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2021 Nissan Rogue Improves In Ways Owners Will Love

The Nissan Rogue was already a great crossover vehicle. What Nissan is changing will be much appreciated by owners.


Sometimes when we auto testers hear that a new generation is approaching we cringe. Not because the outgoing vehicle wasn't great. Rather, because it was great. And we worry that the automaker will just mess it up. By all indications, Nissan has made wise decisions on the all-new 2021 Rogue crossover.

We have tested the Rogue in literally every weather extreme from a sub-zero New England winter and in the desert southwest. The Rogue never let us down and always exceeded our expectations. The new changes to the Rogue also impress us. Here is what Nissan has done to the top-selling Rogue that owners will love.
2021 Nissan Rogue interior image by Nissan2021 Nissan Rogue Infotainment Changes
Infotainment evolves quickly and those automakers who can't keep up (Toyota we are looking at you), risk falling behind in one of the ways easiest to point to. For 2021, any new vehicle without wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay is already behind the times and outdated. Nissan wisely saw this trend and has announced that the new Rogue will have wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Coupled with its wireless phone charger, the Nissan Rogue is as advanced as any crossover in its class, or the premium class for that matter. You can't get this wireless smartphone integration technology in a Tesla Model Y.

Nissan is also making a head-up display available on some trims. HUDs are great. They help keep your eyes up while driving and provide all the info you need in your view of the road.

2021 Nissan Rogue Drivetrain Changes
We found the Rogue's standard drivetrain to be one of the best in its class during multiple tests. We love the CVT and our opinion has evolved on the subject. Now it's the geared transmissions that feel outdated and wonky when we drive them. Nissan's new Rogue keeps its CVT and the engine now has more torque. We here at "Torque News" love more torque. And the reason is that torque is what drivers feel when they accelerate, not power.

2021 Nissan Rogue Safety Changes
For the new model year, all Nissan Rogues get the Safety Shield 360 suite of safety systems. No more having to buy a higher trim to get what you really want to keep your family safe.

2021 Nissan Rogue Many Small But Important Changes
In the new 2021 Rogue, the doors open wider. Anyone who has children to buckle in will understand why that matters.

The new Rogue will also feature better driver assist technology. Nissan's ProPilot system helps reduce fatigue in certain conditions and can steer and maintain speed in traffic (with the driver's involvement). To those that have not tested it, the system always sounds odd. Then you drive it and go "oh, that makes sense." Give it a try.

Nissan is also changing the look of the Rogue to be a bit more assertive in its appearance. Sort of like how the RAV4 evolved. We like the look. Maybe you will too.

Finally, Nissan freed up valuable interior space by changing its shifter design.

The 2021 Nissan Rogue will be available at Nissan dealers this fall. Watch Torque News for a full test report soon.

John Goreham is a life-long car nut and recovering engineer. John's focus areas are technology, safety, and green vehicles. In the 1990s, he was part of a team that built a solar-electric vehicle from scratch. His was the role of battery thermal control designer. For 20 years he applied his engineering and sales talents in the high tech world and published numerous articles in technical journals such as Chemical Processing Magazine. In 2008 he retired from that career to chase his dream of being an auto writer. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American newspapers and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin

Images courtesy of Nissan Media Support.


Digitaldoc (not verified)    June 16, 2020 - 5:52PM

Big missed opportunity for Nissan. The Rogue has been perennially underpowered, and this update does little to address this. About the best I can say is at least they resisted the urge to give in a 3rd row seat and make it larger in every dimension with this redesign. The engine should have been updated to the 2.0T that currently is available in the Altima, which the Rogue is based on. Losing the CVT in favor of an 8 spd auto would have been another obvious move that Nissan missed. Rather than putting so much effort into relaunching their 370Z car, Nissan should have focused on making their volume seller, the Rogue into a more capable vehicle. Another missed opportunity for Nissan. When I need my next CUV, at this point the Rogue will not be on my list.

Jordan Batten (not verified)    August 11, 2021 - 5:20PM

In Canada (my understanding this is the same in the US) the 2021 full size Rogue (not certain as to Rogue Sport) does not have wireless (only wired Android Auto), (but does have wireless Apple Car Play) including the Platinum model. Sadly, even updates to software have not included it and there is no info in the pipeline of it being added. The vehicle has bluetooth and wifi. There's no reason this is missing. Someone correct if I am wrong, I'd love the feature on my Platinum.

Bill (not verified)    November 1, 2021 - 12:05PM

In reply to by Jordan Batten (not verified)

Jordan is correct. 2021 Rogue does not have wireless android auto. I recently received a pixel 6 and went to set it up and it would not work. I believe this is because wireless android auto requires 5ghz wifi and the rogue wifi connects at 2.4ghz.