“The first generation Rogue was voted ‘best new vehicle in class’ by the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC.”

Euro styling, thrifty fuel economy, an extra roomy interior, and good value features make the Nissan Rogue stand out in the hugely popular compact utility market segment.

The first generation Rogue was voted ‘best new vehicle in class’ by the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC), when introduced for the 2008 model year.

Good consumer reliability ratings and excellent crash safety performance have helped make Rogue a solid and smart used vehicle choice. It’s also typically priced a little lower than more established competitors from Honda or Toyota… another plus for prospective used Rogue buyers.

We join Rogue’s first-generation product life story in 2011 when it got a styling refresh inside and out, and a new SV mid-range trim level was added to the model line. Rogue originally came in just S and SL trim levels.

The S and SV trims can come with front-drive or all-wheel drive and a top-line SL is strictly all-wheel drive. The newer SV trim adds (compared to an S trim) 17-inch alloy wheels, roof rails, privacy glass, a polished stainless steel exhaust tip, a backup monitor, dual vanity mirrors, a cargo cover, heated seats, a CD stereo with 4.3-inch colour display, and a USB port.

Power in all trim levels comes from an advanced large capacity 2.5 litre 4-cylinder double-overhead-camshaft engine with continuously variable valve control. It can produce up to 170 hp and 175 lb-ft of torque. Tuned to provide a healthy amount of torque a low engine speeds, it makes a Rogue fairly quick off the line, yet it’s surprisingly easy of fuel.

The lighter front-drive models are the most economical and get a city/highway fuel economy rating of 10.3/8.3 L/100 km respectively, using the new five-cycle method. The all-wheel-drive editions get a 10.6/9.1 L/100 km (city-highway) rating.

Nissan’s Xtronic CVT (continuously variable transmission) uses adaptive logic control to adjust gear ratios to different driving situations and driver demands. All-wheel-drive sends power to the front wheels under normal operating conditions (for best fuel economy). There’s also a locked 50/50 mode, which is useful on snow covered or slippery road surfaces.

Rogue’s rear independent multi-link suspension is also interesting. In addition to offering a better ride than a conventional strut type suspension it’s a more compact design, which allows more rear cargo space inside a Rogue.

Changes for 2012 included a new sport mode that gives the transmission a more aggressive shift pattern, at the push of a button. The SL trim also received Nissan’s superb Around-View-Monitor system. This clever parking aid can provide what looks like an overhead (bird’s eye) picture of the Rogue via four wide-angle cameras.

Not much changed for a 2013 model year which carried over into 2014, until an all-new (second generation) Rogue got a mid-model year introduction. Although the same length the outgoing model, this new Rogue has a longer wheelbase and it`s taller. A larger interior also allowed an optional 3rd row of seats. The 2014 Rogue also provides even better fuel economy, primarily due to a new continuously variable automatic transmission.

Price Check: 2011 – 2014 Nissan Rogue (April 2015)

Year                    Edition                                                 Expect to Pay Today

2011                       SV                                                          $17,000 to $21,000

2012                       SV                                                          $19,000 to $23,000

2013                       SV                                                          $22,000 to $26,000

2014                       SV                                                          $25,000 to $29,000

Prices vary depending on a used vehicle’s condition, mileage, usage and history. A complete mechanical check should always be performed by a reliable auto technician prior to purchase.

Safety Recalls: 2011 to 2014 Nissan Rogue

2008 to 2013: A wiring harness connector may corrode due to exposure to snow/water containing road salt and cause an electrical short. Dealers will add a waterproof seal, inspect the harness connector and replace as necessary.

2011 – The Electric Power Steering assist (EPS) control unit may fail, due to faulty manufacturing, and cause a loss of steering power assist. Dealers will inspect and, if necessary, replace the EPS control unit.

2014: An incorrect bolt may have been used at the intermediate shaft to upper steering column connection. This could allow the steering joint to lose tension and slip or separate and cause a loss of steering control. Dealers will inspect the steering column assembly and replace the bolt as required.

2014: One of the five wheel lug nuts on the right-side wheels may have been installed without being tightened to specification. Dealers will verify wheel lug nut torque.

2014: Improper nickel plating of certain fuel pump internal components could contaminate the pump, potentially resulting in an inoperative fuel pump. This could result in a no-start condition or an engine stall while driving. Dealers will replace the fuel pump.

Contact: bob [dot] mchugh [at] drivewaybc [dot] ca

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