2013 Nissan Juke NISMO Test Drive

? 2013 Nissan Juke NISMO: Spirited fun?

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Nissan introduced a new and uniquely designed sport cross vehicle in 2011, inspired by the Nissan Qazana concept car that was shown earlier at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show. The hugely popular Qazana drew upon a number of lifestyle activities including motorcycles and rally cars. The Nissan Juke e is a four-door, five passenger, sporty crossover that?s based on Nissan?s B-platform, competing with other traditional B-segment hatchbacks. We will review here the even sportier version 2013 Nissan Juke NISMO.

The Juke name comes from the sports term ?to juke? or to catch one?s opponent off-guard, enhancing one?s personal competitive advantage. Juke definitely does that with a vengeance ? it is bold and athletic in its appearance, while combining the best qualities of a sporty sedan and an SUV, blending them in an innovative design form that delivers efficiency and driving fun in an affordable package.

The 2013 Juke displays a basically conventional styling approach until you look at the front end ? there, the conventionality ends. Its raised directional signals rest atop the fenders in a fashion reminiscent of the now defunct Pontiac Aztec, and what initially appears to be grossly oversized fog lamps that are placed low in front, flanking the traditional Nissan trapezoidal grille, actually happen to be the headlights. The actual fog lamps are recessed deeply into the leading lower diffuser, almost hidden from view. The Juke?s profile gives off an almost coupe-like image with its blacked-out ?B? pillar and rearward sloping roofline. The rear door handles are integrated into the leading edge of the ?C? pillar ? also blacked out. Wheel wells are emphatically pronounced by large fender-like bulges that blend gracefully into the front and rear fascias respectively. The rear hatch with its upper spoiler lip rakes aft to a blunt extrusion and short overhang is flanked by ?boomerang? style taillamps influenced by the 370Z, while delivering a somewhat Volvo-like approach.

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The interior provides a high shift point in the center console, placed within what resembles a motorcycle tank mounted console. Seating is both comfortable and supportive with the second row split into a 60/40 configuration that folds flat to provide a large cargo floor, adding to Juke?s versatility and functionality.

The 2013 Nissan Juke NISMO serves up a unique style in an attainable performance package born from motorsports. It is the fourth model to the Juke stable, and the newest addition to Nissan?s NISMO lineup, kicking off a new strategy to expand NISMO?s presence in key markets. The Juke NISMO comes with a race-inspired interior that delivers improved aerodynamic performance along with a NISMO-tuned steering and transmission aiding drivers in engaging enhanced driving dynamics. The NISMO vision and name is derived from NISsan MOtorsports. The NISMO performance group draws upon nearly 50 years of engineering and racing experience in the development of NISMO models.

The new JUKE NISMO, with its track-derived design, enhanced performance and engaging handling, gives JUKE consumers a distinct choice among the affordable S, well-equipped SV and premium SL grades of the popular crossover.

When compared to the standard Nissan JUKE, the most obvious visual change is to the front fascia and grille, modified to better control airflow to the engine. The new front end features a lower and more aggressive design. Juke?s familiar integrated fog lights have been replaced by thin-strip LED accent lights, placed at the top edge of new small vents to the side of the larger grille. On front-wheel drive versions these are blanked, but on all-wheel drive models the left-hand side vent allows air into the engine bay for the CVT oil cooler with the right-hand vent is styled to match.

The prominent upper edge of the large lower grille sports a red pinstripe, which drops dramatically to curve around the smaller vents, continuing all the way to the front wheel arches. This distinctive NISMO cue gives the nose a visual width and presence while emphasizing the Juke NISMO’s athletic road stance. The signature Nissan V-strut grille is finished in a darker shade than other JUKE models. To the right of the grille is a NISMO badge with a red “O,” stamping NISMO’s distinctive motorsport heritage on JUKE for first time. The distinctive JUKE combination lights are smoked as part of the NISMO appearance treatment.

The red pinstripe continues on the flanks of the car at the base of the doors just above the sculpted side skirts, which were reworked enhancing aerodynamic performance and directing airflow around the rear wheels and away from the car as quickly and efficiently as possible. Increasing the JUKE NISMO’s visual stance, the wheel arches are now finished entirely in the body color and are more muscular. Door mirror caps are red giving a visual indication that this is not a standard Nissan JUKE. The B-pillars are now finished in gloss “piano black,” also contributing to the sleek and sporty image. The lower front and rear fascias are finished in an anthracite tone along with the lower side skirts.

Out back, the bumper is deeper than on non-NISMO models and the red pinstripe also appears on the black sill. A redesigned body-colored liftgate spoiler and rear fascia diffuser complete the body modifications.

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The new 18-inch lightweight aluminum-alloy diamond-cut alloy wheels feature a 10 twin-spoke design finished in dark anthracite, and are shod with 225/45R18 Continental ContiSportContact5 summer tires, which provide additional grip during cornering. The wheels are one-inch larger than the standard JUKE wheels. The 2013 Nissan Juke NISMO is available in three exterior colors Sapphire Black, Brilliant Silver and Pearl White.

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Inside, the Juke NISMO’s seats, instrumentation, steering wheel, gear knob, pedals and door trims have all been redesigned to boost driver enjoyment by creating a more performance-oriented environment. Front seats were redesigned providing additional lateral support. Trimmed in suede, they feature vibrant red stitching. Red is also used as a background to the tachometer and also appears on the steering wheel stitching, which is finished in Alcantara and leather. The three-spoke steering wheel now includes a red marker to indicate “top dead center,” another feature derived directly from racing. Rear seats also feature red stitching.

In the footwell, standard black rubber pedals are upgraded to a metallic finish, with a NISMO badge visible on the dead pedal. The NISMO logo has also been precision-stitched into the seatbacks.

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In the powertrain department, both power and torque have been increased without compromising emissions and efficiency for use in the Juke NISMO, which is rated at 197 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque, versus the standard Juke’s 188-horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque. The engine is positioned forward in a transverse orientation, driving either the front wheels or all four wheels via Nissan?s torque-vectoring AWD system. The front-wheel drive Juke NISMO is equipped with a 6-speed manual transmission that features three boost modes: Normal; Sport and Eco, while the all-wheel drive version comes with a sport-tuned version of Nissan’s advanced Xtronic CVT? (Continuously Variable Transmission) with manual mode.

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Suspension componentry consists of independent MacPherson struts up front with a 23mm stabilizer bar, and a torsion beam (FWD) and a multi-link (AWD) setup in the rear, also with stabilizer bar. Braking chores are handled by power-assisted 4-wheel disc brakes with ABS, Electronic Brake force Distribution and Brake Assist.

SUMMARY: The 2013 Nissan Juke NISMO provides a breath of fresh air in both its styling (which tends to grow on you after awhile) and in performance. The NISMO?s enhanced 1.6-liter motor delivers plenty of punch for a four-banger, and the 6-speed manual gearbox delivers a high fun factor. The boost modes appear in the IP on an alternate screen with the climate control and actually provide three very different levels of acceleration.

Handling characteristics are spot on, and the ride quality, though firm and planted is not uncomfortable. The 2013 Juke NISMO is sure to attract sports oriented consumers of either gender who enjoy spirited driving characteristics in a well-equipped, high performance, yet affordable and value-laden package.

Admittedly, the Juke NISMO?s unusual design won?t appeal to everyone?s taste, but for those looking for a fun-to-drive ride that won?t break the bank, check out the NISMO version Juke.
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[wptabtitle] SPECIFICATIONS: 2013 Nissan Juke NISMO [/wptabtitle]
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Base Price: $22,990.
Price as Tested: $25,195.
Engine Type and Size: 1.6-liter, DOHC, 16-valve aluminum- alloy inline 4-cylinder, turbocharged with intercooler and Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG).
Horsepower (bhp): 197 @ 6,000 rpm
Torque (ft./ lbs.): 184 @2,000-5,200 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed manual.
Drive Train: Transversely mounted front engine / Front-Wheel Drive.
Suspension: Front – Independent strut with 23mm stabilizer bar.
Rear – Torsion beam with integrated stabilizer bar.

Brakes: Power-assisted 4-wheel disc brakes (vented front) with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA).

Tires: Continental ContiSportContact P225/55 R18 Y XL summer, mounted on 5-double spoke aluminum alloy wheels.

Wheelbase:?99.6 inches

Length Overall:?163.8 inches

Width:?69.7 inches

Height:?61.8 inches

Curb Weight:?2,930 lbs.

Fuel Capacity:?13.2 gallons

EPA Mileage Estimates:?27-mpg city / 32-mpg highway

Drag Coefficient:?0.35

0 – 60 mph: Not tested.

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