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A woman is shown securing a kayak to the roof of a red 2022 Nissan Rogue Platinum.

Does Thinking Outside the Box Mean Going Rogue? The 2022 Nissan Rogue vs 2022 Subaru Forester

You’re in the market for a practical and versatile vehicle that will fit the many demands of your life, a vehicle that can efficiently navigate your weekday commute and match your sense of adventure on the weekend. Any search for a vehicle like this will likely lead you to the Subaru lineup and models like the Forester, but what if your hard-earned money could get you behind the wheel of something more capable, more luxurious, and more innovative? That’s exactly what you’ll discover in this head-to-head match between the 2022 Nissan Rogue vs 2022 Subaru Forester.

Round 1: Power

Subaru’s reputation for building reliable vehicles is rooted in its adoption of the boxer engine, which you’ll find under the hood of the 2022 Forester. The engine is designed to evenly distribute weight in the vehicle to enhance overall stability and handling. On the Forester, the 2.5-liter engine does exactly this and is mated to a Lineartronic continuously variable transmission that balances efficiency with power, delivering 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque.

While the Forester is certainly impressive, you’ll get more power out of the 2022 Rogue thanks to Nissan’s all-new 1.5-liter variable compression (VC) turbo engine. Nissan pioneered the VC engine and introduced it on the 2019 Altima after two decades of development. The 2022 Rogue sees the latest update to the engine, which is mated to an Xtronic continuously variable transmission and delivers 201 horsepower and 225 lb-ft of torque for quick acceleration and exceptional handling.

A silver 2022 Subaru Forester Touring is shown driving past a body of water during a 2022 Nissan Rogue vs 2022 Subaru Forester comparison.

Round 2: Efficiency

Anyone looking for an efficient adventurer that can handle light off-roading and a variety of terrains and weather conditions knows to look at the Subaru lineup. The 2022 Forester continues Subaru’s legacy as an efficient rig with an average fuel economy of 26 MPG in the city and 33 MPG on the highway. Can the larger and more powerful Rogue match this efficiency?

Even with the Forester’s unique engine design, it’s not as efficient as the 2022 Rogue. The Rogue’s smaller engine packs a heavy punch while its continuously variable transmission does an exceptional job of optimizing efficiency. This translates to an impressive fuel economy of 28 MPG in the city and 35 MPG on the highway on all-wheel-drive models (for an apples-to-apples comparison with the AWD-only Forester) or 30 MPG city and 37 MPG highway on front-wheel-drive models.

Round 3: Capability

The 2022 Forester meets every standard of the Subaru brand, from its boxer engine to its symmetrical all-wheel drive that comes standard across the lineup. What, then, distinguishes Subaru’s all-wheel-drive system from the others? Like the boxer engine, the Forester’s symmetrical all-wheel-drive system is always active, which ensures it maintains a solid and consistent connection with the road. The system constantly routes power to all four wheels to maximize the Forester’s traction whether you’re traveling in snow, rain, sand, dirt, or mud.

While the 2022 Rogue doesn’t come standard with all-wheel drive, the upgrade is more than worthwhile and transforms the SUV into a capable adventurer. Nissan’s Intelligent All-Wheel-Drive works with the Rogue’s Drive Mode Selector and Vehicle Motion Control. Together, these tools individually control the Rogue’s wheels and can apply the brakes to one or as many wheels as needed to optimize traction and keep you in control. With the turn of a button, you get the capability of four-wheel drive thanks to the All-Wheel Drive modes that include Off-Road, Snow, Standard, Eco, and Sport.

Round 4: Interior Design

Just as you would expect from a 2022 model, the Forester is spacious, comfortable, and stylish. The entry-level Forester comes equipped with the basics like power windows and door locks, which leads to the Forester Premium with its chrome details and leather-wrapped steering wheel. The Sport distinguishes itself with its dark gray interior and orange accents, while the Wilderness adds water-resistant upholstery. The Limited and Touring add opulence with leather seating.

If you’re looking for next-level luxury and comfort in the Forester, you’ll have to spend a little more on trims like the Limited or Touring. This, however, isn’t the case with the 2022 Rogue, which offers a premium interior across its lineup from the entry-level S to the top-tier Platinum. This royal treatment starts with the NASA-inspired Zero Gravity seats that minimize fatigue and discomfort when you’re behind the wheel. Designed entirely with you and your passengers in mind, the Rogue also offers tri-zone climate control, a motion-activated liftgate, and Nissan’s exclusive Divide-N-Hide flexible cargo system that allows you to keep precious cargo safe and out of sight.

The black leather interior of a 2022 Nissan Rogue shows the steering wheel and center console.

Round 5: Connectivity

Subaru and Nissan make it easy to stay connected to your busy life even when you’re in the driver’s seat. The 2022 Forester comes standard with a 6.5-inch touchscreen display that’s home to the STARLINK Multimedia system, which gives you access to your smartphone via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Upgrading to a trim like the Forester Limited exchanges the display for an 8-inch touchscreen with a built-in, voice-activated navigation system.

Nissan doesn’t skimp on technology, and it shows in the 2022 Rogue with its standard 8-inch touchscreen display that’s home to wireless Apple CarPlay integration, which matches the convenience of the Rogue’s wireless smartphone charging pad. Want more screen space? An even larger 9-inch touchscreen is available on the SL and Platinum. From the driver’s seat, you’ll have access to an optional 12.3-inch digital dashboard and 10.8-inch head-up display that puts vital information on the windshield in front of your eyes. These tools keep you connected and informed without stealing your focus from the road.

Round 6: Safety

Just as Subaru and Nissan are committed to keeping you connected, they also make your safety a top priority. Every Forester in the lineup comes with the latest version of Subaru’s EyeSight Driver Assist Technology that extends your visibility and minimizes the potential for a collision. Depending on trim, the suite includes features like Blind Spot Detection, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Reverse Automatic Braking, Pre-Collision Braking, and Automatic Emergency Steering.

As with connectivity tools, Nissan sets a new benchmark and equips the 2022 Rogue with the most standard safety features in the segment. Centralized in the Nissan Safety Shield 360 suite, the Rogue’s driver-assist tools include Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, High Beam Assist, and Rear Automatic Braking. Nissan improves these features with Intelligent Driver Alertness, Blind Spot Intervention, Traffic Sign Recognition, and Intelligent Cruise Control, the latter of which is part of the Rogue’s ProPILOT Assist system that provides steering, acceleration, and braking support while you’re cruising down the highway.

What Will You Choose?

The 2022 Subaru Forester and the 2022 Nissan Rogue both have a lot to offer with their versatility, efficiency, and capability. The models are both packed full of cutting-edge technology and conveniences that make any time you spend behind the wheel enjoyable and safe. However, there are a few key differences that can’t be ignored.

Starting at $26,700, the 2022 Rogue might be priced slightly higher than the 2022 Forester’s $25,195 price tag, but that small increase is well worth it. The Rogue’s innovative variable compression turbo engine maximizes the SUV’s efficiency, while Nissan’s intelligent all-wheel-drive system delivers four-wheel-drive capability at the touch of a button. When you add in the Rogue’s Zero Gravity front seats and its extensive suite of driver-assist and infotainment technology, there’s no question that going Rogue is a better investment.