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If you’re looking to purchase a compact SUV, then two cars that should be on your shortlist are the 2022 Nissan Rogue and the Toyota RAV4. The Rogue was redesigned for the 2021 model year and offers buyers a near-luxury package, especially in its top-trim Platinum form. The Toyota RAV4 has been one of the best-selling SUVs on the market thanks to its reliability, efficiency, and surprising capability.

I have had the pleasure of driving both of these small SUVs and noted that although they are vastly different, they are also pretty similar. Here is a quick comparison between them.

2022 Nissan Rogue Platinum exterior
2022 Nissan Rogue Platinum | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The 2022 Nissan Rogue has a more spacious and comfortable interior

Dashboard and front seats in Front angle view of 2023 Nissan Rogue, highlighting how much a fully loaded one costs
2023 Nissan Rogue | Nissan

A wise person once said, “You see the inside of your car more than the outside.” Jokes aside, it is true. If you want a compact SUV with an attractive interior, then the 2022 Nissan Rogue is a great choice. My Rogue Platinum tester came with a semi-aniline quilted leather interior that made me forget which car I was sitting in since it felt more like an Infiniti. The leather is soft, the leather-wrapped steering wheel feels nice in my hands, and all of the buttons and knobs are within easy reach.

The Toyota RAV4 has a nice interior as well, but it feels and looks a little more utilitarian. Like the Rogue, the RAV4 has knobs and dials within easy reach, and the Limited trim level I received came with leather seats. But the seats aren’t as comfortable, and the material isn’t as soft – or as attractive – as those found in the Rogue.

The Nissan Rogue’s new turbocharged engine makes it a tough rival

The turbo VC engine in the 2022 Nissan Rogue Platinum
2022 Nissan Rogue Platinum | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

One major change that Nissan made to the Rogue for 2022 is in the form of a new turbocharged 1.5-liter VC engine. The “VC” stands for “variable compression,” and it’s a little more than a marketing gimmick. The new technology varies the engine’s compression ratios to provide optimal power during any type of driving situation. 

Honestly, I didn’t believe it until I drove it. The engine provides plenty of power in the mid-RPM range, which makes it good for merging onto the highway quickly and passing slower cars. It also provides plenty of grunt when going uphill as I was able to make use of its 201 hp and, more importantly, its 225 lb-ft of torque.

The Toyota RAV4 is motivated by a naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine that trades forced induction for more displacement. The 2.5-liter mill provides 203 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. That smaller torque rating might not sound like a huge difference, but it can definitely be felt when you drive around at a high elevation like I do.

When it comes to performance, I prefer the Rogue. However, I did prefer the RAV4’s 8-speed transmission over the Rogue’s CVT as it made the Toyota’s engine feel more responsive from a dead stop.

The Toyota RAV4’s infotainment system is a little more attractive

The black interior in the 2022 Toyota RAV4.
2022 Toyota RAV4 | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Both SUVs come with a 9-inch touchscreen infotainment system, but size doesn’t matter when it comes to the actual interface. They are both easy to see in various sunlight situations, and they both have the same video quality for the backup cameras. However, I preferred the intuitive interface and attractive graphics on the RAV4’s infotainment system.

The menus are easier to navigate through, and they look a little more attractive than those in the Rogue. Additionally, I prefer the sweet sounds of the RAV4’s JBL premium sound system. Although, the Rogue’s Bose system is still really good.

The Rogue has more storage capacity than the RAV4

An exterior view of a red Toyota RAV4
2022 Toyota RAV4 | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Does Anyone Regret Buying the Toyota RAV4?

When it comes to storage, the Nissan Rogue takes the cake. According to Nissan, the Rogue has 74 cubic feet of storage space with the rear seats folded compared to the RAV4’s 69.8. Sure, that doesn’t sound like a huge difference, but if you have to move something large or a lot of boxes, you’ll notice the difference.

Which compact SUV should you choose?

If horsepower and interior comfort are high on your list, then the 2022 Nissan Rogue is the way to go. It’s easy to get in and out of, provides a comfortable ride, and has a handsome interior. Although, if you want something that’s a little more rugged and you don’t need the extra bits of cargo room, then the Toyota RAV4 is a good way to go. After all, it’s one of the best-selling SUVs for a reason.