Reviews

2016 Nissan Rogue Walk Around


The conservative nose looks modern, bringing the Rogue upscale, at least compared to what it used to look like. Gone is the crazy grille, now with simple chrome bars and LED running lamps. Interesting character lines along the sides, borrowed from the wild Juke, push the car in an evocative direction, with correct proportions overall. Chamfered taillamps mimic competitors, namely the Hyundai Santa Fe and Mazda CX-5.

Interior

The cabin is handsomely finished, its materials high quality, with muted plastics and metallic trim. It’s elegant in an ordinary way, or maybe ordinary in an elegant way. The instrument panel is simple and well organized, with plain old round knobs for climate control and sound, and a center stack with LCD screen and balanced vents. No gimcrack. We like that.

Like the Nissan Altima, the front seats use dense foam that make them very comfortable, with a good driving position, although the steering wheel is raked a bit like a bus; still, we could be happy there for long hours. The heated front seats also use a Nissan Leaf trick, in that they warm up faster in places you feel it first. Manual adjustment on the driver seat is standard, power on the Rogue SV and SL.

The front power seat is manual in all models, however it folds almost flat, to increase cargo capacity and capability. This can be a big thing for outdoorsy types who carry kayaks or stand-up paddle boards.

The rear seats offer plenty of leg room, with that sliding track, assuming there’s no third-row seat or no one back there if there is. Plus, the rear seats recline. And again, for cargo, the rear seats move up and away behind the front seats. That creates a total of 70 cubic feet, with 32 cubic feet behind the second row, or a slim 9.4 cubic feet behind the third row, if there is one. Given the numbers, we would skip the third row, unless it’s a must-have for a small family.

Forward visibility is good, but the rear pillars intrude a bit into rearward vision. One option we like is the surround-view camera that pieces together a 360-degree view of obstacles from four cameras, and makes parking anywhere easier. It’s packaged with other functions smartphone connectivity.

The only cabin downer is engine noise, which the CVT doesn’t help.

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