Perhaps the most sensible thing to ever be named Rogue, Nissan's intermediate-sized crossover has grown up into a practical and very popular crossover vehicle.
Sold elsewhere around the globe as the X-Trail, the Rogue offers buyers a convincing blend of comfort, quietness, interior space, and convenience features, all at a good price. The Rogue also packs another ace up its sleeve that only the Mitsubishi Outlander and much pricier Land Rover Discover Sport have - a third row.
For 2016, the Rogue gains a few new features. Emergency autonomous braking is now standard on the SL AWD Premium trim level (Nissan-speak for fully loaded), which helped earn the Rogue an IIHS Top Safety Pick award. The blind-spot warning system receives tweaks and moves to a radar-based setup rather than one that uses the car's reverse camera. Nissan has upgraded the infotainment systems to feature NissanConnect services; these cars also get Siri Eyes Free (but no Apple CarPlay yet). NissanConnect Services is similar in nature to OnStar and includes stolen vehicle tracking, emergency calling. Like OnStar, a monthly fee is required to keep it active after the trial period.
Last but not least, there's a new SV Special Edition, which brings in desirable features at a more affordable price. At $27,548 the front-wheel- drive Special Edition includes heated seats, 17-inch alloy wheels, proximity key with push-button start, cargo tonneau cover, automatic headlamps, power driver's seat, privacy glass and more speakers. Adding all-wheel drive pumps the price up by $2,000. Either way, it's very good value for money, and should continue to propel the Rogue up the sales charts.
All Rogues feature a nicely finished and ergonomically sound interior design. Zero-gravity memory foam seats, standard on all trims, offer outstanding comfort. Standard sliding and reclining second-row seats give more interior flexibility, as does the Divide-N-Hide false cargo bay floor. Buyers that opt for the third-row bench forgo Divide-N-Hide, though the 50/50 split folding bench does fold flat into the floor. Thanks to its larger size, the Rogue offers more standard cargo space than its key rivals, the RAV4, CR-V, and Ford Escape.
The Rogue shares its powertrain with the Nissan Altima. All models get a 2.5-litre four-cylinder that comes paired to a CVT. The engine isn't especially powerful with 170 hp and 175 lb-ft of torque, but it works well enough. Cleverly, Nissan has used the brakes and CVT in combination with computer sensors to help the Rogue achieve a level ride over undulating bumps and in corners thanks to its Active Ride Control, Active Trace Control, and Active Engine Braking systems. A city rating of 7.1 L/100 km and a highway rating of 9.1 L/100 km makes the front-drive Rogue one of the most efficient models in its class. Adding AWD ups that to 7.4 L/100 km city and 9.5 L/100 km highway.
The base Rogue ? the S FWD ? starts at $24,648, and tops out at $35,248 for the SL AWD Premium.