- Funky styling
- Efficient diesel engines
- Fun to drive in the city
- Struggles on country roads
- Poor interior quality
- Small boot
Striking Crossover SUV is stylish and fun
Since its first introduction in 2011, the Nissan Juke has become a common sight on British roads. It is the car that started the trend for small crossover SUV/hatchbacks, and remains a best-seller. Produced and built in the UK, the Juke is Nissan’s second best-selling vehicle, falling just short of the ever popular Qashqai. The Juke combines unique looks, a well-designed interior, and some interesting engines, offering a solid option for small families. There’s not as much space as in a lot of rivals, nor is the quality up there with the best, but the Qashqai sells in huge numbers for a reason- it’s a car that looks and feels great.
An update in 2014 improved storage space, as well as featuring an update to trim specs.
Funky design, average quality, disappointing space
When you consider just how striking the exterior aesthetics of the Juke are, it’s good to see that some thought has been put into the design of its interior as well. Unfortunately, whilst the design is good, the quality of materials isn’t. And for a car that’s aimed at the small family market, space is tight as well.
The dashboard in the Juke is one that looks incredibly contemporary, especially for a Nissan. The dash sweeps across the car, resembling something close to the inside of a sports coupe. Material quality is unfortunately quite poor however, with a lot of hard plastics used throughout, that feels as though it could scratch quite easily. Controls similarly feel cheap, they’re well-damped, but they don’t feel as solid as they should.
Though the update in 2014 saw an increase in boot space, there’s still nowhere near as much room as in most rivals. With 354 litres back there, there’s still enough room for a family shop or a small buggy, but not much else. And when you compare it with the Skoda Yeti (416 litres), or the Renault Captur (377 litres) it’s clear that in terms of storage space, the Juke is some way behind the class leaders.
Spec levels in the Juke are pretty impressive, though the entry-level Visia doesn’t feature much as standard. You’ll get alloy wheels, air-con, and electric windows, but not much else. The best trim to go for is the Acenta Premium, which adds a touchscreen infotainment system, that adds in a sat-nav, DAB, and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as cruise control, a reversing camera, and sporty seats.
The inside of the Juke excels in some areas but disappoints in others. It’s style over substance, with attractive design but poor quality materials. Space is also limited, though kit is decent, so long as you go for a trim a couple of notches up from the entry-level Visia.
Great to drive in the city, struggles on country roads
The Nissan Juke is a car aimed primarily at city drivers. This is obvious when you drive the car around town. It struggles through winding b-roads, and it’s noisy with the optional sunroof, but if you don’t leave the city too often, it’s a fun car to drive.
Steering in the Juke is set up to be light, making weaving through city streets, and supermarket parking a doddle. It’s fun to drive in this environment, making it feel like a true city car. However, take it out on country roads and you’ll find the Juke struggles. There’s a lot less grip than you’d find in a conventional hatchback, and steering is inconsistent, so throwing it into hairpin bends is a no-no.
Ride refinement is pretty disappointing in the Juke, both in the city, and out on the open road. The ride is jittery no matter what road you’re on, as it struggles with both speed bumps, potholes, and rough surfaces. The suspension is stiff, but it’s not what you’d call sporty, so it’s difficult to see what Nissan were looking to do in this suspension set-up. Thankfully road noise is kept down to a minimum, and wind noise is only poor with the optional sunroof.
Gearbox options in the Juke come in two forms, a 6-speed manual that’s standard across the range, and a noisy CVT automatic transmission. The latter does not suit the Juke at all, increasing both volume and decreasing fuel efficiency. The 6-speed manual does the job reasonably well, and is definitely the one we’d go for.
A good range of engines on display
When it comes to deciding how you want to power your Juke, you’ve got the usual two options: petrol, or diesel. Entry-level 1.6 litre petrol is the worst in the range, with the 1.2 litre turbocharged petrol, and the efficient 1.5 litre diesel impressing the most.
If it’s power that you want from your Juke, look no further than the petrol-powered 1.6 DiG-T Nismo RS. With 218bhp, you’ll be going from 0-62mph in just 7 seconds. That’s pretty impressive for a compact crossover SUV, though the engine may be a little too thirsty for some drivers, with the Juke peaking at 39.2mpg, and it’s not one for the eco-warriers either, with 168g/km of C02 being emitted.
If you are interested in saving the planet, the best model in the range is the diesel-powered 1.5 dCi. With just 104g/km of C02 emissions, you’ll be helping to reduce carbon emissions, as well as saving yourself some money on road tax. This engine is also the one to go for for the money savers out there. With up to 70.6mpg on offer, you can save yourself plenty of money at the petrol pumps.
There’s a decent range of engines on offer in the Juke, though the diesel on offer is perhaps the most impressive. It offers decent performance, impressive fuel efficiency, and is good for the environment.
Full marks in NCAP safety tests, good standard kit
Like nearly every car in its class, the Juke easily achieved the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. With scores of 87% in adult occupant safety, 81% in child occupant safety, and 41% in pedestrian safety, the Juke is a pretty safe car, though the pedestrian safety rating could be better. You’ll also get airbags, stability control, and ABS as standard. An upgrade to the Tech Pack is a reasonable addition, and adds a parking camera, lane assist, and a moving object detection system. If you’re interested in safety, this is worth considering.
Reasonably good value for money, so long as you avoid the cost of new-car depreciation
The Nissan Juke offers buyers pretty impressive value for money. This obviously varies from model to model, but so long as you avoid the thirstier, more powerful petrol engines, you shouldn’t be paying too much at the pumps, or on road tax every year. The 1.5 diesel offers the best day-to-day value in the range, with impressive fuel consumption and C02 emissions.
Insurance wise, the Juke is also pretty cheap car. This again depends on which trim you go for, but roughly speaking, you won’t be paying any more than you should be. The cheapest model in the range is the 1.6 Visia, which sits in group 8, whilst the most expensive model is the 1.6 DiG-T Nismo, which is group 26. The car we’d recommend is the 1.5 dCi Acenta Premium, which is reasonably priced in group 12.
Depreciation is one area that particularly affects the Juke, but only for the first year. With first year depreciation as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
The Nissan Juke is one of the funkiest, and the original compact SUV crossover. It’s not the market leader when it comes to quality, but design-wise it’s hard to beat. There’s also a decent set of engines, with an impressive diesel being the highlight. Space is sadly lacking for a car geared towards small families, but overall, it’s a pretty solid car.
Buying a used Nissan Juke online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Nissan Juke for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used Juke. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Nissan Juke online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Juke? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Nissan Juke, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used Juke, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Carspring Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Nissan to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.