November 21, 2011
One thing I've noticed about a couple of our long-term test cars is that performance from their rearview cameras is often compromised by rain or cold weather. When the weather turns foul, what you're left with is an image on the display screen that's too vague and foggy to easily discern.
The other night as I was running some errands in the Juke, the rain was coming down at a steady clip and it was cold enough for me to see my breath in the air. Happily, though, the Juke's rearview camera wasn't too badly affected, delivering an image that was clear enough to help me back up with a fair amount of confidence.
How does your car's rearview camera fare in colder weather and rain?
Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor @ 15,950 miles
October 28, 2011
A couple of nights ago I was tasked with having to drive to Placentia in Orange County, some 46 miles and five different freeways away. Might not be a big deal to most but it's a downright PITA when you have to do the drive during rush hour at night, when I swear Angeleno drivers just go on auto-pilot.
When the sign-up car list came my way and I saw that the 2011 Nissan Juke was available, I didn't hesitate to claim it. With its sharp handling, turbocharged engine and automanual shifting, I knew it would make the black-and-red snake of death (aka stopped traffic as depicted on Google Maps) bearable. And I was right. Five freeways? No problem. I especially love using the automanual during stop-and-go traffic.
That wind noise that editor Brent Romans mentioned in his post wasn't that much of an issue to me since I just happily tuned into my fave satellite radio stations.
And another great way to pass the time during stopped traffic? Returning calls via Bluetooth. Loved being able to catch up with my family which helped me not sweat the wall of red taillights so much.
Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor
June 30, 2011
Is it just me or does this Nissan's navi system's position indicator seem inspired by the Stealth Fighter? No? Well, if nothing else my observation allowed me to share with you one of the coolest aircraft ever made. On a more serious note...
May 03, 2011
Editor Al Austria said he liked our 2011 Nissan Juke's standard navigation, "the usability seems fine." But while I, too, haven't had to use its nav to find a destination yet, I dislike its layout. The other night when I was trying to navigate downtown LA to get to a concert venue and glanced at the nav to figure out how many streets we were away from our destination I had a difficult time reading it. No, I wasn't struck by spontaneous dyslexia. Rather, it was because as you can see from the above picture, unlike maps where the names of the streets follow the line of the streets, here the street names are all horizontal.
If I didn't already know the streets in the above picture (when the nav was in 2-D mode), I wouldn't be able to tell which one was Colorado Avenue and which Pennsylvania. Sure they have teeny checkmarks to indicate which streets belong to which street names but you can barely see those.
Here it is in 3-D mode, which is a little better.
April 06, 2011
Our long-term 2011 Nissan Juke SL AWD has a standard navigation system. It's a Secure Digital card (SD)-based system with 5" color touch panel display and comes with XM NavTraffic. It's standard on our high-zoot Juke SL.
And it looks tiny. I measured 5" diagonal, same as advertised. The Garmin Personal Navigation Device (PND) measured up at 4.5". But I do prefer factory navi -- usually good usability and it won't be stolen.
March 21, 2011
In a previous post, Engineering Editor Jay Kavanagh said of our 2011 Nissan Juke's Eco mode: "They should rename it 'Suck.' Does anyone actually use the Eco mode of the sundry vehicles thusly equipped? Do these people hate their lives?" So when I was talking to my brother, a brand-new Juke owner, about his recent purchase I relayed Jay's opinion about the Eco mode.
However, bro was quick to disagree, saying that he found merit in the fuel-efficient mode. "I'd use it to save gas on road trips. And I'm sure people who are trying to save money probably appreciate it," he said.
He has a point. But I mistakenly figured that anyone who buys the Juke would be looking to have fun driving it. And it just seemed odd that a zippy car like the Juke would even have such an option. However, I suppose Juke owners are just happy to be presented with either choice of fun or frugal.
Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor @ 3,091 miles
March 07, 2011
At one point during the weekend, I inadvertently pressed the Eco button in our longterm 2011 Nissan Juke. My life sucked for 21.3 seconds.
Until I realized my folly, the Juke was a slug -- in Eco mode the Juke stubbornly refuses to move until the throttle is practically pinned. Ugh.
They should rename it "Suck". Does anyone actually use the Eco mode of the sundry vehicles thusly equipped? Do these people hate their lives?
On a somewhat unrelated front, I got to thinking that the Juke's puny 1.6 turbo mill would play nicely in, say, a small, mid-engined sports car. It's got to be a featherweight thing, and the transverse layout means the engine (and 6-speed manual, of course) could just be slapped directly into such a car as-is. Okay, sure, throw in a twin-scroll turbo and a little extra pep. I won't complain.
Yeah, maybe I've got too much Alfa Romeo 4C on the brain since I returned from the Geneva show...
Jason Kavanagh, Engineering Editor
February 07, 2011
First off, wow. The Juke is a fun car to buzz around in. I thought I'd be busier watching people on the street recoil in horror to the oddly styled nose of the Juke. Instead, I was braking late and picking-off apexes. Then I found the G-meter...
Our beloved GT-R had a G-meter, as well as a host of other performance logging devices -- and it made sense in that car. The Juke? Not so much. In here, it seems like a novelty -- and a rather optimistic one, at that.
Here's why I can't take it seriously. It doesn't have any kind of measurable result. There's nothing on screen that shows how much cornering force there is. There's no "1" marker or smaller increments, nor is there a numerical readout. There's also no logging, so you can't see what the peak g-force is unless you're watching the screen. And that screen is way down by the gear selector.
So really, this cool little G-meter is just a distraction for passengers -- something to grab their attention while the madman driver saws away feverishly at the wheel. And I'm OK with that -- mostly because the car is so fun to drive. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say it will be the surprise hit of the summer (at least in our long-term fleet). Watch out Countryman, the Juke's gunning for your spot.
Mark Takahashi, Associate Editor @ 1,393 miles
February 02, 2011
First off, I love this little car. It's so fast and such a blast to drive. Was so lucky to have it for a couple of days. Found it perfect for getting around the city what with maneuvering around sloww drivers on the freeway, finding parking spaces (it fits in my tiny garage with ample room to spare) and just flat-out fun.
But what was extra cool was the above "magic" show. Climate control and "D-Mode" (Driver Mode) share the same six buttons and screen and can be switched by hitting a button. Great way to really mess with your passenger's mind. "Heyyy, I just saw the A/C button. Where'd it go?"
The only "issue," though, is that the driver mode doesn't stay in the mode you left it in when you restart the car. No biggie but could be bothersome. Apparently the owner's manual doesn't cite a way to change this.
Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor