Nissan won't have its official press conference for a few hours, but we've already snagged these shots of the production Juke, an oddly styled smaller-than-you-think crossover that's poised to hit North America for 2011. In person, the Juke is perhaps less bizarre than one might think, with the exuberance of its alien face reined in with comparatively modest alloy wheels, traditional doors and Volvo C30-like taillamps. If you're wondering where the Juke fits into the Nissan lineup that already has the Murano, Rogue and the Qashqai, this vehicle is markedly smaller than the Murano and actually appears smaller than the Rogue.
The interior is pure Nissan, though it looks like the Japanese automaker has put a few more dollars into some of its interior plastics and materials than it has in the past. In particular, the new HVAC controls have a crisp and colorful display, and the transmission tunnel has a quasi motorcycle-tank look about it.
For Europe, the Juke is available with a pair of 1.6-liter gasoline engines in either normally aspirated or turbocharged direct-injected form, as well as a 1.5-liter diesel, the latter of which is unlikely to make it to North America. The compact CUV will be made in both front- and all-wheel drive configurations, the latter being a newly developed torque-vectoring system dubbed ALL-Mode 4x4-i that is capable of splitting power 50:50 from front-to-rear as well as side-to-side.
We expect to see the Juke make its North American debut in New York. While you're waiting, check out our high-res galleries below and the official press release after the jump.
Live photos by Chris Paukert / Copyright ©2010 Weblogs, Inc.
• Compact SUV meets sports car....
• .....to challenge small car traditions
• To be produced in Europe and Japan
• To be sold globally, including Europe, Japan & US
• Powerful new turbocharged direct-injection gasoline engine
• New torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system
PARIS, France (Feb 10, 2010) - Nissan today revealed for the first time its all-new small Crossover, Juke.
Designed to offer a refreshing alternative for customers who are shopping in the small car segment of the market, but uninspired by the traditional offerings, Juke is a distinctive combination of SUV toughness and sporting style. Juke will inject some much needed masculinity and dynamism into the small car market.
The decision to introduce the industry's fisrst small crossover into the small car market reflects Nissan's philosophy of challenging conventions in Europe. "In the last five years we have enjoyed significant growth in a crowded European market. This has been achieved by challenging traditional patterns and moving away from the C and D segments. Instead, we have pioneered the introduction of crossovers. We started with Murano and then, in higher volumes, with Qashqai - a car which has far exceeded our expectations. Sales have exceeded half-a-million in Europe in less than 3 years," said Colin Dodge, Executive Vice President.
Juke will be manufactured in Europe at Nissan's factory in Sunderland, England, and in Oppama, Japan. In Europe, its production alongside the Note compact family car and Qashqai crossover is the result of an investment in excess of 60m Euros, which safeguards over 1000 Nissan jobs, and more than 2000 in the supply chain. Sales of Juke will begin in Japan in the summer, with the European and North American launch beginning in the autumn.
From a design standpoint, the lower portion of Juke is pure SUV. It combines chunky wheels, wide tyres, extended ground clearance and a robust stance with a top portion that is unadulterated sports car, with a high waistline, slim visor-like side glass graphics and a coupé-style falling roofline. The coupé effect is further underlined by the rear doors which have their handles hidden in the frame of the door.
Inside, the sports car theme continues with a driver-focused cabin dominated by a centre console design inspired by a motorcycle fuel tank. Finished in a distinctive high gloss colour, the 'bike' console adds a sense of fun to the car. Practicality is assured by the rear-opening hatch and versatile luggage area with hidden storage opportunities.
Speaking at the launch, Nissan's Senior Vice President for Design and Chief Creative Officer, Shiro Nakamura, said: "It was our intention to challenge the conventions. I really think Juke will bring something different for customers - something more emotional, energetic, more masculine".
Juke is based on the Renault Nissan Alliance B platform and has a 2530mm wheelbase, is 4135mm long, 1765mm wide and 1570mm tall. On front-wheel drive versions, suspension is by MacPherson struts at the front with a torsion beam at the rear while four-wheel drive models have a multi-link rear suspension modelled on the system found on Qashqai.
The ALL-MODE 4x4-i, is a new development of Nissan's respected electronic all-wheel drive system and now features torque-vectoring technology to enhance agility and reduce understeer when cornering. As well splitting torque front to rear - up to a maximum of 50:50 - it can now be split from side-to-side across the rear axle, too.
Cornering ability is enhanced by sending increased torque to the outside rear wheel, reducing understeer. In total, up to 50% of the total available engine torque can be sent to either rear wheel. The inclusion of this innovation is a first in the small car segment - a technology that has, until now, only been found on top-of-the-range, premium vehicles.
Engines & transmissions
In Europe, three different engines will be available when sales start later in the year: one diesel and two 1.6-litre petrol units, all fully Euro 5 compliant. At the top of the range is a new turbocharged petrol engine (MR16DDT) with direct injection. The engine is one of the most powerful in its class, developing 140kW (190PS) and 240 Nm. The combination of direct injection with a turbocharger provides the power and responses expected from a 2.5-litre engine with the economy of a smaller engine.
The second petrol engine is a newly developed version from Nissan's trusted HR-family. Designated HR16DE, the lightweight, low-friction 16-valve unit now has a unique dual-injection system allowing finer metering of the fuel sprays for better combustion and develops 86kW (117 PS). Finally, the K9K 81kW (110PS) 1.5-litre dCI common rail diesel offers excellent driveability - thanks to its heady 240 Nm of torque - with good economy and emissions.
In terms of transmissions, the two-wheel drive turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol engine is available with a six-speed manual transmission. Nissan's XTRONIC CVT transmission, with a six-speed manual mode, will be available on the range-topping all-wheel-drive version of the turbocharged petrol engine. The naturally aspirated 1.6-litre petrol is available either with a 5-speed manual or the updated XTRONIC CVT, while the 1.5-litre diesel engine is available with a 6-speed manual.
Lists of standard and optional equipment will be released nearer the on sale date, but expected items such as climate control, leather upholstery, rear view camera and Intelligent Key will all be available to Juke customers along with some more unusual features.
One such is the Nissan Dynamic Control System, a central command and display module which allows the driver to alter dynamic drive settings as well as make changes to more obvious functions such as climate control. The display, meanwhile, shows engine and drive related dials and information.
"At Nissan, we are working hard to bring more value to the brand through great design, quality, and driving pleasure. For me, Juke represents so much of what Nissan is and will reinforce Nissan's position as a global leader of design innovation, but also as the global pioneer in crossovers," said Shiro Nakamura
Updated XTRONIC CVT
XTRONIC CVT M6