Nissan has always been ahead of the curve with the design of its vehicles and when the Murano debuted in 2003 it was as unique a design as the Juke is today. The 2008 Rogue followed which was a smaller scale version of the Murano with a very similar design. Today however, the 2015 Nissan Rogue has a much different design than the Murano and is a vehicle all of its own. The 2015 Rogue is hugely spacious and quite a lot of vehicle considering its the entry level midsize in Nissan’s SUV lineup.
Although it is the entry level SUV, the Nissan’s design does a lot to convince the driver and passengers that the 2015 Rogue is all the SUV that one may need, powered by all the engine one would need. Upon further inspection, it is a mere 4 cylinder powering this incredibly spacious vehicle.
ENGINE & DRIVE
Although the 2015 Nissan Rogue comes in various levels of trim (S, SV and SL), all versions are equipped with the same 2.5L four cylinder engine outputting 170 horsepower paired with Nissan’s continuously variable transmission (CVT). Although front wheel drive comes standard, all wheel drive is an available option for the S and SV and comes standard on the SL.
The 2015 Nissan Rogue’s CVT provides a smooth and comfortable ride throughout the full spectrum of accelerations, making it a great choice for city driving as well as long distance road trips. However, at full throttle acceleration the 170 horsepower begins to show, yielding a slower than expected acceleration at quite noisy levels.
Driving the 2015 Rogue in ECO mode keeps the engine revving at lower RPMs, resulting in noticeably slower acceleration but a nice amount of fuel savings. Although rated at 7.4 L/100km on the highway and 9.5 L/100km in the city, our combined city/highway test drive yielded 10.2 L/100km over 350km. However, the 2015 Rogue seemed to perform better for many other testers, so perhaps it was just the routes that were chosen that yielded higher than published figures.
INTERIOR & EXTERIOR
The 2015 Nissan Rogues gets my full praise for its versatile and spacious interior. The rear passenger seating attaches to a 9 inch track, allowing an increase or decrease of passenger legroom or rear cargo space. The adjustable track is also perfect for the split fold-flat 3rd row seating (optional on the SV), allowing for variation in legroom depending on the passengers, where they are seated and how much cargo room is required. The rear cargo area without the 3rd row seating offers adjustable floor sections, useful for both awkward sized cargo as well as grocery bags that would otherwise slide all over the rear cargo area.
The spacious rear passenger area with reclining rear seats and separate climate control make the 2015 Rogue a great choice for comfortable distance drives.
The dash of the 2015 Nissan Rogue offers simple, straightforward and logical button placement, an elegant design and a good mix of materials put together in a high quality build. The vents come through with a 3D style and make the dash design really pop.
Thoughtful features of the 2015 Rogue really make driving a pleasure for all occasions. The power lift gate opens and closes with the touch of a button. The 360 degree Around View Monitor makes reversing and parallel parking a breeze. The full length sunroof brightens the whole cabin and gives a more open and inviting atmosphere.
Although leather seating is only available on the top level trim (SL), it is plush, high quality leather changing the entire dynamics of the interior.
I would have liked to see some more variability with the different trim levels as the SV trim is the only one offering the 3rd row seating, while the SL trim is the only one offering a Bose stereo and leather seating. However, with the base model 2015 Nissan Rogue starting at $23,998 it’s hard to pass up that much versatility and space packed into an elegantly designed vehicle with a smooth and solid driving experience.