2021 Nissan Rogue review: Playing it down the middle

The Rogue is presently Nissan’s best-marketing automobile by a extensive shot, and client desire for compact crossovers displays no indication of slowing down. Useless to say, the “will not screw it up” issue is quite high with the redesigned 2021 Rogue, which rolls into dealerships later on this 12 months.

Table of Contents


  • Silent, snug cabin
  • Respectable fuel financial system
  • Obtainable digital gauge cluster
  • Increased ProPilot driver-help tech

Will not Like

  • Weak engine overall performance
  • Styling just isn’t for everyone
  • Greatest tech options are only available on the most costly trim

Well, Nissan opted to consider a conservative tactic to the Rogue’s redux, however you could possibly not believe so upon 1st look. The boldly styled entrance stop undoubtedly just isn’t for everyone — I’m not a admirer, individually — but it truly is at minimum expressive, which just isn’t something I could say about prior Rogues. The relaxation of the crossover’s visual appeal is unsurprisingly common, although new two-tone coloration solutions are available to give that upright, two-box condition added visible desire. All instructed, the 2021 Rogue is about an inch shorter in equally length and top than its predecessor.

Inside, 2021 Rogue loses 50 % an inch of headroom and 1.5 inches of legroom up entrance. Rear-seat occupants, on the other hand, love marginally a lot more headroom and legroom than prior to — .seven and .six inches, respectively. A third row of seats just isn’t available, and when that could possibly appear like a offered thinking of the Rogue’s smaller size, continue to keep in mind that Nissan provided a holy-crap-that is-cramped choice from 2014 to 2017. Have faith in me, the Rogue is improved off without it.

The SUV’s back doorways now open to a whole ninety-degree aperture, which makes receiving in and out much easier and offers you a lot more area when finagling car seats or other bulky items. A comparable little bit of helpfulness is uncovered in the cargo area, where by you can find an adjustable divider in the two-tier load flooring. Only available on SL and Platinum grades, this two-piece partition offers you a greatest of 36.5 cubic toes of storage area at the rear of the next-row seats, when the Rogue S and SV make do with 31.six. Irrespective of model, folding the back seats flat results in seventy four.1 cubic toes of space, which places the Rogue ahead of the Toyota RAV4 (69.eight) but at the rear of the Honda CR-V (75.eight).

Usually talking, the Rogue’s interior is perfectly great. Nissan’s cozy and supportive Zero Gravity seats are normal for equally entrance and rear travellers, came wrapped in leather on my SL tester and is available with quilted, semi-aniline hides on the bougie Platinum. All of the plastics and wood appliqu├ęs are nicely grained and none of the automobile controls come to feel low cost or flimsy. Nicely, mostly.

The new electronic equipment selector is a significantly awful component of an otherwise effectively-developed cabin. It appears to be low cost and feels less expensive. On the other hand, no mechanical linkage to the transmission frees up area beneath the console for added storage, but thinking of how cavernous the compartment aft of the cup holders is, I will not picture needing that added area all that usually.

Most Rogues will roll out with an eight-inch coloration touchscreen show in the middle of the sprint, operating the newest edition of the NissanConnect infotainment technique. A larger nine-inch high-definition screen is optional on the SL and normal on the Platinum, with the identical NissanConnect application within. This technique just isn’t my beloved, with its from time to time laggy reaction instances, but the graphics are yet colourful and crisp — on the High definition show, at minimum — and it truly is a action up from the Show Audio and Entune units provided in the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4, respectively.

If you want the mega-tech practical experience, go for a Rogue Platinum, which will come with a twelve.three-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.eight-inch head-up show, as effectively as a wi-fi charging pad. It variety of sucks that you have to spring for the most costly Rogue — $36,525, together with $1,095 for destination — to get these niceties, but so it goes. At minimum Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are normal across the board. What’s a lot more, wi-fi CarPlay is optional on the SL and normal on the Platinum, and every Rogue save for the most essential S has an onboard Wi-Fi hotspot as effectively as four USB stores (two A, two C).

The Rogue’s interior is clean and present day.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

A full bunch of driver-help systems arrive normal on every Rogue, together with blind-place monitoring, rear cross-targeted visitors inform, a driver alertness keep an eye on, ahead-collision warning, lane-departure warning and automated unexpected emergency braking. Nissan’s exceptional ProPilot Guide joins the normal roster on SV trims and increased, combining adaptive cruise manage and lane-keeping guide for simple-breezy freeway commuting. A newly enhanced edition of this tech, ProPilot Guide with Navi-Link, is optional on the SL and normal on the Platinum. It works by using navigation details to adjust the Rogue’s velocity for issues like tight freeway curves and hectic intersections, and it can even continue to keep the steering guide energetic on freeway exit ramps. The uplevel ProPilot application also incorporates velocity-limit adaptation, which is something ordinarily reserved for increased-stop luxurious vehicles.

Sad to say, the relaxation of the Rogue’s driving practical experience just isn’t so techy you will not likely uncover turbochargers or electric powered help beneath the hood. Purchasers hunting for a lot more punch need to look at out a Mazda CX-5 with the 2.5-liter turbo, and if you might be all about fuel-sippin’, the Ford Escape, Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 can be had with hybrid powertrains. The Escape and RAV4 even offer plug-in solutions.

The Rogue, in the meantime, works by using a reworked edition of Nissan’s extensive-standing 2.5-liter I4, building 181 horsepower and 181 pound-toes of torque, boosts of eleven hp and six lb-ft around the 2020 model. A repeatedly variable transmission is necessary across the board, and customers can select between entrance- and all-wheel generate on every trim degree.

The a lot more upright condition results in elevated rear-seat headroom.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

Nissan’s CVT is one of the improved transmissions of this kind, mainly fading into the history without roughness or loud droning during acceleration. But the Rogue surely just isn’t speedy, and it from time to time suffers on steep grades. Climbing California’s infamous Grapevine on the I-5 freeway at 75 mph involves a hefty proper foot, primarily considering the fact that the 2.5 has a dearth of lower-stop torque. The practical experience would be even worse with travellers and/or a lot more cargo onboard, far too. This is where by the lower-stop torque from a turbocharger or added electrification can genuinely enable, but opponents generally also make you pay out added for their a lot more-effective engines. Nissan provided a Rogue Hybrid previously, so possibly a a lot more effective engine choice will arrive together in the future.

Fuel financial system ratings of 27 miles per gallon city, 35 mpg freeway and 30 mpg merged are on the improved facet of typical for the compact crossover course. Opting for all-wheel generate lowers those figures by one to two mpg based on trim degree, but all over again, that is not uncommon for smaller SUVs. Soon after quite a few days of testing in combined circumstances, my Rogue’s onboard laptop displays 28.5 mpg.

The engine alone may possibly be quite mediocre, but total, the Rogue drives with self-assurance and composure. The redesigned rack-mounted electronic electricity steering is a ton improved than in previous Rogues, with improved weight and a lot more purely natural change-in that would not come to feel overboosted. Even so, as considerably as steering come to feel is concerned, the Rogue, like most other smaller SUVs, is as useless as your childhood goals.

Of all the compact crossovers on sale nowadays, the Nissan Rogue is surely one of them.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

A new, stiffer frame offers the Rogue a reliable on-street demeanor, and the suspension is nicely tuned to soak up the kind of tough pavement and occasional pothole you’ll practical experience in every day driving. The foundation Rogue S rides on 17-inch wheels, but 18s and 19s, like the ones on my tester, are available. Brake come to feel is reliable and simple to modulate, and if you hustle the Rogue via a corner you’ll uncover predictable quantities of entire body roll. But for the vital missions of a Nissan Rogue — operating errands, commuting to function, using the kids to the lake — this automobile is correctly tuned.

Pricing for the 2021 Nissan Rogue starts off at $26,745 together with destination and all-wheel generate is a $1,four hundred upcharge on every trim. Like every other factor of the Rogue, this places Nissan’s CUV squarely in the middle of the compact crossover course.

It is really challenging to fault Nissan for actively playing it straight with the 2021 Rogue. The current model is undertaking genuinely effectively for the automaker, and it truly is the segment’s third best-marketing model at the rear of the Toyota and Honda. Frankly, thinking of Nissan’s massive-image problems, it truly is probably not a superior plan to shake up a winning formula. Is the Rogue the most desirable, most fun-to-generate smaller SUV? No. But it truly is snug, roomy, cost-effective and priced proper, and those are quite potent laurels on which to relaxation.