NISSAN JUKE 1.2 ST 2WD
Prices start at $23,490 for the front-wheel drive with a 1.2L turbo and six-speed manual. Features single-zone climate control aircon, cruise control and 17-inch alloys. Warranty is 3 years/100,000km. Service interval 10,000km/12 months. Capped price servicing adds up to $888 over three years.
You might have noticed this bug-eyed wannabe in traffic. The looks are polarising to say the least. It’s just as stylish inside too, with its weird hooded instrument cluster — but it’s all hard plastic and the centre console can be difficult to see in strong light. Seats five but a plunging rear roofline could be an issue for rear head room. Back seat splits 60:40, with a 354L boot that hides a lower storage area and space-saver spare. Tech includes Bluetooth with audio streaming, 5.8-inch centre screen and daytime LEDs.
It’s powered by a hi-tech turbocharged direct injection fourcylinder petrol engine that puts out 85kW/190Nm. Paired with a six-speed manual as standard, with auto stop-start to save fuel. If you want an auto, a CVT is another $1000 but it comes with a 1.6 non-turbo engine. Takes premium 95 unleaded, with a thirst rated at 5.6L/100km. We were getting 7.4L/100km. Can tow a 1400kg load.
Achieved a 5-star ANCAP crash rating with a score of 33.03 out of 37. Features six airbags and active front headrests but alas no reversing camera.
The steering wheel lacks reach adjust and the lack of a rear camera or parking sensors doesn’t help around town. Left hand blinkers are annoying but it clips along pretty well for a 1.2-litre, although keeping it nice and smooth can be a challenge in the lower gears as the boost cuts in and out. Ride is firm, bordering on harsh. Electric steering provides little feedback. Sits flat and corners okay for an SUV.