2020 Honda CR-V vs. 2020 Nissan Rogue: Compare Crossover SUVs

November 19, 2019
2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Honda CR-V

Crossovers carry more than passengers and cargo. Crossovers like the 2020 Honda CR-V and 2020 Nissan Rogue carry more technology and safety equipment than many new vehicles on the road and point into new-car shoppers’ priorities better than Christmas wishlists. 

Heavy buzz and pressure aside, which crossover fits best for your family? Our TCC Ratings of 6.5 and 6.3 for the CR-V show a close race on paper. In real-world terms, the race is even closer than that. 

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Nissan Rogue

Both crossovers are relatively easy to configure but require more decisions than just a paint color. Honda offers the CR-V with just a lone engine choice this year, down from two last year, but make all-wheel drive available on every trim level. Same goes for Nissan and the Rogue. Honda will sell a hybrid-powered CR-V next year that we haven’t yet driven, but Nissan gave up on a Rogue Hybrid after last year’s model was a slow-seller. (Its fuel-economy benefits didn’t tempt many buyers.) 

The 190-horsepower 1.5-liter turbo-4 in the CR-V is mostly efficient and smooth, paired to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) that keeps the engine in its sweet spot. A 170-hp 2.5-liter inline-4 is standard in all Rogue models that’s paired to a CVT and quells the coarse attitude of that engine. All-wheel drive is an option on both models and provides all-weather traction. Other crossovers do off-roading better, but the CR-V and Rogue hold their own on snowy days. 

The Rogue’s look and tall windows narrowly outpoint the CR-V’s updated looks for this year, but style isn’t how we arrived at our conclusion. Both offer functional interiors, dominated by a 7.0-inch touchscreen in the CR-V (equipped on most models) and a 7.0-inch touchscreen in the Rogue, which is standard on all models. Honda and Nissan bake in Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility in their 7.0-inch touchscreens, which relieves owners from using sometimes-finicky native infotainment systems found in Honda and Nissan cars. 

The CR-V packs five adults in its interior with room for 39.2 cubic feet of cargo in the back. The Rogue does nearly the same, including almost identical cargo room, but the Honda outpoints it in rear-seat leg room and comfort. 

Same goes for the CR-V and Rogue in safety ratings. The CR-V gets five stars from federal testers and a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS. The Rogue is a Top Safety Pick too, but a four-star overall score from federal testers drops another point. Both crossovers get standard automatic emergency braking and active lane control on every model. Honda adds adaptive cruise control, and Nissan offers a driver-assist system that can keep the Rogue centered in its lane on top trims. 

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Nissan Rogue

2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid

2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Honda CR-V

The base CR-V costs $26,145 and includes 17-inch wheels, cloth upholstery, power features, a 5.0-inch display for infotainment, one USB port, and Bluetooth connectivity. The base Rogue costs just $100 more but adds a 7.0-inch touchscreen on top of Honda’s features. 

Our picks are in the middle of both ranges: a 2020 CR-V EX and a 2020 Rogue SV. The Honda costs $28,655, which is $1,240 more than the Rogue SV, but is better equipped. The CR-V EX adds a 7.0-inch touchscreen for infotainment with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, 18-inch wheels, blind-spot monitors, keyless ignition, power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front seats, uprated audio and faster USB charging ports. The Rogue SV keyless ignition, power-adjustable heated front seats, and available options such as adaptive cruise control, a panoramic sunroof, embedded navigation, driver-assistance features, premium audio by Bose, and unique wheels for more money. 

Both crossovers are rated by the EPA at about 30 mpg combined in most configurations, which is not only good for tall-riding crossovers but also good among most new cars on the road. 

In the end, it’s the CR-V’s polish and safety scores that lift it ahead of the Rogue but it’s easy to see why both are popular with new-car buyers.

Summary

6.5
Expert Rating
The 2020 Honda CR-V hits right at the heart of many buyers’ needs: comfortable, spacious, quiet, and efficient.
6.3
Expert Rating
The 2020 Nissan Rogue is a bread-and-butter crossover that does it all for a low price.

Styling

4.0
Expert Rating
The restyled 2020 CR-V favors mass appeal over outward style.
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5.0
Expert Rating
Plain and straightforward, the 2020 Rogue doesn’t take many risks in its style.
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Performance

5.0
Expert Rating
Addition by subtraction this year for the 2020 CR-V; the lone engine option for now is the best.
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4.0
Expert Rating
Don’t expect to win many drag races in the 2020 Rogue.
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Comfort & Quality

9.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 CR-V excels in hauling people and cargo.
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8.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Nissan Rogue is spacious and comfortable for up to five adults.
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Safety

9.0
Expert Rating
Great crash-test scores are complemented by exceptional outward vision in the 2020 Honda CR-V.
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8.0
Expert Rating
Crash-test scores are mixed, but the Rogue has available advanced safety features that others don’t yet offer.
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Features

7.0
Expert Rating
There’s not a bad pick in the 2020 CR-V lineup.
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8.0
Expert Rating
The Rogue’s best feature will be its affordable price for many shoppers.
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Fuel Economy

5.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 CR-V is efficient among rivals, a hybrid version is on the way that should be even better.
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5.0
Expert Rating
The Nissan Rogue Hybrid is gone this year, and what’s left is average among compact crossovers.
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MSRP

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Invoice

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Fuel Economy - Combined City and Highway

Engine

Drivetrain

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