Our family couldn’t function without our Nissan Qashqai’
As the parents of two primary school children with active social lives, Castleknock couple Steve and Denise Doyle were certain about one thing when it came to buying a new car to meet the needs of their busy family life.
“We wanted a car that was reliable, safe and comfortable and that fitted our needs as a family because we are a very busy family from one end of the week to the other,” explained Denise.
“I am a project manager in the pharmaceutical industry and Steve is a corporate head chef. Our daughter Alex is 10 and our son James is six. There is always something to do and somewhere to go.”
“Monday afternoon it’s ballet and basketball. Tuesday it’s GAA, tennis, speech and drama. Wednesday it’s GAA and swimming. Friday is a break. Saturday it’s soccer, dance, acting and singing and Sunday it’s GAA matches. It’s very full on.”
“We bought a Nissan Qashqai because it was definitely the best all-rounder for us. We also wanted something that suited our children and that they would enjoy. It has all the safety and comfort features we were looking for, but equally it is a really good car to drive.”
“We couldn’t function and be involved with the things we are involved in and that our kids are involved in without our Nissan Qashqai. We have it three months now and it was absolutely the right choice for us. 100%.”
“Alex and James want to take their friends with them now, so we are turning into a quasi-taxi, not just for activities but also to give a lift to playdates or to pick kids up from parties and things like that. It’s really nice to be able to fit extra children in and to be able to help out other parents as well.’
“It was really important for us that Alex and James were comfortable in the car seats they have in the car, that they have enough room and that we felt safe. We can fit three car seats into the back no problem. The back windows are also low enough that they can see out and enjoy the driving experience and the sight games we play to keep them occupied on longer car trips”.
Steve, who is originally from Long Island, New York, loves the height of the car and the visibility that it offers and is a big fan of the satellite navigation system which he relies upon to find and to get to know his way around his adopted city, some eight years after the Doyle family relocated to Dublin.
“I just love the convenience, the height and the comfort. You feel in control of everything around you. You feel very safe, like you can see everything. It’s just a good feeling to be in the car and I don’t mind driving long distances,” he said.
“We car-pool and stuff like that so it’s great to get all the gear right in the boot. It also works out nicely for the golf clubs too. Every once in a while I do get out and the golf clubs fit in there perfectly. They just slide right in and I’ve put three sets of golf club in there.”
Denise is also a fan of the spacious boot but is equally impressed by the technology in the car which, she says, helps to keep the family safe and entertained.
“We love that you can take out the insert and divide the boot into sections, so things we tend to leave in the car or be a bit precious about we put in the back and it still has enough room in the front section for a full shop. That’s great, really super. And you can pull out the tray and get a few extra inches of height too.”
“We are not buying a new car every year and we need to get a few years out of this one. We were looking for value for money and we wanted something that had a good spec because we came from a car with a good spec. We didn’t want to downgrade and we got really good value for money with our Qashqai.”.
“We can plug in iPhone and iPads and the kids can control the music, so they love that but it also has lots of great safety features like the reverse parking camera and front parking sensors. It has also got this really cool thing when you’re driving that tells you if you’re driving too close to the car in front which is really, really good as sometimes you don’t think you are as close as you are.”
Steve agrees: “The price point was very good for all the extras that we got, the sat-nav, the rear view camera, the technology that assists you when parking. All those things were included at a very reasonable price, so for a family car it’s really great value. We really do love it.”
It’s a Qashqai! First time parents embrace life with new family car
Buying your first family car is an important milestone in the life of any new parent as they face up to the reality that the old way of doing things no longer exists.
One of the first things to go when it comes to preparing for the arrival of the first born baby is the car that you used to drive, with household pets sometimes being a close second.
Blessington mum, Shauna McDermott, jokes that herself and her husband Brian’s four year old springer spaniel ‘Gus’ was their ‘first baby’ but explains that it wasn’t until their son Tom arrived in 2017 that life started to change.
“When I was pregnant with Tom I was driving a small two-door car, which was okay for ‘Gus’, but I realised that there was no way that I was going to be able to get into the back seat to put a car seat in,” said Shauna.
“It was around that time that we started looking for a new car, our first family car. We looked at a few cars but the Nissan Qashqai was definitely the one we liked the most. It had everything we were looking for and seemed to be the car for us.”
“It has a lot more room, a lot more space in the back, a bigger boot for a buggy and it just felt like a sturdy, safe car to drive.”
Two years on, Tom is an active toddler and Shauna, who is now a student nurse, is the first to admit that her Nissan Qashqai has become an essential partner for her early morning and late evening commutes and for their busy family life.
“I commute in and out of Dublin to St. Vincent’s Hospital and to UCD and I find that I only really need to put diesel into it every two weeks, so it’s really good on diesel and fuel. It feels very safe when you’re driving, very solid. We’ve used it on all terrains and all weather conditions. You definitely feel safe in it.”
“We live in The Avon in Blessington which is a beautiful venue on the lake. Russborough House is just down the road and there is a 40 kilometres lake drive and greenway here too, so we’d often go for a drive with Tom across Sally Gap or the Wicklow Gap to Glendalough or Roundwood for walks.”
“The car has a lot of space and a lot of compartments in it which are great for all that stuff for babies. Our Qashqai has everything that you can think of in it, a car seat, buggy in the back, nappies, wipes, snacks for Tom. ‘Gus’ is always in the back with Tom. He’s not a fan of cars in general but seems to like being higher up in the Qashqai too.”
“It is great sometimes when we’re parked because Tom will get out of his seat and he will be playing around in it. There is so much space for him to move around in the back, so he is happy out in it”.
“It has great parking sensors too. It really parks the car for you, I find. I never need to look in the mirrors, the parking camera is really clear and does it all for you. The car I had previous didn’t have any of that technology, so I think that if I was ever to have a different car without the sensors, now that I am so reliant on the ones in the Qashqai, that I don’t know how I’d do it”.
“The time comes when you move into the ‘mum car’ but I actually think that it is a lovely car. Whenever, I see it, when I’ve parked it on the road on in a supermarket and I come out I always go ‘is that my car’ it’s so nice.”
“I have already recommended it to three friends who are pregnant at the moment and they have all travelled in it with me and have definitely agreed with me how safe it is, how comfortable it is, the space it has. It is a great family car.”
In step Richard leads from the front in Nissan Qashqai
Retired army company sergeant Richard Curry is a man who is used to leading from the front.
Old habits die hard and it is Richard’s unique love affair with the Nissan Qashqai and dancing that now inspires others to follow his lead.
“I’ve bought seven new Nissan Qashqai cars since 2011. Five of my neighbours bought one having test-driven mine. My son drives one. My daughter-in-law’s father has one and she is going to buy one too and a cousin from Cork has just taken delivery of one like mine,” said Richard.
“They all came to see my cars, liked what they saw and bought one themselves. I’m responsible for five Nissan Qashqai car sales on a street of 20 houses, maybe I should be on commission,” quipped the 73 year old from his home in Naas, County Kildare.
Richard bought his first Nissan Qashqai in 2011, just five years after retiring from the Irish army where he trained as a carpenter and served for 44 years, including tours of duty to Cyprus and Lebanon.
‘My love affair with Nissan started when I was driving the Nissan Patrol in the army. I fell in love with the car but I couldn’t afford it at the time. The Qashqai launched and I bought my first one in 2011,” said Richard.
“Since then I have had new cars in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. The car is an absolute treat to drive. It’s great value for money, comfortable to drive, sturdy, reliable and full of extras like sat-nav, cruise control and heated seats,” he added.
“I had a hip problem for years before I took any action and I also suffer with hip inflammation which required cortisone injections. The height of the Qashqai suits me, making it easy to swing in and out of the driving seat.”
“The steering wheel is great because you can adjust it and drop it. I drive with it down all the time and I find it very comfortable. I love the interior and the heated seats.”
“The first four cars were diesel, but I don’t do big mileage anymore, maybe 20,000 kilometres a year, so I decided to go for a 1.2 litre SV petrol automatic.”
Richard enjoys a busy social life and is an avid dancer. He drives to dances twice a week in Kildare, while also making fortnightly visits to Waterford to go dancing with his brother and twice yearly trips to dances at the Gleneagle Hotel in Killarney.
“It keeps me active. It’s all the quick step, fox trot, waltz, maybe a bit of line dancing. I love country and western music. I’ve been dancing since back when I joined the Army Apprentice School in Naas in 1961.
“Lawlor’s ballroom in Naas had all the big bands like Dickey Rock, The Royal and The Miami and we used to be there Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. Dancing in those days went on until 3 a.m.. It was jammed packed. We were like sardines in a can. They called it The Ballroom of Romance.”
“I go for the steak on the stone in Lawlor’s every few weeks now to meet up with friends for the banter and craic and to reminisce.
“I do a lot of my driving at night so I like the automatic headlights, the lane departure warning and the emergency braking technology in the car. I don’t use the sat-nav much but I have it set for home all the time. It doesn’t matter where I am, I can get home.”
Richard continues to apply the skills of his trade to help family, friends and neighbours out with small maintenance jobs and believes that his Nissan Qashqai is the perfect partner when he is out and about doing these goodwill deeds.
“I love to keep in touch. I have a shed with all the tools in it, so I’m always on call. I still do little jobs. I help people with presses and small maintenance jobs, nothing heavy. The car is ideal, fold back the seats, pop in the tools, deadly”.
“I have three sons and five grandchildren aged two to 11. Occasionally I collect the grandchildren from school. You could have three of them in the car and there’s plenty of room in the back, good seat belts so they’re safe and lots of room for their luggage and bags in the boot”.
“The Around View Monitor is great and I love it for parking. When you select reverse you have the camera straight away. If you’re parking forward then you just go into the camera mode. I use it all the time to get between the white markings and it also warns you if something is moving nearby”.
“It is a fabulous car. I love everything about it. Even just to stand back and look at the exterior. The shape of it. It’s beautiful. I’ll get another one next year and look forward to buying the first EV version”.