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Qashqai drives up savings.

HOW far can the average customer drive a Nissan Qashqai on one tank of fuel? If they drive economically, it could be the entire length of the UK and more

Seven test drivers from the Nissan Technical Centre Europe (NTCE) in Cranfield, Bedfordshire, proved this recently when they took turns piloting a 1.5dCi Qashqai from Land's End on the southwest coast of England to John O'Groats on the northern tip of Scotland without once stopping to refuel.

The drivers, who set off at 6am on September 25, averaged 67.35mpg on the 867-mile run a common route for UK endurance and economy tests. To their delight, there was still another seven litres of fuel left in the tank when they crossed the finish line at 17.30 the next day, enough to cover a further 110 miles.

The 67.35 mpg achieved on the trip is equivalent to a 29% saving over the quoted brochure figure of 52.3mpg (combined urban and extra urban driving average). If a customer travels 10,000 miles per year, the saving would equate to pounds 193 per year, based on current UK fuel prices.

To make sure that the average customer would be able to replicate NTCE's economy run, the team used a standard Qashqai production model. Speeds limits were adhered to on minor roads and a cruising speed of approximately 60mph was used on motorways. Just like during normal customer usage, the test-drivers used cruise control, headlights and air-conditioning when required.

During the run, the Qashqai averaged 111 g/km of CO2, compared with the quoted brochure figure of 145 g/km. To offset the CO2 emitted, NTCE plans to contribute to a carbon neutral tree planting scheme.

The economy run is part of NTCE's efforts to raise awareness about fuel-efficient driving under the company's mid-term environmental plan Nissan Green Programme 2010. The plan, which was unveiled in December 2006, is aimed at reducing CO2 emissions from Nissan's products and activities around the world, as well as reducing other exhaust emissions and increasing recycling.

The Europe-designed and built Qashqai went on sale in early 2007 in Europe and has since sold more than 70,000 units.

In May, the car was awarded the maximum five-star rating for adult occupant protection from the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP), with the highest ever recorded score for any vehicle.

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GREEN MACHINE: The Nissan Qashqai achieved 67.35mpg on a journey from Land's End to John o'Groats.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Nov 6, 2007
Words:415
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