New Car Reviews

2011 Nissan Juke SV FWD M/T – Four Seasons Introduction

Long-Term Update: Summer 2011 Array Miles to date: 0

The Juke is the latest in a long line of truly distinctive cars that have helped Nissan stand out from the automotive crowd. (Besides the current Leaf, Cube, and GT-R, let’s not forget about the Pulsar NX, the Japanese-market S-Cargo, and the Figaro of the late 1980s and early ’90s). Already, the Juke’s looks have been likened on this website to those of a frog, a deep-sea fish, and a Pontiac Aztek. This peculiar-looking, inexpensive crossover, like the Cube, is built on the underpinnings of the even-more-affordable Nissan Versa hatchback. Clearly, plenty of people are pleased with the aesthetic pizzazz offered for a starting price of just $20,330 — Americans bought more than 29,000 Jukes in the vehicle’s first ten months on sale (through July 2011).

Being fans of cars with character — and having recently completed a one-year test of a 2009 Nissan Cube — we were quick to order a Juke for a Four Seasons test. We enjoyed driving an all-wheel-drive Juke SV in Michigan’s snowy Upper Peninsula for our May issue and for this comparison with a MINI Cooper Countryman last winter, but we opted for a front-wheel-drive Juke for the long-term test, so we could get a stick shift (all-wheel drive is available only with Nissan’s continuously variable transmission). The six-speed manual should pair well with the Juke’s 188-hp, 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, a direct-injected engine offered for the first time in North America in the Juke. We likely would have saved some money at the pump, however, if we had gotten the front-wheel-drive CVT. That combination is EPA-rated at 27/32 mpg city/highway, versus the stick shift’s 24/31 mpg.

Our Juke is the midlevel SV edition, which — compared with the $1310-cheaper S base model — adds a sunroof, a pushbutton ignition, XM satellite radio, suede-trimmed seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. It also comes with Nissan’s I-CON system (for Integrated Control), which offers three driving modes (Sport, Normal, and Eco) and cleverly uses the same control knobs and buttons as the climate-control system. Notable features on all Jukes include air-conditioning; power windows, mirrors, and door locks; an auxiliary input for audio toys; steering-wheel-mounted audio controls; a trip computer; and front, side, and side curtain air bags.

Our choice of a stick shift meant that we could not get the SV’s sole option package — a navigation system and a Rockford Fosgate stereo. (The top-of-the-line SL comes with navigation and the premium stereo as well as a backup camera, leather upholstery, heated front seats, and foglights, but costs $2320 more than the SV.) We added only carpeted floor and cargo mats, which cost $175, so our Juke came in at a very reasonable $21,815.

Be sure to check back with us regularly throughout the next twelve months as we keep you updated on life with our graphite blue 2011 Nissan Juke.


  • Body style 5-door crossover
  • Accommodation 4 passenger
  • Construction Steel unibody


  • Engine Turbocharged, direct-injected I-4
  • Displacement 1.6 liters
  • Power 188 hp @ 5600 rpm
  • Torque 177 lb-ft @ 2000 rpm
  • Transmission 6-speed automatic transmission
  • Drive Front wheel
  • EPA Fuel Economy 24/31/27 (city/hwy/combined)


  • Steering Speed-sensitive electric power steering
  • Turning circle 38.1 ft
  • Suspension, Front Strut-type, coil springs
  • Suspension, Rear Multilink, coil springs
  • Brakes F/R Vented disc/solid discs
  • Wheels 17-in aluminum alloys
  • Tires Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3
  • Tire size 215/55VR-17


  • Headroom F/R 38.6/36.7 in
  • Legroom F/R 42.1/32.1 in
  • Shoulder room F/R 53.6/51.4 in
  • Wheelbase 99.6 in
  • Track F/R 60.0/60.0 in
  • L x W x H 161.8 x 78.6 x 61.5 in
  • Cargo capacity 26.1/54.6 cu ft (rear seats up/down)
  • Weight 2923 lb
  • Weight dist. F/R 62/38%
  • Fuel capacity 13.2 gal
  • Est. fuel range 350 miles
  • Fuel grade 91+ octane (premium unleaded)


  • standard equipment

    • 1.6-liter turbocharged direct-injected I-4
    • 6-speed manual transmission
    • Four-wheel disc brakes
    • 17-in aluminum wheels
    • Six air bags
    • Antilock brakes
    • Vehicle Dynamic Control
    • Traction Control System
    • Tire pressure monitoring system
    • Steering wheel stereo controls
    • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
    • Tilt steering column
    • XM Satellite Radio
    • Bluetooth
    • Push-button start
    • Power sliding moonroof
    • Integrated control system
    • Rear privacy glass
    • 12V DC power outlet


  • Carpeted floor mats and cargo mat
  • $175