Nissan proudly touts its 2021 Nissan Rogue crossover as the ultimate family vehicle, with wide-opening back doors for wrangling kids and even a specific place in the rear-cargo area for transporting a gallon of milk. Unfortunately, the freshly redesigned Rogue is lacking the area that is usually number one on family car buyers’ minds: crash safety.
The previous Rogue rated “Good” across the board with IIHS, except for the small overlap front: passenger-side test, where it still earned an “Acceptable” rating. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s New Car Assessment Program gave the last gen Rogue four out of five stars overall on front and rollover crashes, and five stars in side impacts.
While the 2021 Nissan Rogue scored another overall four out of five stars with NHTSA back in January, the front passenger crash test earned the automaker a measly two out of five stars. That’s...not good, especially for such a huge volume seller like the Rogue. The CUV makes up a little less than half of Nissan’s SUV and truck sales in the U.S. In 2019 Nissan sold 350,447 Rogues in the states. In other words, Nissan really needs to get this Rogue right.
Now Nissan says it has applied an (untested by federal regulators) fix for cars built after Jan. 28, 2021, and will recall cars built before that date to apply the fix. Roadshow got a hold of Nissan’s statement about how Nissan is going to go about making the change:
Nissan is committed to vehicle safety and is pleased with the 2021 Nissan Rogue’s overall 4-star NCAP safety rating. All 2021 Rogue vehicles fully comply with federal safety standards.
Nissan is aware of the two-star NCAP rating for front-passenger safety for 2021 Rogue vehicles assembled at Nissan’s Kyushu, Japan, manufacturing facility prior to Jan. 28, 2021. Nissan applied an update to the front passenger restraint system on all 2021 Rogue vehicles assembled at Nissan’s Smyrna, Tennessee plant, and all vehicles produced after Jan. 28 at the Kyushu plant. Therefore the two-star front-passenger safety rating only applies to the vehicles produced at the Kyushu plant prior to Jan. 28.
To ensure customer confidence and satisfaction, Nissan will soon launch a service campaign to update 2021 Rogue vehicles produced in Kyushu prior to January 28, 2021. Owners will receive notification as to when to bring their vehicle in for updates.
The front-passenger safety systems in the vehicles that received the update have yet to be tested by NHTSA. An additional test of the 2021 Rogue is scheduled with results expected in May.
The Rogue does come with a whole host of standard active safety features, now known as Safety Shield 360. It includes rear automatic braking, rear cross-traffic alert, lane departure warning, blind-spot warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection and high beam assist. All of that wrapped up in 10 standard airbags, so it’s not all bad news for Rogue buyers.
It’s not super clear what change will be applied, but it seems Nissan is updating the seatbelts. Hopefully, May will bring better news, in the form of better test results, for Nissan and its customers.