Sporty/performance car; Built in Japan
  • 4-door hatchback
  • transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $15,300 – $23,000*

2011 Nissan Juke Front

2011 Nissan Juke Profile

2011 Nissan Juke Rear

2011 Nissan Juke Interior

  • All-wheel drive
  • Climate controls
  • Maneuverability
  • Engine noise
  • Passenger room
  • Rear-seat entry/exit

Radical styling, a peppy turbocharged powertrain, nimble handling, and available all-wheel drive give Nissan’s Juke a distinct, sporty personality that stands out among similarly-sized subcompact and sporty/performance cars. Those bonuses place Juke on our Recommended list. Despite its SUV-influenced design elements, Juke gives up some practicality in exchange for its expressive attitude in that it’s not as space-efficient as many small hatchbacks. Combined with relatively high prices when new, that makes Juke less compelling than most subcompacts, but likely a good used-car value when compared with many sporty/performance models.


Introduced for 2011, Nissan’s Juke was a new subcompact car from this Japanese automaker, built on the global-B platform. Specifically, Juke was a four-door hatchback with seating for five and boldly aggressive styling that blended sports-car and compact-SUV elements. Three trim levels were offered: base S, mid-level SV, and top-line SL. Each came with either front-wheel drive or Torque Vectoring all-wheel drive. The sole engine was a 188-horsepower, direct-injected, 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. All Jukes could have a continuously variable transmission (CVT) that behaved like an automatic. The front-drive SV and SL could be equipped instead with a six-speed manual gearbox. The gearshift lever sat atop a center console, said to be inspired by a motorcycle’s fuel tank. An Integrated Control selector offered three throttle/transmission/steering-response settings: Normal, Sport, and Eco.

Standard safety features included all-disc antilock braking, traction control, an antiskid system, curtain side airbags, and front side airbags. Standard wheels held 17-inch tires. Among the available features were a wireless cell-phone link, keyless access/engine start, leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a navigation system. Though its distinctive design almost placed the Juke in a class by itself, it competed against such subcompacts as the Ford Fiesta, Honda Fit, Mini Cooper, and Volkswagen GTI.

Yearly Updates

2012 Juke
Except for a couple of minor revisions to option groups, plus new body colors, no significant changes were made to the 2012 Nissan Juke.
2013 Juke
The 2013 Nissan Juke lineup saw the addition of a performance-oriented NISMO version. Other Jukes received only minor changes–the SV model’s optional navigation system now included a rear-view camera, a center armrest was added to the options list, and a Midnight Edition appearance package that included black wheels and trim became available.
2014 Juke
The 2014 Juke lineup added two new paint colors–the imaginatively named Red Alert and Bordeaux Black. Midyear, a higher-performance NISMO RS model debuted.


transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive

In all base and all-wheel-drive Jukes, a turbocharged, direct-injected 188-horsepower, 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine mated with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). Front-drive SV and SL models may instead be equipped with a six-speed manual transmission. The new-for-2013 NISMO model used a hopped-up version of the turbocharged 1.6-liter engine that was rated at 197 horsepower. Front-drive NISMOs all came with the 6-speed manual transmission, and the AWD version was CVT only. During 2014 Nissan added an even more muscular NISMO RS model. Front drive versions had 215 horsepower and a 6-speed manual transmission, and the AWD version had 211 horsepower and a CVT.

Turbocharged dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.6/98
Engine HP 188
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 170
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed manual
CVT automatic
Turbocharged dohc I41
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.6/98
Engine HP 197
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 184
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed manual
CVT automatic
Turbocharged dohc I43
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.6/98
Engine HP 211
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 184
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
CVT automatic


Turbocharged dohc I42
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.6/98
Engine HP 215
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 210
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed manual


1. Juke NISMO. 2. Juke NISMO RS 2WD. 3. Juke NISMO RS AWD.

Road Test

No Juke is particularly snappy off the line, but acceleration picks up nicely once the turbocharger kicks in–especially in the NISMO. Once underway, throttle response is peppy. With all-wheel drive, it sometimes takes the system a brief moment to send power to the rear wheels when the front tires slip. Nissan’s manual transmission shifts smoothly, helped by agreeable clutch action. However, some testers thought that the front-drive NISMO’s shifter felt a bit rubbery, disappointing given that model’s performance focus. The CVT is alert and responsive. SV and SL models came with a “D-mode” drive-mode selector that alters throttle, transmission, and steering response between three settings: Normal, Sport, and Eco. Sport mode delivers sharper throttle response and CVT performance; Eco mode softens both for maximum efficiency. No opportunity to evaluate a NISMO RS.

Fuel economy is appealing. In Consumer Guide testing, an extended-use AWD Juke SV averaged 24.5 mpg. All-wheel drive drops the CVT’s EPA estimate from 27/32 mpg to 25/30 mpg. Nissan recommends premium-grade gas. Note that front-wheel-drive Juke models have a 13.2-gallon fuel tank, whereas the tank on AWD versions holds 11.8 gallons.

Ride quality is decent for a small, sporty car. Small bumps are absorbed well, but medium and larger imperfections can pound through the cabin. This behavior is not unexpected, given the Juke’s sporty suspension tuning and short wheelbase, but harshness is minimal. Juke NISMO’s sport suspension and 18-inch wheels team up to make a slightly stiffer ride.

Thanks in part to a fairly wide track (distance between wheels on the same axle) and standard 17-inch tires, all Jukes offer sporty, nimble moves. NISMO models are a bit more agile. AWD models deliver an extra measure of road-holding grip. The “D-Mode” system’s Sport setting sharpens the steering feel for spirited driving.

Juke’s engine whirs loudly during fast acceleration, and sound doesn’t fully recede at cruise. The CVT is partially to blame here, as it can allow engine speed to race ahead of road speed. Tire noise is usually well muffled, though wind noise can intrude at highway speeds.

Backlit gauges are clearly marked and unobstructed. Stereo and climate controls are easily accessible. SV and SL models have a unique “Integrated Control System (I-CON)” panel that switches from climate to “D-Mode” controls at the touch of a button. It includes a color screen that displays various vehicle-info and fuel-economy readouts. Juke’s interior styling is as bold as its exterior, though some cost-cutting is evident. The headliner is budget grade, for example, and several plastic pieces are lackluster. However, some satin-finish trim and the high-gloss console and door trim add visual interest. Upholstery ascends in quality and style through the trim levels: S models have basic cloth seats, SVs have sportier cloth upholstery with suede-like inserts, and SLs benefit from handsome leather. NISMO models have a convincingly high-performance feel thanks to numerous distinct trim features. The model’s synthetic-suede upholstery helps make them feel a bit more upscale too.

Front-seat space is adequate for most adults, though very tall occupants might feel cramped. The sunroof’s housing cuts slightly into headroom, and passenger-side knee room is stingy. Some drivers have complained about being unable to get comfortable, due to the pedals being too close and the steering wheel too far away. A telescopic steering wheel would help, but that feature has been unavailable. Also unavailable: a center armrest. In addition, sun visors aren’t extendable, and don’t reach far enough back along the side windows to provide adequate shade. On the plus side, a tall-for-the-class seating position provides a relatively commanding view of the road, and the SL model’s heated front seats are a welcome feature that’s rare for this segment. Generously sized exterior rear-view mirrors contribute to good all-around visibility, though thick rear roof pillars slightly obstruct views to the rear corners. NISMO models have aggressively bolstered sport seats that provide great support in fast corners, but some occupants might find them too confining.

Rear-seat space is disappointing, at least when compared to such subcompact cars as the Honda Fit, Suzuki SX4, and the automaker’s own Nissan Cube. Still, it’s better than what’s typically found among sporty/performance cars. As in front, the sunroof’s housing cuts into the already-tight headroom, and legroom is stingy as well. The back seat lacks a fold-down armrest. Small rear-door apertures are especially narrow at the bottom, which impedes entry and exit.

Cargo space is satisfactory behind the second-row seats, which fold in a 60/40 split. They fold flat, but in order to load bulky items, you need to remove the owner’s manual, which is oddly and inconveniently strapped to one of the seatbacks. Be aware, though: the front seats must be adjusted at least halfway forward first, or the rear headrests won’t clear the front seatbacks. Front-wheel-drive Jukes have a handy extra storage compartment beneath the rear load floor. Small-items storage is subpar, with no cupholders in the rear-seat area and only a bottle holder in each rear door. We’d prefer a covered storage bin/armrest in place of the small open tray at the rear of the console. The leading edge of the console has a handy tray with a grippy rubberized surface that’s intended for stowing a cell phone or MP3 player.


Model Tested: 2011 Nissan Juke SV with AWD

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.


Acceleration - 6
Fuel Economy - 7
Ride Quality - 4
Steering/Handling - 7
Quietness - 5


Controls/Materials - 6
Room/Comfort Front - 5
Room/Comfort Rear - 3
Cargo Room - 6


Value - 7

Total: 56


4-door hatchback
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
99.6 162.4 69.5 61.8
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
35.9 13.2 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.6 36.7 42.1 32.1
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2012 Nissan Juke 4-door hatchback


(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 4
Front Passenger Injury - 3

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - 4
Rear Passenger Injury - 5


(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Door handles
Description: The outside door handle latch may freeze and the carmaker issued a voluntary recall to install seals and a special grease to prevent this. (2011)
Engine noise
Description: Timing chain may deteriorate over time and distort, causing strange engine noises like rattles and ticking. If condition is ignored the timing chain can break. (2011-13)
Hard starting
Description: The engine may be hard to start after a cold soak when the outside temperature is 40 degrees F or lower (but starts normally thereafter) requiring a software update to the engine control module. (2011-12)
Keyless entry
Description: If owners have more than one Juke or Leaf (or both), the car may not run or the doors may not operate when both intelligent keys are present requiring replacement of the body control computer. (2011)
Water leak
Description: Water may leak from the sunroof in carwashes requiring an improved seal and drain. (2011-12)
Check-engine light
Description: The check engine light may illuminate but the car runs fine requiring a software update to correct a false air/fuel sensor error. (2012)

Recall History

2011 Juke
Description: Turbocharger sensor bracket on certain vehicles made from April 9, 2010 to May 12, 2011, may separate from air inlet tube due to defective weld; vehicle could stall while engine is idling without warning.
2011 Juke
Description: Fuel pressure sensors on certain vehicles may not have been tightened to correct specification; as a result, sensor may loosen due to heat and vibration, allowing fuel to leak.
2012 Juke
Description: Due to an incomplete weld, rear seat-back striker may separate in a crash.
2012-14 Juke
Description: Certain 2012 through 2014 model Nissan Juke vehicles may have fuel pressure sensors that were not properly tightened during production. The sensor may loosen over time and cause a fuel leak.
2013-14 Juke
Description: Certain 2013 and 2014 model Nissan Juke vehicles made between July 3, 2013 and October 22, 2013 may have engine stop/start buttons that can become stuck inside the button housing.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.


Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.

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