Nissan mulls Evoque-style Qashqai variant

The Qashqai is Nissan's best-selling model in Europe.
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MADRID -- Nissan may consider a sportier version of its Qashqai compact crossover along the lines of the Range Rover Evoque.

A coupe-styled version of the Qashqai could win sales in Europe where the Evoque started a trend toward crossover coupes, said Marco Fioravanti, Nissan Europe's general manager for product planning and strategy.

"We are observing the moves of other automakers such as Audi, Honda and Volvo. We will not stand watching," Fioravanti said during a press event for the new Qashqai here.

A Nissan spokesman said the company currently had nothing in its product plans for an Evoque-style Qashqai. "Nissan constantly studies model trends and mulls ideas. Some make their way to production and others fall at various stages," the spokesman said.

Fioravanti said Nissan will not build a Qashqai hybrid version. "Our traditional engines have excellent fuel consumption. We want to keep an high 'value for money' formula on the Qashqai," he said.

The Range Rover Evoque's success may inspire rivals.

The Qashqai's most fuel-efficient variant is the 110-hp 1.5-liter diesel, which uses 3.8 liters of fuel per 100km and has CO2 emissions of 99 grams per km.

Nissan started sales in Europe of its second-generation Qashqai last month.

The Qashqai may have an high-performance version with the brand's Nismo badge. Currently, Nissan sells Nismo versions of the Juke subcompact crossover and the 370Z coupe. The GT-R Nismo sports car will go on sale in Europe by the end of the year.

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