Wednesday, October 5, 2011 08:00
Somewhere out there is someone who owns a high-performance sports car and wants to drive it off road, and someone with a mild-mannered crossover who dreams of blowing the doors off high-performance sports cars. But nobody is sure just how many of each of those two types of drivers there are. So in order to find out, Nissan engineers crossed a Juke crossover with a GT-R supercar and got the Juke-R, a rolling survey to gauge the public’s hunger for a Juke with the heart of a GT-R.
Developed by Nissan and built by leading motorsports outfit RML with input from Nissan Technology Centre for Europe (NTC-E), the Juke-R is a one-off, road-legal concept car. Actually it’s a two-off; only two will be built, one each in left-hand- and right-hand-drive.
Under the hood is a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 engine adopted directly from Nissan’s flagship supercar. Under the floor hides the GT-R’s six-speed transaxle, with the front and rear ends joined by a modified GT-R 4WD driveline and prop shaft, while chunky 20-inch RAYS forged alloy rims fill each wheel arch.
The interior merges split the difference between crossover and supercar. The Juke’s dashboard has been transformed to accommodate the gauges, dials, and 7-inch customizable LCD display from the GT-R. Twin race seats with five-point harnesses sit inside a visible roll cage that gives FIA safety standards as well as enhanced rigidity to provide the ultimate performance.
The Juke-R is currently under development and is expected to complete its first tests in November. After that it’s likely off to the show circuit to see what the public thinks.