Monday, October 1, 2012

2013 Nissan Juke Nismo closer to coming to America

First shown as a concept at the Tokyo Motor Show and first unveiled in production trim at this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans, the 2013 Nissan Juke Nismo has just had its first in-person meeting with the Autoblog team at the Paris Motor Show. While not quite as extreme as its Juke R brother – not having a GT-R drivetrain kind of takes the edge off – the Juke Nismo nonetheless kicks the standard car up a few notches to become even more of an enthusiast's plaything than a quasi-crossover.

With the laying on of hands from Nismo, Nissan's in-house performance tuning and motorsports arm, this Juke benefits from a host of improvements that up its performance game. The changes begin with a complete Nismo aero package that includes new front and rear bumpers, wider wheel arches, side skirts, rear spoiler and front grille. Eighteen-inch alloys wheels get tucked under those new fenders, while the interior benefits from a lavish swathing of grippy Alcantara on the new sport seats and steering wheel.

Nissan says that the Juke's direct-injected turbo 1.6-liter four-cylinder has been modified for Nismo duty, presumably for more power, though the company is still keeping tight-lipped about new power figures. The 1.6-liter as it stands in the base Juke produces a healthy 188 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque, but even if the engine weren't upgraded, Nismo has also addressed performance from a handling perspective by fitting the Juke with a stiffer suspension and revised steering, along with tweaking its traction control and torque vectoring systems. Launching in Europe early next year, the Juke Nismo will then be made available in Japan before finally making its way to North America at a yet-to-be-determined later date. Pricing is still a mystery as well, but it's safe to say the Nismo will probably be at least a few thousand dollars over the standard model.

From AutoBlog.Com