Nissan has added a high performance NISMO version of its ugly duckling Juke to the fold.

Juke NISMO RS joins the GT-R and 370Z which also wear the NISMO badge of honour.

The limited edition Juke features race inspired styling, driver-focused cockpit and more performance, compared to the standard model.

“The NISMO Brand and its range of cars are admired all over the world, we are delighted to offer small SUV buyers a NISMO option,” Nissan Australia managing director, Stephen Lester, said.

“The Juke NISMO RS has the increased power and torque expected of a NISMO model, and a design that is consistent with its NISMO siblings.

“With a devoted following, and with only 240 units available, we expect the Juke NISMO RS to attract a dedicated group of buyers.”

Instead of 140kW, the 1.6-litre turbo in the NISMO version of the car pumps out 160kW of power and 280Nm of torque in manual form, or 157kW and 250Nm with the CVT auto.

The higher outputs have been achieved by optimising ECU settings and a revised exhaust system with a larger main tune diameter and revised baffling.

The connecting rods have also been beefed up, along with a strengthened clutch cover and dual mass flywheel.

With the 6-speed manual has a shorter final drive ratio for faster acceleration, with a helical limited slip diff that directs more power to the front wheel with most traction to maintain acceleration during cornering.

This also helps reduce torque steer.

The Xtronic system on the All-Wheel Drive model offers eight steps or gears — up from the six step standard system — plus an advanced torque vectoring system designed to limit understeer and improve agility, making the NISMO RS more fun to drive.

Body and chassis have been reinforced to increase rigidity, steering precision and response.

Suspension and steering updates include re-tuned spring rates, damping force and electric power-assist steering (EPS).

The front suspension link has also been reinforced and it has been slightly lowered — all of which contribute to a more exciting and agile drive feel.

The limited edition Juke also features vented brake discs, larger 12.6-inch front brake rotors and vented rotors in the rear, plus red-painted calipers and upgraded brake pads.

And of course the Juke NISMO RS is designed to look the part too.

The unique aero package features bespoke front and rear bumpers, side skirts and roof spoiler, as well as a NISMO front grille, exhaust system, rear diffuser and signature red mirror caps and detail line, plus RS badging.

Inside there’s a leather-accented shift knob and leather and Alcantara steering wheel with red stitching and the iconic red centre mark, plus NISMO suede sports seats with red stitching.

It also has an intelligent key with NISMO RS push button engine start, a red NISMO tachometer and NISMO branded front kick plates and carpet mats.

Gloss black centre console, door trim and air vent finishers, a black roof liner, a carbon-look finish on the head unit and gear shift surrounds, and the suede door panels and meter hood compliment the seats.

The RS also has unique 10-spoke NISMO RS alloy wheels.

Built in the UK, the Juke NISMO RS is available in three colours including Ivory Pearl, Pearl Black and Platinum with a premium suede sports seat and red stitching interior trim.

It’s priced from $37,790.

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Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for almost 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.