of Micra. It was a very solid little car and much better than the Renault/Nissan thing that followed it

  5. Like it or not, The Qashqai has sold tremendously well (certainly more so than the Primera & Bluebirds). It will be mid September this year when Nissan have been building cars at Sunderland for 30 years.

    When talk of building a car factory up here in the early 1980’s was mooted, no one could have imagined it would be so successful. Having previously owned Datsun’s myself in the 1970’s & early 80’s, I don’t regard NISSAN as a rubbish name.

  6. I drove some of the previous Qashqai as hire cars and liked them, being comfortable and easy to drive. It’s a car I would consider to buy except that the engines are weak. Where are the powerful engines to go up against the top range models from other makers ?

  7. I was a little surprised when my Dad bought a Qashqai to replace his Mondeo almost 4 years ago.

    He certainly hasn’t regretted it, & has only had the odd thing to put right, & the dealer was easy to get on with.

    It’s a little underpowered being a 1.6 but most of the time it’s just him & my Mum in it.

  8. Can’t see John, how Nissan is a rubbish name. A great business, hugely successful with products the market obviously wants. Many of them built in one UK factory producing more cars than all the factories in Italy combined! How can it be ‘rubbish’ to bring new, fresh thinking products creating new segments (Qashqai, Juke), and make such a sucess of it?

  9. Can’t see John, how Nissan is a rubbish name. A great business, hugely successful with products the market obviously wants. Many of them built in one UK factory producing more cars than all the factories in Italy combined! How can it be ‘rubbish’ to bring new, fresh thinking products creating new segments (Qashqai, Juke), and make such a success of it?

  10. Nissan is absolutely not a rubbish name. I’d sooner buy a Japanese car any day than any modern Germanic offering. If you want to know about rubbish brands, Nissans stablemate Renault epitomizes poor quality, unreliable rubbish.

  11. @ Nige, I’ve owned a Micra for over two years( the car’s about five years old now) and all I’ve had to buy are three new tyres and front wiper blades. I’d definitely consider a car that starts first time, has never left me stranded and seems well built to be anything but rubbish. OTOH BMW, with its electrical faults, poor build quality and terrible handling in the wet, is one I’d avoid.

    • Glenn I really would love to give you the keys to my 1 series. Poor build quality? Nope the best screwed together car I have ever owned. Terrible handling in the wet? Far from it. I’ll admit that the best handling car I have ever had was my Focus mk1 facelift (boy could you chuck that thing into corners!) but the 1 series is not far behind. We have had terrible weather here in Bedfordshire since Saturday and I drove back from London in torrential rain. I felt a lot safer in the 1 series than I ever did in my DS3.

      Going back to topic I am thrilled that Nissan have done so well in the UK but they don’t build any vehicles that appeal to me. A number of us at work do refer to the Qashqai as the Cashcow!

  12. Totally agree Glenn. My Honda accord is ten years old with 95k and all its ever needed other than service parts is a new rear calliper.

  13. @ Nige, Japanese and Korean badged cars lead the way now for quality. Also since many Japanese cars are now built over here to the same standard as in Japan, buying a Nissan or a Toyota, with over half the parts sourced locally, is as good an excuse to buy British as a Vauxhall and possibly more reliable with better dealer standards. Not that I’m knocking the latest Astra, as Vauxhall have made big improvements with the quality, it’s just the standard of customer care at many of their dealers is far worse than dealers who sell Japanese badged cars.

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