Let's not ignore the elephant in the room. The Nissan Juke is ugly. On one hand, Nissan should be commended for going out on a limb and not producing yet another two-box crossover. On the other hand, it's difficult to find a good angle from which to view the Juke at.
While it does look masculine and assertive, the design is a bizarre pastiche of different shapes and surfaces which are visually jarring. The only possible explanation is that the Nissan stylist responsible for the exterior decided to sketch his vision of what a Suzuki SX4 would look like when crossed with a blowfish.
As our day with the Juke wore on, the initial shock of its styling began to fade, but there is a real danger of this car being perceived as the Son of Aztek. Nissan's target demographic of "young, urban, connected males," who are obsessed with signaling their social status with ostentatious Polo shirts may also react negatively to a vehicle that's "so ugly, bro".
The interior is another mixed bag, with some very innovative touches mixed with some equally nasty, cheap hard plastic. The dash betrays the fact that this car was built to a price, with its expanse of black, grainy material that could have come from a Versa, while the center console lacks any useful storage place for iPods, cell phones and assorted gadgets that people carry with them.
While Nissan touts the gearshift surround as being styled like a sport bike's gas tank, complete with high-gloss paint, the money spent on this neat but useless feature should have gone into a high-quality, soft-touch dashboard, something that the average consumer is much more likely to notice and can be used by dealers as a selling point.
More: 2011 Nissan Juke Review - First Drive on AutoGuide.com