The 2017 Nissan Rogue Sport is more of a good thing for the folks at Nissan.
Sold as the Qashqai pretty much in every market that isn’t the United States, the Rogue Sport unveiled ahead of the 2017 Detroit Auto Show is being billed here as an extension of the popular Rogue nameplate that Americans can’t seem to get enough of. It unseated the Altima as the most popular Nissan in 2016 and, pickup trucks aside, was the best-selling vehicle in the U.S. in December.
The Rogue Sport, largely unchanged from the Qashqai, is built in Japan and comes only to the U.S. with a 2.0-liter four making 140 horsepower and mated to a CVT. Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive optional. Suspension tuning has been altered for the American market, as well as the center console design adapted from the bigger Rogue.
Rogue Sports will come from Japan, whereas Europeans can’t get enough from the Qashqai that’s produced in the UK. Canada will also keep the Qashqai name, despite the U.S. intro of the car. In addition, the Rogue Sport gets different suspension tuning and a new center console over the Qashqai.
But much of the car is the same as the updated 2017 Rogue models, although the hybrid powertrain isn’t offered on the Sport. It’s a foot shorter than the standard model and a smidge narrower, so bet on it feeling very similar to drive. That’s not derisive, because the Rogue is an accomplished vehicle for carting people around – even if it doesn’t incite passion.
The Rogue Sport will come in S, SV and SL trims, with the option of lovely leather upholstery and the Nissan suite of driver assistance features. It’s exactly what people who live in cities probably want from a Rogue – something admirable, but with less bulk. Nissan has another winner on its hands.
At this point, they should just call all their vehicles “Rogue.”
Photos: Zac Estrada and Nissan