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2022 Nissan Rogue vs Kia Sportage

2022 Nissan Rogue vs Kia Sportage

2022 Rogue vs Sportage - How Do They Stack Up? Which is Better?

When you are in the market for a quality small SUV, you might be surprised by just how many of those vehicles are out there. In this highly competitive market, small SUVs are seemingly all trying to best one another when it comes to things like power, fuel economy, and included technological features. The 2022 Nissan Rogue and 2022 Kia Sportage are two such rivals that tend to go head-to-head a lot.

Having just been overhauled for its current generation, the 2022 Nissan Rogue provides its buyers with a good balance between power and fuel economy. It offers an EPA rated 33 miles per gallon in combined driving on the front-wheel drive (FWD) equipped base Rogue. When it was redesigned for the 2021 model year, the Rogue was adorned with many of the latest and greatest tech features available from Nissan. Even though it has a slightly elevated price tag compared to its rivals, the 2022 Nissan Rogue gives you an abundance of additional features. That's not all though; the Rogue serves up a cozy ride quality coupled with well padded seats. On top of that, the cargo area is spacious and geared toward versatility. Add to that the list of advanced driver aids geared toward use every day by the average driver.

Of course, there are a few downsides to owning the Rogue. This SUV will let in a fair amount of road and wind noise when going along on the highway. Also, its faulty voice recognition system and cramped back seats take away from the Rogue's overall appeal.

The 2022 Kia Sportage offers its buyers a smooth, comfortable ride quality thanks to its well tuned suspension. And the cabin? It is a lot roomier than it might seem from the outside. During highway drives, it remains quiet and relaxing. Whether you are seated up front or in the back, you should have plenty of room for your head and legs regardless of how tall you are, so you can just kick back and relax. Up front, you get a sleek, user-friendly dashboard with controls logically displayed and within reach for the driver. All of this is backed by some best-in-class warranty coverage from the automaker.

The Sportage does have its drawbacks though. The fuel economy isn't up to snuff with the Rogue and some other competitors in their class. Also, the cargo capacity isn't quite so generous or versatile in terms of design. The engine's sluggish acceleration might also be a reason to hold off on buying the Sportage until the upcoming next-gen Sportage generation makes its debut.

Which of these two small SUVs is able to meet your unique needs the best? Does one offer more overall value than the other? Which price tag can you most easily justify? Give this comparison a read-through to find out.

The Powertrain

When it comes down to it, a good powertrain can make the ownership experience a delightful one. You won't have to worry about how you're going to merge onto or pass another vehicle on the highway. But a bland powertrain can leave you feeling frustrated and like you're just getting left in the dust.

New for the model year, the 2022 Nissan Rogue is equipped with a standard 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine that is able to produce a higher power output )of 201 horsepower and 225 lb-ft of torque) than its predecessor, which was known for feeling under-powered. A continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) comes paired up with it. Front-wheel drive (FWD) in standard for the drivetrain, but all-wheel drive (AWD) can be put in its place on any of the Rogue's trim levels. It is important to remember that you cannot select any other powertrain for the Rogue; this is it.

This new Nissan Rogue is smooth and composed in regards to handling turns even though it is not close to being as sporty as the Mazda CX-5. Still, the Rogue's steering has enough bulk to it to prevent the steering and handling from feeling too floaty. The powertrain could still be better, but it is at least an improvement over the outgoing model. It takes about 9 seconds for the Rogue to get from 0 to 60 miles per hour, but that timing is just about average for a small crossover SUV. While this might not sound like a bad thing from the outset, it can feel a tad draining when you have to drive the Rogue five to seven days per week. You will have to take this SUV into full throttle in order in order to receive a decent response in power for merging or passing on the highway. This just means you will have to plan your actions a little ahead of time, but it could be worse.

When it has AWD equipped, the Rogue gets an EPA estimated 28 mpg in combined city and highway driving. These estimates put it about 2 mpg above what most of the Rogue's top competitors are able to achieve. Real-world tests reflect these estimates, which, with gas prices being what they are, should appeal to quite a few buyers who aren't yet ready to invest in a hybrid.

Now, for the 2022 Kia Sportage and its powertrain offerings. There are two to choose from. The LX, Nightfall, and EX trims are powered by a 2.4-L 4-cylinder engine while the SX Turbo models are all equipped with a 2.0-L turbo 4-cylinder engine. No matter which of these engines you choose, the Sportage will come with a 6-speed automatic transmission and FWD. All trim levels do have AWD listed as an option.

The 181 hp that the base engine generates probably won't feel all that impressive, so the turbo's 240 hp might be more your speed. You get a nice amount of low-end torque while cruising about town, but even the turbo engine quickly runs out of steam at higher speeds. It takes the turbo engine about 9 seconds to get from 0 to 60 mph, which feels slow for an upgraded engine. The Rogue's base engine even feels more spirited than this. What's worse is that the brake pedal sometimes feels too soft, and the suspension loses its sense of control on winding roads. With power delivery being unpredictable and the steering feeling vague, the driving performance isn't that inspiring.

Fuel economy is seriously lacking too. The turbo engine with AWD turns in a measly 21 mpg combined while the FWD-equipped 2.4-L engine gets an EPA estimated 26 mpg combined. This falls below what the Rogue can do and puts the Sportage below quite a few other rivals. Real world tests match these EPA estimates, so there is little hope that you'll be able to best them.

Drivability

Drivability is a term we use that is all-encompassing. How comfortable is a vehicle to ride in? Is the ride quality smooth enough? Are the interior materials high enough quality? Is everything inside the cabin logically laid out? Are the tech features functional as expected? How much cargo space will you get, and how easy is it to utilize? These are some of the major factors we consider when we talk about a vehicle's drivability.

Let's start by assessing the 2022 Nissan Rogue and what makes it such a comfy SUV to ride in. The front seats are padded for the utmost in support and relaxation, making them a great fit for those who love road-tripping. There rear seats have two reclining positions and are sculpted with an abundance of lumbar support. The comfort-tuned suspension lends to a smooth ride quality, and it can quickly dispatch a variety of road imperfections without an issue. Even on the optional 19-inch wheels, the suspension has no problem getting rid of all sizes of bumps and juts in the road.

The Rogue does have its share of pitfalls when it comes to how it rides. You will get a fair bit of wind and road noise that seeps into the cabin when you get it zipping along on the highway. However, the tri-zone climate control system on the SL trim level and above is a rarity for small SUVs that aren't in the luxury segment. Regardless of whether you are sitting up front or in the rear, it distributes air flow with ease.

With its wide door openings, getting in and out of the Rogue feels effortless. The spaciously designed cabin feels airy and open, making you believe that it is bigger than it really is. Also, you can see clearly in front of the vehicle from your seat behind the wheel due to the wide glass panes. Unfortunately, the thick rear roof pillars will require you to use the advanced driver aids to help you see out the back and to the sides. The Rogue's cabin has a crisp, modern, and clean design complete with high quality materials. What's more, its layout is easy to get used to. But rear seat leg room is tighter than it is the likes of the Honda CR-V.

The Rogue has become a top contender in this segment due to how much standard tech it now includes. When the Rogue was redesigned in 2021, it was given a lot of fancy new tech features that are known for being user-friendly and functional. Smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is standard on every trim level. Also standard is SiriusXM Satellite Radio compatibility. The base S trim comes with two USB ports, but upgrading one trim level to the SV tacks on two charge-only ports to the rear seats. WIFI hot-spot connectivity and a six-speaker audio system are also equipped on the SV and above. The SL Premium package adds on voice controls, wireless Apple CarPlay (although wireless Android Auto is not yet available on the Rogue), a 10-speaker Bose premium audio system, a 9-inch touchscreen display, and an integrated navigation system. Going all the way up to the Platinum adds on all of those features plus a digital instrumentation panel and a wireless charging pad.

Nissan makes the most of the space it can give the Rogue, which helps it feel like one of the roomiest cabins in this segment. Nissan adds in a space-saving two-tier cargo management system which they call the Divide-N-Hide. Given this design, the cargo area gets a dual-panel floor that adds versatility, creating a flat load floor that can hold bigger cargo without blocking rear visibility. When these panels are placed into their lowest position, cargo space comes in at 36.5 cubic feet, which is only a little bit smaller than average for this segment. When you fold the rear seats down, cargo space maxes out at 74.1 cubic feet, which is one of the largest cargo areas you can get in this class.

How does the 2022 Kia Sportage stack up? Well, it tries. The front seats are really supportive and have superb heating and ventilation functions when you opt for them. Tire noise becomes obvious at highway speeds, but the cabin is otherwise well muted from sound and kept free from jarring motions as you roll over bumps in the road. The ride does tend to feel overly firm due to its sporty tuning. It can sometimes feel like you're driving a boat, not a SUV.

While the interior design looks high quality, the sloping roofline cuts down your rear outward visibility. It also makes for less head room in the back row of seats. The driver's seat might not go low enough for taller drivers. Buttons are all clearly labeled, but since they all look alike, you have to rely on those labels.

Technology is a brighter spot for the Sportage. The touchscreen is easy to use, and smartphone app integration makes things simple. There are rear USB outlets available depending on the trim level. Voice controls don't work that well though, and they aren't even accessible while you are using smartphone projection. Subscribing to Uvo services leads to a few improvements with voice controls, but it obviously costs you extra money.

The Sportage's 30.7 cubic feet of space behind the back row and 60.1 cubic feet with the seats folded down is merely average. Wheel wells gobble up space and make the flat load floor feel a bit restrictive. Putting rear-facing car seats into the back seats can be more trouble than it's worth, although front-facing seats are easier to install. The center console's bin is somewhat tiny, but the phone storage cubby is more than spacious.

Safety

For most drivers, safety is a major concern. Auto makers are well aware of the demand for enhanced safety features and designs. That is why Nissan equips the 2022 Rogue with a suite of standard driver aids called Nissan Safety Shield . This bundles together forward collision mitigation, lane departure warning, a blind spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert, a rear-passenger safe exit system, and rear automatic braking. The SV trim level adds on lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and a 360-degree camera system. The SL Premium package tacks on front and rear parking sensors, and a sleek head-up display comes along on the Platinum trim level.

Nissan's driver aids all seem to work well enough since the automaker was able to refine them during the last overhaul. As owners have noted since 2021, the Rogue's new lane centering assist and adaptive cruise control are less likely to emit false warnings than similar features found on other vehicles. Owners even state that these features bring them some peace of mind while driving. There is one odd glitch though. Adaptive cruise control should ideally communicate with the nav system to slow the Rogue down to prepare it for oncoming curves, but this doesn't seem to work quite yet.

Kia doesn't skimp on the Sportage's driver aids either. You get a standard driver attention monitor, lane departure warning, forward collision warning, and lane keep assist. Blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert is standard on the Nightfall Edition and above, and the optional EX Technology adds parking sensors and adaptive cruise control. Lane keep assist is the only feature that is problematic since its steering assist is lacking and it doesn't read lane markers correctly.

Which Has the Best Value?

Value is something buyers need to consider as they go about making purchasing decisions. Which vehicle will give them the most bang for their buck? It is hard to say just from test-driving a vehicle. That's why you should always look into pricing, warranty coverage, and how owners are rating these vehicles in their online reviews.

Buyers of the 2022 Nissan Rogue get plenty value given how many standard tech features and driver aids make the list. Sure, this lengthy list means that the Rogue is more expensive than some of its competitors, but its available quilted leather and wireless smartphone app integration on the line-topping Platinum trim level make it easy to justify a higher price tag. Most buyers don't simply go with the base trim, so you will probably want to carve a little deeper into your budget to get a higher, more well-equipped Rogue trim level. Warranty coverage is industry standard, but the quality of materials found inside of the cabin is higher than a lot of what you will find in the Rogue's rivals.

Value is something the 2022 Kia Sportage also offers in droves. Kia's outstanding warranty coverage is a huge selling point. You get a basic warranty that covers five-years/60,000-miles (whichever comes first) and a mind-blowing 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, both of which are matched only by its corporate cousin, Hyundai. The Sportage has a cheaper starting MSRP than the Honda CR-V and Nissan Rogue, and the line-topping trim slides in below the Mazda CX-5's line-topper, which is actually sporty and a stand-out performer all-around.

Which is Better?

While we like the 2022 Kia Sportage's warranty coverage and tech features, it is clearly in need of that redesign that's coming up. If you're set on the Sportage, hold off until the new generation is introduced. Otherwise, we recommend testing out the 2022 Nissan Rogue, which actually feels sporty but also quite comfortable and well-rounded.

View Comparisons for other Years:

2021 Nissan Rogue VS Kia Sportage
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