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Nissan Juke (2010–2019) review - Practicality, comfort and boot space

Undoubtedly the weak point of the Juke experience, it’s neither an especially practical car nor a particularly comfortable one

The Juke is a lesson in form over function, with the shallow windows, rakish stance and dark coloured interior all conspiring to make the cabin a cramped place to be. The boot is a reasonable size on paper, at 354 litres, but it’s still hampered by a shallow opening and an odd shape.

Be wary if you’re buying a used Juke, though, because the 2014 facelift saw boot space improved by 40 per cent and the addition of a false floor that can be raised to the height of the lip. These make new Juke models considerably more practical than pre-facelift models.

However, be aware that if you go for four-wheel drive you’ll have to make do with just 205 litres of space – that’s less than a three-door MINI. Fortunately, though, Nissan has placed plenty of useful cubbyholes around the interior, plus a deep glovebox and extra storage under the boot floor. 

From the driver’s seat things remain disappointing. The steering wheel doesn’t adjust for reach and it’s difficult to find a comfortable driving position as a result. It’s actually a longer car than the Renault Captur, but a shorter wheelbase means there’s much less room; and with hard, dark plastics covering the dash and doors, it feels cheap.

Size

The Juke looks deceptively tiny because its SUV proportions are more often the stuff of much larger cars. In fact, it’s longer than a Ford Fiesta, wider and, logically, quite a bit taller. Still, the high driving position makes front visibility excellent, and this is an easy car to place on the road. Rearward, though, the styling does leave large blind spots at the thick C-pillars.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

As a package the Juke is the opposite of, say, the Volkswagen Up because its sloping roof, high interior floor and chunky interior styling eat into space noticeably. The Juke simply doesn’t have much room and lags behind rivals like the Renault Captur and the Ford EcoSport.

In reality this makes the Juke the sort of car that’s best for those who don’t always need the back seats. This is not a five-seat car (despite having five three-point seatbelts) and headroom is restrictive for taller people. The thick-set front seats don’t help rear knee room, either, and also mean that rear facing child seats placed in the back will force the front-seat occupants to move their seats forward to perhaps an uncomfortable position.

Boot

The original Juke came with a paltry 251-litre boot, so in response to criticism Nissan improved it to a more useable 354 litres and included a twin floor, handy not only for easier loading but for concealing smaller valuables underneath the load cover.

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The rear bench is 60:40 split-folding as standard and when fully folded liberates 1,189 litres of space. The problem with the shallow boot opening remains, but that’s a respectable amount of space. Again, though, it’s trumped by the Renault Captur’s 1,235-litre capacity. 

Towing

While it can't match its more traditional supermini rivals for in terms of practicality, the Nissan Juke's availability in four-wheel drive means its capable of towing, with a maximum towing capacity of 1,250kg. This is available on both petrol and diesel variants, however it pays to check the specifics as certain Jukes are limited to either 1,150kg and 1,200kg.  

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