Nissan Juke – An honest review of a controversial car

The Nissan Juke’s gonna be an 
interesting car for me to review because  
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, or actually had 
a look at any of the reviews of this car online  
it’s not the most highly regarded car on the 
internet. I just wanted to know – is it  
true? Or is it just one of those cars that people 
like to get on the bandwagon of hating the car?
So the Nissan Juke came out way back in 2010 – it’s 
a compact crossover car and it’s the very first  
of the really small cars that are basically jacked 
up on stilts. You’re obviously higher up than your  
average car which gives you a commanding 
view of the road. It’s got very light steering, so it  
feels like it’s very easy to maneuver around 
town. It does feel like a little  
city car in that regard. The clutch is actually 
quite stiff, which is a unexpected for a city  
car. It’s not very long – it’s only slightly 
longer than a Nissan Micra, so although it looks  
like a big car – it isn’t. The bonnet you can 
see in front of you, and you can see  
the lights which are designed by Nissan to 
give you a position indicator of where  

the front of the car is – and it does work. And at 
night time you can even see the indicator working  
so they look pretty cool. You’ve got 
huge wing mirrors, in that you can see the
bizarre shape of the car – the rear arches which 
protrude from the back of the car and give it that  
haunched look. The Juke is a strange 
looking car, and I actually don’t mind how it looks.  
I think it’s quite an interesting design, and at 
least they tried to do something with it, but I can  
certainly understand why some people think it’s 
strange looking. The side of the car with the glass  
that pinches back and gets smaller – that’s 
supposed to look like a motorcycle helmet visor.  
Trying to make it a bit like a coupe style design, 
you’ve got the the rear door handles which are hidden  
in the back plastic part of the top of the 
door – I thought that was a recent trend but  
Nissan have been doing it since the 80’s with 
their Pathfinder. I like this general layout 
of everything in front of me, 
you’ve got these two big obvious dials for  
the revs and speed, you’ve got this little screen 
in the middle which puts everything condensed into  
this one little screen, so you’ve got all your 
information which you can switch between on  
the steering wheel – MPG and miles remaining. Nice 
steering wheel in front of you, it’s got all of  
the controls you need on it including radio and 
phone and your cruise control as well which   
I always like cruise control on the steering 
wheel because it’s easy to just flick on and  
off. The centre console here – surrounding the 
gear stick – is supposed to be like a fuel tank  
on a motorcycle, and then you’ve got these weird 
like ring pull type door handles on the doors.
True to form of the the crossover class, this 
car is front wheel drive. Now you can get it as  
all-wheel drive but so few are available with 
that system. In terms of its off-roading ability  
of course it doesn’t have any, but what it does 
have is some ground clearance which means that  
when you’re coming up to potholes and curbs and 
things that you would otherwise be fairly  
fearful of in your regular hatchback, you can just 
kind of go over it in this. You’ve got quite a good view  
out the back window, there is a
blind spot and the rear three quarter c-pillar  
of the car – it’s quite fat. The ride comfort 
is the first thing I noticed that I’m not  
so impressed with, and it’s because it feels 
quite firm and uncomfortable really in some  
situations where you’re hitting big potholes or 
bumpy bits of road, and you’d think with it being… 
*hits a pothole* woah there we go…
raised up off the ground and with 
lots of suspension it’d be more comfortable but
I think that’s because Nissan wanted to build 
a crossover car that had a high centre of  
gravity but they still wanted to make it handle 
all right as well. There were a few different  
engines available – this one’s got the 1.5 diesel 
which is a good all-rounder if you want a diesel.  
It’s got enough performance – over 150 
miles in this car I got 65 mpg which is really  
impressive. It’s £20 a year to tax if you 
get a car that’s pre 2017 in the UK. But of course  
there were also petrols available – initially a 1.6 
litre and a 1.6 litre turbo, which was actually  
quite quick! Later on – and it became quite a popular 
engine – was the 1.2 litre turbo petrol as well.
With this being the Tekna model, it’s quite 
a high-spec one but the Juke did come with all  
sorts of interesting kit on it. This one’s got four 
cameras – one at the front, one at the back and one on  
each wing mirror. It’s got lane keep assist, blind 
spot monitoring, it’s got keyless entry. Most  
systems you have the key in your pocket and you get 
in the car, with this one you have your key in your  
pocket but you have to press a button on the door 
to open the door, and I quite like that because  
you can use the button to lock it as well, and it 
means that you know that the car is locked and you  
don’t have to like walk away wondering if it’s 
locked itself or not. In all but the lowest spec  
Juke you’ll get this thing called the I-CON climate 
control system. Now it’s in ‘Climate’, all the buttons  
are for the climate control, but then when you 
switch it into ‘Drive Mode’ all the buttons change  
and you’ve got these different drive modes 
like Normal, Eco and Sport – Nissan GT-R style stuff,  
like being able to see the G-force and the torque 
of the car which is just… it’s pointless.
It’s kind of a quirky little feature, but there’s no 
real way of me looking down at that while I’m  
driving around these corners. So because of that 
firm suspension, it does feel quite good  
to drive actually, for one of these 
sorts of cars, it doesn’t handle too badly. There  
isn’t much body roll like you’d expect there to be 
on a raised up car. I’m gonna put it into sport and 
see how the car behaves… oh hello! Pretty sure the 
steering feels heavier! I’m just gonna  
change it back to normal – yeah that’s quite light –
and then sport mode, I really wasn’t expecting that.
I thought it would just be a throttle thing – 
makes the throttle more responsive or whatever.
Bloody ‘ell!
Getting comfortable in this car, you 
can adjust the steering wheel up and down  
but you can’t adjust it outwards – there’s no 
adjustment for like lumbar support or anything so  
your back is just going to be in whatever position 
your back’s in, which over distance I find that the  
the seats – especially these leather ones – 
they’re quite hard and uncomfortable.  
Practicalities up front in this car – the fat bottomed
bottle, it sort of fits in the cup holders but  
it doesn’t fully go down to the bottom.
And again for the side door pockets it kind of  
half wedges in to it. You’ve got this arm rest 
here which gets in the way of the handbrake when  
it’s down, which is kind of annoying, and then 
inside it it’s got a little cubby hole.  
Glovebox, which is on the smallish side. A little tray 
here in the centre console, and then next to it  
you’ve got aux-in and USB. There’s a mirror in the 
sun-visor, but there’s no light around it so it’s  
not going to illuminate your face at night when 
you’re doing your makeup. It’s now time to ask  
Backseat JJ what he thinks of the back seats 
of the Nissan Juke?   
Yeah no problem mate! As you
can see I’m just about fitting, my knees 
are just there, my head’s just touching the roof  
It is only a small car though remember?   
that’s that’s a good point actually.
It is a little
bit dingy, these are 
tinted windows here, and they’re quite narrow so  
sort of a little bit claustrophobic. Also have you 
told them about the safety features of the Nissan  
Juke – it’s a five-star Euro NCAP car, so it’s a 
pretty safe car. If you get a post 2015 facelift  
Juke then the boot is actually bigger – you get 
space underneath where you can  
lower the floor and fit more stuff in, or you can 
keep the floor where it is and have a flat load  
lip so you can slide things in easier. The seats 
fold 60/40 and when they fold they fold totally  
flat which is really good, not all cars will do 
that. So it’s reasonably practical back here but  
especially if you get the facelift model.   
You don’t 
just get a reverse camera on this car – you get
a reverse camera, a camera on the front and 
then one in each wing mirror so  
you get four cameras and then Nissan stitch it all 
together into this like 360 degree surround view  
of the car. So when you are in reverse 
it will automatically put it on and if you press this  
camera button here it will also bring it on. It 
kind of looks like you’ve got a drone flying  
above the car that can see everything around 
the car. It’s really quite a cool bit of tech.
In the 80’s and 90’s Nissan was a byword for 
reliability. It’s not really the case anymore  
– these are not unreliable – but there are some issues. 
This one’s got two of the quite common  
problems that the Juke can have – on the infotainment 
system, the radio the volume fades out to nothing  
now and again. Apparently a software update 
might sort that out. The aircon condenser is down  
at the bottom in front of the radiator, there’s 
a great big hole in front of the car to let air  
in and it’s known as the wine rack because of the 
shape of the bumper. A stone will chip the condenser  
and then all of your aircon refrigerant will just 
come out and then your aircon doesn’t work anymore.
Sadly for this diesel engine, it’s not known 
as the most reliable – it was ranked 30 out of  
35 for this kind of car with What Car. The petrols fared  
a bit better – 9th out of 
35 so that’s pretty good…is that an F355?
yeah, wow!   
Generally speaking, I think that the 
the boys up in Sunderland who built this car
they didn’t do a bad job – this is of course a UK
built car. Problem is, because the ride’s quite firm  
I can hear a bit of rattling coming 
from the back. Is the Nissan Juke as bad as some  
people make out? I’m gonna just tell you now – 
no it isn’t. It’s not a bad car,  
the only real things that I’m not a big fan 
of are the ride comfort and the seats – these  
leather seats in this Tekna version at least,
are quite firm. The design of the whole car,
I quite like it. It’s different at 
least, okay you see them everywhere now so  
it’s not as interesting as it might have once been.
What do you think about the Nissan Juke? Whether  
you’ve got one, or you’re thinking of getting one,
or you’ve just watched this video out of curiosity,
do you like the car? Do you like the style of it? 
A big thank you to Natalie for lending me the car,
and uh if you want to see a review of the Vauxhall 
Mokka which was a direct competitor to this car
click up here. It’s definitely worth looking into 
that car if you if you’re interested in this one  
and I’ll see you in the next video

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