The compact-SUV segment didn’t really exist 10 years ago, but since then it is a marketplace which has exploded in terms of popularity, with most mainstream manufacturers having at least one vehicle from their lineup in this category. Today, we’re pitting 3 of the most popular models against one another to see who comes out on top!
The Juke was welcomed with raised eyebrows at first. The styling of the bodywork was quite revolutionary and it took a while for the general public to grow accustomed to its unique appearance. Nissan now produce over 500,000 vehicles a year, with countless being built in their Sunderland plant. In fact the Juke was their second most popular car in the first half of last year, selling 21,128 units, only the Qashqai was more popular.
The Juke falls short in one area in particularly when compared to the Captur and the 2008 and that is with Road Tax. The Juke, even in its cleanest diesel form, will still cost £20 a year to tax under current rates as it emits 104g/km of CO2. The other two competitors trump it here. The Captur will only breathe out 96g/km of CO2 and the 2008 just 95g/km - which are both free to tax each year under current rates.
You get a nice big boot with the Juke, a massive 1,189 litres when you fold the seats down, although it’s worth mentioning that the 2008 offers an extra 5 litres. You probably won’t ever notice the difference though.
Another quirky looking car - this time from Renault. The Juke and Captur aren’t too dissimilar. The Renault-Nissan Alliance share parts from their vehicles across their models, such as the engines and drivetrain.
The Captur shines with its exceptional MPG, the best of the three. Renault claim you can get a massive 78.5mpg out of their Juke, which is 2.6mpg more than the Peugeot 2008 and a whole 8.5mpg more than the Nissan Juke. Not massive differences though, so savings would be marginal even over years of ownership.
The Captur is also the shortest of the lot too. If you were concerned about parking, the Captur is 4,122mm, the Juke s 4,135mm and the 2008 is 4,159mm. Again, those aren’t huge margins so this shouldn’t really be a huge issue for prospective buyers. - particularly if you’re looking for a top-spec car which will have parking cameras and sensors to assist you anyway.
There’s a brand new 2008 on the market for 2016. We say brand new, it’s essentially an aesthetic facelift, but it’s a new model of a car that’s sold extremely well. In fact, they’ve sold 585,000 2008s since introduction, and at the end of 2015 the Mulhouse factory in France was producing 760 of them every single day. At £13,615 the 2008 is the most affordable on the list - but Peugeot know that 65% of buyers will go for the Allure spec or higher, which will be closer to £16,000. Still, it’s more affordable than in base-spec than the Juke, at £13,995 and Captur at £14,575
The 2008 is probably the nicest to drive of the three, although they’re all good thanks to the raised ride height, but the 2008 sits flat through bends better than the other two and body roll is minimal. The 2008 also offers a nice amount of feedback through the wheel and doesn’t feel bigger than a standard hatchback in tight situations, which is handy if you plan on driving through busy city centres or negotiating supermarket car parks.
The interior is well laid out and intuitive too and the nice 7” touch screen is easy to use and responsive enough. The GT Line spec comes with some really attractive styling cues in the form of Red pin-stripes on the seat belts, red stitching on all the upholstery and dash and red LEDs in the surrounding the dials. It’s a very classy car once kitted out.
Which is best?
This part of a group test is always difficult because it depends what you’re after. The Juke is a great choice if you want something reliable and attractive. If you’re dead-set on a petrol model the 1.2 litre in the Juke is probably the best of the three. It’s also worth noting that the Juke is the only one available as a true 4x4, and also the only one available in a ‘hot’ variant, the Juke Nismo RS
If practicality is a big deal for you then the Captur is an attractive option. The biggest boot space (with seats in place, the 2008 is biggest when folded flat) and the shortest length make it easy to drive but also good for carrying luggage. All 3 are sufficient for carrying passengers in the rear, even adults, although the Jukes sloping roofline may hinder their headroom.
The best ‘all-rounder’ though will have to be the 2008. It’s the most attractive car too, with the 2016 facelift really setting it apart. The Juke and Captur don’t look bad, but we’ll admit they’re somewhat an acquired taste. The 2008 shines through with it’s award winning puretech engines and also BlueHDi diesel engines too. The latter actually achieved over 100mpg in a 208 last year and is the most efficient non-hybrid engine on sale. Not to mention the 2008 is also the most affordable and although it’s not the most economical, it’s only 2mpg behind the Captur, a difference you’ll never notice.