Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
November 21, 2013
Alongside the new GT-R NISMO, Nissan's performance arm had a couple more surprises up its sleeve at LA Auto Show.
First up was a more powerful Juke NISMO called the NISMO RS. The Juke NISMO RS takes the standard Juke's turbocharged and direct-injected 1.6L four-cylinder and boosts it to produce 215 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque (211 horsepower and 184 pound-feet when equipped with all-wheel drive and the CVT). This is due to a remapped ECU, stronger connecting rods, and a new exhaust.
Transmissions include a six-speed manual with a stronger clutch cover and dual-mass flywheel, or Nissan's Xtronic continuously variable transmission. The manual can only be equipped with front-wheel drive, while the Xtronic CVT can be either be equipped with front-wheel or all-wheel drive.
As for the exterior, the Juke NISMO RS is the same as the Juke NISMO with a more aggressive front end, blacked-out alloy wheels, and a red accent line. Inside, the Juke NISMO RS packs a set of Recaro bucket seats wrapped in red leather and black suede.
The Juke NISMO RS comes to dealers early next year.
Second up is Sentra NISMO concept. Taking a plain jane Sentra, NISMO was able to create something very distinctive. On the exterior, NISMO fitted a new grille, front and rear bumper, oversized fender flares, large exhaust tips, and nineteen-inch Rays wheels. Inside is a NISMO-style steering wheel wrapped in leather and Alcantara, and satin carbon fiber trim.
Under the hood is an 1.8L directed-injected and turbocharged engine that makes more than 240 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission gets this power down to the front wheels.
Other mechanical changes include a sports-tuned suspension and Brembo brakes.
Nissan isn't saying whether or not the Sentra NISMO will go into production or not, but executives are hinting that it could become a reality.
"The NISMO name is not to be taken lightly. Neither are vehicles that wear the NISMO badge," said Pierre Loing, Nissan's vice president of product planning in a statement.
Press Releases are on Page 2
New JUKE NISMO RS, the third model in 2014 JUKE lineup, combines sporty design with enhanced performance
Features best-in-class* 215 horsepower, 210 lb-ft of torque and Helical Limited-Slip Differential (manual transmission), along with additional structural rigidity and larger brakes (versus non-NISMO RS models)
Special NISMO RS interior treatment includes genuine Recaro front seats, carbon fiber-look finishers, special red-and-black color theme with, suede, Alcantara® and leather appointments
Set for early 2014 availability at Nissan dealers nationwide
LOS ANGELES - To understand the difference between the Nissan JUKE sports crossover, the recently introduced JUKE NISMO and the new JUKE NISMO RS – which makes its North American debut today at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show – the one word is all that's needed: More.
"The concept behind the development of the new JUKE NISMO RS is giving the customers exactly what they have been asking for – more power, handling and exclusive equipment like Recaro seats and Alcantara®-wrapped steering wheel," said Pierre Loing, Vice President, Product and Advanced Planning and Strategy, Nissan North America, Inc. "And the best part is, it does it in a very balanced way, delivering up to 215 horsepower in combination with unique body and suspension upgrades."
The idea of creating vehicles that can be driven everyday to work, but that you want to drive them the long, winding way home, is central to the NISMO design philosophy. As Nissan's performance group, with its vision and name derived from NISsan MOtorsports, NISMO is applying its near-50 years of engineering experience and expertise to an expanding range of affordable production vehicles. Like the 370Z NISMO and JUKE NISMO before it, the new JUKE NISMO RS ups the excitement level for the driver while still remaining attainable for the average consumer.
"JUKE buyers now have six distinct ways to experience 'Innovation and excitement for all' – the premium level of features and equipment offered by the JUKE S, SV and SL models, the sporty appearance and upgraded power of the JUKE NISMO, and the race car-inspired design and fun-to-drive performance of the new JUKE NISMO RS," added Loing.
Unique Engine, Suspension, Steering and Brake Tuning
With the addition of the NISMO RS, JUKE buyers now have three distinct levels of drivetrain tuning to choose from to fit their driving style and needs. Every JUKE model starts with one of the most advanced engines in the Nissan portfolio – an inline 4-cylinder 1.6-liter DOHC aluminum-alloy Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG™) turbocharged engine.
The engine's direct injection helps improve combustion, enhancing power, torque, economy and emissions. The use of the turbocharger and intercooler also help boost power, while the variable timing control for both intake and exhaust cycles improves low-end engine response. For use in the JUKE S, SV and SL grades, the engine is rated at 188-horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque.
The JUKE NISMO increases the engine's performance to 197 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. Also added to the JUKE NISMO are a NISMO-tuned suspension and 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels.
As "king" of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE's bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 – 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 – 6,000 rpm).
Changes to the engine to create the higher power and torque figures include optimized engine control (ECU) settings and a revised exhaust system with a larger main tube diameter and revised baffling. "The JUKE NISMO RS's exhaust has been tuned to create a highly visceral sound worthy of its racing-inspired roots," said Loing.
The engine's connecting rod durability has also been enhanced for use with higher torque settings with the manual transmission, along with a strengthened clutch cover and dual mass flywheel. The new, high capacity 6-speed manual used in the JUKE NISMO RS is a different transmission than available in the other JUKE NISMO models and uses lower gear ratios in 1st through 3rd gears for quicker acceleration. Manual transmission-equipped models also offer a standard helical-geared Limited-Slip Differential (LSD).
"We expect drivers to feel a noticeable increase in acceleration – especially the manual transmission model – in the RS versus the regular JUKE NISMO. It also holds peak torque longer. Combined with the Helical Limited-Slip Differential, which helps reduce torque steer, the sense of driving excitement is unmatched in the JUKE lineup," said Loing.
All-Wheel Drive JUKE NISMO RS models also offer improved acceleration and a sportier driving feel. With its all-new steering column-mounted paddle shifters, NISMO RS AWD's CVT utilizes technology found only in the Nissan Maxima sports sedan for an available manual feel. The CVT's manual mode offers eight step "gearing" versus the JUKE NISMO CVT's seven and base JUKE CVT's six steps.
In addition, the advanced torque vectoring AWD system has been specially tuned for the NISMO RS's increased active cornering, providing better line control through corners. The system – standard in all 2014 JUKE AWD models – is designed to limit understeer by increasing torque to the outside rear wheel, helping the car follow its intended course, while enhancing agility, giving the JUKE NISMO exceptional ride comfort and handling in spite of its higher ground clearance when compared to compact cars. Torque can be split up to a maximum of 50:50 front to rear, as well as shifted from side-to-side across the rear axle, up to 50 percent per wheel.
Information collected by various sources (measuring wheel speed, steering angle, yaw rate and lateral G-force) is interpreted to anticipate the driver's intention. System actions are relayed to the driver via a real-time graphic display on the instrument panel depicting the torque distribution under all conditions.
A significant bolster to JUKE NISMO RS's engaging driving dynamics is a series of special body and chassis reinforcements designed to help increase overall rigidity. "The additional reinforcements and fixing points, used primarily for the higher torque front-wheel drive model, contribute to the increased steering precision and quicker response of the NISMO RS versus the JUKE NISMO," said Loing.
In addition, the suspension and steering have been specially tuned to provide a more exciting and agile driving feel (versus non-RS models) without compromising ride comfort and noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). Spring rates and damping force have been reset and the front suspension link reinforced to enhance steering feel and response.
Like the JUKE NISMO, the NISMO RS's suspension has been lowered slightly versus non-NISMO JUKE models, reducing the gap between the tires and wheelwells for a cleaner appearance and improved aerodynamics. An independent MacPherson strut front suspension and torsion beam rear suspension are utilized on FWD models, while JUKE NISMO and NISMO RS AWD models offer a multi-link rear suspension design. A cradle-type front subframe enhances lateral stiffness of the assembly. Front and rear stabilizer bars are standard on all models.
The Electric Power-assist Steering (EPS) has also been retuned for use in the NISMO RS. The JUKE NISMO RS braking system includes 4-wheel vented discs, larger brake rotors in front (12.6 inches versus 11.7 inches), vented rotors in the rear (versus non-vented in non-RS models), red-painted calipers and upgraded brake pads.
"The JUKE NISMO RS has all of the actual hardware to go with the increased power, just as you'd expect from NISMO – which through its decades of motorsports experience understands that 'fast' alone is not enough, a car must be 'balanced" to provide real performance," summed up Loing.
Racing-Inspired Exterior and Interior
The new JUKE NISMO RS shares much of its racing-inspired exterior modifications with the JUKE NISMO. Compared to the standard JUKE, JUKE NISMO and NISMO RS show a 37-percent improvement in aerodynamic performance – thanks to items such as the front fascia and grille, which have been modified to better control airflow to the engine. The unique front end features a lower and more aggressive design. The regular fog lights have been replaced by thin-strip LED accent lights, positioned at the top edge of small vents to the side of the larger grille.
A NISMO-themed "red stripe" accent line starts on the upper edge of the large lower grille and curves around 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 emphasizing the Juke NISMO's athletic stance on the road. The signature Nissan V-strut grille is finished in a darker shade than standard JUKE models. The distinctive JUKE combination lights are smoked as part of the NISMO appearance treatment.
Subtle NISMO RS badges with a red "O" are located on the front grille and to the right of the rear liftgate. The red pinstripe continues on the flanks of the car at the base of the doors. The sculpted side skirts enhance aerodynamic performance, directing airflow around the rear wheels and away from the car as quickly and efficiently as possible.
To increase the JUKE NISMO and NISMO RS's visual stance, the wheel arches are more muscular and are body colored. The door mirrors are painted red to give a visual indication that these are not standard Nissan JUKEs. The B-pillars are finished in gloss "piano black," also promoting a sleek and sporty image.
In the rear, the bumper is deeper than on non-NISMO models and the red pinstripe is also visible on the black sill. The unique body-colored liftgate spoiler and rear fascia diffuser complete the body modifications.
Also part of the dramatic exterior appearance are the unique 18-inch lightweight aluminum-alloy wheels with 225/45R18 Continental ContiSportContact5 summer tires, which help give drivers additional grip during cornering and further boost the JUKE NISMO and NISMO RS's on-road presence. The diamond-cut alloys feature a 10 twin-spoke design and are finished in dark anthracite. The 2014 Nissan JUKE NISMO RS is available in three exterior colors – Sapphire Black, Brilliant Silver and Pearl White.
Inside, JUKE NISMO RS's biggest departure from the JUKE NISMO is the addition of genuine Recaro front seats trimmed in red leather-appointed side bolsters and black suede center inserts. The seats, based on the popular Recaro "Sportster" design, are designed to hold the driver and front passenger firmly in place during spirited driving. They feature embossed Recaro and NISMO logos, along with red stitching.
The JUKE NISMO RS also offers an Alcantara®–trimmed steering wheel and exclusive "RS" logo on the speedometer and charcoal grey suede (with red stitching) meter hood. The surface trim around the center stack and shifter features a special carbon fiber look.
Similar to the JUKE NISMO, the rear seats also feature red stitching. Like the JUKE NISMO, other standard content includes privacy glass, Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push Button Start and the I-CON (Integrated Control) system with automatic air conditioning.
Just one option package is available with the JUKE NISMO RS, the Navigation Package with NissanConnect™ with Navigation system with 5.8-inch touch-screen, 3D-effect map views, Voice Recognition and NavTraffic capability (SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately); NissanConnect™ Apps; Rockford Fosgate ecoPUNCH™ audio system; USB interface (iPod® compatible); and RearView Monitor.
The Real Deal
Said Loing: "The new JUKE NISMO RS is the real deal. It starts with racing-inspired aerodynamics, and high-quality attention to detail. It adds a race-style driver-machine interface with racing-style seats, gauges, shifter and steering wheel. Then it caps it all off with enhanced power and traction, agile handling and improved exhaust system. It's the JUKE enthusiasts have been asking for."
For full information on the 2014 Nissan JUKE and JUKE NISMO, please visit NissanNews.com. Additional information on the 2014 JUKE NISMO RS, including full specifications, will be available at a later date.
Nissan Sentra NISMO Concept Teases Further Expansion of Performance Line
– 240+ Horsepower Performance Study Makes World Debut at L.A. Auto Show –
LOS ANGELES - As Nissan expands its NISMO line of factory performance models, it is revisiting the small car performance genre and teasing the future with the Los Angeles Auto Show world debut of the Nissan Sentra NISMO Concept.
The Sentra NISMO Concept is built on the solid foundation of the latest generation Nissan Sentra, which offers an outstanding balance of premium style, innovative technology and fuel-efficient performance. The concept injects performance and design tuner elements into the mix. Among the Sentra NISMO Concept's many departures from a production 2014 Sentra are its race-inspired exterior with enhanced aerodynamic performance, NISMO-tuned suspension, steering and transmission and engaging motorsports-style cockpit. And under the hood, the concept adapts a 1.8-liter direct injection turbocharged engine producing more than 240 horsepower and 240 lb-ft of torque, mated to a 6-speed manual transmission.
"Fans have asked that we bring back a high-performance Sentra straight from the factory, just like in generations past," said Nissan Vice President of Product Planning, Pierre Loing. "With NISMO, our in-house motorsports arm already producing versions of the 370Z NISMO, JUKE NISMO, JUKE NISMO RS and upcoming GT-R NISMO, we wanted to demonstrate where we could go in the future."
A Powerful Presence
The look of the Sentra NISMO Concept, like previous Nissan performance sedans, is somewhat understated – more sophisticated and confident than "in-your-face" boy racer. Exterior modifications, designed to enhance Sentra's already good aerodynamics, start with a deep front fascia with lower LED lights and wide lower grille that match the stock Sentra's standard LED daytime running rights and upper grille.
The aerodynamic look continues with a wide lower front spoiler and along the sides of the vehicle with the oversized fender flares and integrated side sills flowing into a deep-skirted rear fascia accentuated by large dual exhaust tips. A custom rear spoiler and center rear fog lamp, which echoes the design of the 370Z's rear diffuser, complete the look. All lights on the vehicle feature a smoked look.
A thin, signature NISMO red accents accentuate the areas where aerodynamics have been emphasized such as the lower spoiler, while more discreet striping is found on the side mirrors and side sills. NISMO badges – with signature matching red "O" – are located front and rear.
The body is painted in a custom Bright Pearl White. The aerodynamic side door mirror covers, front splitter and rear diffuser are finished in a high-gloss, genuine carbon fiber diagonal pattern. The special Black Chrome-finished mesh grille is surrounded by Dark Chrome, adding to the Sentra NISMO Concept's imposing presence.
"The exterior treatment takes Sentra's mature, premium presence and infuses it with an added dimension of excitement and dynamic energy," said Loing. "Still easily identified as a Sentra, it evokes a strong sense of the power that lurks just below the surface."
While production 2014 Sentras combine responsive acceleration with excellent fuel efficiency from a 130-horsepower 1.8-liter DOHC 16-valve inline 4-cylinder engine, the Sentra NISMO Concept borrows technology from the new JUKE NISMO RS's DOHC 16-valve, turbocharged, intercooled, sequential Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG) equipped 4-cylinder, enlarged to 1.8 liters. The NISMO-tuned engine produces an estimated 240+ horsepower and more than 240 lb-ft of torque – enough to show its taillights to ordinary sedans.
The engine is matched with a beefy 6-speed manual transmission and limited-slip differential to help make sure that the power is directed firmly to the road surface. The stock Sentra's independent strut front and torsion beam rear suspension receive the NISMO tuning treatment, complete with custom performance shocks and springs.
Wide 19-inch RAYS aluminum-alloy wheels mounted with 225/35R19 Michelin Super Sport performance tires and red-painted 370Z Brembo brake calipers complete the package.
A true performance sports sedan demands an equally engaging cockpit. The Sentra NISMO Concept interior features an array of NISMO-inspired upgrades, including Recaro "Sportster" front seats with custom black leather and Alcantara® appointments. The rear seats are treated to a mix of perforated black Alcantara® in a similar pattern to the front seats. Alcantara® is also used for the pillars and headliner.
The racing-inspired interior continues with a NISMO-style leather/Alcantara®-wrapped steering wheel with red leather at the 12 o'clock position, along with matching shift knob and shifter lever boot surround. The instrument cluster features a satin carbon fiber finish and all chrome accents are treated to a Dark Chrome finish. Both the start button and tachometer include iconic NISMO anodized red rings.
The Ultimate Essence
"NISMO is the 'Ultimate Essence' of Nissan's 'Innovation and Excitement' as a performance and personalization brand. With its highly credible motorsport heritage and passionate attitude in pursuing victories and continuous performance improvement, the NISMO name is not to be taken lightly," said Loing. "Neither are vehicles that wear the NISMO badge. For those who love their sports sedans with a little adrenaline, a Nissan NISMO product should be on their shopping list."