2014 Nissan Rogue: Safer, More Fashionable, Practical

By Sue Mead, December 14th, 2013

As a top player in the popular compact crossover SUV market, it's no surprise Nissan completely redesigned the Rogue. The second-generation Rogue can now seat seven. There's also a new value-priced Rogue Select edition.

Manufacturer photo: The all-new 2014 Nissan Rogue is set to challenge convention with bold emotive styling, a comfortable and inviting interior, unique passenger and cargo versatility and an enhanced sense of driving confidence
Manufacturer photo: The all-new 2014 Nissan Rogue is set to challenge convention with bold emotive styling, a comfortable and inviting interior, unique passenger and cargo versatility and an enhanced sense of driving confidence

The 2014 Nissan Rogue Starts at $22,490 with modernized exterior and interior styling; a host of updated navigation, communication and safety technologies; improved driving dynamics; and -- for the first time -- optional three-row, seven-passenger seating (a result of its all-new platform).

Built in Smyrna, Tenn., Rogue comes in three models: S, SV and SL, each in a choice of front-wheel or all-wheel drive. Also available is the Rogue Select. It's the current 2013 generation model that seats five and is on sale in January as an entry-level model priced below $20,000.

What you'll notice first on the 2014 Rogue is the exterior redo. It now looks more uplevel and classy with sharpened bodylines and a bolder, more aggressive appearance that incorporates larger wheel wells and available 18-inch tires. Designers kept its compact size, but added 0.6-inch to the wheelbase, increased the height by 1.2 inches and reduced the front overhang by 1.5 inches.

Stepping inside, we noticed the more premium styling and far greater roominess over the previous-generation model. Changes include an optimized front headrest shape, lowered front seat shoulder height, forward-shifted center console location, reduced front seatback surfaces, reduced rear door speaker enclosure intrusion, lowered door trim height and the new sliding/reclining second-row seat design.

Manufacturer photo: The all-new 2014 Nissan Rogue is set to challenge convention with bold emotive styling, a comfortable and inviting interior, unique passenger and cargo versatility and an enhanced sense of driving confidence

These changes create more interior space in a cabin that boasts 70.0 cubic feet of cargo room, with the rear seats folded. New front bucket seats are zero gravity-inspired: an articulated seat shape gives support from the pelvis to the chest and helps reduce fatigue for long drives. Available are Quick Comfort heated front seats that focus on warming the body parts that are most sensitive to heat, such as thighs and hips; it then increases warmth on body pressure points.

Rogue also comes with EZ Flex Seating System; all seats fold and the front passenger seat folds rearwards to allow for stowage of long items, such as an 8-foot ladder. Optional is a stadium-style, flat-fold third-row 50/50-split bench seat.

Under the hood is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 170 horsepower and 175 lb.-ft. of torque. The engine is matched with an advanced next-generation Xtronic CVT (continuously variable transmission) with a standard Sport Mode. The new CVT is more efficient. Fuel economy is rated at 33 mpg highway for front-wheel drive CVT-equipped models, which is an 18 percent improvement in highway fuel economy versus the 2013 model. City mileage is rated at 26 mpg. AWD models are rated at 25/32 mpg and 28 mpg combined.

We drove the 2014 Rogue on a route in and around Nashville and found its exterior and interior updates fashionable and consumer-appealing. Motoring on a variety of roads we immediately noted Rogue's improved quietness, resulting from new aerodynamic and coefficient of drag design elements. Innovative treatments include underbody aerodynamic devices, such as a Nissan-first muffler spoiler, rear bumper closing panel, fuel tank deflector, rear suspension cover, under engine cover and front tire deflectors.

While the Rogue's engine is the same there are new drive features that we experienced during our drive. Added technologies on the Rogue include an Active Engine Braking system that comes from changes to the CVT and helps slow the Rogue with less brake effort. Active Ride Control smoothes out the drive by automatically applying the brakes and adjusting engine torque if the vehicle hits a bump, and reduces the typical "head bobble" pitch-or body roll. Active Trace Control uses Vehicle Dynamic Control stability system to aid cornering feel by automatically applying the brakes or smoothing engine torque while accelerating.

Manufacturer photo: The all-new 2014 Nissan Rogue is set to challenge convention with bold emotive styling, a comfortable and inviting interior, unique passenger and cargo versatility and an enhanced sense of driving confidence

Other notable features we tested are Nissan's Around View Monitor that employs four small super wide-angle cameras mounted on the front, side and rear of the vehicle to provide a 360-degree view of objects in the perimeter, plus additional split-screen close-ups of the front, rear and curb views to help navigate in or out of tight spots.

Moving Object Detection works with the AVM and provides visual and audible warnings if the system detects moving objects within the perimeter, when the vehicle is in park as well as when starting off or backing up.

Getting into the back is easier with new doors that have a wider opening (77 degrees) for easier entry. We also liked the variety of smart storage and convenience solutions, with six front storage areas -- five within the driver's reach.

Specifications

Base price $22,490 (as tested: $24,570)
Curb weight 3,393 lbs.
Displacement 2.5-liter
Epa mileage rating 26 mpg city, 33 mpg highway
Fuel capacity 14.5 gal.
Horsepower (net) 170 at 6000 rpm
Motor type 16-valve 4-cylinder w/SMPFI
Overall length 182.3 in.
Torque (lb.-ft.) 175 at 4400 rpm
Transmission CVT
Vehicle type 5-passenger FWD compact CUV
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