Watchdog: Nissan under fire over Qashqai belt bust-up

Owner claims firm didn't inform her new part was needed, leading to engine failure

Many owners choose to avoid expensive dealerships and have repair work done at independent garages, which offer similar services for smaller fees. Sometimes, though, choosing to save can end up more expensive in the long run.

It’s a scenario that Martine Davis, from Welwyn Garden City, Herts, found out to her cost. Martine had serviced her 2008 Nissan Qashqai at her local Nissan dealer, Glyn Hopkin in St Albans, since it was new, so when major problems developed earlier this year she thought she’d be covered.

She was driving on the motorway when her auxiliary belt snapped, and seized the engine. “I eventually had the car towed back to Nissan, which charged me £4,025 for a new engine,” Martine told Auto Express. The auxiliary belt needed replacing every five years, and because it was two years overdue, Nissan said it was no surprise it had snapped.

Martine, however, said her dealer had never told her to replace the belt: “In 2013, I was told I needed a new cambelt, but because Nissan wanted £840 for the job, I decided to have the work done at an independent garage, which only charged me a fraction of what Nissan wanted.”

She was adamant that at no point did Nissan emphasise the auxiliary belt needed replacing, too. She added: “I’ve serviced my car with Nissan for seven years, twice after the independent garage replaced the cambelt. Nissan should have told me about needing a new auxiliary belt.”

Auto Express took the case to Nissan to see if it would help with the engine cost given her continued servicing loyalty, but a company spokeswoman said: “The Nissan service schedule indicates the auxiliary belt should be changed at the same time as the cambelt. As Mrs Davis had the work conducted outside the network it is not reasonable for us to be responsible for a consequential repair, whatever the size of it.”

Martine wasn’t happy, saying: “Not only was I never told the auxiliary belt needed replacement, I contacted other Nissan garages who told me they do not always replace the auxiliary belt with the cambelt. I’ve had all of my services with Nissan – this isn’t something I envisaged.”

Recommended

Nissan Qashqai SUV review
2021 Nissan Qashqai driving along road
Nissan Qashqai
14 Jan 2022

Nissan Qashqai SUV review

The safest cars to buy in 2022
Safest Cars 2022
Best cars
12 Jan 2022

The safest cars to buy in 2022

The UK's top 10 best-selling cars 2021
2021 Vauxhall Corsa-e
Best cars
6 Jan 2022

The UK's top 10 best-selling cars 2021

Electric Nissan Ariya SUV: prices, specs and release date
Nissan Ariya low down
Nissan
10 Dec 2021

Electric Nissan Ariya SUV: prices, specs and release date

Most Popular

Best new car deals 2022: this week’s top car offers
Hyundai Kona deals
Deals
14 Jan 2022

Best new car deals 2022: this week’s top car offers

Top 10 best economical 4x4s, SUVs and crossovers 2022
Peugeot 3008 SUV front cornering
Best cars
6 Jan 2022

Top 10 best economical 4x4s, SUVs and crossovers 2022

Top 10 best used small cars 2022
Ford Fiesta Mk7
Best cars
14 Jan 2022

Top 10 best used small cars 2022

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
10 Aug 2021

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Electric car charging station
Tips and advice
5 Nov 2021

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
29 Sep 2021

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
23 Jul 2021

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors 2022
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022
Ioniq 5
Best cars
19 Jan 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022
Toyota Prius front 3/4 cornering
Best cars
17 Jan 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022
Audi RS 3 driving - front view
Hot hatches
27 Oct 2021

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022