Nissan’s answer to the popular Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 has received a hearty helping of Krom for 2010. Nicknamed the baby Murano, the well-equipped Rogue is currently in its third model year and fresh off moving 77,222 units in 2009, a 5.7% increase in sales versus 2008. Four distinct models will be available for 2010: the base S, the S with the 360° Value Package, the S Krom edition, and the feature-laden, topline SL.

The new Rogue S Krom edition was first announced in October and went on sale in December. Selecting the Krom edition adds a slew of aesthetic features to distinguish the limited edition model from other Rogues -- a uniquely styled body kit, body-colored side mirrors, a new front grille, and rear spoiler are flanked by 17-inch wheels wrapped in either Continental or Dunlop rubber. Exclusivity also brings rear tinted glass, a Krom emblem, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, and a center-mounted, sport-tuned exhaust. The Krom edition Rogue can be ordered in just three colors -- Gotham Gray, Venom Red, and Wicked Black -- and is unavailable in Hawaii.

Those looking for more bang-for-the-buck can opt for the aptly-named 360° Value Package, which adds 16-inch aluminum-alloys in place of the factory 16-inch steel wheels, an auto-dimming rearview mirror with in-mirror RearView monitor, chrome grille overlay, rear spoiler, and rear tinted glass. The package adds a mere $1000 over the basic Rogue S.

The single engine available across the Rogue line is the all-aluminum QR25DE, a 2.5-liter inline-four with 170 horsepower and 175 pound-feet of torque. Matched to Nissan’s advanced Xtronic CVT, engine power is routed to the wheels via front-wheel drive or an optional all-wheel drive system with yaw movement control; both drive systems are available on all Rogue models. With a curb weight under 4000 pounds, the Rogue achieves fuel economy ratings of 22 city/27 highway mpg for two-wheel drive models and 21 city/26 highway mpg for all-wheel drive models.

Underpinnings are provided by Nissan’s C platform, the same as the Sentra. The Rogue’s four-wheel independent suspension is comprised of front strut and rear multi-link suspension. Up front are subframe-mounted struts with coil springs and an anti-roll bar, while aluminum-alloy upper links, high-performance shock absorbers, and an anti-roll bar are bolted in out back. The 105.9-inch wheelbase and 182.9-inch overall length are among the longest in the compact CUV class, affording a cargo space volume of 57.9 cubic feet with the rear seats folded. Disc brakes are standard at all four corners with matching ABS, EBD, VDC, and Brake Assist to boot.

For those who want even more kit, additional options include a Premium Package with a Bose audio system, a Leather Package, and a power glass moonroof. With a wide array of standard safety features, electric power-assisted steering, newly standard chrome door handles, and well-received styling, the Rogue is sure to continue attracting buyers in the ever-expanding compact CUV segment.

2010 Nissan Rogue
Base Price$21,140
Vehicle LayoutFront-engine, FWD, AWD, 5-door compact crossover SUV
Engine2.5L/170-hp/175 lb-ft DOHC 16-valve I-4
TransmissionContinuously Variable Transmission
Curb Weight3281-3354 lb (FWD), 3435-3534 lb (AWD) (mfr)
Wheelbase105.9 in
Length x Width x Height182.9 x 70.9 x 65.3 in
EPA City/Hwy Fuel Econ21-22/26-27 mpg
On SaleNow