Feb 13 2013

National Geographic – Megafactories: Gumpert Apollo EN .

Feb 8 2013

Nissan Juke Nismo: the story in detail

Nissan Juke Nismo

■Nismo launches in Ireland with the Juke
■First in a range of Nismo models to feature motorsport DNA
■Powered by 200PS 1.6-litre direct-injection turbocharged engine
■Efficiency of standard Juke DIG-T remains unaffected
■Set up for more engaging, exhilarating and exciting dynamics with superior handling and agility

The wait is over – Nismo has arrived in Europe with the launch of the first in a new range of road cars: the Juke Nismo.

With track-derived design, enhanced performance and engaging handling, Nismo’s unique motorsport DNA adds a new dimension to the pioneering compact crossover’s list of attributes.

Power comes from a modified version of Nissan’s acclaimed 1.6-litre direct-injection turbocharged petrol engine. You only need to look to the success of the pioneering Nissan DeltaWing to see the potential of this advanced and efficient engine…

Add a bespoke aerodynamics package and revised chassis design and you have a driving experience which takes Juke thrills to the next level. Two models – front-wheel-drive with a six-speed manual transmission and an all-wheel drive with CVT and 7-speed manual mode – are available, with every Juke Nismo benefitting from a motorsport-inspired interior packed with innovative technology.

Andy Palmer, Nissan’s Executive Vice President, Global Product Planning, commented: “Nismo is about providing innovation and excitement for everyone, and there’s no better place to start than with the Juke, our critically acclaimed and highly successful compact crossover. Oozing an attitude that has really struck a chord with buyers across Europe, it was the obvious choice for the Nismo team to showcase its design, engineering and personalisation expertise.”

After initially appearing as a concept at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, the Nissan Juke Nismo made its global debut in production form at the Le Mans 24-Hour Race in June 2012. It was seen again at the Paris Motor Show in September and is on sale now (introduction to individual European markets is staggered).

The Juke Nismo is the product of global expertise. Its design and engineering was led by Nissan and Nismo in Japan in partnership with Nissan Design Europe (NDE) in London, UK, and Nissan Technical Centre Europe (NTCE), in Cranfield, UK. Like other Juke models, the Juke Nismo will be built at Nissan’s UK manufacturing facility in Sunderland.

Exterior design: motorsport aerodynamics for the road
Far from being purely cosmetic, every modification to the Juke’s body has been carried out to enhance a specific element of its aerodynamics. All changes have been influenced by Nismo’s motorsport expertise, in particular using lessons learned from the styling and engineering of the Nissan GT-R race car which competes in the GT500 class of the Super GT in Japan.

Compared to the standard Nissan Juke, the most obvious change is to the front, which now features a lower and more aggressive design. The familiar five-circle shape of the base section has been swapped for a horizontal mesh grille. That also means the integrated fog lights have been replaced by thin-strip LED daytime running lights, positioned at the top edge of new small vents to the side of the larger grille.

On 2WD versions these are blanked, but on 4WD models the left-hand side vent allows air into the engine bay to cool the oil pump, and the one on the right is styled to match.

The prominent upper edge of the large lower grille features a red pinstripe, which drops dramatically to curve round the smaller vents and continues all the way to the front wheel arches. This distinctive Nismo cue gives the nose a visual width and presence while emphasising the Juke Nismo’s athletic stance on the road. Above, the three-sided surround to the Nissan badge in the centre of the upper grille – known as the V-strut – is now finished in a darker shade. To the right is a Nismo badge with a red O, stamping Nismo’s distinctive motorsport heritage on the Juke for first time.

The red pinstripe continues on the flanks of the car at the base of the doors. The sculpted side skirts have been reworked to enhance aerodynamic performance, getting air flow round the rear wheels and away from the car as quickly and efficiently as possible. To increase the Juke Nismo’s visual bulk, the front wings are also more muscular and are now finished entirely in the body colour to give a truly premium feel. The door mirrors have been coloured red to give a clear and quick indication to the casual observer that this is not a standard Nissan Juke. The B-pillar is now finished in gloss ‘piano black’, also promoting a more upmarket and sporty image.

At the rear, the bumper is deeper than before and the red pinstripe is also visible on the black sill. Above, a stylish tailgate spoiler is painted in the body colour and houses the high-level brake light. In common with all exterior modifications, this is designed to increase front and rear downforce, so enhancing the Juke Nismo’s dynamic performance and efficiency.

Equally, the stunning new 18-inch light-alloy wheels feature wider tyres to give drivers additional traction during cornering and further boost the car’s on-road presence. One inch larger than on the standard Juke, the diamond-cut alloys feature a 10 twin-spoke design and are finished in dark anthracite. Both the 2WD and 4WD versions of the car ride on Continental ContiSport Contact5 225/45/R18 tyres.

The Nissan Juke Nismo is available in three stunning exterior shades – Silver Grey, Pearl White and Metallic Black. All come with red door mirrors and the matching pinstripe around base of car.

However, with personalisation a key part of the Nismo brand DNA, owners can add further options to the specification of their vehicle. Decals are available, featuring a wide roof stripe which stretches from midway down the bonnet over to the rear spoiler. Side stickers, which emphasise the car’s powerful waistline from the front doors to the dramatic rear haunches, are also offered as an option. The decals are available in the same three colours as the overall car, allowing owners to select a colour that will contrast with their vehicle’s exterior finish.

Interior design: sporty styling focused on the driver
Nismo’s core belief is that everything should be focused on the driver. It’s about enhancing their experience, pure and simple. So the Juke Nismo’s seats, instrumentation, steering wheel, gear knob, pedals and door trims have all been redesigned to boost driver enjoyment by creating a more performance-oriented environment.

The front seats have been redesigned to offer additional lateral support. Trimmed in suede, they sport vibrant red stitching – picking up the detail introduced by the red bodywork pinstripe. Red is also used as a background to the tachometer and also appears on the steering wheel, which is finished in alcantara and leather. The tactile wheel now includes a marker to indicate ‘top dead centre’, another feature derived directly from motorsport.

Darkening elements of the cabin just outside of the driver’s eye line is another Nismo styling cue and allows the driver to focus entirely on the elements which are most important – the dials, switchgear and controls. Consequently the headlining of the Nissan Juke Nismo is black, and there is a gloss ‘piano black’ finish around the ventilation and audio controls. There is also new smoked grey trim around the gear selector. In the footwell the standard black rubber pedals have been upgraded to a metallic finish, and there is a Nismo badge visible on the footstop. The same branding has been precision-stitched into the seat squabs.

Powertrain and engineering: revised for improved dynamics
Nismo was born on the racetrack in 1984 through a spirit of innovation and determination which is still at the heart of the performance brand today. It’s this DNA which has been injected into the Juke to create the first Nismo road car for Europe.

Under the bonnet of the Juke Nismo is a reworked version of Nissan’s advanced four-cylinder 1.6-litre Direct Injection Gasoline Turbocharged (DIG-T) petrol engine. Cementing the link to Nismo’s track activity, the engine features the same technologies as the unit installed in Nissan’s revolutionary and experimental DeltaWing race car.

Both power and torque have been increased in comparison to the standard DIG-T variant, but boosts in output don’t come at the expense of emissions and efficiency. Power rises from 140kw (190PS) to 147kw (200PS), while torque is boosted from 240Nm to 250Nm.

A version of the Juke Nismo offering greater performance is currently under development, ready to deliver an even more focussed driving experience with a unique suspension set-up and power increase.

Improved performance is only one element of Juke Nismo’s dynamic appeal. The suspension settings have been completely revised, leading to greater traction and improved body response and roll control, while the car’s steering has been reworked for sportier and more direct handling. Thanks to increased resistance at the wheel, more feedback is evident at medium and high speeds.

The Nissan Juke Nismo is 4,165mm long, 30mm more than the standard car. At 1,770mm, it’s 5mm wider than its sibling while the height and wheelbase remain unchanged, at 1,565mm and 2,530mm respectively.

Despite all of the modifications, weight gains are negligible. The 2WD car weighs 1,295kg while the 4WD model is 1,441kg – both figures are almost identical to the equivalent version of the standard Juke.

Performance: excitement without compromising efficiency
The 2WD six-speed manual Juke Nismo gets from 0-100km/h (0-62mph) in 7.8 seconds and has a top speed of 215km/h (134mph). Fuel economy is 6.9 l/100km (40.9mpg) on the Combined cycle with CO₂ emissions of 159g/km – identical to the standard, less powerful Juke DIG-T.

The 4WD model with its CVT accelerates from 0-100km/h (0-62mph) in 8.2 seconds and has a top speed of 200km/h (125mph). Fuel economy is 7.4 l/100km (38.1mpg) on the Combined cycle with CO₂ emissions of 169g/km.

Torque vectoring: supercar technology in the Juke
In common with standard versions of the Juke 4WD, the all-wheel-drive Nismo variant benefits from Nissan’s innovative Torque Vectoring System (TVS). It’s a technology that has, until now, only been found on top-of-the-range premium vehicles and its arrival in the Juke was a first for compact car segments.

The 4WD chassis employs a multi-link rear suspension and the latest version of Nissan’s ALL-MODE 4×4-i electronic technology. Fitted as standard, the TVS is designed to limit understeer by increasing torque to the outside rear wheel, helping the car follow its intended course. TVS also enhances agility and means the Juke Nismo provides exceptional ride comfort and handling in spite of its higher ground clearance when compared to other compact cars.

As well splitting torque front to rear – up to a maximum of 50:50 – the TVS means it can also be shifted from side-to-side across the rear axle. Information collected by various sources (measuring wheel speed, steering angle, yaw rate and lateral G-force) is interpreted to anticipate the driver’s intention.

TVS actions are relayed to the driver via a real-time graphic display on the instrument panel depicting the torque distribution under all conditions.

Nissan Connect with enhanced functionality*
The Juke Nismo is among the first Nissans to feature an enhanced version of the Nissan Connect infotainment system. Already an enormously successful system, Connect continues to offer an exceptional package of navigation and connectivity in one standard fit, integrated package.

Benefitting from a larger 5.8-inch touch-screen display, the latest system includes Google ‘Send to Car’ navigation software allowing routes planned at home to be transferred directly to the car. Additional connected services include Google Points of Interest (POI), nearest fuel prices, plus flight and weather information. Enhanced satellite navigation functionality also includes exit view and lane guidance, in addition to the full Bluetooth connectivity and reversing camera systems that Connect users have come to rely on.

*Availability depends on local market launch date

NDCS Nissan Dynamic Control System (NDCS)
The Juke Nismo offers further control through Nissan Dynamic Control System (NDCS). This advanced central command system allows the driver to alter the car’s dynamic settings as well as make changes to everyday functions including climate control.

The centrally mounted digital screen changes display, colour and functions depending on the mode selected by the driver. Settings alter throttle maps, steering effort and CVT shift schedules on the 4WD Juke Nismo.

In the D-Mode Sport setting, the throttle map is retuned to deliver higher engine revs and sharper responses, while in the Eco setting, engine revs are reduced for more gentle progress. In the M-CVT version of the DIG-T engine Juke, the Sport setting even introduces a ‘rhythmic’ auto up shift that simulates manual changes at the red-line.

Steering effort in Sport is firmer and more responsive, while in Normal it’s lighter and more linear. In the Eco setting, the quantity of cold air circulating in the cabin is optimised, reducing the load on the climate control and lowering the system’s power consumption.

Real time trip information can also be displayed giving average speed, fuel economy, journey times and engine torque and turbo boost as well as a daily fuel consumption history. The system even incorporates a G-Force indicator.

Nismo driving application – a vision of a connected Nismo future
Known by millions through the virtual world of driving simulation games, Nismo has a strong link with the digital world. The Juke already offers an unparalleled virtual-to-reality link to the driver through NDCS’s integrated G-Force monitor and selectable driving modes, but Nissan and Nismo engineers are working on taking the Juke’s digital integration to the next level.

A new app, currently under development, could give Juke Nismo customers an innovative ‘connected’ experience. It bridges the gap between the highly advanced race technology seen in the ultra-exclusive Nissan GT-R and the aspirations of affordable performance car owners.

Running the app, the driver’s iPad will be linked to the car’s on-board computer systems via Bluetooth. The driver can view multiple gauges showing engine temperatures, pressures, G-forces or lap times. What’s more, the motorsport-inspired layout will be fully customisable on the iPad’s screen.

The concept also previews the vision of a connected online community of Nismo drivers. Once connected to the internet, customers would be able to upload their car’s stats, sharing them on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Points could be awarded based on a driver’s skill and challenges could be set to improve ability.

Nismo: the Juke is just the start
The Nissan Juke Nismo will spearhead the launch of a range of accessible yet highly advanced performance cars in Europe. Staying true to the brand’s proud motorsport heritage, each will be created with Nismo’s maverick engineering philosophy at its heart – efficient performance, accessible technology with bold and smart design embodying innovation and excitement. The wait is over and Nismo has arrived. But much more is to follow.

Feb 5 2013


Already renowned for its Motorsport prowess in the USA and Japan, the Nismo brand has been more familiar as a virtual product amongst the online gaming community in Europe – up until now. Nismo will arrive first in Ireland with the arrival of The Juke Nismo.

Feb 2 2013

Lexus LFA – Megafactories

By (National Geographic Channel)

Feb 1 2013

Punchy Punto Proves Impressive

FIAT PUNTO 1.3 Multijet on test with motorrevolution

FIAT PUNTO 1.3 Multijet on test with motorrevolution


This week here at motorrevolution we’ve been testing the latest FIAT Punto 1.3 mutijet diesel, covering several thousand km along the east coast of Ireland. Since its launch in 1993, the FIAT Punto has been a sales hit across Europe with some 8.5 million units produced in that time. The competition in this sector is fierce however and so the latest Punto benefits from revised interior and exterior styling and the availability of the 2011 International Engine of the Year, the 85hp, two-cylinder, TwinAir Turbo engine which we recently tested in the little FIAT 500.
By combining CO2 emissions of just 98g/km CO2 with an output of 85hp and 145Nm the FIAT Punto TwinAir offers such a unique blend of eco-friendliness and zesty performance it has actually been given its own “TwinAir” trim level, complete with unique alloy wheels and the option of a gloss black roof.
Not to be left behind, the 1.3-litre MultiJet II turbo-diesel engine has also been given a performance boost, matching the TwinAir’s 85hp output but offering even lower emissions (90g/km) thanks to its on-demand Intelligent Alternator and Intelligent Flow (which manages engine coolant) systems). This is the engine in our test model.
Apart from the mechanical updates, the latest FIAT Punto also gets new body-coloured bumpers front and rear, new wheel designs, new cabin upholsteries and dash inserts as well as new paint colours.
In fairness the exterior look of the Punto has aged remarkably well and to our eyes the car still looks fresh and modern. The addition of our test cars black alloys and decals no doubt assist as does the vibrant blue metallic paint work.
It had been a while since we tested a Punto so it came as a pleasant surprise to see that the fit and finish of the cars interior was to such a high standard. Even if you strip away the extras fitted to our test model the actual quality of the materials used on the dash and touch points is pretty good and much better than previous generations of this model.
Our test model was fitted with the 1.3 multi jet diesel engine producing 85bhp and while it doesn’t pin you back in the seat it certainly does all that’s asked of it in day to day motoring. The driving position and seating are good and handling is sharp. Instruments are clear and easy to read while on the move and the 5 speed box is as smooth as they come. The car uses a gear indicator system and stop/start technology to get the best economy possible.
The Punto is bigger than some of its rivals with rear space good enough for two adults in comfort while boot space is helped by the split rear seat. Buyers of the previous models will have more space than before and many customers of other models will be the same.
We liked the way the Punto looked drove and delivered a good value for money package. The equipment fitted to our car included Blue&Me connectivity with TOMTOM sat nav.
Not a lot to dislike here, however depreciation may be a factor to consider as FIAT residuals are not always as strong as the competition. Having said that smaller FIAT models always fair better in this respect. The stereo system consistently suffered from interference but this is probably something that can could be fixed easily by a dealer. The front fogs also failed to work intermittently but these are just small niggles.
We liked the Punto and couldn’t help feeling that it’s a shame more people don’t put the car on their shopping list when deciding what to buy in this sector. In many respects the Italian is well up to the competition but just doesn’t get a chance as not enough possible customers take a test drive in advance of making a decision. Further dealer development and brand building is required to give the car or its successor a fighting chance.
See more images in our gallery.