NASHVILLE — The 2017 Rogue Sport now reaching Nissan showrooms may look nearly identical to the brand’s volume-leading Rogue cross-over. Built on the same global platform as the Rogue, the Sport arrives with roughly the same shape, the same front and rear ends, the same chassis and most of the same parts.
But there is one big difference in how the new model will be presented: The Rogue is essentially for young families; the Rogue Sport will be pitched to singles and couples with no kids.
Selling vehicles never follows such cut-and-dried rules as that, of course. Consumers buy what they please. But Nissan believes the Sport fills a hole in its portfolio for shoppers who are attracted to the Rogue but just want it to be a bit more compact, with less cargo space and no need for a third row.
That difference has big implications for Nissan, says Aditya Jairaj, senior marketing manager for Rogue and Rogue Sport.
“We’ve got lofty targets for the Sport because there is a customer out there who hasn’t found the product they want yet,” Jairaj said. “We see customers in the market, shopping for a crossover but not buying one. The two main reasons why are the price is too high and the usual compact crossover is just too big.”