- The Honda CR-V was last all-new for 2017 and receives a facelift and a new hybrid model for 2020.
- The Nissan Rogue was last redesigned for 2014, and an all-new version is coming for 2021.
- The CR-V and Rogue are IIHS Top Safety Picks.
The 2020 Honda CR-V and the 2020 Nissan Rogue are two of the more popular compact SUVs on the market today. Both offer practicality, space, safety and efficiency, and buyers in the market for a small SUV are likely to consider at least one of them. The CR-V was last fully redesigned for the 2017 model year and receives an update for 2020 and a new hybrid model. The Rogue was last all-new way back in 2014, and it should be replaced by an all-new model for 2021.
Below, we’ll compare the two vehicles in several categories to give you a better idea of which one is the better buy in 2020.
Looks are subjective, but we’re inclined to say that the CR-V looks a little more upscale than the Rogue, — which makes sense, given that the CR-V’s design is newer and more modern. See the 2020 Honda CR-V models for sale near you
In terms of exterior size, the Rogue is about 4 inches longer than the CR-V — the CR-V is 180.6 inches long, and the Rogue is 184.5 inches long. Their width and height are very similar, and both vehicles offer 8.2 inches of ground clearance. See the 2020 Nissan Rogue models for sale near you
The CR-V and the Rogue come with rather conservative interiors. The Rogue’s interior is particularly bland, and Nissan‘s focus on cost-cutting in recent years really shows. Black plastic and dated switchgear dominate the dashboard, center console and door panels. The CR-V’s cabin is at least a little more upscale, as it uses a greater variety of surfaces and colors. One unique touch in the CR-V is that the gearshift lever is mounted to the bottom of the center stack, rather than on the center console, as in most vehicles. There’s some wood trim, too, which feels like a step back in time in 2020, but beyond that, the CR-V’s cabin is about what you’d expect from a compact SUV.
In the dimensions that count, the Rogue comes with 37.9 inches of second-row legroom. The CR-V is a little more generous, offering 40.4 inches. Each vehicle comes with 39 cu ft of cargo space behind its second row, but with the second rows folded, the CR-V has the edge, offering 76 cu ft to the Rogue’s 70 cu ft.
The 2020 Honda CR-V comes standard with a 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine putting out 190 horsepower and 179 lb-ft of torque and paired with a continuously variable transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard. All-wheel drive is optional. With FWD, the 2020 Honda CR-V is rated by the Environmental Protection Agency at 28 miles per gallon in the city, 34 mpg on the highway and 30 mpg in combined driving. Adding AWD results in a 1-mpg loss all around.
The 2020 Nissan Rogue’s lone powertrain option is a basic 2.5-liter 4-cylinder putting out 170 hp and 175 lb-ft of torque. It’s one of the weakest engines in this segment. Like the CR-V, the Rogue uses a CVT and offers optional AWD. Fuel economy is 26 mpg city/33 mpg hwy/29 mpg combined. AWD results in a 1-mpg drop in the city and highway figures and a 2-mpg drop in combined mileage.
While the Rogue loses its hybrid trim for 2020, the CR-V gains one. The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid comes standard with AWD and uses a 4-cylinder engine paired with a hybrid motor for a total output of 212 hp — more than the nonhybrid model. It’s rated by the EPA at 40 mpg city/35 mpg hwy/38 mpg combined — impressive, but a couple of mpg behind the segment-leading Toyota RAV4 Hybrid.
Features & Technology
Features available on the CR-V include LED lighting, a panoramic sunroof, heated power adjustable front seats, a heated steering wheel, rain-sensing wipers and a hands-free power rear lift gate that can be operated by your foot.
The Rogue offers a lot of what you can get on the CR-V. Features unique to the Rogue include a 360-degree surround-view camera system, a Bose audio system (Honda doesn’t do branded audio) and a clever tire pressure monitoring system that beeps the vehicle’s horn when the recommended pressure has been reached during refills.
The Rogue comes standard with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and the CR-V offers them on all but its base LX trim. Both vehicles earned a Top Safety Pick award for their performance in crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and both come standard with a healthy array of active safety tech, including forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control and more.
Factoring in destination fees, a base model 2020 Nissan Rogue S with FWD starts at $26,395. A fully loaded Rogue SL with AWD comes in at $36,350.
The 2020 Honda CR-V starts at $26,170 and tops out at $35,870 for a top-spec Touring model with AWD. Opting for the hybrid adds an additional $2,700 across the board.
On paper, the Rogue and the CR-V are evenly matched in a lot of ways. They offer similar cargo room, reasonably efficient powertrains, great safety scores and some nice-to-have features in their upper trim levels. But at this point, the Rogue’s age is impossible to ignore. Its cabin feels dated, and its powertrain is weak and unrefined. In this extremely competitive segment, it’s simply been too long since the Rogue was last given a full redesign. The only real reason to buy a 2020 Nissan Rogue is if you’re getting an incredible deal. An all-new Rogue is coming for 2021, but as far as the 2020 models go, we’d choose the CR-V without thinking twice, and we’d give strong consideration to the hybrid model. Find a Honda CR-V for sale or Find a Nissan Rogue for sale