2012 Nissan Rogue SV new car reviews

The Rogue doesn't look half bad.
It's actually somewhat sporty to drive.
The interior is simple and well-appointed.
Our test car had automatic A/C, though the Rogue doesn't have a traditional temperature display.
The Rogue offers ample room for cargo, and the seats fold down.

Better than: Geo Tracker
But not as good as: Honda CR-V
GRM Bang For The Buck Index: 62.31

The 2012 Nissan Rogue is still a strong contender in the competitive crossover market. Stickering at just under $30,000, our test model had lots of toys (leather, Bose stereo, Navigation, heated seats, a very nice camera system, etc.) for its relatively low price.

However, this Rogue SV with the SL package represents the upper end of the crossover spectrum. For a more modestly appointed Rogue, figure around $22,000. That price slightly undercuts the Honda CR-V, the Rogue's main competitor, as well as most other crossovers.

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Other staff views

Joe Gearin Joe Gearin
Associate Publisher

I recently drove a Rogue from Las Vegas back to Florida. That rental was equipped in a similar manner to the sample car we have here. This isn't a bad vehicle, it isn't a great vehicle, it just is. If your favorite ice cream is vanilla, if your Camry is just too low to the ground, or if you have just too much excitement in your life already, the Rogue may be for you.

About the only non-beige thing about this small Ute is it's sub-par CVT transmission. The CVT broadcasts the engine's relatively coarse nature by forcing the engine to scream at the slightest provocation. A conventional auto would mask the harshness, and make for a much more enjoyable trucklet. Besides the transmission, the Rogue is average in every way.

I can't blame anyone for buying a Rogue, but I can't recommend one either. Toyota's RAV-4 and Honda's CRV do everything better than this Nissan, but those both come with a price premium. For the non-car person, I'm sure this small Ute is acceptable. For those of us that enjoy driving, there are better choices.

Jane Soliman Jane Soliman
Reader

I love Nissan, so I have a bias. I don't care for SUVs, so there's another bias. The Rogue wasn't a grand experience. It's a typical Nissan. Unlike my Sentra, however, I had to refill half the tank that was used over a weekend, when I usually only do that weekly or even less often. It is roomy, has a decent stereo system and rear cam, but what car doesn't these days. Also, it didn't pick up much speed very quickly. And I could feel every bump and crack in the road, which I didn't expect in an SUV. But, I still love Nissan.

Alan Cesar FartSmeller69
SuperDork

I hated the CVT in this car. Maybe I just hate all continuously variable transmissions. I've driven a few that were tolerable, but this was not one of them. This vehicle was a real yawner with low-rent materials inside. I expect to see it filling up rental fleets.

Tom Suddard Tom Suddard
Digital Experience Director

This car was a contradiction. It had great power (for a crossover), but was ruined by a CVT. It had a navigation system and a fancy camera system that showed 360 degrees around the car, but the stereo sucked. The seats were great leather, but the armrests were plastic. It felt cheap and expensive at the same time, a combination I really didn't like.

Oh, and the seat doesn't go down far enough. This car is sized for a petit person, not a six-foot-tall one that sits very close to the wheel.

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Comments

View comments on the GRM forums
Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
6/28/12 10:22 a.m.

yes, and I don't see myself wearing either!

Klayfish
Klayfish UltraDork
6/28/12 11:37 a.m.

Maybe that's just clever marketing strategy by Nissan...name it one simple spelling mistake from a make-up. Wonder what the gender demographics for it are???

integraguy
integraguy UltraDork
6/28/12 1:17 p.m.

"Wonder what the gender demographics for it are?" Apparently, you aren't watching all the Nissan commercials with the HYPER perky young woman shopping for the Rogue? Aren't all the U.S. "cute utes" aimed at women?

BTW, in Europe, you can get a Rogue with a manual transmission and/or diesel engine.

Finally, no one mentioned the very bad (supposedly?) blind spot caused by the shape of the rear side windows. About 90% of owners of the Rogue gave Nissan and the the Rogue very black marks for this design feature. I'm not all together sure how other folks "test drive" a vehicle before buying...but I think if it bothered me, I'd notice BEFORE the contract needed signing.

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
6/29/12 9:11 a.m.

Honestly I didn't notice the big blind spot. Reports may have been exaggerated, or it could be that we are just used to claustrophobic cars these days. It is actually a pleasant surprise when we CAN see out of a new car.

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Associate Editor
12/10/13 12:00 a.m.

The 2012 Nissan Rogue is still a strong contender in the competitive crossover market. Stickering at just under $30,000, our test model had lots of toys (leather, Bose stereo, Navigation, heated seats, a very nice camera system, etc.) for its relatively low price.

However, this Rogue SV with the SL package represents the upper end of the crossover spectrum. For a more modestly appointed Rogue, figure around $22,000. That price slightly undercuts the Honda CR-V, the Rogue's main competitor, as well as most other crossovers.

Like what you read here? You can get a whole magazine full of these types of articles delivered to your home or shop 8 times a year. Subscribe now or visit the Grassroots Motorsports online store for back issues.
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