2018 Rogue New Car Test Drive
Nissan Rogue is a small crossover. Now in its fifth year of production, the Nissan Rogue has tough competition with updated rivals like the Honda CR-V, Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4, Ford Escape and Mazda CX-5.
Rogue is comfortable and has all-wheel drive available, but its powertrain and handling are unexciting compared to those others. For 2018, the optional third-seat has been dropped. It was very small.
The 2018 Rogue SL model can be optioned with Nissan's new ProPilot Assist technology, a step closer to autonomous driving. With ProPilot Assist, the Rogue can automatically accelerate, brake, and maintain the distance from other vehicles with no driver input, in certain situations.
Also for 2018, the standard infotainment system has been updated to include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the entry-level Rogue S gets a nice 7.0-inch touchscreen, and there are two new colors. For 2018, all but the base model get standard liftback opening with a wave of the foot under the rear bumper.
It's hard to put the Rogue in a box, because the smaller Nissan Juke is deemed a compact, and the larger Pathfinder a midsize. Rogue is a big compact or a small midsize, closer to the Pathfinder in size. Nissan sells a smaller, less-powerful crossover called the Rogue Sport that's cheaper but certainly not sportier.
Rogue comes standard with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder mated to a continuously variable transmission, making 170 horsepower with 175 foot-pounds of torque, delivering mediocre acceleration and a strong 29 EPA Combined miles per gallon with front-wheel drive, 27 mpg with all-wheel drive.
The cargo area is handy for cargo, but unsecured floor panels make the Rogue a terrible choice for dog owners.
Rogue has earned a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the IIHS, with mostly top Good scores, an Acceptable headlamp rating, and Superior front crash prevention. The NHTSA gives it four stars. It's a rare discrepancy, for a vehicle that gets the top rating from IIHS not to get five stars from NHTSA. It appears that it's the SL model with LED headlamps that earns the top score from IIHS.
Rogue S ($24,680), Rogue SV ($25,900), and Rogue SL ($31,060) come with the 2.5-liter engine. (Prices are MSRP and do not include destination charge.)
Rogue S includes climate control; Bluetooth with audio streaming; rearview camera; 17-inch wheels and all-season tires; tire pressure monitor; and an AM/FM/XM/CD audio with a USB port and four speakers. Options include blind-spot monitors, a lane-departure warning system, and a forward-collision warning system with emergency automatic braking for the SL Premium.
Rogue SV adds satellite radio; alloy wheels; automatic headlights; a power driver's seat; keyless ignition, and NissanConnect, which enables the use of smartphone apps like Pandora. A Premium Package for the SV comes with a 7.0-inch touchscreen; voice-activated navigation; real-time traffic and weather data; a surround-view camera system; a power liftgate; heated cloth seats; blind-spot monitors; and a lane-departure warning system.
Rogue SL gets leather upholstery, heated front seats, Bose audio, NissanConnect, Siri Eyes Free, navigation, power tailgate, surround-view camera, 18-inch wheels. A Premium Package for the SL adds a panoramic sunroof, LED headlights, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, blind-spot warning, lane departure warning, and adaptive cruise control. Options include that ProPilot Assist, plus run-flat tires, a panoramic sunroof, those advanced-safety features, and LED headlamps to go with the standard LED running lights and taillamps.