For those of you not in the know, the 2011 Nissan Rogue has been revised ever so slightly. Ever so slightly that one would most likely not notice if they were looking at a 2010 or 2011 model. The headlights, bumper design and taillight plastic are all subtly changed for the new model year. But wait until you hear about the interior changes!
Okay, I really oversold that one but Nissan is thankfully upgrading the quality of the interior plastics from the realm of the abysmal to merely passable I would hope. I tested a Nissan Rogue Krom Edition earlier in 2010 and was horribly disappointed with the quality of the interior trim.
Yes, the Rogue is an inexpensive compact family SUV but that doesn’t mean it needs to feel so unremittingly cheap where you spend most of your time. The interior plastics have all of the tactile enjoyment inherent in holding hands with Freddy Krueger and the seat fabric acts as a magnet for pet fur and dirt.
But do remember that the 2011 Nissan Rogue starts at only $20,810 rather modestly equipped. The basic Rogue comes with the CVT, air conditioning, power windows, power door locks, power mirrors, keyless entry, a 6-speaker AM/FM/CD system with aux-input jack and the option of all wheel drive at no extra charge.
If you want the primo Rogue SV then you have to come up with $23,220 which nets you the essential Bluetooth and USB/iPod connectivity (both of which were unavailable in 2010), XM satellite radio, push button start, a back-up camera, power seats, stylish and functional roof rails and very handsome 17 inch alloys. They are actually much better looking than the chrome plated numbers on the Krom.
Do note that there is also a ridiculously over-specced SV with SL package that has features like a Bose audio system, optional navigation etc. which can easily near the base price of the much cooler Murano.
Although the Rogue shares the same spunky 2.5 liter 170 horsepower/175 lb. feet of torque 4 cylinder with the Altima, the CVT automatic saps power from this rev-hungry powerplant and makes really odd moaning noises under heavy acceleration.
So, if you can live with a so-so driving experience and low cost of entry is of prime importance then the Nissan Rogue has few rivals. Oh wait, except for that pesky Hyundai Tucson, Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, Chevy Equinox and Kia Sportage to name a few that I would recommend first. Or even better, the ever so cool 2011 Nissan Juke.
2011 Nissan Rogue Specs
Engine: 2.5 liter 4 cylinder
Output: 170 horsepower/175 lb. feet of torque
Economy: 22 city/27 highway
Cargo Space (Second Row Up): 28.9 cubic feet
(With Second Row Folded Flat): 57.9 cubic feet
Fuel Tank: 15.9 Gallons
0-60: 8.6 Seconds (Estimated)
Warranty: 3 year/36,000 mile bumper to bumper
5 year/60,000 powertrain coverage
Crash Ratings (Government): Front Impact-Four Stars
Side Impact-Five Stars
Rollover Protection-Four Stars
(NOTE: Exterior revisions not applicable to Krom Edition 2011 Rogue models.)