And just like that, it’s gone.
It was back in 2011 when the Nissan Juke launched in the US. Many at first didn’t know what to make of the funky-looking small crossover with its frog eye-like front-end design and, at the time, unusual proportions. But jump ahead to 2018 and just about everywhere one goes a Juke will be spotted on the road. We previously reported Nissan UK had built its one-millionth Juke and that production would continue. Not so in the US. Automotive News reports that Nissan has officially dropped the subcompact Juke crossover from its American lineup.
Sales were down last year by 48 percent, compared to 2016. Its replacement is the all-new Nissan Kicks. Americans haven’t quite taken to the Juke in nearly the same enthusiastic manner as the Europeans have, but it was an important vehicle for Nissan North America nonetheless. How so? It brought attention to the brand. Nissan claims the Juke’s goal in the US was not to appeal to family crossover shoppers, but rather young single men whose next car would hopefully be a 370Z (hence part of the reason behind the Juke Nismo and Juke Nismo RS).
Nissan’s entry-level crossover was the Rogue, and the assumption was that owners would one day graduate to a larger Pathfinder or even an Armada as their families expanded. But because the Juke never became the smash hit it was and still is in Europe, those young male buyers simply shopped around elsewhere. Another reason for the Juke’s slower US sales is its lack of headroom and overall cramped interior. Americans like space whereas Europeans have long been accustomed to less. Nevertheless, Nissan’s “sports car crossover,” quirkiness and all, has said its final goodbye to America.