Nissan Juke Review
The 2014 Nissan Juke ranks 16 out of 22 Affordable Compact SUVs. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Nissan Juke, as well as reliability and safety data.
The 2014 Nissan Juke is ranked:
The Nissan Juke turns heads with its unique styling and sporty dynamics, but rival crossovers offer roomier cabins and more cargo space, reviewers say.
The 2014 Nissan Juke is equipped with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine that reviewers say provides ample power and zippy acceleration, especially in the more powerful, performance-tuned Nismo trim. Test drivers report that the standard continuously variable transmission (CVT) is responsive and that the optional six-speed manual has a shifter that feels a bit rubbery at times. Equipped with a CVT and front-wheel drive, the Juke gets an EPA-estimated 27/32 mpg city/highway, which is excellent for the class. The Juke is one of the few affordable compact SUVs that calls for premium gasoline. Reviewers like the extra grip provided by the all-wheel drive system, which is available on all trims. In addition, test drivers say that responsive steering, strong brakes and nimble handling make the Juke fun to drive.
The automotive press agrees that the Juke’s cabin is stylish and sporty, though some say the use of hard plastic materials can make it feel cheap. Front seats are well-bolstered and comfy, reviewers say. Critics note that the lack of a telescoping steering wheel makes it hard to find a good driving position. A low roofline makes the back seat cramped and headroom is at a premium, reviewers say. The Juke has roughly half the cargo space of many rivals in the class, and some test drivers say this makes it a less practical choice. Standard features include a six-speaker audio system, an iPod interface, Bluetooth phone connectivity, keyless entry and steering wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls. Optional features include a USB port, a Rockford Fosgate audio system, satellite radio, a touch-screen navigation system, push-button start, a moonroof and a rearview camera. Reviewers say that the Juke’s audio and climate controls are well-placed and intuitive and large dials make them easy to operate.
- “Cramped rear seats and limited cargo space mean the Juke isn't for everyone, but those who like the styling and prioritize driving enjoyment should take a close look." -- Left Lane News
- "All told, the 2014 Nissan JUKE NISMO is an all-around excellent performance vehicle with a ton of personality. The base price is $22,900, but even at an as-tested price of $25,195 (including destination fee, a center armrest and the Navigation Package) the JUKE NISMO represents an interesting and expressive alternative to other performance hatchbacks, such as the MINI Cooper S and FIAT 500 Abarth." -- AutoTrader
- "While more conventional, but less-powerful and in many cases less well-equipped rivals like the Subaru XV Crosstrek, Suzuki SX4 Sportback and Toyota Matrix XRS Sport can be had for about the same or less, none can match the performance of any Juke variant." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)
- “Radical styling, a peppy turbocharged powertrain, nimble handling, and available all-wheel drive give the Juke a distinct, sporty personality that stands out among similarly sized subcompact and sporty/performance cars." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
Other SUVs to Consider
The Mazda CX-5 gets excellent fuel economy and reviewers think it’s one of the most engaging compact SUVs to drive. Additionally, the CX-5 offers a lot more cargo space and reviewers say it has a roomy cabin that’s made with upscale materials.
The Fiat 500L isn’t an SUV, but it offers plenty of cargo space. Reviewers like its snappy Italian styling and wrap-around windows, saying they let in a lot of light. They also say the cabin is roomy, and the 500L has a smooth and steady ride.
Details: 2014 Nissan Juke
The 2014 Nissan Juke seats five and is available in four trims: S, SV, SL and Nismo. All models have a turbocharged 1.6-liter, four-cylinder engine. A continuously variable transmission is standard, and a six-speed manual is available on the SV trim and standard on the Juke Nismo. All-wheel drive is optional on every trim. The Juke has seen few changes since its introduction in the 2011 model year, so this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2011 to 2014 model years.