2014 Nissan Rogue Walk Around
For 2014, Nissan Rogue has been completely redesigned. The styling is still swoopy, but lines are now more angular and athletic. The previous wedge shape is gone, replaces by a more upright, symmetrical silhouette.
The front fascia uses the new signature Nissan grille, which forms a deep, angular U-shape around the Nissan badge. The face is unique to the Rogue, but shares similarities with Nissan's other SUVs, the Murano and the Pathfinder. Deep, dual V-shaped lines run the length of the hood, the inner lines stemming from the grille's distinctive U shape, and the outer lines a continuation of the sharp distinctive LEDs that frame the headlamps, which resemble sideways check marks.
From the side, you can see the Rogue's steeply raked windshield, which helps with airflow. The crossover's stance is lower than before and looks more planted (this also comes at expense of decreased ground clearance, however). Fender flares are sculpted and defined. A center line flows from the front fender and through the front door handle, making a sharp Z shape in front of the rear door handle before curving down into the rear fender flare. It's as if Zorro had left his mark in the sheet metal.
The rear-end remains pleasantly curved, not boxy like many crossovers and SUVs. Tail lamps and rear bumper use a variety of angular, geometric shapes to give it a more athletic look. Tail lamps have LED accents that mimic the check-mark shape of the front LEDs.
Interior materials of the 2014 Rogue are improved over the last generation, though there is still an abundance of hard plastics on the dash, doors and console.
Bold interior lines wrap around from the instrument panel to the front doors, and run down the sides of the center stack. Front and center is the Rogue's touchscreen, which on S and SV models is small, and provides access to audio controls. SV models equipped with the Premium Package and SL trims get an upgraded, 7-inch touchscreen, along with navigation, a voice recognition feature, and the NissanConnect interface, which allows users to pair their smartphones, provided they download the NissanConnect app on their devices.
NissanConnect uses the phone's cellular signal to stream audio via Pandora and more. We found the NissanConnect app was intuitive to use. Navigation worked fine also, and voice recognition was mostly accurate, though not always (most systems from all manufacturers can be hit-and-miss). Despite the touchscreen, there are still numerous buttons on the center stack including preset, audio functions, source, volume and others. These look a bit dated, both because of the font and the hard plastic look. Also, even upgraded touchscreen seems too small compared to what other car companies offer, like the large MyLink screen available on the Chevrolet Equinox.
Storage for small items up front is adequate, with two center cupholders, a storage tray behind the gear shifter, and door pockets deep enough to hold a large-sized water bottle or mug.
In front of the driver is a thin film transistor (TFT) electronic display, the largest Nissan has made to date. It allows the driver to cycle through various information screens, including mpg, tire pressure and navigation information (on cars so equipped). It's flanked by two analog gauges, which are attractive and easy to read, with white luminous markings on a black background.
Front seats are comfortable, and use Nissan's Zero Gravity design, which uses a unique construction to make the driver and front passenger feel as if they're almost suspended in the air. They're soft and cushy, yet firm and supportive. At a Nissan display that contained seats from both the 2014 Rogue and the current Honda CR-V, it was clear after sitting in both that the Rogue had the advantage. By comparison, the Honda seat felt hard and unsupportive. We preferred the fabric seats in dark colors; the light beige fabric upholstery looks like it would show dirt easily.
Second-row seats are comfortable for the class, and offer a reasonable amount of support. Second-row legroom measure 37.9 inches, close to the Honda CR-V's 38.3 inches and a tad more than the Toyota RAV4's 37.2 inches. Head room comes in at 38.5 (or 36.6 with the optional moonroof), again, close to the CR-V's 38.3 inches, but shy of the Toyota RAV4's 39.8 inches (38.9 with the Toyota's optional moonroof). Rogue's toe space under the front seats is also plentiful.
The optional third row will fit two more people, but the extra seats are small and cramped, and are best only for carrying small children short distances. Third-row legroom measures only 31.4 inches, and headroom comes in at 34.6 inches, with or without the moonroof. The third row is not available on SL models.
Cargo space is much improved in the 2014 Nissan Rogue, up to a maximum of 70 cubic feet with the second row folded flat. With the second-row seats up, Rogue offers a maximum of 32 cubic feet, or a modest 9.4 cubic feet with the optional third row in place. This brings it more in line with the Honda CR-V, with a maximum 70.9 cubic feet with the seats down, though CR-V easily bests the Rogue with 37.2 cubic feet with the rear seats in place. The Toyota RAV4 beats them both, with a maximum of 73.4 cubic feet, and 38.4 cubic feet with the seats in place. The Chevrolet Equinox is the least roomy of these, with a maximum of 63.7 cubic feet, and 31.5 cubic feet behind the second row.
Not only does the 2014 Nissan Rogue have more space than before, it's organized more conveniently. Second-row seats now fold flat, instead of partially flat as before. The cargo floor can be raised, allowing for about five inches or so of hidden storage underneath. Also, a new piece in the front of the cargo floor flips up, so that dirty or muddy items can be separated from the rest of the trunk. The removable piece is washable/wipeable on one side (carpeted on the other). An optional tonneau cover keeps everything out of sight.