Nissan’s popular Rogue has made the small SUV market a three-way horse race, surpassing Honda’s CRV in sales the past two years and nipping at the heels of Toyota’s RAV-4.
Small SUVs were the best-selling segment in the United States last year, with large pick-up trucks a distant second.
Nissan has continually added features since its 2016 make-over, including some mid-year changes, a move not frequently done in the automotive industry.
Rogues come in S, SV and SL trims, as well as a Rogue Sport and Rogue Hybrid. All-wheel-drive is an option.
For 2019, our test drive 2019 Nissan Rogue SL forward-wheel-drive made several safety features - once sold as options - standard.
They include a rear sonar system with automatic rear braking, a rear door alert reminding the driver to see if items may be forgotten in the rear seat, and ProPILOT Assist combining dynamic cruise control with lane keeping assistance.
Nissan reminds drivers to keep their hands on the wheel, with Nissan insisting this is not an autonomous vehicle and some features may cease to operate in inclement weather.
Our SL had $2,885 in options, including Platinum Reserve Interior with exclusive zero-gravity, tan quilted leather inserts with unique stitching that coordinated with the exterior Monarch Orange paint. Friends said they either loved or hated the bold color.
All Rogues use the same 170-horsepower engine, which is not quick off the line but has a comfortable ride on 19-inch wheels and decent handling.
Rear visibility is hindered with upright rear head restraints and the rear and B-pillars but blind spot protection works well.
It received top safety scores in crash tests.
Outside, the Rogue maintains its clean, contemporary look, with chrome window surroundings, shiny roof rails and roof overhang.
Inside, comfortable front seats (elevated, heated and with memory), ergonomically located controls, interior knick-knack spaces, plus fit and finish using quality materials combine to make the cabin efficient and comfortable.
Fold-down rear seats, including the front passenger seat, increase cargo capacity with below-floor hidden trays in the trunk above a temporary spare tire.
Nissan Connect provides navigation via a 7-inch touch-screen, good voice recognition, Sirius XM, mobile apps and texts via a smartphone and a USB connection. A 360-degree camera view on the dashboard aids parking in tight spaces and shows ground-level objects.
Visors are extendable and there is a CD player. It can tow 1,100 pounds.
LIKES: Price, comfort, versatility, mileage, ride, spacious.
DISLIKES: Hindered rear visibility, slow acceleration.
BOTTOM LINE: Its size and competitive pricing overcomes low horsepower engine.
2019 NISSAN ROGUE SL FWD
Base price plus destination fee: $32,385 (as tested $35,270)
Curb weight: 3,615 lbs.
Wheelbase: 106.5 inches
Length: 184.5 inches
Width: 72.3 inches
Engine specs: 2.5-liter, DOHC, 4- cylinder inline
Horsepower: 170 hp at 6,000 rpm
Torque: 175 lbs.-ft. at 4,400 rpm
Transmission: Continuously variable
EPA rating: 26 city, 33 highway
Range: 14.5 gallons, regular
Performance: 0-60 in just under 10 seconds