Competitively speaking, the Rogue is up against SUVs like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, Hyundai Tuscon, Kia Sportage, Chevy Equinox, and Suzuki Grand Vitara. Since I have not driven any of these competitors, I cannot comment on how the Rogue drives on a relative basis, but I can comment on exterior/interior styling and feature functionality. The Kia Sportage is easily the best looking of all, but the CR-V and RAV4 are the 800-pound gorillas in the room; not only are they the sales leaders, but they are also leaders in quality and reliability. The CR-V and RAV4 have storied reputations that go back to the mid-1990s in the US, while the Rogue is a newbie, so lack of brand recognition does not help the Rogue.
I never liked the Murano's styling (I thought the front end was too futuristic for its own good, and the rear windows between the C and D pillars were awkwardly shaped), but American consumers have spoken, and the Murano has been a huge hit since its introduction in 2002. The Rogue is styled very similarly to the Murano, but I would argue it is slightly more attractive and less avantgarde. In fact, Infiniti would have been better off adapting the Rogue platform instead of the awkward looking EX, which is more of a G station wagon than baby-FX SUV. However, when all is said and done, nothing about the Rogue's exterior styling raises my pulse, and I think some of its competitors have pumped out more innovative designs. One exterior design component I really like about the Rogue is the rear spoiler, which continues the line of the rear window quite seamlessly. The chrome accents are also very well placed; without them, the Rogue would completely blend into the crowd.
|Nissan Rogue interior|
My overall impression of the Rogue is lukewarm. As a car enthusiast, I would personally never buy this car, but it is a perfectly competent crossover for people who aren't looking for a lot of pizzazz or performance in their vehicle. Nissan had a chance to make a splash in the US crossover market with this relatively new entry, and instead barely made a ripple.