The term “rogue” generally references an unprincipled, deceitful, and unreliable sort of person. A scoundrel or rascal – someone anomalous or unpredictable. However, the 2019 Nissan Rogue Sport reverses that supposition. It’s perhaps the exact opposite of all those terms. It isn’t a scoundrel, nor is it unpredictable. In fact, it serves up a substantial level of control. Nissan calls the Rogue Sport, known as the Qashqai overseas, an example of “Biokenetic Synchronicity”. That translates as being a blend of clear exterior design, dynamic strength and smart premium in one styling exercise.
Nissan added the Rogue Sport to their crossover and SUV stable at the end of the 2017 model year. The standard Rogue remains Nissan’s best-selling vehicle in the U.S., and the Sport version shares several of the design cues. It also shares in the utility and technological features of standard Rogue models. The 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport is slightly smaller, more sporty and affordable than its larger sibling. It’s focused on appealing to a younger set of urban crossover buyers.
Packaging plays a key role in the 2018.5 Nissan Rogue over the 2018 and prior models. Nissan added only a few refinements to its optional packages. The new SV Technology Package – previously named the SV Premium Package – includes the contents of the previous SV All-Weather Package. That brings heated front seats, a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel, Remote Engine Start, fog lights, a leather-wrapped shift knob and heated outside mirrors. The SL Premium Package now includes the contents of the previous SL Platinum Package. Here, you get Intelligent Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning, Intelligent Lane Intervention and Automatic Emergency Braking with pedestrian detection.
The Rogue tends to be more family oriented, while the Rogue Sport focuses on a more fun-to-drive role for singles or couples. The Rogue Sport’s wheelbase is 2.3 inches shorter, its overall length is 12.1-inches less, and Nissan shaved the Rogue Sport’s width by 0.4 inches. The height is reduced by 5.1 inches. That has a minimal effect on head, leg and hip room. However, cargo space shrinks more significantly. The 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport does still provide up to 22.9 cubic feet of cargo space behind the 2nd row seats. With those seats folded, there’s up to 61.1 cubic feet.
The Rogue Sport lineup consists of the same three basic trim levels or models found in the regular Rogue family. There’s the base model SE, followed by the SV trim, which is in turn topped by the flagship model SL. The standard drive configuration is front-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive available as an option.
Visually, the 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport carries forward Nissan’s ”emotional geometry” exterior design language. The compact body is sleek, but with pronounced fender volume with bold lower body sides. The front leads off with a sporty grille, flanked by LED signature Daytime Running Lights, halogen headlights and available fog lights. Also available are LED low-beam headlights with auto on/off function and High Beam Assist.
Another exterior feature is the a large rear opening and a wide rear body image. That’s complimented by sleek LED boomerang-shaped taillights and rear spoiler. Other exterior details include body-color front and rear bumpers, black wheel arches and roof molding, body-color outside mirrors with available integrated turn signals and heated outside mirrors. Nissan also offers a power-sliding moonroof with a sliding shade, and roof rails.
COMFORT AND CONVENIENCE
The cabin displays Nissan’s “gliding wing” interior design. That blends a wide-open feeling with areas for personal space. Seating includes a standard 6-way adjustable driver’s seat, 4-way adjustable front passenger seat, 60/40 split fold-down rear seat with rear seat center armrest and rear seat heating/cooling center console vents. 8-way power adjustable, leather-appointed seats are available on the SL.
The instrument panel features a 5.0-inch Advanced Driver Assist Display. The front center console includes an integral armrest and storage compartment, along with a 12-volt power outlet. 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport SV and SL grades include Nissan’s Intelligent Key with Remote Start.
Other available comfort and convenience features include a Divide-N-Hide Cargo System, RearView Monitor, Siri Eyes Free, NissanConnectSM with Navigation and Mobile Apps, and a 7.0-inch color touchscreen display. Also available is an advanced Around View 360-degree camera system and Intelligent Cruise Control.
The 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport offers the same comprehensive suite of Nissan Intelligent Safety Shield technologies as the standard Rogue. That includes Forward Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Forward Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning and Lane Departure Prevention.
Propulsion for all Nissan Rogue Sport models is provided by a 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine. The engine is rated at 141 horsepower and 147 lb-ft of torque. Energy is geared to the driving wheels via Nissan’s Xtronic CVT with an Eco Mode switch. There’s also four-wheel limited slip and Hill Start Assist.
The 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport is light on its wheels and tires. It also delivers a very flat, stable and controlled ride. The steering provides a positive and direct reaction to driver input. The ride is on the firm side, but remains comfortable and compliant even when pushed. It is also relatively quiet.
Challenging backroads showcase the Rogue Sport’s enhanced agility, making for high maneuverability in both urban and suburban driving scenarios.
Wrapping up, this new 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport is a good vehicle for a youthful and active consumer group. In addition to its affordability, its aerodynamic, yet athletic form and character lines stage a pleasing and attractive styling persona. There are more lively handling crossovers in the class, but the Rogue Sport is hard to fault as an all-around package.
SPECIFICATIONS: 2018.5 Nissan Rogue Sport
|Price as Tested:||$28,760|
|Engine:||2.0-liter naturally-aspirated I-4|
|Drivetrain (Layout):||Transversely mounted front engine, all-wheel drive|
|Horsepower:||141 hp @ 6,000 RPM|
|Torque:||147 lb-ft @ 4,400 RPM|
|Transmission:||Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)|
|Suspension:||Front: Independent strut w/ coil springs
Rear: Independent multi-link
|Brakes:||Front: 11.65 x 1.02-inch vented discs
Rear: 11.50 x 0.63-inch vented discs
|Tires:||Falken Sincera SN250A P215/60 R17 96H all-season|
|Fuel capacity:||14.5 gallons|
|Fuel economy (EPA):||24 City/30 Highway/27 Combined MPG|
|Turning Circle:||36.9 feet|
|Curb Weight:||3,389 pounds|