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#16

in Affordable Compact SUVs

MSRP: $19,170 - $28,120
Invoice: $18,480 - $26,938
MPG: 27 City / 32 Hwy
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Nissan Juke Performance

According to the automotive press, the 2014 Nissan Juke’s peppy turbocharged engine and athletic handling make it fun to drive. It hugs the road nicely, they say, especially when equipped with all-wheel drive. An Integrated Control System with four driving modes (Normal, Sport, Eco and D-Mode) broadens the Juke’s appeal, reviewers note, letting driving enthusiasts customize their experience behind the wheel.

  • "There also little argument over the Juke's performance credentials. Its turbocharged four-cylinder engine produces brisk acceleration, while the precise steering and sport-tuned suspension deliver better handling than you might expect of a vehicle of this type. Fuel economy is even decent, at least when driven conservatively." -- Edmunds (2013)
  • "All Juke models are light on their feet, boasting nimble responses, accurate steering and unusually strong acceleration for the segment." -- Left Lane News
  • "All 2013 Nissan Jukes are fitted with a 1.6-liter ‘DIG’ (Direct Injection Gasoline) inline 4-cylinder that boasts the trifecta of modern engine tech … to deliver an impressive mix of performance and economy." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)
  • “Juke's small footprint and sporty suspension tuning means it's agile in corners. The available all-wheel drive enhances the car's road-holding prowess and is a benefit on wet and snowy roads." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
  • "An excellent turbocharged four-cylinder engine provides good acceleration." -- Car and Driver (2012)

Acceleration and Power

The 2014 Nissan Juke has a turbocharged 1.6-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 188 horsepower. The Juke Nismo has a comparably-sized engine that produces 197 horsepower. A continuously variable transmission (CVT) is standard, while a six-speed manual transmission is available on the SV trim and standard on the Nismo trim. Equipped with a CVT, the front-wheel-drive Juke gets an EPA-estimated 27/32 mpg city/highway, which is excellent for an affordable compact SUV. All-wheel drive models yield 25/30 mpg. All models use premium gasoline, which is unusual for a non-luxury crossover.

Reviewers say that front- and all-wheel drive Juke models both have peppy acceleration and plenty of power. While test drivers like the Juke’s responsive CVT, some say the shifter feels a bit rubbery on models equipped with the manual transmission.

  • "With its waiflike mass, the 2014 Nissan JUKE NISMO zips about happily and sounds good doing it." -- AutoTrader
  • "In Edmunds testing, a front-wheel-drive Juke with a CVT went from zero to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds, an impressively quick time for this category. An all-wheel-drive model was essentially just as quick.” -- Edmunds (2013)
  • "The manual transmission shifts smoothly, with agreeable clutch action. However, some testers thought that the NISMO's shifter felt a bit rubbery, given that model's performance focus. The CVT is alert and responsive. The ‘D-Mode’ feature allows the driver to dial in a peppier or more-relaxed throttle response." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
  • "Nissan once again makes the most of its engineering ingenuity by delivering a compact crossover that performs like a low-slung pocket rocket." -- Kelley Blue Book (2012)

Handling and Braking

Reviewers are impressed with the Nissan Juke’s responsive steering and firm brakes, and note that the Juke has a comfortable, controlled ride. At the same time, the Juke is nimble around curves, test drivers report. The available all-wheel drive gives the Juke excellent road grip and a sport mode adds some fun behind the wheel, reviewers note.

  • "Credit must be given to the buttoned-down suspension, which keeps the wheels planted and helps prevent wheel spin. The JUKE NISMO also provides an impressive level of communication from the steering and brakes." -- AutoTrader
  • "‘D-Mode’ system's Sport setting sharpens the steering feel for spirited driving." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
  • "The 2013 Nissan Juke SUV's taut suspension is adept in minimizing body roll and lean, with only a minimal trade-off in the areas of ride comfort. The electric-assist power steering feels pretty spot-on, although we'd still prefer a hydraulic setup in a car like this." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)
  • "Get the Juke on a serpentine stretch of road and it's in its element, happily bounding from corner to corner. Steering is well-weighted and the suspension provides crisp response, while the big (for a car this size) tires hang in there as you push it harder." -- Edmunds (2012)
Review Last Updated: 5/14/14

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