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Nissan adds smaller Rogue Sport model to crossover lineup, starting at $21,420

Emma Jayne Williams, Fort Worth Star-Telegram on

Published in Automotive News

A new Rogue Sport joined the expanding Nissan SUV lineup for 2017, sharing design, utility and technology with the slightly larger Rogue, Nissan's best-selling vehicle in the United States.

The five-passenger Sport is, of course, sportier -- with a lower profile and sleeker looks -- and has more room than a compact sedan, with maneuverability, a fun-to-drive feel and affordability that younger, urban buyers are looking for. The third-row seat from the regular Rogue is not available.

Three models are offered: the very basic S, midlevel SV, and well-equipped SL -- priced from $21,420-$26,070 for front-wheel drive models. Intuitive all-wheel drive adds $1,350.

All models are equipped with a 141-horsepower 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine, Xtronic CVT with manual-shift mode and Eco Mode switch, and four-wheel independent suspension. Manual shifting is located on the shifter, with position (1 through 7) indicated in the instrument panel meter.

Eco Mode is operated using a switch or the navigation screen, and helps improve fuel efficiency, correcting excessive acceleration when starting from a standstill. If sudden acceleration is necessary in an emergency situation, the computer accesses the pressure on the accelerator and allows proper acceleration.

Standard equipment includes Electric Power-assisted Steering with Sport mode (sharper steering response), Vehicle Dynamic Control with Traction Control, and four-wheel antilock disc brakes. Dynamic control helps control oversteer or understeer for more confidence in turns by reducing engine speed and/or applying brake pressure to specific wheels, while traction control reduces throttle in the event of front wheel slippage or spin to help regain grip and maintain control.

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Active Trace Control helps keep the vehicle on its intended track around sharp curves, for even more confidence. Active Engine Braking smoothly adds small amounts of engine braking when the driver depresses the brake pedal, for more-comfortable braking. Active Ride Control moderates fore-aft pitching of the vehicle over bumps in the road by controlling the engine and brakes, for a smoother ride. Hill Start Assist is also standard.

Rogue Sport's exterior wears Nissan's familiar "emotional geometry" design, from the swooping front end with the dynamic V-motion grille flanked by signature boomerang headlights with LED Daytime Running Lights, purposeful creases along the sides, the pronounced rise at the back of the beltline, ending in a wide rear body appearance with long, sleek boomerang LED taillights and integrated roof spoiler.

Lines from the V-motion grille extend up to and across the hood to the "A" pillars. The kick-up waistline emphasizes the floating roof appearance.

Round fog lights designed to create a low, wide projection are integrated into the outer edge of the body-color front bumper.

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