After a total redesign last year, the Nissan Rogue returns for 2015 with some minor enhancements: a new fuel-saving driver-selectable Eco driving mode, the addition of standard automatic headlights to base mid-level SV and top-level SL trims, optional Forward Collision Warning on top SL trims, and a new Arctic Blue Metallic exterior colour replacing Graphite Blue.

2015 MSRPs have risen anywhere from $300 to $900, depending on the trim level. The base prices of the 2015 Rogue S FWD ($23,798) and S AWD ($25,798) have each gone up by $300. The Rogue SV FWD ($27,648) and SV AWD ($29,648) have increased by $900, and the top-of-the-line Rogue SL AWD ($34,098) shows a $400 increase. There seems little justification for this as there haven’t been any major upgrades to the standard equipment list. Perhaps the tumbling value of the Loonie vs the US dollar is responsible (the Rogue is assembled in Smyrna, Tennessee). The good news is that the Rogue S and SL models are still less expensive than the previous generation 2013 Rogue S and SL trims were. And compared to major competitors such as the Honda CR-V, Mazda CX-5, Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4, and Ford Escape, the 2015 Rogue is often priced lower.

As we reported in our First Drive and Test Drives of the 2014 Rogue, this second generation compact SUV is bigger, roomier and shapelier than the first generation Rogue which was sold from 2008 through 2013. Though it’s a bit shorter overall, the new Rogue is 40 mm wider, 30 mm taller (without roof rack), with a wheelbase that is 15 mm longer. The increased dimensions provide considerably more passenger and cargo room making it one of the roomiest SUVs in it class. In fact, it’s difficult to describe this as a compact SUV any more – it seems more mid-size now.

Up front, the driver and front passenger have large, contoured, supportive seats with multiple adjustments and seat heaters. The Rogue’s unique seat heaters are supposed to warm your thighs first and then your back, but like tester, Paul Williams, I found that they took a bit too long to warm up my posterior. In our top-of-the-line SL AWD tester, the driver’s seat has power fore-aft, height, tilt, recline and lumbar adjustments while the front passenger seat (as part of the $2,800 Premium Package) offers power fore-aft and power recline functions. Base S models have manual adjustments including a driver’s manual height adjuster. A padded centre armrest and padded door armrests are a nice touch. Legroom, hiproom and headroom are generous, but some of the latter is taken up by the large panoramic moonroof housing.

The Rogues stylish instrument panel includes soft-touch plastics and a tasteful blend of silver, faux carbon fibre, and piano black trim. Personally, I don’t like glossy, piano-black trim: it attracts dust and scratches easily when cleaned. Care needs to be taken to keep it looking good.

The Rogue’s bright, illuminated instruments are clearly visible day and night, and the colour display between the gauges provides a library of information including outside temperature, time, compass, gear indicator, trip odometer, average fuel economy, instant fuel economy, range, average speed, audio channel and artist, and driving aids (forward collision warning, blind spot warning, etc.). A button on the steering wheel allows the driver to switch between items.

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