Interior view of the 2014 Nissan Rogue SL AWD.
With a host of new features and many awards, this is a crossover definitely worth a look, writes our automotive editor Sally Miller Wyatt.
Does Nissan have more cars in their line up than anyone else? It sure looks like it, with more than 24 models in the group. One of the most popular, and the one with tons of awards, is the Nissan Rogue. It has been named “Best Crossover” in 2014 Parents magazine, and makes Edmonds.com’s 10 Best Family Cars list. It’s also getting high marks for its safety features and affordability, as it landed Kelley Blue Book’s “10 Best SUVs under $25,000” award.
It’s also all new for 2014. Among the chief attributes is a bold new design, and optional third-row and seven-passenger seating. It also has many new technologies, including NissanConnect with Navigation, Blind Spot Warning, and other nifty features.
What hasn’t changed is that the Nissan Rogue is a sporty, compact SUV that offers some innovative features. Especially of note is its Around View Monitor. It was first introduced on the 2012 Nissan Rogue models and it uses four small but super-wide-angle cameras to give you a 360 degree view of objects around the vehicle, which is then displayed on the dashboard. Then, using a split screen, the system then takes those images and creates a virtual image of the vehicle from above. The “above” view is terrific for when you are parallel parking because it helps you see just how close you are to other cars and the curb. The street-level screen is really helpful in letting you know just how close you are to people or objects, even as you back out of parking spaces. This is great, especially when you have young drivers who are just getting the hang of such things as parallel parking and moving around safely in parking lots.
The 2014 Nissan Rogue remains a classy crossover SUV, and it is available in three trims: the S, the SV and SL models, with a choice of either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. It is the kind of vehicle that can easily go from taking the clan to the mountains for ski or backpacking trips, to getting all cleaned up for date night in the city.
Nissan Rogues for 2014 have a standard 170-horsepower 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, advanced Xtronic CVT (continuously variable transmission), Vehicle Dynamic Control, four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock braking system, as well as lots of safety features and pretty impressive gas mileage. It has lots of passenger and cargo-carrying space, especially when the second row of seats is folded down. Having a third row of seats, and those extra seat belts, will be a big advantage for families.
Nissan Rogues start at $22,490 and work up from there. These 2014 models have a 33 mpg mileage rating, which is an 18 percent increase over 2013 models.
Our test car was the SL model, with four-wheel drive. It was nicely appointed, with heated leather seats, heated outside mirrors, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, automatic temperature control, a navigation system with a five-inch color screen, XM NavTraffic, a Bose Premium Audio System with seven speakers, the previously mentioned Around View Monitor, auto dimming inside mirror, a power sliding glass moon roof, automatic on-off headlights, High Intensity Discharge Xenon headlights, fog lights and 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels.
Behind the wheel, we found very comfortable seats and great visibility. The dashboard is cleanly designed and highly functional. We did like the Around View Monitor.
Rear passengers have plenty of leg and hip room, even for that usually unlucky rear middle passenger. The rear cargo area is good sized and deep, which helps when you’re bringing home stuff from the grocery store or local garden supply warehouse.
The rear lift gate opens with a touch on the key fob, which is a very convenient feature.
Standard safety features include front seat active head rests, which should help reduce whiplash risks in the event of a rear-end collision, Vehicle Dynamic Control with Traction Control, Electronic Brake Force Distribution and Brake Assist, and a Vehicle Security System.
We found the 2014 Nissan Rogue to be a comfortable crossover SUV packed with some really nice-to-have standard features, and knowing that all those awards and accolades follow the car gives us parents lots of peace of mind.