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2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5: Which Is Better?

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author photo by Eric Brandt February 2020
  • The 2020 Nissan Rogue and the 2020 Mazda CX-5 are competitive compact crossover SUVs.
  • The CX-5 has some newly standard safety technology for 2020.
  • The Mazda has a lower starting price, but it gets more expensive than the Nissan on the high end.

You have a ton of options when it comes to compact crossovers, and two good choices are the Mazda CX-5 and the Nissan Rogue. They both have upscale, roomy interiors, respectable fuel economy and a sense of style that will make you stand out from the crowd. Both SUVs have different strengths and weaknesses that set them apart from each other.

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between the Rogue and the CX-5 and see which is better.

2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5 exterior

Exterior

Despite both of these SUVs technically competing in the same segment, the Rogue is actually quite a bit bigger than the CX-5. The Nissan is six inches longer and about three inches taller than the Mazda, and the two are almost identical in width. Since the Rogue is on the bigger side of the compact crossover segment, it will take up a little more space in your garage. See the 2020 Nissan Rogue models for sale near you

As for exterior design, the CX-5 has a premium look to it that you might expect from a more expensive SUV. The Rogue hasn't been redesigned in a while, but its look is aging nicely with its bold V-motion grille up front and nicely sculpted body. See the 2020 Mazda CX-5 models for sale near you

2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5 interior

Interior

The premium look of the CX-5 continues on the inside with a fantastic interior design, especially for this price point. The inside of the Rogue looks nice too, but in a more sporty way with a flat-bottom steering wheel. Both crossovers use nice materials on the inside and never feel cheap, even in the lower trims.

The extra length of the Rogue pays off on the inside with quite a bit more cargo room than the CX-5. The Nissan's cargo hold is above average for this class, while the cargo space in the Mazda is below average. Passenger space is almost identical between the two. If you're looking for a more versatile interior with more cargo space, you'll appreciate the Rogue. If a more premium interior is more important to you, then you'll probably prefer the CX-5.

2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5 mechanicals

Mechanicals

The Rogue only has one engine available, and the CX-5 has three. As par for the course in this segment, both of these SUVs have standard front-wheel drive and available all-wheel drive. There used to be a hybrid option for the Rogue, but it's been dropped for 2020.

2020 Nissan Rogue Engine

  • 2.5-liter inline-four; 170 hp, 175 lb-ft of torque; up to 26 mpg city/33 mpg hwy

2020 Mazda CX-5 Engines

  • 2.5-liter inline-four; 187 hp, 186 lb-ft of torque; up to 25 mpg city/31 mpg hwy
  • 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-four; 250 hp, 310 lb-ft of torque; 22 mpg city/27 mpg hwy
  • 2.2-liter turbo-diesel inline-four; 168 hp, 290 lb-ft of torque; 27 mpg city/30 mpg hwy

As you can see, the CX-5 has quite a bit more variety under the hood than the Rogue. We like the fuel economy of the sole engine in the Nissan, but frankly, it's a bit underpowered. The base engine in the CX-5 makes more power and torque, and it's in a slightly smaller, lighter vehicle than the Rogue, adding up to noticeably better performance. If you want to upgrade the performance further, you can get the turbocharged engine, but it's only available starting in the Grand Touring Reserve trim. It's worth noting that the CX-5 is the only SUV in its class that offers a turbo-diesel option that makes a lot of torque while returning good fuel economy.

2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5 technology

Technology

When it comes to infotainment technology, these two SUVs are pretty similar. They both come standard with a 7-in infotainment system, with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay standard in the Rogue and optional in the CX-5 (it's on every trim except the base Sport model).

As for safety technology, the CX-5 gets more standard tech for 2020. Standard tech features include a rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, forward-collision warning, pedestrian detection and low-speed automatic emergency braking.

The Rogue's list of standard safety tech includes a rearview camera, lane-departure warning, pedestrian detection, forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and automatic high-beam headlights.

2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5 pricing

Pricing

The CX-5 has a starting MSRP of $25,190, and the Rogue starts at $25,300. The top trim of the Rogue (SL AWD) starts at $33,040, and the range-topping CX-5 Signature with standard AWD starts at $37,155, as well as some that are standard with the turbocharged gas engine.

2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5 conclusions

Conclusion

For most drivers, the CX-5 is a better crossover than the Rogue. The Mazda has a nicer look inside and out, more variety in its model range and under the hood and better performance. However, if you like the idea of better fuel economy and more cargo space, then you'll probably find more to love in the pragmatic Rogue. Find a Nissan Rogue for sale or Find a Mazda CX-5 for sale

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2020 Nissan Rogue vs. 2020 Mazda CX-5: Which Is Better? - Autotrader
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