Nissan Rogue's Five-Year Plan

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In January, Nissan debuted its new compact SUV, called the Rogue, which will compete with the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 when it hits the market in a few months. Today, Fortune details the vehicle’s inception … in 2002. Most car buyers may be unaware that this is a typical gestation period for an all-new model. Back in 2002, Nissan had to come up with target buyers and what they wanted in a vehicle, on top of all the engineering and design requirements that would be needed.

The article points out that Nissan recently failed in its attempt to predict consumer wants with the Quest minivan, but the hot-selling compact SUV market is a bit more of a no-brainer. We’re not sure we can swallow the market-ise reasoning behind the Gen X target buyers growing up “unprotected and insecure,” and thus desiring this particular cute-ute. Still, we’re routinely amazed that car companies work on such a lengthy time frame and can still produce hits.   

Creating a Car for the Future (

2007 Detroit Auto Show: Nissan Rogue (KickingTires)

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Former managing editor David Thomas has a thing for wagons and owns a 2010 Subaru Outback and a 2005 Volkswagen Passat wagon. Email David Thomas

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