- Most significant changes: Foot-activated power liftgate, additional Nissan Connect telematics services and Siri Eyes Free now standard on SL trim.
- Price change: TBA
- On sale: Fall
- Which should you buy, 2015 or 2016? 2015
Nissan's Rogue is riding the popularity wave for compact crossover SUVs, with sales up 36 percent in the first half of 2015. Part of its success is due to its unique position among small SUVs in offering an optional third row of seats (on S and SV models) that increases passenger capacity to seven from five. Only children will fit in the third row, but it's a handy feature to have when the herd of munchkins grows to five or six. The second row also has more room than most compact rivals.
If you decide to check out a seven-seat Rogue, the third row eliminates room for a spare tire; that setup comes with run-flat tires. That might be something a salesman fails to mention, so do some research on run-flats.
The Rogue comes with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and continuously variable automatic transmission (as opposed to one with five or six fixed gears) that generate considerable noise but mediocre acceleration, which you might not notice in a brief test drive.
On the other hand, despite its relatively small size, the Rogue has many features often found on a larger vehicle, including a standard backup camera. A surround-view monitor uses four cameras to provide a bird's eye view of the SUV; it's standard on the SL trim and optional on the SV.
For 2016, automatic emergency front braking is added to the SL Premium Package, which includes forward collision warning, blind spot warning (now radar-based instead of camera-based), moving object detection and other features. Siri Eyes Free voice control of Apple devices is now standard on the SL and part of the optional SV Premium Package.
Nissan sales are on a roll this year, helped by generous incentives and dealer discounts. That should make it easier to find a good deal on a Rogue, whether it's a 2015 or 2016.