$5,932 - $6,755

2010 Nissan Rogue Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2010 Nissan Rogue was new.


Performance: 7.8

For the most part, test drivers are satisfied with the Rogue's performance. Nonetheless, some complain about the continuously variable transmission and underpowered four-cylinder engine.

  • "Highway cruising is where the Rogue and its transmission work best. Secure on-center steering feel, a firm but compliant ride, and a quiet cabin combine to effortlessly count down highway miles." -- Car and Driver
  • "The Rogue had very little body lean for an SUV, but it's probably still not up to the level of the Outlander. Even so, the Rogue is probably the best all-around performer in the four-cylinder class." -- Cars.com
  • "The Nissan's tall-sidewall 60-series tires and well-sorted suspension translates into carlike ride quality. In fact, the Rogue feels like it's riding on clouds: cushy, compliant and controlled, no matter the situation. Potholes, speed bumps and gravel roads are all easily handled by the small sport utility. When asked for more cornering capability, the Rogue proves that its steering and brakes are more than up to the task." -- MSN
  • "Rogue feels less solid and refined than the class leaders. Washboard freeway surfaces can bring about annoying pitching and bobbing. S models, with their smaller, less aggressive tires, ride better than their SL counterparts." -- Consumer Guide

Acceleration and Power

The Rogue comes with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 170 horsepower. Almost every review says that while it's powerful when up to speed, it lacks oomph off the line and in merging situations. It's paired with a continuously variable transmission, which reviewers say is overly noisy and even a bit whiny. The Toyota RAV4  costs about $1,000 more than the Rogue, but offers V6 engines with more power. Still, it can't match the Rogue's fuel economy.

According to the EPA, the front-wheel-drive Rogue should achieve 22/27 mpg city/highway, while the all-wheel-drive model should net 21/26. This puts the Rogue's fuel economy in the top half of its class.

  • "We wouldn't complain if Nissan gave it more power, as we had to floor it to climb through some of the elevated turns in the mountains." -- About.com
  • "We aren't crazy about the CVT [Continuously Variable Transmission] in this new vehicle, or in any other for that matter, nor have we been convinced yet of its claim to dramatically improve gas mileage, but the wide spread of gear ratios and the smooth power delivery do seem to be a better idea than the four- or five-speed conventional automatics of the competition." -- Car and Driver
  • "CVTs have a tendency to create a droning engine note at wide-open throttle, and when merging on the freeway, it's noticeable in the Rogue. Still, it's less intrusive than other vehicles we've driven recently." -- Popular Mechanics

Handling and Braking

Though the automotive press gives somewhat mixed reviews about the Rogue's handling, most find the ride stable and car-like.

  • "Nissan has tuned its small crossover for responsive cornering, but the downside is a ride that delivers sharp kicks over bumps." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "The Rouge's electric power steering is intuitive and reactive to driving conditions. Add computer-assisted vehicle dynamic control and traction control to the other mechanical benefits, and that's a nice package." -- BusinessWeek
  • "The Rogue also lived up to its sporty roots in the handling department. While the steering felt loose at low speeds, it really tightened up the faster I went. I was tuned into the turns on windy roads, and the feel of the wheel was dead-on." -- Cars.com
  • "Body lean in sharp corners is quite noticeable. Steering feel is responsive. Rogue is subject to wandering in gusty crosswinds, making steering corrections at highway speeds necessary. The brakes provide good stopping control, but one test model suffered from a slightly touchy pedal." -- Consumer Guide

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