The list of best-selling vehicles in the United States is always topped with the Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado. Beyond those two constants, there’s a consistent flow of Toyotas and Hondas that typically round out the top 10.
One car that hasn’t spent much time on the best-selling list is the Nissan Rogue. Its name suggests that the car is a lone ranger, a scoundrel driven away from the rest of the herd and left to operate on its own. This is a vehicle that might be more comfortable slinking around in the dark than basking in the limelight of a top-sellers list.
It’s ironic then, that the once-mediocre and formerly unpleasant Nissan Rogue has evolved into the best-selling non-pickup in America.
More people choose a Rogue than any other model from Nissan. That isn’t necessarily surprising, but here’s the shocker:
The growth of crossovers comes as car sales face double-digit declines this year and the industry experienced a 1.6-percent first-quarter drop in sales — the first three-month drop to begin a year since 2009. The Rogue compact has experienced a 47 percent increase in sales during the first quarter compared with 2016 to dethrone the Toyota Camry — last year’s best-selling nonpickup.
What makes the Rogue so compelling over incredibly tough competition? Price is one factor. Comparing the Rogue and CR-V, buyers can save about $3,000 if opting for a Rogue SL over a CR-V Touring. Plus, the Rogue’s refined soft-touch interior is a refreshing option compared with the competition’s hard door panels and armrests. Performance and fuel economy numbers are close enough to not give either car an advantage, so buyers are making their choices based on value for the money.
That’s where the Rogue wins.
Not only is the rise of the Rogue a telling sign of the dominance of crossovers, it’s also a moment that marks the fall of the family sedan.
We expect crossovers, SUVs, and pickups to continue to rise in popularity while Americans fall out of love with sedans and small cars.
If you had to pick one: Toyota Camry or Nissan Rogue?