I repeat, this is not a Joke. For about 3 years, Nissan has been teasing us with the potential launch of the new Juke. It was previewed in the Philippine International Motor Show in 2012, and it even created rumors that the car will be launched sometime in the same year. It was only when Nissan had a change in management in 2014, now being controlled directly by Nissan from Japan, when they have finalized their plans to bring in the Juke to the Philippines.
First and foremost, the design is one of the most unique aspects of the Juke. It looks very different, and the jury is still out whether this is a good looking small crossover or not, but for me, the Juke looks handsome and appealing. Every nook and cranny of the vehicle is stylized, all the way down to the Juke’s rear diffuser.
Inside, the uniqueness continues. Instantly recognizable is the interior’s center console, which can be matched with the car’s body color. The shape and concept of the center console has been inspired from the design of a motorbike’s gas tank. Just below the touchscreen audio system is the car’s control panel for the climate control and the car’s driving modes.
Under the hood is a 1.6 liter 4-cylinder petrol engine, producing 114 hp and 154 Nm of torque. Power is sent through the front wheels, via a CVT. All wheel drive is not available, even as an option.
For the Nissan Juke’s price tag of P980,000, the car is very well kitted out. There are plenty of standard features, which include a smart key with push button start, automatic headlamps, touch screen audio system, Bluetooth telephone and audio, and a plethora of safety features such as ABS with EBD, Brake Assist, and Dual SRS Airbags.
It can be credited that Nissan has popularized the subcompact SUV by introducing the Juke. They were one of the first in the international market, but is it too little, too late for Nissan to introduce the Juke here? Maybe, but with the Juke’s excellent pricing, it’s hard to find any reason why this won’t be a success, considering our market is prone to floods, and many Filipino buyers are preferring SUVs because of this.