Offered with the latest driver-assistance, collision-avoidance, and infotainment technologies
Built in Japan
Known in other parts of the world as the Qashqai, the new 2017 Nissan Rogue Sport is wisely renamed for the U.S. market. A small, 5-passenger crossover SUV, the Rogue Sport slots between the Juke and the larger Rogue in Nissan’s lineup, and is aimed at single people and couples without children.
More than a foot shorter than the existing Rogue, and equipped with a shorter wheelbase and narrower track, the new Rogue Sport is distinctively different from the model with which it shares its name.
Styling is sporty and attractive, especially in SL trim with 19-in. aluminum wheels. Gray wheel-arch moldings and lower body cladding give it the bare minimum requirements necessary to pass for an SUV and not a 5-door hatchback.
Nissan will offer the Rogue Sport in the expected palette of white, silver, gray, and black paint colors, along with more whimsical choices such as Monarch Orange, Nitro Lime, Mocha Almond, Palatial Ruby, and Caspian Blue.
Interior colors include black or light gray, complemented by gloss black and gunmetal trim. The Rogue Sport’s dashboard is similar (but not identical) to the existing Rogue’s design, complete with electroluminescent gauges and a 5-in. driver information display.
Nissan says the Rogue Sport seats 5, but 4 adults will be more comfortable. The driver’s seat includes standard height adjustment, and the rear seat is a 60/40 split-folding design with a rear center armrest. Air vents carry heat and air conditioning to passengers.
The Rogue Sport supplies 22.9 cu. ft. of space behind the rear seat, measured to the roof. That’s more than double the Nissan Juke. Fold the rear seat down for a maximum of 61.1 cu. ft. of space. A cargo cover is standard equipment.
Upgrading to SV trim adds 17-in. aluminum wheels, automatic headlights, LED turn signal indicators on the side mirrors, and a silver-finished roof rack. Inside, the SV includes keyless entry with push-button engine starting, dual-zone automatic climate control, extra stereo speakers, and a Divide-N-Hide cargo-management system.
Choose the Rogue Sport SL for leather seats, heated front seats, heated side mirrors, and a heated steering wheel. The SL also comes with a fully featured infotainment system, a 360-degree surround-view camera system, remote engine starting, and spiffy 19-in. aluminum wheels.
Additional options are offered in packages, but none of them includes a larger engine.
Under the Hood
Because “sport” is a part of the Rogue Sport’s name, you’d think it would provide something more energetic than a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine generating 141 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 147 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,400 rpm. Y’know, something along the lines of the Juke’s rowdy turbocharged 1.6-liter. But that’s not the case.
It also doesn’t come with a manual gearbox that would make best use of the available motive force, the one offered in the Qashqai in other parts of the world. Instead, buyers are stuck with a continuously variable transmission with a driver-selectable Eco driving mode, which distributes the power to the front wheels or to all four corners via the optional all-wheel-drive system.
At least it’s got a 4-wheel-independent suspension featuring struts in front and a multi-link arrangement in back. The electric steering has a Sport setting, the 4-wheel-disc brakes are ventilated all around, and in addition to a hill-start assist system the Rogue Sport features Active Trace Control, Active Engine Braking, and Active Ride Control, three technologies that have a subtle but positive effect on the SUV’s ride and handling, Nissan says.
Stick with the basic Rogue Sport S and you’re rolling on skinny 16-in. wheels. The SV trim level adds 17-in. wheels, while the SL gets meaty 19-in. wheels wrapped in sizable 225/45 tires.
A reversing camera is standard for the Rogue Sport. Upgrades, depending on the selected trim level, include adaptive cruise control with forward-collision warning, pedestrian detection and automatic emergency braking, as well as a lane-departure warning and prevention system, and a blind-spot warning system with rear cross-traffic alert.
The available 360-degree Around View Monitor system includes moving-object detection, and the Rogue Sport SL offers LED headlights with automatic high-beam assist. Versions of the SUV equipped with NissanConnect services also supply automatic collision notification, SOS emergency calling, and safe teen driving features related to speed, curfew, and boundary alerts.
Bluetooth, Siri Eyes Free, and a hands-free text-messaging assistant are standard on every Rogue Sport. Choose one equipped with the NissanConnect with Mobile Apps and Services infotainment system and you’ll enjoy a larger 7-in. touch-screen display, navigation, voice recognition, satellite traffic and travel services, and subscription-based NissanConnect Services.
Another standard feature is Nissan’s Easy Fill Tire Alert technology, which makes it much easier for owners to maintain proper tire pressures.