Used test – high fashion: Mini Cooper S vs Nissan Juke vs Volkswagen Beetle

These three prioritise style and fun above all else. But which of them is bang on trend – and which is a fashion disaster?...

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What Car? team
12 Mar 2016 20:00 | Last updated: 14 Jun 2018 00:03

What are they like inside?

The Volkswagen Beetle’s interior is a bit of a mish-mash. Bold retro instrumentation, oval air vents and expansive piano-black-finished panels sit cheek-by-jowl with contemporary Volkswagen switchgear.

Up front, there’s a huge amount of elbow room, plus decent leg and head room, and there’s a great sense of space because the side windows are so large.

There’s a good range of adjustment for the steering wheel, while both front seats return to their original settings after you let people in and out of the back. Rear leg room is extremely tight, though.

Used test – high fashion: Mini Cooper S vs Nissan Juke vs Volkswagen Beetle

The Mini’s dashboard looks great, with its huge speedo, steering wheel-mounted rev counter, and vast array of toggle switches, even if it isn’t the last word in usability.

Over-the-shoulder visibility is brilliant, and that squared-off rup makes the Mini a doddle to reverse park into tight spaces. The downside of that truncated rear is extremely limited boot space.

The interior of the Nissan Juke is less instantly appealing than either of the other two cars, but its curved instrumentation cowling and bulging centre console are at least interesting and unusual.

Used test – high fashion: Mini Cooper S vs Nissan Juke vs Volkswagen Beetle

Ingeniously, the main rotary dials for adjusting driving modes and operating the climate control are one and the same. You simply press the climate or drive buttons and the panel display changes to suit.

Although you sit high up, visibility in the Juke still isn’t great because of those shallow side windows and tiny rear screen. At least the protruding headlights help you see where the front of the car ends.


Used test – high fashion: Mini Cooper S vs Nissan Juke vs Volkswagen Beetle